This is my paternal great grandpa William Howard Furnier. I look at this photo and think, hey, if this were taken in the era of the digital photo they totally would’ve looked at the camera screen and done a second take. But with this possibly taken in Cincinnati mostly likely in the 1910s or 1920s, great grandpa Howard Furnier was stuck with this eyes shut photo.
But, I digress. This post is less about my ggrandpa, and more about his attire. Rewatching Boardwalk Empire made me pay even closer attention to everyone’s clothes, and I am just dying over the three piece suits. The jacket-pants-vest combo in 1920s wonderfulness is killing me. I did some google image searching which led me to this fantastic blog with great posts on Jimmy Darmody’s suits (dark pinstripe and blue suit). (Nick Charles has got it goin’ on too.)
Vests and menswear really don’t fit my body type. Neither does 1920s womenswear, alas. Thankgoodness me and the Mad Men era get along.
Howard Furnier would’ve been a contemporary to Andrew Holt (all the way over on my Mom’s side of the family). Andrew was about 10 years older, but they both seem like they were movers and shakers of a sort. Howard did some amateur boxing in the 1910s and 1920s – exciting! Totally a future post topic. I think I’ll be staying in the 1910s/1920s for awhile, I’m getting comfy here.
Not to mention, Howard married my great grandma Edith Graham in Newport, Kentucky in 1929. I went on an Underground Cincinnati tour, run by the fabulous American Legacy Tours company, and learned they also have a Newport, Kentucky walking tour on gangsters, speakeasies, and all that jazz! I don’t know when I’ll be back in the Cincinnati area to visit relatives again, but I definitely want to go on the Newport tour next time I’m around town. I had no idea Newport was a significant place during Prohibition.
Actually he was a professional boxer. I think the picture was taken after a fight. His eyes look swollen. Grandma said he travelled around the country to fight. There’s a picture of him in Florida and some of his fights in the record books say he fought in Boston or Philly.
I didn’t even think of the possibility that this picture was taken after a fight – good thinking!