The Slide Years: Wedding Portrait

By Eilene Lyon

Back before digital cameras, my dad wielded a 35-mm camera loaded with Kodachrome slide film. Several years ago, I scanned many of his slides (a few, such as this one, taken by another person).

The quality isn’t as good as I would hope (though this one was poor to begin with – blurry and underexposed). Perhaps I’ll get them professionally scanned sometime later.

After using some of these images in my post about my brother Steve, I thought it might be fun to regularly share these old family photos. They were taken from 1957 to 1982.

This image is my parents wedding: August 18, 1957 in Corvallis, Oregon. Flanking them are my grandparents: Smiths on the left, Halses on the right. I never met Grandpa Halse, as he died in 1961, the year I was born.


Mom and Dad met at Oregon State University and shared a love of musical theater. Here they are in a production of The Pirates of Penzance in 1956.

My parents stayed together for 25 years before they divorced. Each moved to a different coast – Mom went west, Dad went east – where they still live today.

Contemplating marriage makes me wonder why we do it. Are we really meant to spend a lifetime with one particular person? Divorce seems so commonplace that I wonder if humans need to come up with a better arrangement. What do you think?

22 thoughts on “The Slide Years: Wedding Portrait

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  1. I guess it all depends on the person? My parents were married for just shy of 54 years when my dad passed away in 2014. There have been no divorces in my immediate family – it’s something that’s not seen very often!
    Love the pics…I scanned hundreds of my dad’s slides after his death. What a treasure they are!

    Liked by 3 people

  2. I don’t know Eilene. I wonder if now a days people aren’t willing to put the work in that a marriage requires or would there have been more divorces way back if it hadn’t carried such negative stigma…A divorcee wasn’t considered future marriage material and it was much easier for a woman who was married to survive, have children etc….?

    Liked by 3 people

  3. I have no definitive answer as to why some marriages make it and others don’t. Luck, maybe? Common goals? I know what you mean, though. Divorces are about as common as happy marriages.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. My Grandma Smith, married for 63 years, told me she didn’t see how modern marriages could last that long. They went through the Great Depression and WWII, then the booming decades of the 60s and 70s. She felt modern life was too stressful (!!) to make for lasting marriages.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Dr C and I have been married now for 47 years, we were postgrad students together, studying the same subject, from different sides of the planet. We tell people tales of how we began planning for future financial security from the day we married and most don’t understand things like this or only ever having a single shared bank account. Coming from different cultures was a sure fire possibility of causing marital disaster, but what has kept us together all this time is quite simply shared common values, things we believe in, things our parents believed in and raised us within.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. There are so many variables, it’s difficult to generalize about which couples will stay together and which ones won’t. I’m fortunate that my parents were devoted to each other, as it gave me a stable and secure childhood.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I feel like my childhood was stable and secure, but there wasn’t much love in our household. My brothers and I all married later in life – I was youngest at 37. Still hanging in 20 years later!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. There was so much charm to Kodachrome, and not just because Paul Simon said so.

    As far as marriage is concerned, I once pondered the idea of making marriage an actual contract in which people sign up for a specified amount of time. If you’re a busy professional looking to climb the ranks, maybe you enter into a five year marriage contract and see where you stand in five years before deciding whether to re-up. If you’re high school sweethearts who couldn’t imagine being with anyone else, sign the lifetime contract.

    In all seriousness, it might seem incongruous for a merry bachelor such as myself to say this, but . . I think marriage is always worth it. If two people see forever in each other’s eyes, why not take that chance? Just because I failed at it, doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate the value of having been there.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. We heard a speaker talk about with our higher life expectancy, if we wouldn’t change the marriage license to something like a fishing license – good for so many years, at which point you could renew it. Or not!
    Interesting to think about!

    Liked by 1 person

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