New Collection: Garard-Getter Family Collection

The Garard-Getter Family Collection consists primarily of the personal photographs of a Dayton, Ohio, family in the early 20th century: Jesse and Catharine (Getter) Garard and their two daughters Wilma and Mae (nicknamed “Major”).

Pauline, Eugene, Mother (Catherine), Daddy (Jesse), Wilma, and Mae, 1922 (cropped from larger photo)
Pauline, Eugene, Mother (Catherine), Daddy (Jesse), Wilma, and Mae, 1922
(cropped from larger photo)

A few items date to as early as about 1890 and as late as 1955, but the bulk of the materials date from about 1920 to 1935. Subjects include leisure activities, travel, and family reunions.

Leisure activities depicted include hunting, boating, camping, swimming, sports, and playing music. Sports team photos include the St. Paul M. E. Church basketball team (circa 1910s?) and the Moraine City Bowling Team (1937-1938). The theme of music appears many times, including photos of “Daddy” and other relatives playing instruments at a reunion; Mae playing saxophone in both the Harmony Flyers band (1928) and in Louise Henning’s All-Girl Orchestra (1936); and photos of the St. Paul’s orchestra (presumably also St. Paul M. E. Church). A few other items of interest include a group photo of the “Fyr-Fyter Gang,” presumably employees of Dayton’s Fyr-Fyter Co. (manufacturers of fire extinguishers), where Mae worked in 1930; a group photo of what appears to be an 8th grade graduation class from Huffman School (undated).

Documentation of the family’s travels around Ohio and beyond include photos of sights and activities at Coney Island (Cincinnati) and its “Princess” steamer boat; Washington, D.C. (including the Capitol building), 1932; Akron, Ohio (including Goodyear hangar), 1938; Mansfield, Ohio (including Boys’ Reformatory), 1938; Ft. Loramie, Ohio; and Zane Caverns in Bellefontaine, Ohio. Campgrounds at an unidentified location (or locations) are also present. Other locations mentioned but not necessarily pictured include Lima, Ohio; Indian Lake, Ohio; Asbury Park, New Jersey; Muncie, Indiana; McCabe Park (Dayton); and the Dayton Soldiers’ Home. Automobiles appear frequently in the photographs as well.

Washington, DC, 1932
Washington, DC, 1932

The last three locations hosted Garard family reunions, which appear to have been held fairly regularly every year or two from at least 1918 to 1928, in both Indiana and Ohio. The reunion was held more than once at the Dayton Soldiers’ Home or at nearby McCabe Park.

For more information about this collection, please review the MS-668: Garard-Getter Family Collection finding aid or contact Special Collections and Archives.

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