Old Photographs Saved From Trash Can ~ #80 A White Swan

Why did Florence ROYALTY save this photograph of a big white bird?

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Photographed by Cumings of Golconda, Illinois. (no information was found for this photographer)

A Trumpeter swan or a Tundra swan? There are two species of swans in North America with black bills. Since there is no color in the photo one cannot see if this is a trumpeter with a red border on the lower mandible or a tundra with yellow marking on the lore. But then a tundra swan can also have the red marking and some tundra swans don’t have the yellow teardrop spot near the eye. A tundra’s eye is usually distinct from the bill while a trumpeter’s eye is not but the quality of the photo makes it hard to tell. Trumpeters have longer necks in proportion to their bodies than tundras. Distinguishing the trumpeter from the tundra is not easy even when the two are swimming or standing and they can be compared. These characteristics can be used in the field to identify one or the other but from this photograph, it would be a “wild” guess.

“In the 19th and early 20th centuries, the trumpeter swan was hunted heavily, for game or meat, for the soft swanskins used in powder puffs, and for their quills and feathers.” [Source: Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trumpeter_swan]. Extinction of the trumpeter seemed imminent by 1933 when fewer than 70 were known to exist. In the 1950s several thousand trumpeters were discovered in Alaska. The population has been restored to over 46,000 birds in 2010.

royaltyquincywhiteswanbackQuincy ROYALTY
killed this white swan
in a lake in New Mexico
& had it stuffed & mounted
in a glass case.

He sold it to a lawyer
when he left there for $20.

John Quincy ROYALTY (1866-1918), Florence’s brother, was the man who killed the swan. Quincy was in New Mexico from before 1898 until 1903, during the time that the swan was heavily hunted. In 1898 while in Albuquerque, New Mexico, he enlisted in Company E, First Territorial U.S. Volunteer Infantry, and served during the Spanish War until mustered out at Albany, Georgia, in 1899. After a visit to his old home in Pope County, Illinois, he returned to the West. In 1900 he was once again in Albuquerque, living in the household of his brother-in-law John R. BOSWELL and his youngest sister Olive ROYALTY, and working as a watchman for the railroad. By 1903 he had moved to California. This would have been when he sold the stuffed swan for $20.

But there is still one inconsistency. If Quincy killed the swan in New Mexico and sold it to a lawyer before he left there, then when and where did Mr. Cumings of Golconda, Illinois, photograph the swan?

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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Unpacking the Old Photographs Saved From Trash Can Collection

Have you been following my series of posts on the Old Photographs Saved From Trash Can?

Thursday evening one of my Facebook friends commented on my latest post asking if I thought they had really been retrieved. The answer, as of Wednesday, is definitely YES! They are now ALL in my possession.

Several months after these precious photographs were nearly destroyed a second time due to a fire in a downstairs neighbor’s home, my cousin Joe, after not finding anyone in his area who wanted them, decided to pack them up and mail the entire collection to me. Thank you Joe.

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The package I received this past Wednesday
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Partly unpacked content
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Dear Cathy! Please enjoy! Cousin Joe
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The largest photographs from the package
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The postcard size photographs….
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Another stack included large,…
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…and medium to small photographs.
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Tintype (middle), penny pictures (top), and WWII period prints (left and below)
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A family group photograph on glass (lower right)

© 2015 Cathy Meder-Dempsey

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Old Photographs Saved From Trash Can ~ #19 Guy Royaltey BOSWELL 1893-1979

This is a spin-off of my 52 Ancestors: #14 Albert Spencer LILLIE (1848-1913) ~ Old Photographs Saved From Trash Can blogpost in which I featured a few photos from a collection of old photographs my 4C1R Joe Rooney shared with me. I asked Joe about using the photos and he kindly wrote, Please use them at your will.  I feel it is keeping it in the family and don’t need credit.  If anything, I appreciate your evaluations, identifications and detective work.  I’m hopeful you and yours enjoy them.  On a blog, in a book, above a cloud.”

#19 Guy Royaltey BOSWELL 1893-1979

Guy Royaltey BOSWELL was the only child of Olive ROYALTY and John R. BOSWELL. He was born 14 June 1894 in Golconda, Pope County, Illinois. When his parents married his mother’s maiden name was spelled ROYALTY. Guy’s World War I and II Draft Registration Cards both have his middle name spelled ROYALTEY.

guy1
A very young Guy, not a girl.

