Mystery Photo #35: Frank Lundgren and Joe Marceau

Frank Lundgren and Joe Marceau circa 1918

This mystery photo was sent by Ryan Sanders, a distant relative of the man at left in the photo above, Frank Lundgren. (Yours truly, Paul Lundgren, is no relation.) Standing next to Frank Lundgren is his brother-in-law Joe Marceau. The photo was shot somewhere in Duluth around 1918. The mystery we are looking to solve is where specifically the photo was shot.

“My wife and I have recently found her birth family and they are from Duluth of which we will be visiting this October for the first time,” Sanders writes. “I am hoping to find this location so I could go see the sight and such if it is close by.”

There aren’t a lot of clues in the image, other than the arrow-shaped sign that appears to say “Step in and get …”

Sanders’ sister, Genyce Cottle, provides a few family details in case it helps.

“Frank Lundgren is the son of John Lundgren and Berta Burkland, both of whom are from Finland,” Cottle writes. “Frank is standing here with his brother-in-law, Joseph Marceau, who actually resided in Duluth with his wife Ella Marie Lundgren (Frank’s sister), their daughter Mildred (who married a Blackburn) and Joe’s sister Ella A. Marceau (not to be confused with his wife Ella M.). This was according to a United States Census from 1920. My guess is Frank was there visiting the Marceaus.”

Mildred Marceau Blackburn apparently sewed wedding dresses and might have owned a shop.

“Frank is one of 10 children,” Cottle continues. “That’s a lot of Lundgrens to grow from. We are actually related from his oldest brother John Lundgren (who was born in Finland 1884) and wife Mabel Maude Hocking then through their daughter Mirium Ruth Lundgren who then married a Sanders.”

That’s about the end of the clues. Let the theories and speculation run wild.



about 8 years ago

The sign behind the guys reads: KODAKS. I don't know how many camera stores existed in Duluth in 1918 but I found this image from ca. 1904 on the Library of Congress website. It was taken from 5th Avenue West, looking east. In the far distance (between 4th Ave. W. and 3rd Ave. W.) is a KODAKS sign. Could be totally unrelated but who knows?


about 8 years ago

Here's the close-up of the KODAKS sign from the above photo.

Paul Lundgren

about 8 years ago

By George, that kind of looks like a solve to me. Although ... it doesn't quite appear to be the same sign. The lettering is the same, but the sign in the older photo has a border around it and appears to be hanging higher up (although the perspectives are different).


about 8 years ago

Any chance Duluth Camera Exchange has been around that long?

Here's a couple Shorpy photos of that same view:
Superior Street, Duluth, 1904
Superior Street, Duluth, circa 1909

Paul Lundgren

about 8 years ago

Duluth Camera Exchange was founded around 1950 and was located on First Street in its early years. It moved to 321 W. Superior St. at some point in the 1970s.

Paul Lundgren

about 8 years ago

I checked the Duluth Public Library's microfilm of the 1918 city directory and there were zero Joe Marceaus or Frank Lundgrens listed. The library doesn't have a 1919 directory. The 1920 directory lists two Joe Marceaus and two Frank Lundgrens.

Apparently every Marceau in town worked at McDougall-Duluth Shipbuilding Company.

Joseph Marceau

Frank Lundgren

The old city directories don't have a block-by-block list of businesses, so I wasn't able to get any info on what was on the 300 block of West Superior Street back then.

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