Toby MacDuffie with Blackberries, Irwinville

John Vachon/Library of Congress. (May 1938)

Images like this are an invaluable visual record of the folklife of the rural South at a time when few others were documenting it. I can just imagine the cobbler or preserves she might have made! John Vachon noted that she had just picked these blackberries in a nearby swamp. According to her grandson, Winston, this is Toby Julia Turner McDuffie (1875-1961).


Filed under FSA Photographer John Vachon, Irwinville Folklife, Irwinville People

11 responses to “Toby MacDuffie with Blackberries, Irwinville

  1. Thanks for posting my Grandmother: Toby Julia Turner/McDuffie, 1875 -1961, known and loved by many.

    Winston McDuffie

  2. W. Cliff McDuffie

    WOW…did not know her but for a short time. Spelling is wrong McDuffie but who cares It’s Toby!!
    Always glad to get photos of my Dad’s family that we had little connection with over the years.
    Welbourne C. McDuffie, Zephyrhills Florida

    • I believe the FSA photographers probably were in such a hurry when they made these images that they probably just kept notes in a field notebook and added the captions later. I’m so glad to hear from all the McDuffie family, though!

  3. I’m thrilled to see this photo of my paternal grandmother.
    As the youngest of six children, I never got to know her well since she lived in Georgia and we lived in Florida but I heard many delightful stories about her. Thank you for sharing this. I look forward to reading your book. Please let me know when it is published.

    • Thanks for your response, Ermalou! I think this is just the neatest photograph. I had a grandmother who was born in 1876 and died in 1977, so of that same era. People were so much more interesting in those days, I believe.

  4. Stan Roller, Jr.

    I’m Ermalou’s son, and Cliff’s nephew. So much fun to see my great grandmother – who died the year before I was born.

  5. I’m Winston McDuffie’s daughter, and named after Toby McDuffie, also known as “Big Toby” after I came along.

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