I again started skimming through the old diary late one night when one entry caught my eye. Mostly because it was much longer than her usual entries and I spied the words Orient Point. I knew from the writing on the vacation picture that was where the photo was taken. I was totally shocked to find an entry connected to the photo. I am fairly certain the entry and photo are from the same event due to the following:
- Diary entry is August 25, 1888. Fits my grandmother's age in the photo (although I originally estimated 1890)
- Location - same on photograph as in diary.
- Entry describes a boat wreck, title on photo is "The Party in the Wreck"
At Orient Point - L.I.----Taking a sail in a yacht - Tammie Say Brook - Struck on a rock in Plum Girl - All thrown out. eleven persons in all saved by another yacht - Gladys. H-screamed once when the water went in her mouth and nose. but - holding with her arms around Mammas neck was quiet. Said she hoped they would not send an old broken boat to save her. and said Mamma ask Jesus to save me too.
I find it strange I never heard this story. Possibly my grandmother was too young to remember (age 3) or maybe it was traumatic and she never spoke about it. I do not believe the boat in the photo is the one that overturned because 11 people would not have fit into it. Also she refers to the overturned boat as a yacht, so I am assuming it was bigger boat. I have no way of knowing but I assume this photo was taken after the incident. The accident is probably the reason they took the photo. They were all quite lucky to be rescued. I find it amazing even if they all had on bathing suits that the clothes did not weigh them down.
This is also a good example of how careful we must be making assumptions about photographs or any data. In my original post I assumed the title "Party in the Wreck" was meant to be funny. It now seems this photo was to document a harrowing experience!
It is such a treasure and rare event to find a family photo and then find supporting written documents that help explain the photo. I love finding little bits and pieces of my ancestor's lives that go beyond the collection of names, dates, and places. I think I will move the transcription of those diaries up a few notches on my "to do" list!