The woman is Lenore Grady Shearer, born in Palmer, Massachusetts in 1875 and the man is Purlin Marcus Shearer, Jr, also born in Palmer in 1876. The photos appear to have been taken around 1905, a few years after they married in 1901.
Lenore was a beauty─ the 9th child (of 16) born to an Irish Catholic family whose father was straight from Ireland. Purlin was the spoiled only-son of a wealthy family of Scots-Irish whose ancestors arrived around 1720 from Northern Ireland and who had helped settle the Town of Palmer.
Can you imagine the fireworks when Purlin told his parents that he wanted to marry this girl?
It may be hard to imagine now, but in 1901 when these two married, Protestant Irish and Catholic Irish might just as well have been from different planets. “Mixed marriages” of this type just weren’t acceptable and I’m sure the young couple had plenty of trouble fitting in with either side of the family. Still, they achieved a 50-year marriage with eight children of their own.
In time, I hope to share more of my research about this family. Stay tuned (you can subscribe to my blog for updates. Just scroll to the bottom of the blog page and click on RSS Feed.
1880 U.S. census, Hampden County, Massachusetts, population schedule, Depot Village Palmer, Enumeration District (ED) 293, p. 47, 48 (penned), dwelling 103, family 487, Michl Grady; digital images, HeritageQuest Online (http://interactive.ancestryheritagequest.com/6742/4241711-00819?pid=15189762 : accessed 29 February 2016); from National Archives microfilm publication T9, roll 534.
 “Massachusetts, Town and Vital Records, 1620-1988,” database and images, Ancestry.com (http://interactive.ancestry.com/2495/41261_263431__0002-00060 : accessed 18 March 2016), image 61, entry for Shearer, Purlin M., 1876; citing Town and City Clerks of Massachusetts, Massachusetts Vital and Town Records, (Provo, UT: Holbrook Research Institute) n.d.
 “Massachusetts, Marriage Records, 1840-1915,” database and images, Ancestry.com (http://interactive.ancestry.com/2511/41262_b139475-00123 : accessed 18 March 2016), image 602, entry for Purlin M. Shearer, 31 Dec 1901; citing Massachusetts Vital Records, 1840–1911, (Boston, Massachusetts: New England Historic Genealogical Society, Massachusetts Vital Records, 1911–1915.
The History Place (http://www.historyplace.com/worldhistory/famine/america.htm : accessed 18 Mar 2016), “Irish Potato Famine: Gone to America.