Jim and Elsie are my great-grandparents. Jim was a soldier in the first world war, but was injured and sent back to the main port of Halifax, Nova Scotia, where Elsie was working as an accountant for the local newspaper. They were married in Halifax on 19 Dec 1919, and I believe this picture was taken around the time of their engagement. Certainly it is not taken at the time of their wedding; safe to say that there would have been snow and leaves would not have been on the trees. I wish I had a formal wedding photo, but I don't, so this one will have to do. I must say, I really like her coat.
I have two wedding announcements for Jim and Elsie: one from the Halifax paper where Elsie worked; the other from Jim's hometown paper in Westville, Nova Scotia. Let's start with the big-city formal announcement, shall we?
Halifax, December 22--Rev. John Y. MacKinnon, minister of St. John's Presbyterian church, officiated at the marriage, therein last evening, of Elsie Maud, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Robert Dewar, of Charlottetown, and James MacDonald, C. E., of Westville, a large group of friends and well wishers being present to witness the ceremony. Miss Dewar has held with signal efficiency the responsible position of bookkeeper in the employ of The Herald and The Mail, and is a charming and popular girl. Mr. MacDonald also has a wide circle of friends in the city.
The bride wore a smart tailored suit of dark brown, with hat and furs to correspond, and carried a shower bouquet of carnations and roses.
Mrs. Esdalle [??] presided at the organ, giving a fine rendition of the wedding marches.
Immediately after the ceremony Mr. and Mrs. MacDonald left for Charlottetown, proposing to spend the honeymoon at the home of the bride. Thither they are followed by the best wishes of a host of friends.
The collection of wedding gifts was a large one, and included a cabinet of silver from the editorial, business and mechanical staffs of The Herald and The Mail.
The bride has during the past three or four weeks received numerous gratifying proofs of the regard of friends, including several "showers."
Pretty sweet, isn't it? Do you think that Mrs. E, the organ player, reveled in the reviews of her wedding marches? I also wonder if any of the silver my grandparents have is from the wedding gift?
Although just as friendly, the announcement from the other paper is much less formal and more...small townish. Like an informative letter, almost.
Announcements have been received in town conveying the good news of the marriage of our townsman James W. MacDonald, son of Mr. and Mrs. Alex R. MacDonald, Union Street, to Miss Elsie M. Dewar, of Charlottetown, P. E. I. The marriage took place in St. John's Presbyterian Church, at Halifax, on Monday evening last. They are spending a short wedding trip in Charlottetown. Jim is one of Westville's most popular boys, a member of the original 85th Battalion, and his hosts of friends will join in wishing the young couple a happy and prosperous married life.
I'd love to add a photo of the church to my collection, but unfortunately Jim and Elsie's wedding fell into a little blip in church history. The St. John's congregation had begun building a new church in the North End of Halifax in 1917 (two years before the wedding), but just two months into the project, the Halifax Explosion flattened that area of the city (Jim and Elsie weren't in Halifax at that time, thankfully, although the story goes that the explosion rattled the windows in Charlottetown). After that, building the church wasn't quite the priority it had been. The new church was finished, however, by the time Jim and Elsie were married in 1919, and the space must have been new and beautiful when they held their ceremony. But apparently the space was also too small.
In 1920 a cornerstone was laid for a new sanctuary and bell tower, just 40 yards from the (new) old church. I'm not sure if they built a whole new church or just did a massive renovation, but by 1921 Jim and Elsie's wedding spot was obsolete. I'm afraid that 1918 to 1921 is a small window for finding pictures (not that I won't continue to try!).