Three Sisters: An Intimate Photo Album of the Midwest Between World Wars
Photo Album(Women). Photo Album: Three Sisters. Midwest, 1918-1927. Oblong octavo. Covers are brown cloth boards held by ties. Oblong octavo, 11” x 7” inches. Title “Photographs” in gilt. 230 snapshots in a variety of sizes, most 3.5” x 4.5” inches, but also 2.25” x 3.5”, 1.5” x 2.25”, and 7” x 5”. Both black and white and sepia, in glossy and matte finishes. Very occasionally torn along the fold, and minor silvering to a few photos. The life of three sisters growing up in the Midwest is captured with warmth and incredible detail, creating a culturally significant document of middle-class family life between the World Wars. The majority are captioned in white pencil or white ink with the name of the person in the photo and a brief description like “Sunday best”; some are a little ironic tone, such as “Seeking sunburn” underneath a photo of two of the sisters, sweaty and bare armed in a row boat, and “No water, but our tongues” under a picture of the sisters as little children in bathing suits on their porch, pulling silly faces. We follow the women from childhood through early adulthood, through their schools and summer camps, across suburban Ohio, the shores of Michigan, and the wooded Ozarks. The private lives of these young girls are revealed to be impish, spirited, and silly in these intimate photographs; At the same time, they were growing up in a period of great change. With the passage of the 19th Amendment in 1920, they were the first generation of women to come of age in a time when they could exercise the right to vote. Bumping at corners and a half-inch tear at top of spine, otherwise clean. First page separated. A fascinating cultural artifact of a historically significant period for women’s rights.
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