Saturday, November 1, 2008

Heritage Photos of the Week

Several years back a distant Mobley cousin sent me a copy of the following photo. She said that no one in her family knew for sure who he was, but they speculated that he might be Joseph Sheppard Mobley. At the time I only had one photo of Joseph, a very bad one, and there was indeed some distinct similarities between the men in the two photographs, so I agreed that it was probably him.

It only goes to show that you should study photographs more closely. Last year I obtained a photo album that had belonged to Joseph's wife and there was an original tintype of the photo mounted on the second page of the album.

Next to it was this original tintype of a woman I had never seen before.

The two photos were obviously made at the same time and in the same place. I knew for a fact that the woman was not Joseph's wife, because I had numerous photos of Mary Caroline Morgan Mobley and this woman looked nothing like her.

The next clue that pointed to the true identities of this couple was to be found on the first page of the album. Two photographs, mounted side by side, were of another couple that I recognized, John and Amanda (Rice) Morgan. John and Amanda were the parents of Mary Caroline and it made perfect sense that they would take the first page place of honor in her photo album.

It dawned on me then that the clothing worn by the couple in the tintypes was of the same period to match the generation of John and Amanda. That, and the location of the photos on the second page of the family album, and the physical resemblance of the man to the one photo I had for Joseph told me that what I had here were photos of Joseph's parents.

So far as I know, these are the only photos in existance of Reason/Rezin and Lucretia (Dunkin) Mobley, who lived in Newnan, Coweta County, Georgia. The photos were probably taken shortly before the start of the Civil War, when the couple would have been in their forties. Their only daughter did not survive her teens. Three of their five sons would be lost in the war. Two sons would survive, Hezekiah and Joseph, and would move this branch of the Mobleys west to Texas.


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