Who Were They?

Lost and forgotten photos from the past


Harmonize, boys!

I just love the idea of this photo being an early fraternity party photo, although it looks rather tame compared to some of the fraternity parties *I* attended in the 90s! Initially I thought it might be a Yale photo on account of the large Y pennant. Looking closer though, I think it is located somewhere in Ohio, and may not be a fraternity photo after all. While the boys sing merrily and toast one another, lets take a closer look at the photo. Click below to enlarge.

Exhibit A, ladies and gentlemen

Exhibits A-F, ladies and gentlemen

A. This pennant starts with CH or OH

B. This pennant says BNU or ONU

C. Various work-themed plaques on the wall: Do it now; Plan your work and work your plan; Hope for the best but plan for the worst

D. Religious themed plaque: The Lord is my defence.

E. Unopened bottles! Those all have caps on them.

F. Full bottle of whatever it is; clear liquor so possibly vodka or gin. Yet, also unopened.

So in conclusion, I think this is a staged photo! What with the unopened bottles of beer and liquor, and the fellow in the middle looking a bit anticipatory of the scene’s conclusion, I think these boys stumbled upon the remains of a great party and decided to ham it up. Maybe it was for a fraternity, or men’s fraternal organization such a the Elks, designed to show what a good time they have when they get together. Who knows, there is no identification on it that is clear!

UPDATE: Thanks to reader lissajuliana, we know this is probably somewhere in Lebanon Valley, PA. See the comments for more detail. Thanks!

4 thoughts on “For he’s a jolly good fellow!

  1. lissajuliana says:

    I think the photo is probably from Lebanon Valley (Pennsylvania) – you can see a plaque at lower right that says ‘Lebanon Valley’ across the top. (There’s also a Lebanon Valley College – founded 1866.) And the kicker is that L.V. made a brand of beer called ‘Export’ which is the name on the bottle above the plaque. See:


    1. Mrs Marvel says:

      Oh excellent identification! I was able to make out “valley” on that plaque but I couldn’t figure out what else it said.


      1. lissajuliana says:

        I’m not sure what the bottom words say either – too bad, it looks like there might be a date down there. Fun!


  2. Interesting photo! :)


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