Old Photographs Saved From Trash Can ~ #74 A Church Gathering of Unknown People

This group photo has no date, location, or names of the people. It was most likely taken in the 1950s. Being a child of the late 1950s it’s difficult for me to guess if this is early, mid, or even late fifties fashion.

mrin38268-lillieruthjchurchworkassy-rooney-collectionJoe Rooney, who labelled all the digital copies of the photographs, recognized his aunt Ruth Joanna LILLIE in the far back, in the middle of the doorway. Her hair is much lighter than in the 1950 photo we’ve seen of her with her brother Samuel Royalty “Roy” LILLIE. Joe shared a photo with me of Ruth, her sister Ruby, and brothers Raymond and Reese from October 1960. Ruth’s hair in the photo is lighter colored and she is holding her head the same as in this closeup of the group photo.

ruthblowupI asked Joe where the building may be and which religion Ruth was associated with. He wrote, “ I don’t recognize the building, but it was my guess* and could be wrong. She participated in the Eastern Star as did Sandra Lillie. But their “reunions” often took place elsewheres, even in Michigan. I don’t know much about the organization.” *Joe is referring to his identifying the photo as  “LillieRuthJChurchWorkAssy.”

The photo from October 1960 will be included in a future post along with a series of pictures Joe shared with me of his mother Ruby with her sister Ruth. The series are from Joe’s family album and were not part of this collection of photographs rescued from ending up in a landfill.

bestwishescathy1

More about this collection, how it came to be in my possession,
and links to previous posts in the series can be found here.

Please contact me!
Are you related to a person mentioned in this post? Send an email to
openingdoorsinbrickwalls @ pt.lu or message me on my Facebook page
Opening Doors in Brick Walls.

© 2016, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.

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Author: Cathy Meder-Dempsey

As a military brat I've lived in Georgia, France, Idaho, West Virginia, Spain, South Carolina, Texas, and Luxembourg. Married 36 years with two grown children. When I’m not doing genealogy, I spend time riding my racing bike with my husband through the wonderful countryside in Luxembourg and surrounding countries.

9 thoughts on “Old Photographs Saved From Trash Can ~ #74 A Church Gathering of Unknown People”

    1. Amy, my cousin Joe was under the impression that it was an assembly of church members. My question to him was which church and I gleaned the information about Ruth being a member of the Eastern Star. I have seen this mentioned in obituaries but never took the time to look into it. Vera explained a bit a in her comment below. Thank you for the questions!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I should have been a bit more specific about this being the name he gave to the digital image – and not everyone writes things out. I know what you thought! I actually wondered if I was the only one who would notice this. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  1. I think I lost the comment I had written. If this is a duplicate, just delete. (And excuse the long windedness).
    Eastern Star is the women’s branch of the Masonic Lodge, a fraternal organization. Although it has religious connotations, it is definitely not church based. If this were an Eastern Star gathering, you could see Eastern Star pins on the women. They sometimes had dangling additions denoting various degrees of membership, so they would be visible. I don’t see any, so would assume that the label Church Work Assembly would be correct. (Any chance she belonged to a proselytizing group like Jehovah’s Witness?Just a wild thought)
    Many protestant churches had/have church assemblies–the leaders of many churches in an area, state etc. get together to talk about general administrative things, confer on church policy and /or hold joint worship services.
    Although I went to high school and college in the 50s, I can’t guess the exact period either. Women of the age in the picture did not necessarily wear the latest up-to-date fashions. The skirts are pretty long, which would incline me to think late fifties after Dior’s “New Look” filtered down to the general public. (Both the 40s and later 60s were shorter skirts, although these middle aged and older women might have continued to wear the same thing they wore in the 50s.) Although men’s fashions seem never to change, the width of neckties do change. In the 40s and early 50s I think the neckties would have been broader, but you’d have to check that.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Vera for the long winded comment and sorry you lost the first.
      The skirts lengths also had me guessing closer to late 1950s. The hemlines going up and down used to be a good indication of time period but women could not always afford to wear the latest fashions.
      I appreciate the time you took to write about the Eastern Star.

      Like

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