The Library Will Be Closed April 3rd — Dress Accordingly!

The Davenport Public Library will be closed this Friday and our staff hopes to enjoy the Spring weather . . . whatever that turns out to be.

As those of us who live here know all too well, Calendar Spring in Eastern Iowa has little to do with Meteorological Spring.  This makes it difficult to dress appropriately for all possible fluctuations of temperature, precipitation, and wind velocity.

But we in Special Collections have photographic evidence that some Davenport residents have managed to wear the perfect Spring outfit, even without benefit of air conditioning.

Elva Yeatman Gifford, for one.

In April  of 1915, Miss Yeatman, who would marry Ira L. Gifford in Washington, D.C. in early May, had her photograph taken by the Hostetler Studio.

In the photographs, she is wearing an outfit, which does not match the description of her wedding dress offered by the May 3rd Davenport Democrat but was certainly lovely enough to have done the job:

Elva Gifford2.jpg

The flower motif, the pretty, pinfeathered hat, and the whimsical collar say, “Spring.”

The gathered, insulating ruching at the waistline and the doubled overlay of the bodice, not to mention the kid gloves say, “Not quite yet.”

It’s the perfect combination.

Elva Gifford

Well done, Mrs. Gifford!

It’s too bad this sort of style has gone out of fashion.  But I’m sure our staff will be just as comfortable in our shorts, sweatshirts, galoshes, and woolen socks, our umbrellas in one hand and our snow shovels in the other.

Because around here, Spring tends to make April Fools of us all!

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