Photograph Showcase: The Anniversary Pendant



DUVAL, Deane, wearing the aniversary pendant

Deane Alice Duval, wearing her mother’s anniversary pendant

When you are the daughter of photographers, you have your picture taken a lot.

Like, a lot, a lot.

So when you are the great-granddaughter of photographers, you have seen a lot of photos of your Grandma.

Like, a lot, a lot.

So sometimes, the photos kind of blur together in your memory.  And sometimes, bits of stories and treasures in those photos go unnoticed.

And then, every now and again, a detail pops out of a photo and smacks you in the face for the first time.  The detail was always there, but it went completely unnoticed until one day, it didn’t.

I scanned this photo.  A long time ago.  But I scanned it.  That means I looked at it at least three times.  Once before I put it on the glass, once on my computer screen, and then again when I pulled it off the glass.  But who knows how many other times I looked at it?  I don’t.

But just last night when I was flipping through images to choose a photo to share, a detail in this photo jumped right out at me for the first time.


DUVAL, Deane, wearing the aniversary pendant - crop

The pendant my Grandma is wearing didn’t belong to her.  I don’t know if it ever did.

There have been three owners that I know of.

First – my great-grandmother, Hope Estelle Maffit.  According to my mother, it was an anniversary gift given on the first anniversary of her marriage to my great-grandfather in 1931.

Second – my mother.  I remember her wearing it a lot when I was growing up.  Only ever on Sundays, but still, she wore it a lot.  I frequently wore my mother’s jewelry but I don’t remember ever wearing this.  I loved it, but I never wore it.  Maybe I wasn’t allowed.  I don’t remember.

Third – me.  A surprise.  Last year when I went for a visit, my mom gave it to me.  I didn’t know what to say.  I don’t think I ever told her how much I loved it.  But of all the pieces of jewelry she owned, it was the one item I would have chosen for myself after she is gone.

Treasure doesn’t even begin to describe how I feel about it.

But finding it in this photograph last night – there just aren’t words to explain how this photograph struck me.

Four generation of women.

One pendant.  A gift to symbolize love.  A love that is one-eighth of my story.


A treasure, to be sure.


Author: thegenealogygirl

I'm a girl who loves genealogy. Let me tell you about it.

10 thoughts on “Photograph Showcase: The Anniversary Pendant

  1. Wow. That one hit me right in the heart and gave me goosebumps. Indeed, what a treasure. I think we need to see posts of the others wearing it—including you! 🙂 And what an absolutely gorgeous woman your grandmother was—such an amazing photograph. Your great-grandmother had quite an eye.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Amberly, you have such a treasure in this photo and now this locket! Very touching to know that your mother wants you to have this special necklace and be the keeper of its special memories.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. What a gift! To have a photo of her wearing it brings the generations together. Do get a photo of you wearing it for your children.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi Amberly, I don’t remember this pendant. It is cool that it has been loved so long by our family. After Grandma Estelle passed away, Grandpa let me go through her jewelry and pick out a few pieces. One of them that I choose was a little mouse pin that had real fur on it. Grandpa told me her put the fur on it and it was an anniversary gift. I don’t remember ever seeing Grandma wearing it, but none the less, it is a special piece. Thanks for sharing.


  5. Hi Amberly. How about a photo with you wearing the pendant? Maybe a close-up of it? It looks like there are some stones or a tiny diamond on the pendant. I’d love to get a closer look. How wonderful you finally saw the detail in your Grandmother’s photo. She was very pretty.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. What an amazing discovery! How wonderful to find this photo to fill in the gap, so to speak. And you look so much like her!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So happy for you to have this beautiful treasure.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I agree with Luanne! You do look a lot like her. It was actually the first thing I noticed even before I clicked over to the post. Thanks for sharing this treasure.


  8. That sure is a wonderful treasure. I somehow managed to keep my maternal grandmother’s lavalier pendant with chain and my maternal great-grandmother’s wedding ring. Now it’s deciding which cousin will eventually receive these heirlooms.


  9. What a wonderful, wonderful treasure! I had a very similar experience with my great grandmother’s bracelet that she received at her high school graduation in 1890. She gave it to my grandmother and then she held on to it with instructions that when she died it was to be given to me. And while I still have it, both of my daughters wore it on their wedding day. So a very, very special treasure. You can read about it here.


  10. Wow, it’s amazing that you have the locket that your grandmother wore in this photo.


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