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Gwendolynne Andrews Murphy

Posted Nov 12 2007 12:00am

Born on Buckhall Plantation, Louisiana on October 11, 1923, died in St. Louis, Missouri on Friday, August 17, 2007...

This is Aunt Gwen. She was married to my grandmother's brother. Aunt Gwen had two sons, Charles and Clinton, that died before her. Uncle Clint, Aunt Gwen, Charles and Little Clint are all buried at Jefferson Barracks in St. Louis.

Growing up, I always found Aunt Gwen to be fascinating. She had a wonderful love of family history and it is because of her and my grandmother that I became obsessed with genealogy.

My mom, Evan and I went to St. Louis for her funeral in August. I was very surprised to learn that Aunt Gwen used to be a fashion model.

This is such a neat story...(excerpt taken from here )

The mood of America was very solemn in the early months of 1942. The Japanese had attacked Pearl Harbor in December of 1941. The early months of the war were not going well. The magazine publishers of America were afraid that their industry would be rationed, along with paper rationing, gasoline rationing and rubber rationing.

And their industry would suffer. They wanted to show to the government that they were a vital force in America at the time. That America's morale could be lifted by putting the flag on as many magazine covers as possible. The July 1942, United We Stand, flag campaign, was meant to do that.

Lady Liberty. I've always -- this is actually my favorite cover. I always saw the woman as the personification of Lady Liberty. She's standing very tall and graceful. Her white dress is billowing in the breeze with the American flag standing on either side of her. I think it makes a wonderful statement about the gracious dignity of Lady Liberty

if you click the link it will take you to Amazon where you can browse the book for a bigger picture...I believe Aunt Gwen is the third click! Enjoy!

This is my aunt! On the July 1942 cover of Vogue magazine! All of the "United We Stand" covers are in a collection here. Being me, as soon as I got back home and on my computer I started to research. I found the articles I linked to and then discovered the photographer was Toni Frissel.

Who is she? Well she only did the wedding photos for Jackie and John Kennedy!

I was able to find a cover suitable for framing...that is my next project when the holidays are over.

This is a picture of a picture of Aunt Gwen before she made her debut into Louisiana Society...I think she was just breathtaking.

My cousins, Charles and Clint, never married and both died before Aunt Gwen. They were the last of the Murphy line in our family.

This Murphy family also served the country in WWII, The Korea War and Viet Nam. All heroes.
And, yeah, Aunt Gwen had a Confederate Flag on her casket, but for her it wasn't a symbol of what so many people take it for today. She was very proud of her Southern Heritage and belonged to many societies including United Daughters of the Confederacy, Daughters of the American Revolution, Gold Star Mother's and was active until her death in August of 2007.
And maybe my family is a bit dotty that we take pictures at funerals. But people that do genealogy understand this.

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