A Man and Two Women

Connie Stowers, my uncle Hugh Cleage and my mother Doris Graham Detroit, 1940.

My uncle Hugh is sitting on my mother’s parent’s couch being hugged by my mother and her best friend, Connie.  I remember that ash tray.  It was red.  The couch was dark green and over it hung a tapestry with a garden scene that included… wait, here is a photograph that includes the bottom of the tapestry.  I wonder where it came from and where it went.

My aunt Mary V, holding her grandson Frank with my grandfather Mershell Graham aka Poppy.

By 1966, we had the old couch at our house and my grandparents were using my great grandmother Jennie’s furniture. At the time I thought it was strange they changed to that hard wooden furniture but as my knees give out, I appreciate that it was higher, easier to sit down on and get up from. Plus there must have been a lot of memories for my grandmother.  My mother sold it to an antique store after her parents died.

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17 thoughts on “A Man and Two Women

  1. I love this post, which is really two posts in one! First, I like your title–which, incidentally, is the title of a very interesting short story by Doris Lessing. The photo is terrific. Lucky Uncle Hugh–he looks pleased with himself! Second, your story about the couch and the tapestry, and how they got passed on (or disappeared). As the soft green couch was passed on to you, your grandparents started using their parents’ couch. And I know what you mean about it getting harding to push/pull oneself up from a soft couch. My mother is having increasing difficulty with that on one of their old couches, whose springs have seen better days.

        1. Not in looks so much as in how they are dressed. It’s a great composition, with your smartly dressed uncle with these two pretty young women, almost identically dressed, clinging to him on either side.

    1. I didn’t think of it at the time, but now I remember that there is such a story. I’ll have to look and see if I have it here.

  2. Isn’t it interesting how memories flood back with these prompts, and that inanimate furniture can play such a part. Lovely photo of your Mum, uncle and friend and also the generations.

  3. I too have very good memories of the furniture my parents had when we were children, and I wish I had a couple of those armchairs now. Isn’t it useful that those old Kodak Instamatic prints often had the date printed in the margin.

  4. A really fun photo of ‘A Man and Two Women’…made even more special since they are your kin….and kind of classic setting. It’s always interesting to see the furniture and wall pieces of our families homes. I remember my grandmother always had doilies on the back of sofa’s and on the arms that usually were askew after lots of grandkids played there. Thanks for visiting my blog for Sepia Saturday.

    Sue CollectInTexasGal~Today’s Post~
    Older Sister Syndrome~Sepia SAT Sibling 3Some

  5. It is a beautiful photo and memoir. The three look so wonderfully happy and loving. A very handsome man your Uncle Hugh. the girls are lovely too!

  6. what sweet threesomes that flush out cherished memories! I remember one couch my parents had; it was blue with a velvety feeling fabric. We also had doilies on furniture and end tables.

    1. It probably is for the best that she sold it. Who knows what would have happened to it by now. I lost so many really good pieces of old furniture with all my moves. It sure would be easier on my knees than what we now have though.

  7. Your uncle, Hugh, looks like a lot of fun, but the onw who draws me in is your grandfather. I had a great uncle who died when I was about 4. He’d stood in as grandad for me because my grandad, his brother, was dead. He had the same sweet, calming persona. I can feel his presence today.

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