Who Were They?

Lost and forgotten photos from the past

This photo from the Mearns Family Album is identified as Mrs. Rutledge T. Gifford. Her dress is an exquisite example of Gay Nineties fashion. It features the high neck with a bit of tiny lace edging, modest puffed sleeves and fancy applique emblems across the front of the bodice. We can only see six buttons, but there are probably 12-15 all together. I wish we could see more! The skirt likely had similar appliques in a pattern. I see this dress in navy on navy. She has tiny earrings and her hair while pulled back into a bun has bangs that are allowed to frizz and pouf, as was the style.

Right under this photograph is the following one:

This gentleman is identified as Mr. Rutledge T. Gifford. Considering his first name is interchangeable for a surname, my guess is his mother was a Rutledge. It was a common practice to use the mother’s surname as the first name of one of her sons, typically her second son. Iggy’s research skills will likely root out exactly what ordinal position he occupied and if I’m correct. :-) Mr. Gifford has a strong jawline and full mustache to compensate for his receding hairline. His suit is a double breasted affair with a white bow tie.

Both photos were taken by Tanquerey (anyone want a martini suddenly?) of 21 E. Baltimore Street in Baltimore. Here is the back of the photograph:

They had locations in New York, Brooklyn, Boston, Philadelphia and Baltimore. Quite a photograph franchise!

5 thoughts on “A Rutledge Connection

  1. IntenseGuy says:

    Rutledge Thornton Gifford was born 02-Jul-1860 and died 11-Jan-1936. On 19-Nov-1890 he married Mary Maria Creswell (b: 08-Jan-1870 d. 28 Feb 1952).

    They had one daughter, Ruth Carhart Gifford (b: 22 Feb 1892 d. 07 Jul 1950), never married.

    Rutledge’s mother, Susan Watson (b. 19-Jan-1819 in Pennsylvania d. 29-Nov-1892 in Pennsylvania) is buried in Hopewell M E Cemetery, Port Deposit, Cecil County, MD, USA. She married Benjamin Gifford (b: 01-Mar-1814 in Watergore) on 13-Dec-1837 in Newtown, Pennsylvania. They raised their family in North East, Cecil County, Maryland.

    John M. C. Carhart married Miss Ruth Gifford daughter of Samuel Gifford, and Austin Carhart married Mary Lambert of Lambertville, New Jersey. He was one of the founders of the Presbyterian church at Zion, and from its organization its trustee and treasurer.
    His funeral took place from the Presbyterian church at Zion on Thursday afternoon. The services were conducted by Rev. J. L. Milligan, pastor of the church, who delivered a eulogy on the life and labors of Mr. Carhart. The pallbearers were Isaac T. Vanarsdale, H. H. Duyckinck, Hugh Cameron, John P. Wilson, William L. Mearns and Samuel Gifford. The funeral was largely attended, and the interment was made at Zion, Cecil County, Maryland.

    So our good friend William L Mearns was a neighbor of Samuel Gifford. If I can, I’ll see how Samuel is related to Rutledge.


  2. IntenseGuy says:

    Samuel Gifford (b. 20-Dec-1854 d. 28-Apr-1882) married Imogen Jennie Frazier (b: 1859) on 16-Dec-1880 in City Hall, Baltimore, MD, USA. He is buried in Greenback Cemetery, Baltimore, MD, USA.

    Samuel was Rutledge’s older brother.

    What I found curious is Rutledge’s sister Emeline Gifford (b. 19-Dec-1845 d. 02-Mar-1919) buried in the Rising Sun Cemetery, Cecil Co., MD, USA (3 miles from Zion, MD) married a fellow named William Thomas Benjamin Rittenhouse Roberson on 23 Jan 1878…….


  3. IntenseGuy says:

    Emeline Gifford married the son of Gertrude nee Rittenhouse Robertson, William Thomas Benjamin Rittenhouse Roberson.

    Gertrude was the sister of Jeremiah Rittenhouse, the father of Amy T. Rittenhouse (wife of William L. Mearns). That makes Emeline’s brother, Rutledge, Mr. and Mrs. William L and Amy T. Mearns’ nephew-in-law (If I’ve not goofed).

    Gertrude and Jeremiah’s other sister, Caroline Rittehouse married Asher Clugston, of Larwill, Indiana.

    And just to summarize, William L. Mearns’ brother Samuel J. married Emma Fulton.

    Now if I could only tie down Emma Chandlee/Chandler!


  4. So this is Mary and Rutledge..I wonder if they called him Giff ( certainly not Rut). I also appreciate her dress and wish I could see more:)


  5. It is me again..poor Mary outlived her only child by 2 years. It is good to see their headstone..but I wanted to brush off the dried grass:)


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