Four wedding photos are at the heart of a little mystery an Arlington Heights couple picked up at the side of the road, and have now laid in the lap of the Daily Herald.
Who is in these photos? How did they wind up on the street? And does the family want them back, or were they tossed on purpose?
Dawn and Chester Evans found the photos at Wilke and Nichols roads while on a walk over Memorial Day weekend. Gravel dents testify a car ran over them, but the colors indicate they were outside only a short time.
One is a portrait of the bride and groom on a staircase, perhaps at their reception. Another is of the bride and other women in the wedding party. One was taken as an attendant walked up the aisle. The fourth is a neatly dressed older woman -- the mother of the bride? -- being escorted into the church.
The Evanses are sure the pictures were lost inadvertently, and want to return them to the family.
"We were thinking they blew off a car or out a window," said Dawn Evans. "We decided they look like they belong to somebody, maybe we'll see if we can find the owners."
Dawn Evans posted the photos on Facebook, but as a Pennsylvania native most of her Facebook friends are from the East Coast.
Guesses as to the date of the wedding range from the 1950s to the 1970s.
Not so, says Franca Deflorio, who designs and sells her own line of haute couture bridal dresses in the Loop, Deflorio Fashion.
Those A-Line dresses worn by the bride and her party indicate the wedding was in the late 1960s, Deflorio says, pinning the most likely date as between 1966 and 1968.
"At that time the A-Line dress and empire waist were very popular," said Deflorio, who teaches in the fashion/design department at Harper College in Palatine.
She also points to other clues that date the wedding, like the A-Line floral dress worn by the older woman, the hooded dresses worn by the bride and her attendants, and the hand-sewn beads that emphasize the empire waist and the hoodies.
Deflorio added the "little girl look" of the shoes typifies the late 1960s, as does the gathered cuffs on the sleeves of the wedding dress.
Deflorio, who came to Chicago from Bari, Italy, said geometric shapes were popular in late 1960s fashion, evident in the baskets of flowers carried by the bride and her party. And the vests worn by the men under their jackets also suggest that time period.
A faded photographer's stamp indicates the pictures were taken by a photo studio in Lincolnwood. The name is obscured, but using the partial name the Daily Herald has identified someone who is the most likely photographer.
We are not naming him because we haven't reached him.
The photos are about 3- by 4-inches. And whatever the story behind this elegant wedding couple, the Evans would like to return the photos.
"They're really nice old pictures," said Dawn Evans. "Maybe they're important to somebody. They were at one point."