Ray and ?

These two great vintage photos show Ray Gibbons and a younger friend, unknown. At first I didn’t think this was Ray, because my mother in law didn’t point him out. She said she didn’t know who was in the photo. But, comparing the older fellow of the two to the bakery photo in the last post, I realized that it was Ray. He is so young!

The photos were taken…somewhere. Although the buildings in the background have business names on them, when I enlarge them, they are unreadable. There is a clock, and The Something Something. I know that Gibbons Bakery was in Mount Clemens, and it is possible this was taken there as well, as Ray seems to be about the same age as the last picture. The building looks like a school or a bank to me.

I don’t know a thing about cars except to say they are old.

On the single photo, although it looks like the boy is wearing some sort of pin, it’s actually damage to the photo paper. In the photo of the two of them, it looks like the younger boy is holding an apple? a baseball? and someone off camera is handing Ray something. Impossible to know now what it was. They seem to be laughing and having a good time. After school joking around, maybe?

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Gibbons Bakery

I think one of these two young men might be my father-in-law, but I’m not 100% sure. (Update, my husband says he is the one on the right!) The picture unfortunately isn’t the best, but it is a treasure all the same. And just look at that monster cake they are decorating! The Gibbons Bakery in Mt. Clemens, MI was opened in the 1920s by Albert Henry Gibbons and his wife Christine Schultz Gibbons. Born in 1891 in England, Henry emigrated to the US in 1913. Henry and Christine married in 1920 and must have opened the bakery around that same time. Sons William (1922) and James (1923) soon arrived, followed by daughter Roseann (1930) and finally son Albert Raymond (1932). By the time Raymond was working in the bakery it was a well established business that has a long legacy in Mt. Clemens. I have another photo I will share soon of Roseann and her kids in front of the bakery. By 1957, Henry and Christine lived in Florida and Bill, Jim and Ray kept the business running. Eventually, all the kids had moved on to various other locations, and by 1988 the bakery was owned by Djurdja “Julie” Bogojevski. Gibbons Bakery was located at 84 Macomb Place near the corner of Pine St for quite a long time, enjoying at least one resurgence in the early 2000s by an entrepreneur who wanted to bring a nice bakery to Mt. Clemens. The building is still there and looks basically the same as it did way back when.

At some point, Ray and my mother-in-law Marie opened the Ray Marie Bakery, also in Mt. Clemens. Marie told me some stories of the early days of their marriage when Ray had to get up at 3 a.m. to be at the bakery and she would get up to make his breakfast, all while suffering morning sickness and the smell of bacon and eggs made her extra queasy! It was in that first apartment that Marie was given the recipe for carrot cake that became one of the recipes at their bakeries. It is a family treasure that I have made for birthdays and special occasions over the years. She shared that her neighbor offered her a slice of cake, but all she could think was “why would anyone make a cake out of carrots?” Fortunately for all of us, she liked it. By 1971 they were working on building The Cake Shop in Whittier, CA. which became another family owned and operated bakery, with Steve, Paul, David & Joe working alongside their parents.

The most recent version of the Gibbons Bakery in Mt. Clemens, MI operated from around 2010 to 2015, at the historic location of 84 Macomb Place. The owner at that time had personal ties to the bakery, having worked for Bogojevski shortly after emigrating to the US.

Here’s a great vintage photo I found showing a firefighter poking his head out of the window of Gibbons Bakery after a fire in the adjacent building. The irony here is that The Cake Shop burned down many years later, fire once again damaging a Gibbons owned bakery.

Here’s more about the “new” Gibbons Bakery:

Gibbons Bakery Facebook Page

Article about the reopening from Oakland Press News

Bruce D McSparrow / McSparrin

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One of these lads is Bruce D. McSparrow McSparrin. Due to some home construction, I have packed these photographs away and I’m not sure which one of these had the writing on the back! Whoops. I also had it carefully labeled on the original file, but my computer is also packed away. Fooey.

Bruce was 7 years old at the time of the photo, September 3, 1897. These two photographs are small, only about 3″ x 4″ with the image centered in the card.

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They were accompanied by their mother, previously shown in this post. As it turns out, this is identified on the back as Mrs. S. M. McSparrow McSparrin.

UPDATE: As it turns out, both of these images are probably of the same boy. Bruce Darlington McSparrin lived with his parents Susan and Charles McSparrin in Dayton, PA. This begs the question of who the other photo represents. It may simply be a photo of Susan McSparrin twenty years on in life.

Christmas Day!

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All grown up

Over the course of 13 cards, we have seen Kathy & Karen Klein grow up from babies to teenagers. Kathy has grown her hair long as was popular in 1969, while Karen is keeping hers cut short. Both girls look to the side. This is our last Klein family card. I have no idea who they might have been sent to, maybe Aunt Rita who was the recipient of a different Klein family member’s card? I hated seeing them languishing in a box of other photographs, so I’m happy to have rescued them from obscurity or even the trash.

This last photo card features a pine cone, the sentiment Merry Christmas / and a happy new year! as well as the family’s names – The Kleins / Fred, Isobel, Kathy & Karen.

Merry Christmas to you, wherever you may be! There are yet more cards, because you know the mail does not always cooperate with us, and sometimes we don’t always get our cards into the mail in a timely fashion. There’s always a couple that arrive after Christmas, so stay tuned!

Christmas Eve

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It’s Christmas Eve around the world! I hope all your Christmas cards have arrived at their destinations to carry the wishes of happiness and love to everyone on your list. Kathy & Karen Klein are opening gifts in a paneled room, surrounded by more gifts. The color printed card is dated 1968 and features a horse drawn sled. It was signed Fred, Isobel, Kathy & Karen, and the signature appears to have been incorporated in the printing.

Merry Christmas Happy New Year

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Full color!

The reverse of this card indicates it was 1965. The girls Kathy & Karen are again in matching pajamas, and looking at a large decoration. It appears to have a small elf on it, and reminds me of a mistletoe ball my mother had. The girls are surrounded by pretty packages. The color printed card also features holly and ribbon ties, and is signed The Kleins / Fred, Isobel, Kathy, Karen.

Christmas Greetings

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Something important to say here

Wearing the same pajamas as the card from the previous year, Kathy & Karen are again opening presents while surrounded by more presents. They must have been very loved! The card salutation is Christmas Greetings from Our Home to Yours, and features a pair of small houses with smoke coming from their chimneys. The printed closing reads The Kleins – Fred, Isobel, Kathy & Karen.

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