Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Adella Mariah Fowler

This is a photo of my Great-great-grandmother Adella Mariah Fowler.  She was born in Livonia, New York, in 1845.  She married my Great-great-grandfather William R. Benton in 1866, after he returned from the Civil War.  In 1871, they started a homestead near Blaine, Kansas, where they raised six children:  Allie, Frank, Flora, Delia, Will, and Nellie.  Eventually, William's failing health (on account of disease from the war) caused them to sell their farm and take up residence in Oakland, Kansas (a suburb of Topeka).  William died in 1894, but the now widowed Della, continued to raise her children until a trip to care for her flu-stricken in-laws in Cummings, Kansas.  It was here that she contracted and succumbed to the illness herself while caring for others.  She died in 1899, leaving the youngest two children, Will and Nellie, to be raised by her sisters in Wichita.

I only have two known photos of Della.  This one that was taken when she was young but married and another one which I had previously posted here.  What do you think, is this the same woman in the photo from yesterday?

Not only on this blog, but also on my Facebook account, linked to this blog, people commented that I should run these images through some photo recognition software.  Unfortunately, the two known photos of Della are taken straight on and the one I don't know from yesterday has her heard turned to the side.  Additionally, other identifying features, like her ears, are pretty hard to determine from the two known photos.  She parts her hair in the center, but many women at this time did.

I'd welcome your opinions if anyone has them.


Judi said...

I have no idea if it is the same woman, but this photo is wonderful. It looks like a pencil sketch. You are fortunate to have it in your possession.

Zelda said...

I starred at the pictures for a few minutes each and my humble opinion is that it is the same lady. I'm basing this on the mouth and her composure which is somewhat the same in both pictures. We will never know if I would have been accepted in a CSI team. Thank you for this interesting challenge.

Merideth in Wyoming said...

I believe both photos are of the same woman, Nate. If you look at the photo of the younger Adella, there is a noticeable downward crook of the left side of her mouth. The photo of the older woman has the same feature.

Ellena said...

Does shape of eyebrows change as we get older? The young brows are 'straight' whereas the older ones are 'arched'.

Chuck Kelly said...

I think both pictures show the same woman. I'm basing this on the shape of her mouth & lower face since that's the most distinguishable element in both pictures.

However, it's funny how people change, especially children.

Chuck Kelly said...

I looked at the wrong picture before I made my previous post, which I erased. I can't tell if they show the same woman. My hunch says they are two different women - their mouths are different although dentures or major dental work may have altered her appearance.