This photograph, undated and with no location, was included with the other Rudd family photographs. The back of the photo identifies the family as follows:
Seated = Ed, Fred, Harry
Standing = Maude, Rosa, Bert J
And the last name Colter written beside that.
I must note that Harry, presumably the lad on the right front, is actually standing.
I started poking around on Ancestry because I really wanted to try to identify this family. That site really is wonderful. :-) I am going to tentatively date this photo to 1895 based on young Harry’s birth in 1890. Who are we looking at?
This is Rosalia Rudd Colter (4-29-59 to 2-11-22), married to James Henniger Gilbert Colter (12-28-47 to 7-10-22). Together they had several children:
Abigail – 1877-1878
Fred Tuttle – 1879-1944
Edward – 1880-
Eliza Maude – 1882-1975
Herbert or James Burton – 1887-1980
Harrison E – 1890-1937
For some reason James was not in the photograph. They lived in New Mexico in 1880 and 1900, so my guess is the photo was made in that locality. You may remember that Rosalia’s father was William Mann Rudd.
There’s some confusing and titillating information on James H. Colter, suggesting he was married to two women at the same time. James was born in Hartford, Nova Scotia, Canada. Well, the census records and family trees indicate he was married to Annie Colter, born 1858 in Nova Scotia, and having children John (1880), Lessettie (1889) and Cecil (1891) together. However, there is another record showing that James and Rosalia married February 22, 1877. I couldn’t find much other information, but it does make me wonder. Was James in Canada at the time of the photo? Maybe that’s why Rosa doesn’t look terribly happy. By 1900 she listed herself as widowed on the census, but other sources indicate that James lived until 1922 – and those sources are the Mormons and they don’t often get this stuff wrong!
Rosa died in San Jose, CA and is buried in Springerville, AZ, while James died in Prescott, AZ and is buried in Springerville, AZ. It adds to my curiosity. Did he leave her and she just claimed widowhood to save her dignity? Did he disappear and was presumed dead, only to turn up alive and able to survive Rosa by 7 months? They are quite likely buried in the same cemetery, and that indicates the family knew all along where the two were in order to bring them back together in death, and it is interesting that he was not returned for burial in Nova Scotia with his mystery family.
It is quite a lot of speculation and quite a story!