Tuesday, December 26, 2017

A Christmas Present from Sam Booksh

On December 25, 1875 Belle received a Christmas present from Samuel Walker Booksh.
Carte de Visite album c 1870
It was a little leather photo album for the small calling card sized photos known as Carte de Visite which were made from 1854 to 1905. They were most popular in the 1860s.

 This album was made by 
  A. J. Holman & Co. of Philadelphia.

On the first page Sam has written:

Miss Belle Tisdale
From her .....
Sam'l W. Booksh
Dec. 25/75

This is the earliest mention of Sam Booksh in Belle's papers.  They must have met when she was staying with her Grandma and Grandpa Pratt in East Baton Rouge Parish. His family lived across the Mississippi River in Grosse Tete, Iberville Parish.  Perhaps he was her beaux and from his inscription it seems he wanted to be more, maybe her fiance. Was this part of a marriage proposal?  They married in April 1878, a little more than two years later.

The first carte de visite in the album is not a photo but  a reproduction of a romantic painting titled Tender Chord. 

When I first saw the album it was filled with photos. Grandpa Booksh was able to identify most of them for me. Many were of Sam's brothers, his sister and other relatives. Was this his way of bringing her into his family?

The photo of Sam in the album bears a striking resemblance to my brother. It has been enhanced by the photographer, A. D. Lytle. No doubt Sam's blonde hair and blue eyes were under exposed. In the family we have titled this one "I wish I had a penciled-in moustache."

Samuel Walker Booksh   1853-1930

The back of the photo has the inscription:
Miss Belle Tisdale
From her friend
Saml. W. Booksh

and the word "rememberence" written just
above the photographer's name.

Samuel Booksh was born on the 4th of July 1853 in Grosse Tete, Iberville Parish, Louisiana, son of Charles Booksh, 1808-1886, and Marie Eliza Elizabeth Leonard, 1819-1897. He was the eighth of ten children, nine boys and one girl. He married Arabella Maria Tisdale on 23 April 1878. They moved from Grosse Tete to New Orleans in 1893. He died 3 November 1930 in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Another photo in the album is of a more casually
posed Sam with his older brother Thomas Claiborne
Booksh, 1846-1902.                                                                             

Thomas Claiborne and Samuel Walker Booksh, c1875    

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