“Unfortunately, the images of the children are too small to specifically identify Nellie in the picture at this time,” said historian and postcard owner Carol Jensen. “A magnifying glass and a ‘blow up’ of the image may assist in comparing known images of Nellie to the Byron School photograph.”
On the back of the postcard, which featured 45 students, Nellie wrote “I got promoted in the second grade. I have a baby brother.” Jensen purchased the card on eBay and asked for Press readers’ help to uncover Nellie’s full name and any details about the girl who sent her postcard to Loyd Peterman of Willows, Calif. on June 1, 1908.
After spotting the picture in The Press, Norma sent it to her sister-in law Petra, who suspected Nellie was referring to her husband Walter, who was born on May 24, 1908. Petra then called her daughter Nancy Slatten to tell her that the postcard was from her aunt Nellie, a fair-skinned, strawberry blonde from Byron. Slatten then e-mailed Jensen to inform her that the History Mystery had been solved.
“Traditional snail mail and new internet technology communication resulted in a solution all within three days of the Brentwood Press’ publication. Small, well connected world,” Jensen mused.
Jensen said the family believes Loyd Peterman was Nellie’s cousin. Petra Lewis has been awarded a membership to the East Contra Costa Historical Society for solving the mystery.
Stay tuned for the next History Mystery in an upcoming issue of The Press.
If you have more information about the postcard, e-mail Jensen at email@example.com.