Tag Archives: finding families

Identifying a Family in a Box — The Hoelke Family

Identifying a Family in a Box — The Hoelke Family

Okay, everyone knows I do not care to see family photos for sale no matter where they come from. I have 121 photos from the Hoelke family. ( Florida, UK and Canada) so next week I am going to start going through them.. Anyone that knows me knows I love putting things together and getting photos back to family. Thanks to Julie Charron for telling me about them and Sarah Cavanagh you dont have to worry about them anymore.. They are in good hands— read-Are These Memories Just for Ourselves? — The Family in a Box

First photo-what military WW1 uniform is this? So I asked Ray Paquette–

I have looked at the picture of the couple posted in “Tales of Carleton Place” and after investigating the uniform, all that I was able to determine was that it would appear to be a WW I,  Other Rank uniform. The difference between “Other” and “Officer” rank is the belt on the upper body. Other ranks wear the belt right to left while officers wear the belt left to right.

I did some further investigation to see if I could find a duplicate of the Cap badge which would have indicated his regiment and country, i.e., Canada, UK or perhaps another Commonwealth nation and was unsuccessful.

To recap then, the uniform is the British  Army Service Dress, “Kitchener Pattern” as exampled in the attached PDF file. With the plethora of unit or regiment cap badges and the lack of definition in the photo, it was difficult to ascertain the regiment


The second photo from the Hoelke family is in front of a Grand Army of the Republic memorial rock. This gentleman (photo 1900 or earlier) was in the Union army. If any of my American friends have seen this rock let me know. Please note that the Grand Army of the Republic is from the Civil War not Star wars 🙂

I would say this is early 1900s

Grand Army of the Republic (GAR), patriotic organization of American Civil War veterans who served in the Union forces, one of its purposes being the “defense of the late soldiery of the United States, morally, socially, and politically.” Founded in Springfield, Ill., early in 1866, it reached its peak in membership 

The Grand Army of the Republic was founded in 1866 in Springfield, Illinois, and grew to include hundreds of “posts” (local community units) across the nation (predominantly in the North, but also a few in the South and West). It was dissolved in 1956 at the death of its last member, Albert Woolson (1850–1956) of Duluth, Minnesota.

3rd photo This was obviously in the UK sign says: E. R. Shea Coal and Coke Oil– any ideas?

Here was another clue.. I could read what I thought was Livery Company.. but thanks to all of you.. the right answer

Kevin PercyLooks like “The Pembroke Livery Company” to me.

Jeff BrennanI see Pembroke Lumber Company.

.Brian SarsfieldProbably the Pembroke Lumber Company, beside the Ottawa River . Make be take prior to the fire of June 1918.

It’s the Pembroke Lumber Company pre 1918.. and all the photos will go back to the family but this one will go to the Pembroke Historical Society

Sunday May 2 update– I think I found the family… and will continue a bit before I contact them hoping they want these photos back. https://mdbfuneralhome.com/tribute/details/6201/Earl-Hoelke/obituary.html

Related reading

Are These Memories Just for Ourselves? — The Family in a Box

Getting the Family Paintings Home– Dr. Harold Box

When the Past Comes A Haunting- Jessie Comrie

A Time of its Own– The Mystery Photo

The Peden Family- Genealogy– Peden Saunders Sadler