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Electrial Service Store, c. 1923, and Fur Shop, c.1930

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    Posted 9 years ago

    (84 items)

    My husband’s grandfather lived the American dream. Born and raised near London, he immigrated to the States in 1910 at the age of 18 and later started an electrical business with his two brothers. Jack is the second from right in the first photo and seated with his sister in the second photo. Here’s the family story that has been passed down over the years: Jack’s wife Annette asked her husband to buy her a car so she could cart their children around. He refused, so she decided to start her own business--a fur shop pictured above. Apparently she was successful enough to go out and purchase her own car! The last photo is the family in JACK'S car around 1922.

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    1. ozmarty ozmarty, 9 years ago
      Beautiful Photographs! Love the washing machine as well!
      And is that a base for an early Darlek under the shelves??
    2. marcobabe13 marcobabe13, 9 years ago
      It does look like something out of Doctor Who! However, my husband thinks it could be a tumbler from a washer or dryer because the shop also sold appliances. My favorite piece is the desk lamp. I wonder what happened to it? What a shame it wasn't passed down in the family. Thanks for your comments, ozmarty, and thanks also to everyone else for your interest in my photos.
    3. vetraio50 vetraio50, 9 years ago
      Thanks for sharing these wonderful photos.
      I love the Thor automatic washing machine. I just found out they were available as early as 1908 in the US!
      Another object that caught my eye was the machine behind Jack in the corner of the sitting room. Perhaps its an ironing machine? Maybe it's another Thor product? But I reckon it's a Simplex Ironer ( they date back to 1910!)
      And so many lamps!
      These people were pretty advanced suppliers and users of technology!
      The following site shows a timeline for home appliances:
    4. vetraio50 vetraio50, 9 years ago
      Thanks for the photos!
      I just found out about the Thor automatic washing machine being available in the US in 1908. I had no idea! My mum was still handwashing here in Australia in the 1950's and making her own soap too.
      In the photo in the drawing room it looks like there's an ironing machine behind Jack! I think it's a Simplex Ironer. And they were available in 1905!
      Your relations certailny were pretty advanced suppliers and consumers of electrical appliances.
      I've learnt a lot about the 100 years of electrical appliance use by looking at these wonderful photos. Thanks agai!
    5. marcobabe13 marcobabe13, 9 years ago
      It's amazing how much you can learn from an old photo! I wondered what that contraption was against the wall. You're right, I do believe that it's a Simplex Ironer. (of course I had never heard the word "Simplex" until I read your comment a few minutes ago.) There are some neat vintage Simplex advertisements online. Thanks also for your information on my opal ring. Based on your comments, I plan to do some more research on the ring another day, as it's getting late here. By the way, one of Jack's brothers was a DR who was educated in London but moved to Australia. I correspond with a relative there who lives in Geelong.
    6. LoetzDance LoetzDance, 9 years ago
      Way to go, Jack's wife! I love the story about starting a fur business to buy a car. It looks like she and the kids enjoyed riding in it. I wonder if she ever got to drive it?
    7. marcobabe13 marcobabe13, 9 years ago
      Thanks for your comments, LoetzDance. We don't know if Annette ever drove her husband's car, but doubt she cared after she bought her own. Just to be contrary, she would always purchase a different make of car than the one Jack drove. She was one independent and free spirit woman!

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