Saturday, 14 July 2012

Sepia Saturday - Grandparents De Langen-Doelman

Sepia Saturday was first started by Kay Mortensen and Alan Burnett 
Kay and Alan explain in their blog that "Sepia Saturday provides bloggers with an opportunity to share their history through the medium of photographs. Historical photographs of any age or kind (they don't have to be sepia) become the launchpad for explorations of family history, local history and social history in fact or fiction, poetry or prose, words or further images."
I fully support this idea and I like to contribute my share starting today. Although I will try to concentrate on photographs telling a story of my ancestors (and of course those of my wife), I will exhibit others as well. But true to my favorite pastime I will start with my matrilineal grandparents.

This picture was taken almost a century ago on the occasion of the marriage of Gerardus Theodorus de Langen (The Hague, Nov. 24, 1888 - Utrecht, Oct. 20, 1967) and Antje Doelman (Rotterdam, May 2, 1892 - Tilburg, Dec. 6, 1984). The date: December 27, 1916 or Third Christmas day as Granny used to say. The thing that strikes me most on this photograph is the colour of the bridal dress. Today we can hardly imagine a bride dressed (seemingly) in black but this photo is proof that 100 years ago it was quite normal.
Note: The photographer of this photo is C.J.J. Vermeulen, 11 Toussaintkade, The Hague. In case you want to call him, please dial 1873.

Korte samenvatting
In 2009 startten twee Amerikanen met het blogmotto Sepia Saturday. Daarmee proberen zij aandacht te vragen voor oude foto's, niet noodzakelijkerwijs familiefoto's. En bij zo'n foto hoort natuurlijke enige uitleg. M.n. in de genealogiewereld is dit motto aangeslagen en regelmatig zie je blogs met dit motto verschijnen. Omdat ik dit een goed idee vind, heb ik besloten mijn bijdrage te leveren. Hierbij mijn eerste.

Deze foto is bijna 100 jaar oud en toont mijn grootouders van moeders kant op hun huwelijksdag 27 december 1916. Oma noemde dat altijd 3e Kerstdag. De bruidegom is Gerardus Theodorus de Langen (Den Haag, 24 nov. 1888 - Utrecht, 20 oct. 1967), de bruid Antje Doelman (Rotterdam, 2 mei 1892 - Tilburg, 6 dec. 1984). Het opmerkelijke aan de foto vind ik oma's zwarte trouwjurk. Het maagdelijk wit is kennelijk later in de mode gekomen. De foto is gemaakt bij fotograaf C.J.J. Vermeulen, Toussaintkade 11, Den Haag. Zijn telefoonnummer was 1873. Deze fotograaf had ook nog vestigingen in Utrecht en Rotterdam.


  1. It's a pleasure meeting your grandparents. Welcome to Sepia Saturday.

  2. Thanks Wendy, hope to be able to contribute for a long, long time :)
    PS Noticed one of your ancestors was a Holland. Pity there is no Dutch connection there otherwise I could have added your blog to

  3. A warm welcome to Sepia Saturday Peter; we hope you’ll be with us for a long time too! Thank you for sharing this photograph of a striking couple. I suppose the dress could have been dark red or green taffeta, something she could have worn as a ‘best dress’ afterwards.

  4. Thank you Little Nell and so do I! Your guess about the dress may very well be right. Pity I can't ask her anymore...

  5. I haven't ever heard anyone talk about the third day etc. of Christmas, but there is a song "The Twelve Days of Christmas."

  6. In Holland we celebrate Christmas on December 25 and 26 commonly known as First and Second Christmas Day. So my Granny felt Third Christmas Day is a proper name for December 27 :)

  7. @Postcardy. The twelve days of Christmas are the 12 days before Christmas, the advent. A child gets an advent calendar and each night opens a little window, behind which a picture shows. The biggest window is the 12th, which is opened on Christmas Day, 25th.
    More traditionally a European celebration, we celebrate Christmas Eve, 24th December with dinner and gifts.May people go to Midnight Mass after.
    Aussie way is Christmas Day opening presents at breakfast time, then having lunch on the beach or garden parties around swimming pools. Very Australian.
    Second Christmas Day doesn't exist this part of the world, it is called Boxing Day. Only banks are closed, whilst all shops are open and department stores etc. will start their annual sales.
    Peter, keep in mind that the old pictures are only in black, white and hues inbetween. The dress could well have been navy blue or dark grey or brown....
    It is an unusual colour. All my wedding pics from the past have white or cream dresses.

  8. @aussie
    You may very well be right (on the color). Unfortunately I can't ask her anymore :(

  9. A grave problem we are all facing. We cannot ask the dead, and have to be good detectives to find out how their lives really were. If we are lucky we can find their stories so we can imagine what it was like to live in those days. I wish I had asked all those questions to my grandparents when they were still around. So let's make sure we leave our footprints so our kids can sniff the trail.


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