Friday, March 16, 2018

A wedding ... and a drowning: Arnold family 1899 Natal

This delightful wedding photograph (with a glorious collection of hats) taken in Durban by W B Sherwood in 1899 shows members of the Arnold family. The gentleman standing, left, could be William Marshall Arnold and the lady standing far right his wife, Julia nee Irvine, parents of the two little girls. The names of the bride and groom await further research, but the elderly lady seated left is the grandmother of the girls sitting on the floor at front. Her resemblance to the child next to her is very clear.

A tragedy hangs over the happy picture as the two young girls, Eunice and Kathleen Arnold, drowned at Durban on 8 March 1900. The story is that one girl lost her bracelet and they both drowned looking for it. The family had come from Ladysmith to see the arrival in Durban of an unnamed dignitary.

Acknowledgements to Peter Hare and Dale Schultz.

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