“Byron & Tootsie” is the photographic history of my parents, Byron R. Pipes and Grace D. Pipes. “Tootsie” was Mom’s family nickname from early life and the only name used by most everyone in her family. It think it reflected the cheerful and outgoing personality she was known and loved for by so many people. Family and friends meant everything to Mom, and the frequent family gatherings we had during the 60s always seemed to revolve around her. But to my father she was always “Grace” - a lady who possessed charm, beauty, and warm personal presence. Dad’s annotations in this collection are a testament to that.
My father was a lover of life - of the world, history, science, literature, poetry, music, and people. “No man is useless while he has a friend”, was his motto recorded in the 1928 Byrd High School yearbook. Although he was as happy to be alone reading history, or listening to music, he was no loner. People liked his warm smile and engaging nature, and he always sought the company of friends and family. My parents both experienced failed first marriages and had entered early middle age when they met. That event took place in 1947 at Barksdale Air Force base, where Dad was stationed and Mom was a civil employee. It was the early post-war period, and the free world was entering the great decade of optimism - when the 20th century American middle class was built. They both came from hard-working northwest Louisiana families of humble means, and reached early adulthood just in time for the Great Depression. I think I can imagine how happy they were to have found each other at that time, and how much they just wanted to live a good, decent life, and raise a family. And so, it was my good fortune to be born into this environment some five years later. I doubt very many had a more idyllic childhood and received more attention and care than me. Dad’s career took us to very different places - Alabama, South Texas, Newfoundland Canada, and then to Shreveport. Mom and Dad made many, many friends, and I always had a block-full of playmates. I never had any awareness of anything bad in the world until I reached my teenage years, and Mom’s cancer was discovered to have returned.
“Byron & Tootsie” is a partial transcription of Dad’s annotated photo collection he created over the entire course of his life. It includes about 700 color slides and 14 books containing about 400 prints in total. Of that number, I think about 70% are Dad’s photography and photo processing. The rest include photos that document the Pipes ancestry and extended family, as well as a few shots of Mom’s family during her childhood. Dad combined his dedication to family, history, and art to produce the work, and I am very proud of it, and of him. To help fill the more recent years I have added some additional photos taken by family members and provided my own annotation. I hope you will enjoy “Byron & Tootsie” and remembering, or learning, about two wonderful people and their families. Dad compiled the collection into volumes, annotated each with memories, and documented time and place where he could. The best quality prints and most detailed notes were reserved for the volume covering my childhood.
Part of B&T is open to the public and part is protected by password, and intended only for family and close acquaintances. If you fall into the latter category and would like access to the closed pages please contact me using the contact block below.
1. Annotation sources where indicated: BP = Byron Pipes, RP = Randy Pipes.
2. L2R = Left - to -Right (individuals in photo)
3. In ancestry tree diagrams a blue circle with check mark in the lower left corner of a name box indicates there is a photo of the individual in the album.
- Added information and images to Vol 5 Chapter 1, mostly from family history book compiled by Helen Huckabay and currently possessed by Michael Huckabay.
- Added Pine Island area image/map.
- Added password protection for family volumes