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Mother's & Daddy's wedding picture - Sayre, Oklahoma, 1921

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Mother's new fall outfit, 192 Hat: Harding blue velvet crown laced with silk gosgrain ribbon, brown velvet brim slightly turned up. (Warren Harding, President) Harding blue: new color. The new shoes, the highlight of the ensemble, cost $18 which was a lot in 1920.

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Horace Brown, Eugenen Brown, Ruth Brown Caylor, Helen Jarvis, Virginia Jarvis (holding Georgia Ruth). George Jarvis
Front: Alice and John Jarvis (children of Howard and Helen Jarvis).

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Horace Eugene Brown—photographer, store proprietor, my maternal grandfather.

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Mary Ellen (Givens) Brown, my maternal grandmother.


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Mother, taken in Lenora, Kansas by Grandfather Brown on bear skin rug, before they moved to Plainville.


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Mother at 2 1/2 years old.

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From left to right (skipping the man in back): Caroline Brown (Mother’s aunt), Mae Brown, Joseph Marion Brown (seated—my great grandfather), Ruth Elizabeth Brown (Mother’s Aunt Libby), Horace Eugene Brown (my grandfather).

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Drugstore—Runge, Texas, 1937.


 

GEORGE JARVIS TAKES A BRIDE
How They Named Their Children
 


George Jarvis’s first child was a daughter; she was given the female equivalent of his own name, Georgia Ruth. “Ruth” came from our beautiful Aunt Ruth, Mother’s sister. Daddy reasoned at the time, and told me later, that when he had a son, he wanted the son to have his own name so as to be free to make his own mark in the world. At this stage of his life (his early thirties), Daddy did not feel himself to be a particular example in his endeavors. True, he was supporting his family well, but he wanted his son to have a fresh start.

When I came along as the second child, three years after Georgia Ruth, Daddy chose the name William. “Willie” had been the name of his mother’s first child, who died in infancy. William was a traditional name in his Irish mother’s family. Daddy’s Irish cousin was named William Samuel (Daddy’s middle name was Samuel). Daddy, a student of history, knew well of the German statesman of his time, Kaiser Wilhelm, and thought of him when naming me. Daddy always preferred my nickname “Billy,” perhaps after his brother Willie, whom he never knew.

As it happened, the middle names of all three of us children came from Mother’s side of the family. My middle name, Eugene, came from Mother’s brother whom she admired. This name goes back to her father, Horace Eugene Brown. My younger sister is Phyllis Virginia, after my mother, Virginia.

For my first 16 years I was called Billy Jarvis. But just as I was leaving high school for college, Billie Jeanne Dodson, my class valedictorian, told me that I should call myself “Bill” at college, which I did. As an adult I am called William, a little more formal as I grow older!

How naming children has changed over the years! Prior to Grandfather’s time, children’s names had to come from the Bible. This was the law in many Christian countries. By Grandfather’s time it had become popular to name male children after great statesmen, and that is how my grandfather, George Washington Jarvis, was named. Another prominent person so named was George Washington Carver, the great negro scientist.

It is interesting that in later years children were named after favorite movie stars. Just after I was born, talking movies were invented and became very popular in the 1930s. The greatest star of the 1930s was Shirley Temple, and there are many Shirleys around now who were born then. In the 1980s, boys were named Sean after Sean Connery, the first James Bond. About this time, it also became popular to give a child two last names and to give girls a boy’s name, such as Kelly. In the 90s it is common to use whimsical spellings of names and to corrupt the spelling of foreign names.

 
 
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