Guy is wearing a sailor themed little boy’s dress in this photograph taken about 1895. He was most likely still in diapers as dresses made frequent diaper changes easier. Once a boy was potty trained he would be seen wearing shorts.

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Guy on Bee Rock in Griffith Park overlooking the old zoo in Los Angeles.

“Guy has the sun grins” was written on the back of this photograph along with the location.

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Guy Boswell posing in snow.

I believe the couple in the background help to date the photograph – 1920s.

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Guy Royaltey Boswell or not?

These (above and below) photos were labelled “UnknownMan” by Joe Rooney. While going through all the knows and unknowns I came to the conclusion this must be a young Guy, above, and below perhaps an older Guy, below.

guy5
Guy Royaltey Boswell or not?

Joe Rooney kindly gave me permission to use these photographs on my blog.

Links to previous posts in this series may be found in Old Photographs

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.

Joe ROONEY wrote on 15 February 2015: This collection of photographs was scanned at 300 dpi color by me. The original photos were sent by Sandra Lillie about ten years ago after she found them cleaning out a relative’s garage in Southern Illinois, finding no other takers (suckers). She believes they were a collection by L Vance Lillie. Many of the pictures seemed to be removed from frames or were in albums evidenced by fading characteristics and may have been from other’s collections. I scanned the reverse if there was laboratory advertising or writing. Some of the authors’ identification may be figured out of the handwriting matches. I did not scan the reverse of photos where there was only a three digit number that I believe to be sequence numbers on a roll of film. I didn’t spot any obvious helpful commonalities.

© 2015 Cathy Meder-Dempsey

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Old Photographs Saved From Trash Can ~ #18 Olive ROYALTY 1871-1949

This is a spin-off of my 52 Ancestors: #14 Albert Spencer LILLIE (1848-1913) ~ Old Photographs Saved From Trash Can blogpost in which I featured a few photos from a collection of old photographs my 4C1R Joe Rooney shared with me. I asked Joe about using the photos and he kindly wrote, Please use them at your will.  I feel it is keeping it in the family and don’t need credit.  If anything, I appreciate your evaluations, identifications and detective work.  I’m hopeful you and yours enjoy them.  On a blog, in a book, above a cloud.”

#18 Olive ROYALTY 1871-1949

Olive ROYALTY, born 8 July 1871 in Illinois, was the youngest daughter of Samuel L. ROYALTY and Joanna PALMER. Her mother died between 1871-1874 and Olive was raised by her step-mother Johanna PADDOCK.

youngoliveThis photograph was labeled Irene (left) and Olive (right). The girls resemble each other but I have not been able to figure out who Irene may have been. At first glance of the back I was hoping to read Florence, Olive’s sister, instead of Irene. Olive was raised in Pope County, Illinois. Could she have visited Girard, Kansas, as a young girl? Or did the family live there for a while?

Olive married John R. BOSWELL on 12 June 1892 at Prospect Church, Golconda, Pope County, Illinois. They had only one child, Guy Royalty BOSWELL, born 14 June 1893 in Golconda.

1898caOlive
Olive ROYALTY with her husband John R. BOSWELL and their son Guy Royalty BOSWELL ca. 1897.

Olive, John and Guy were living in Albuquerque, Bernalillo County, New Mexico, at the time of the 1900 census. Before 1910 they moved to Los Angeles, California, where they lived the rest of their lives.

olderolive
Olive ROYALTY, photo taken in Los Angeles
olderolive2
An older Olive (ROYALTY) BOSWELL

Joe Rooney kindly gave me permission to use these photographs on my blog.

Links to previous posts in this series may be found in Old Photographs

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.

Joe ROONEY wrote on 15 February 2015: This collection of photographs was scanned at 300 dpi color by me. The original photos were sent by Sandra Lillie about ten years ago after she found them cleaning out a relative’s garage in Southern Illinois, finding no other takers (suckers). She believes they were a collection by L Vance Lillie. Many of the pictures seemed to be removed from frames or were in albums evidenced by fading characteristics and may have been from other’s collections. I scanned the reverse if there was laboratory advertising or writing. Some of the authors’ identification may be figured out of the handwriting matches. I did not scan the reverse of photos where there was only a three digit number that I believe to be sequence numbers on a roll of film. I didn’t spot any obvious helpful commonalities.

© 2015 Cathy Meder-Dempsey

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