An adventure at Niagara… a birthday treat for my young mother, Gladys Elson (1912 ~ 1996), who traveled from Lewiston, NY, to Niagara Falls (about 5 miles) on the Great Gorge Route train. Accompanying her was her mother, my grandmother Mabel Hobbie Elson (1878 ~ 1965), redoubtable in That Hat (Mom’s sort-of cloche is much less expressive), & they carried a picnic lunch. They de-trained on the American side & walked across the Fallsview Bridge (built 1897 ~ collapsed in 1938, to be replaced by the Rainbow Bridge; still in use) to the Canadian side. As they sat with the American fall as backdrop, some rambling photographer snapped this shot.
The picnic was not bad, nor was it a complete success. For one thing, before they left Cedar Bank in Lewiston, they retrieved a jug of milk from the icebox there, planning to take it along on the outing. Unbeknownst to them, Aunt Carrie Hayes, seen here, second from left, had brought over another jug of milk, this one SOUR (she was getting ready to make cottage cheese), & Mabel & Gladys grabbed the wrong one. They had to make do with water when they commenced eating their picnic. (Sounds like something that would happen to Hyacinth Bucket whilst attempting a social occasion involving riparian entertainments.)
I think it was my mother’s 10th birthday, & despite the fact that it was in mid-June, it was chilly beside the roar of the Falls. Back on the American side, they went to a sprawling & popular mercantile establishment called Tugby’s Bazaar (much info on NF here; scroll down a little past half-way to find a picture & description of Tugby’s) where my grandmother bought Gladys a little German-made ‘Indian’ doll, which is now in my possession, reddish-tinted bisque head, headband, deerskin dress & all….
A day of fond memories for Gladdy. Most of the time, she was her dad’s girl, & excursions alone with her mother were comparatively rare, though they did much as a family. And ANY chance to ride on the Great Gorge Route was a bonus.