Camera Shy?

I spent this weekend working on my thesis.

HAHAHA- Of course I didn’t!!

What I did spend a lot of time doing was looking through old yearbooks from Meredith College- which lucky for me, are available online.

I started looking because of this:


(Left column, fifth and sixth paragraphs)

There’s Sheldon Shaw, my great grandmother. 

This clipping is from the Twig, a publication of Meredith College, located in Raleigh, North Carolina. It’s dated May 6, 1927. 

I desperately want to find a picture of Sheldon. We have nothing from that branch of the family- no pictures, no documents, no memories- nothing. Besides growing up without her father, my mother also had no connection with his family. I don’t know whose choice that was, and considering most of them are deceased (or in John Rigsbee’s case, presumed dead), it’s really a moot point by now.

So I was in contact with a cousin from the Allen branch (Hazel Allen being Sheldon’s mother) and she told me that those yearbooks were available online. 

My search yielded no results. No mention of her in any of the yearbooks. Then it struck me that she was 14 years old in 1927. I’m not familiar with the format of Meredith College in the 1920’s. My cousin said they used to have high school level classes as well, but they stopped that practice in 1917. So what was she doing there? I have no idea. I looked through yearbooks page by page from 1926-1933 and found nothing.

It seems odd to me that Sheldon was obviously a socialite and I have yet to find a single picture of her. I’ve found articles in newspapers with Miss Sheldon Shaw is going to visit her friend, Miss So-and-So, or Miss So-and-So is coming to visit Miss Sheldon Shaw. I’ve also found that she was presented in the 1931 North Carolina Debutante Ball. So you’d think there has to be a photo of her somewhere!!!

I hate to think that somewhere, in an antique shop is her picture in a box of old photos being sold for a dollar a piece. “Instant ancestors” someone once called them.

I have some emails out trying to get in touch with the archivist/historian/equivalent of Meredith College to try to figure out what Sheldon was doing there. I am also trying to find if the Debutante Ball has any sort of archives or historical records.

Once again I’ve hit a brick wall. Sheldon is one of the ever-elusive leaves on my family tree.

I might as well go back to my paper, at least that’s one mystery that’s already been solved!


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