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Wedding History - Weddings From The 1900's
( Originally Published 1954 )
This was the era of the Gibson Girl and Arrow Collar Boy, the dawn of a new century. Our relatives married in that day wanted "something new" as well as "something old." New indeed was the engagement ring, a diamond solitaire in a, high gold-pronged `Tiffany' setting-and America's favorite for 25 years to come. New also was the high pompadour be-ribboned hairdo and the tie worn ascot fashion with scarf pin-"bows and pins made suitable inexpensive gifts for bridesmaids and ushers." But old as marriage itself were such practices as carrying the bride across the threshold of her new home. Parents of the decade must have been rather insistent that a man be well established financially before taking a bride; at least this would be a ready explanation for the prevalence of late marriages indicated by our album photographs. The honeymoon also became a more prosaic affair, with hired hack ride to the station and a brief train trip to some other town.
In this decade the bridal flowers were white roses, white orchids, lillies of the valley, or orange blossoms. Bridesmaids also carried white, and these flowers were often paid for by the groom, as is still customary with the bride's bouquet.
As for the wedding ceremony itself, the procession was arranged and re-arranged according to various self-styled authorities. Some formal weddings went back to the old custom of having little girls cast flowers before the bride as she led the procession down the aisle on the arm of her father. Others held aloft a garland of flowers for her to pass under as she took her place before the altar. Still other weddings adhered to the new practice of placing the little girl and her basket of uncast flowers after the maid of honor and just before the bride. All formal weddings now tended to have the ushers and bridesmaids march as two separate groups in the processional but to pair up and follow the bride and groom in the recessional.
For more informal home weddings, the Gibson bride and her groom had simply another couple "stand up" with them.. Afterwards father and mother might stand with the wedding party for an album portrait. Very appealing indeed are some of these principals, mothers and grandfathers to many of us today.