Friday, February 12, 2021

Photo Friday: The Corvins


Mrs. Corvin and William Booker Corvin
and unknown woman

This photo is identified only as “Mrs. Corvin and William Booker Corvin.” The other woman? It’s anybody’s guess. It is just one in an assortment of photos dated between 1917 and 1921 that came to me through my grandaunt Helen Killeen Parker. The supposed date of the photo plus the similarity to other photos makes me think that these are friends of my great-grandmother Mary Theresa Sheehan Killeen Walsh or even friends of Helen. But who were they?

I have found 3 William B. Corvins: one born about 1906 in Massachusetts, one born about 1924 in Wytheville, Virginia, and the other born about 1922 in Bristol, Virginia. Unfortunately, the Massachusetts “B” stands for Benjamin; the Wytheville “B” stands for Buford. “Booker” is the middle name for the lad from Bristol, Virginia.

Since Helen was only 19 when William Booker was born, I looked for his parents. They were Leonidas Roy “Orin” Corvin and Louissia Elizabeth Cline. How would they have known Mary Theresa or Helen? They lived at opposite ends of the state. Actually, the other woman in the photo resembles neither Mary Theresa nor Helen, so how did one of them come to have this photo?

“Orin” was employed by the Norfolk & Western Railroad, based in Roanoke. Helen’s husband Herbert Parker worked for the railroad too and often traveled to Roanoke. I hesitate to say, “Ah ha! That’s it – they must have been friends” because Herbert would have been working as a clerk at the Army Ordnance Depot at the time William Booker was being carted around in an infant pouch sling.

A mystery yet to be resolved.


© 2021, Wendy Mathias. All rights reserved.

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