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Here Come the Bridesmaids: 1924

Here Come the Bridesmaids: 1924

May 6, 1924. Arlington, Virginia. "Byars-Coontz wedding." The union of Miss Virginia Byars to Lieut. Kenneth Lee Coontz, son of Admiral Robert Coontz. National Photo Company Collection glass negative. View full size.


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Son of the bride

Obituary here.

Groom & doom

The wedding earned an entire column of coverage in the May 7, 1924 New York Times. The matron of honor in this photo was the First Lady of Virginia and the flower girl, her daughter. The happy couple planned to move into the Wardman Park Hotel, home of many a Shorpy subject, to await the groom's return to service in the Pacific that fall.

In its brief September 26, 1926 report on Lt. Coontz's death, the Times stated that it followed an illness of more than a year, and that he had undergone several major operations. The Associated Press had mentioned cancer.

Virginia lived a long life

Ghastly Garments

It's nice to know that bridesmaids dresses have always been useless once the wedding is over. And what's with the bride, who looks like she's trying to figure out a way to get out of the wedding?

A somber occasion

As my late mother would say, when taking a picture, "Would it kill you to smile?"

Tragic end to the union?

ADM Coontz served as the second Chief of Naval Operations. His son, the groom, died on active duty, apparently two years after this photo was taken, and was interred not far from wherever this photo was taken in Arlington. See here.

Can I go now?

That little boy looks thrilled to be part of the festivities.

Little boy lost

Presumably the usher standing with arms crossed amidst encroaching bouquets. His outfit was not designed to bring a smile to his face.

[He's most likely the ring bearer, and his feminine counterpart the flower girl. -tterrace]

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