Wavy Hair in Your Family Photos

By Maureen A. Taylor

Last week, I wrote about how “radium perms” gave our ancestors’ hair smooth curls. Two readers sent me pictures of their female ancestors with wavy hair. Whether permed or created with a curling iron, these female ancestors ended up with lovely ‘dos.

Sharon Haskin Galitz sent in a 1928 graduation picture of her mother.

Laura Powell’s grandmother Ruth Myers posed for this picture around 1930, about age 16.

I’ve written about clues in curls before. See if you can use the pictures in this post and those linked below for comparison with your family photos. Can you spot the details?

  • Clues in Curls: Some women wore long curls in their youth. This woman’s hair steals the attention in this picture.
  • Four Times the Mystery: A set of four photo booth images act as a timeline of one woman’s life. Her hair is part of the solution.

Identify your old mystery family photos with these guides by Maureen A. Taylor:

  • Family Photo Detective: Learn How to Find Genealogy Clues in Old Photos and Solve Family Photo Mysteries
  • Fashionable Folks: Bonnets and Hats 1840-1900
  • Finding the Civil War in Your Family Album
  • Hairstyles 1840-1900
  • Photo-Organizing Practices
  • Preserving Your Family Photographs
  • Searching for Family History Photos: How to Get Them Now