Misperception

Week 45: #52 Ancestors – Bearded

By Eilene Lyon

I don’t recall when I first saw some version of the image above of my grandfather, Everett Halse, but as a child, it stuck in my mind that he was a bearded man. This, despite the fact that every other photo of Grandpa showed him clean-shaven. I never met Grandpa, because he had his third, fatal heart attack six months before I was born.

My relatives eventually corrected my misperception. Everett cultivated this beard for a pioneer days contest. It was probably the one and only time in his life that he grew out his facial hair!

Everett and Reatha Halse with silver set in the late 1950s, most likely a 25th anniversary gift from Reatha’s parents, Stella and Walter Gusso (who appear in a companion photo to this one).
Photo of Everett Halse, probably taken in the 1920s. Plastic covering the photo is responsible for the odd reflection.
Everett Halse in 1933, South Dakota.
Reatha and Everett Halse in Corvallis, Oregon, in 1943.
Reatha and Everett Halse in Corvallis, Oregon, in 1945 with their four sons.

As you can clearly see, Everett Halse was not a bearded man.

(All photos courtesy of S. Halse)

36 thoughts on “Misperception

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  1. Love the overalls! I have a photo of my grandfather, who I never met, wearing them, and when they were in style again in the 80’s, my grandmother remarked. those remind me of your grandfathers. I do wish the current fad for beards on men would go away – I much prefer the clean-shaven look.

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    1. As for beards, for me the face beneath it matters. I’ve always preferred my husband with facial hair. Right now he wears it goatee style. I’ve always like overalls, but never had a pair that fit me right.

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  2. There are so many misperceptions about our families that come to light when we actually sit down to go through the history. It’s a shame that you never got to meet your granddad. My paternal grandfather died before I was born as well.

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  3. Great old photos. I have sort of the opposite story. My dad grew a beard when he was already in his seventies, having never had one before. He kept it til the day he died at 92. So for probably twenty years he had a beard. But if someone asked me to describe him, I would probably never mention the beard because my memory of him is from when he was younger and clean-shaven.

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  4. My dad grew a beard for the first time in his life when he was nearly 80 — it was for a centennial celebration in his hometown. Only then did I realize my dad would have made a great Santa! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. It’s strange how childhood memories are formed, isn’t it? One of my great-uncles was married to a woman who performed as a clown (she was called Twinkles – I don’t even remember her real name), and they lived in Florida, so I only met her once. I remember she made balloon animals and did some weird clown magic for me, and even though she wasn’t actually wearing clown makeup at the time, every time I picture her, it’s as a clown – I genuinely don’t remember what she actually looked like. I think I was so terrified of clowns that once someone told me she was a clown, that’s all I could see when I looked at her, and I was on edge for her entire visit. My great uncle was strange too, so it was just a weird experience all around!

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    1. It’s like how big everything seems when you’re little and you revisit places and they shrank terribly in the interim.😂 Or my perception that the mermaids in the Disneyland submarine ride were real – then to go back as an adult and see they are little plastic things spinning on a post. Oh my, the disillusionment!

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Yes! Some places seemed so large and magical in my childhood memories. Often these are the places best left to our youthful imaginations and not revisited.

        There’s nothing like ruining a good memory with a healthy dose of reality.

        Liked by 2 people

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