Thursday, January 14, 2016

Svetlana, Tatiana, & Lena: 1950's Seoul Sisters

Svetlana, Tatiana, and Lena were three Russian sisters born to Konstantin Aleksandrovich Vassilieff and Natalia Feosodievna Mitrofanenko. Their father was an architect, and their mother worked in military translation. Their parents were of Ukrainian, Lithuanian, and Polish stock. You can read more about them here. The Seoul Sisters were born in Korea, and lived in Seoul and Japan before immigrating to San Francisco in 1953.

I have a rather large collection of black-and-white snapshots taken in Japan, sometime in the early 1950's. The ones featured here spotlight the Seoul Sisters together, sometimes with, or without cats. Vintage cat pics anyone?

Photo of Svetlana Vasilev aka Lana K. Thomson, Tatiana Vasilev aka Tanya K. Sarsfield, and Elena K. Vasilev, taken in early 1950's Tokyo, Japan.
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Photo of Svetlana Vasilev aka Lana K. Thomson, Tatiana Vasilev aka Tanya K. Sarsfield, and Elena K. Vasilev, taken in early 1950's Tokyo, Japan.
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This last photo is of the oldest Seoul Sister Svetlana (on left), alongside Lena, the youngest. Most of the photos feature Tatiana and Lena together. I assume because they were closer in age.

Photo of Tatiana Vasilev aka Tanya K. Sarsfield, and Elena K. Vasilev, taken in early 1950's Tokyo, Japan.
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Photo of Tatiana Vasilev aka Tanya K. Sarsfield, and Elena K. Vasilev, taken in early 1950's Tokyo, Japan.

Tatiana and Lena clearly had a thing for cats. I found a few snaps that feature the Seoul Sisters petting cats, hugging cats, cradling cats, and otherwise loving cats. Harry Pointer (1822–1889) has been cited as the "progenitor of the shameless cat picture"—but these kids took the budding trend, and ran with it.

Photo of Tatiana Vasilev aka Tanya K. Sarsfield, and Elena K. Vasilev, taken in early 1950's Tokyo, Japan.
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Photo of Tatiana Vasilev aka Tanya K. Sarsfield, and Elena K. Vasilev, taken in early 1950's Tokyo, Japan.

"And I will love him, and squeeze him, and call him George!" Or perhaps, in this case, Yury.

Photo of Tatiana Vasilev aka Tanya K. Sarsfield, and Elena K. Vasilev, taken in early 1950's Tokyo, Japan.
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Photo of Tatiana Vasilev aka Tanya K. Sarsfield, and Elena K. Vasilev, taken in early 1950's Tokyo, Japan.

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