A picture, a mirror, and a copper plate by
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Prompted By Anniversaries

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A picture, a mirror, and a copper plate attest to my grandparents’ anniversary.

They were married 101 years ago June 2. I know this because I have a picture of my grandmother in her wedding dress.

There’s a mirror behind her, now hanging in our bedroom, although a bit worse for wear. The copper plate, originally used to make engraved invitations, attests to the date of the wedding.  The paper invitations are gone, but the plate has survived. It’s now folded up at the edges – I think they were given to newlyweds to use as a place for guests to leave their calling cards. I suppose if the marriage didn’t go well, it could be used as an ashtray, but there’s no evidence that was done here. The plate was necessarily a mirror image of the card stock for the printing process. You can now read it normally through the magic of iPhone editing.

It’s hard to read here — the text is “Mr. and Mrs Edwin [hence the “Ed” in “Mr. Ed”] F. Peirce request the honor of your presence at the marriage of their daughter Mary Ellen to Mr. Leslie Norman Leet on Wednesday June the second nineteen hundred and twenty at eight o’clock St. Luke’s Church, Chelsea Massachusetts.”

Looking at and writing about these things now, I wonder what my grandparents would think if they were to know that over a century later these objects would still exist, and be a reminder of a particular day at the beginning of June in 1920. Would they look back and remember the day fondly? Would they chuckle at the attention they’re getting? Or would they take some satisfaction that they set in motion lives not then existing who would look back and wonder about them?


Profile photo of Mister Ed Mister Ed

Characterizations: moving, well written


  1. Betsy Pfau says:

    How wonderful that you still have those relics from your grandparents’ wedding, Mr. Ed. Such treasures to go along with the lovely portrait of your grandmother. Incredible that you have the actual mirror from the photo and the copper plate for the invitation. As the keeper of my family history (I spent time yesterday scanning the family history I wrote 30 years ago and sending it out to my children and nephews), I am in awe of your keepsakes.

    Your pondering on what they might have thought about their heirs is a worthy thought, as we are here 101 years later. What, indeed?

  2. Laurie Levy says:

    I love this, Mr. Ed. The wedding picture of your grandmother is so beautiful. Recently, one of my grandkids found the wedding topper from my parents’ wedding in 1944. It was hidden in a drawer of a secretary I inherited when my mother died. She claimed it for her wedding, but since she’s just 15, I hope she remembers it when the time comes. They were married for 68 years, which is pretty good luck.

  3. Marian says:

    This is so cool, Mr. Ed. How wonderful to have these mementos. Love the style of the dress and especially the copper plate. Probably few younger than boomers know what that’s for!

  4. Thanx Mr Ed for this surprisingly moving tale of your grandparents’ wedding!

    What indeed would they think! And how amazed would they be to learn their grandson is a horse who blogs!

  5. Khati Hendry says:

    So there is a reason to hang onto those old sentimental pictures and mementos! I am incapable of throwing those out, and how wonderful for someone to pay attention years later and think about those who went before. History is not dead, and that is a good thing to remember.

  6. What a lovely, moving tribute to your grandparents, Mr. Ed! And in answer to the questions in your closing paragraph, I imagine yes, to all three.

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