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When my grandparents were my age.

January 23, 2016


I’m not sure where this photograph was taken, or by whom, but the pair are my grandparents, Ellen Margaret Wichstrom Bonde and Carl Tosten Bonde.  She got a certificate to be a teacher at Valley City Normal School in North Dakota, and I’m not certain about Carl’s education, but he probably finished high school.  He was fluent in Norwegian and had excellent handwriting.  My aunt Corinne told me that Carl learned handwriting from Mr. Palmer himself, of “Palmer Method” fame, in which students filled pages with O’s and L’s and the like to develop a flowing cursive style.

I’m guessing this may have been taken by their son, Carl Ralph Bonde, Jr., because he was an ardent photographer while in high school at Flathead High in Kalispell, Montana.  He graduated in 1941.  Notice that at least two light sources, judging from the shadows, were used for this night time indoor photograph.  Carl Jr. developed and printed his own photographs.  As a child I played with Carl’s Kodak 120 camera.

Alternatively, the photograph may have been taken by my father, Robert Powers Struckman, although he usually used a larger format camera, such as 4 x 5 inch Graflex.  I inherited several film holders for a Graflex.


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