Maplewood History: My Own Family Story – Part Two


Ora Marguerite Layman and Lowell Hobart Jackson, my maternal grandparents

If you missed the first post of my historic family photos you can find it here.  Also, I made a late addition of our family tree to that post that you may find interesting.

This image is on a postcard. This is my mother’s handwriting.  There is no record of what year the image was made.

The back of the previous photo.

My grandmother Ora Layman is on the far left in this image also from 1918.  I don’t know what to make of this.  Does anyone know what these young ladies were up to?

The back of the previous photo.

My grandfather “a courting”.  Nice ride, Lowell.

From the back of the previous photo.

Ora Marguerite Layman and Lowell Hobart Jackson.  The child is unidentified. My mother was born on November 20, 1921 so it’s not her.

Lowell and Ora on their wedding day.  Somewhere in one of the large boxes of images and historic material that I received after my parents passed at the end of 2020 is a document with the date of the wedding of Ora to Lowell.  I don’t have it on hand at the moment. (I have since learned that they were married on January 16, 1920.)

Ditto.  Boss shoes, Grandmother and Grandad!  Boss has – long been a slang term for “excellent,” with evidence reaching back to the 1880s.

Ditto.  I wonder where they were in this one.  A lookout tower, maybe?

The back of this postcard has some interesting information.

It is hard to read but it looks like this card was posted on May 1, 1920.  Ora and Lowell were living in St. Louis so they must have been married by then.  If this card is a clue,  Grandad may have once gone by his middle name, Hobart.  News to me.  I never heard him called anything other than Lowell.

Out of curiosity I looked on Google to see if there was anything left of the neighborhood around 3814 West Pine. This is it.  By appearance it doesn’t look like it will be around much longer.  Shame, ain’t it?  What a neighborhood it must have been.  Ora and Lowell might have rented a room in one of these big houses.

There are two copies of this postcard.  Mama was probably a young girl when she wrote the comment 0n this one.  She would be embarrassed if she knew I was posting it.  It does tell us something though.  The photographer’s prop car was from the brass era, 1896-1915.  Ford’s V8 engine didn’t come out until 1932.  Mom’s comment was written some time after that.

I was a bit worried at first as to how my audience would accept my family history on my Maplewood History blog.  I needn’t have.  The comments have been overwhelmingly positive.  Thank you, folks.

There is more to come.

Doug Houser           April 27, 2023





  1. Doug, I think the group of 6 ladies in white dresses with banners of China, Japan, Africa,
    South America, India and the USA were honoring some of the nations or regions that were fighting against Germany during WWI.

  2. Once again Doug, I love the pictures of your family. And I appreciate all you do to remind us of times well spent.

  3. Thanks for sharing your family with us. Great pictures and memories. Very special and precious.

  4. Yes, Doug, fear not. Your family history is most interesting. Please keep posting. Sure wish that West Pine house could be saved.

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