Thursday, September 1, 2011

A real stumper

We believe that this is a picture of Ms. S. Bush, circa 1910, outside her Millinery Shop on Front Street. Ms. Bush had either a friend or an associate or a clerk - no matter, but who is who is another matter entirely.

This has nothing to do with the 'class' system of who owns and who is 'help'.  If you remember the Broadway Musical "Hello Dolly", the subplot revolves around two women in just this type of store. Exactly.

These two could be Irene Molloy and Minnie Fay waiting for their Barnaby and Cornelius. What is charming about this photo is of course the "set". 79 Front Street puts this store in the first block west of Main and although we can picture it approximately, it isn't immediately familiar to us so we are bound there, camera in hand, to see what we can see. Obviously were are looking for a double door and to the left, a 4 step-up to another door probably leading upstairs.

If we find it or not, it is, again of no matter.  What does count is that two women ran a shop a hundred plus years ago and sold hats and led lives we know nothing about and will know nothing about.  That doesn't make this shop and these women any less important - in fact it heightens them.  People don't have to go through life as big fish in big ponds to have lives.

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