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About the Photos

Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.

© 2019 SHORPY INC.

[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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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]

SHORPY OLD PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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