May Family

055 sloan-may family (5)This photo left to right is Eunice May, Alice & Anurie Sloan, Gladys May below. Alice & Anurie were twins.

Sloans and Mays were well to do local original settlers. A good sized family, the May kids marrying, soon created a clan of their own.

These kids as teenagers were considered “wild” or “free spirits” (not in today’s context), simply exuberant and busy doing lots of outdoor stuff.  In this photo, you can tell by their very attitude that they are “doers.”

In my day they would have been called “Tom boys”–this was not a derogatory term, but simply meant that they kept up with us boys doing most anything. This attire was equivalent to today’s “exercise outfits.”






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A bad photo, perhaps a double exposure, however, it shows such an idyllic, postcard style farm, that I thought I should share it with you.  Before WWII we seldom had any  camera other than Brownies, which were primitive enough, however the film in use was very slow.  One pretty much had to set up so that the sun was behind you.  double exposures were common as were cutting off people’s head or feet. We did not take many photos.

The May family barnyard about one mile SE of New Plymouth. It shows the typical farm yard of a well to do and established farm. The “40 ton” haystack shows someone who stacked it was inept. The looseness and inattention to stacking principles means that this stack will fare badly with weather, and be a mess to feed from.


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The buildings and other accoutrements show the well off status of bldgs, and the number of bldgs is outstanding for the time and area — these folks came to New Plymouth with money!

The building siding is simple shiplap common to the area and period.  The carpentry is excellent and professional, unlike many cobbled – together homes like the Bean home (shown elsewhere).

The size of the trees indicates that this farm photo is at least 1910. The Mays were a large family, closely knit, with a number of adults that apparently farmed as a co-operative of sorts — and a number of separate residences on the farm site — hence the well off status.

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May Family Wagon 1898. This is typical farm wagon using tried and true wooden wheels common to that time period.

Studebaker originated this design in St. Louis in 1860s.They made wagons long before they made cars.These were the “Cadillac”freighting wagons of the time.

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