Rod & Sophie 1940s Reception

Rod & Sophie - 1940s Detroit Wedding Reception at Home {}

I came across this single photo amongst a basket of  paper ephemera at a local antique store sale a couple of weeks ago. The candid pose of the couple, the cake, and the table spread of a reception at home instantly drew me to it. But of course, it had no identifying information. I looked through the rest of the papers it was with but didn’t find anything to help me out. After picking around the rest of the tent, I finally made my way up to pay for it. Initially, the clerk seemed confused as to why I would want a single torn wedding photo but offered that he knew who the couple was (I was delighted). He mentioned that they had lived in the area and the husband, Rod Rieser, had been a photographer for the Detroit Times (I was even more delighted!).

I later discovered that beyond his work at the Times (a Hearst newspaper that was sold to the rival Detroit News in 1960) he was a freelance photographer who had his work featured in Life magazine. He was also a founding member of the Detroit Press Club. In the early 1990s a retrospective of his work that featured photographs of Marilyn Monroe, Richard Nixon, and Jackie Gleason, among others was exhibited in the lobby of the Fisher Building in Detroit. I’m so pleased to be able to share a photo of a fellow photographer here on my blog dedicated to wedding photography!



  • Nikki
    August 17, 2014 - 3:27 pm | Permalink

    How cool that the dealer knew some background info! I wonder if the pair have any family left in the area….

  • Nikki
    August 17, 2014 - 3:28 pm | Permalink

    P.S. I love the drapes!

  • Ryan
    August 28, 2014 - 4:59 pm | Permalink

    That is my grandpa rod and grandma Sophie. I was looking around on the internet to see if by any chance if there was any of his work posted. I would like to know more about how you came across it

    • They Said I Do
      October 6, 2014 - 6:49 pm | Permalink

      Hi Ryan, wow! I’m so glad you found this. So often I never know who any of the people in the photos I find are and I always wonder if there aren’t family members out there who would like to reconnect with the photos. Without the offhand comment when I purchased this, it would have remained just another interesting but anonymous photo.

      I would really like to know more about your grandparents’ story and your grandfather’s photography. I’ll follow up with you in an email shortly!

  • September 11, 2014 - 8:59 pm | Permalink

    Very interesting I know the family. Great people.

  • September 11, 2014 - 9:02 pm | Permalink

    I wish I had that dress she has on.

    • They Said I Do
      October 6, 2014 - 7:04 pm | Permalink

      Isn’t it great? 😀

  • Mike Howe
    September 11, 2014 - 9:22 pm | Permalink

    Rod Rieser was like a second father. His son is one of my BF’s. A beautiful photographer. I got him a shot of Lee Iacocca being shot for his 1st Chrysler commercial. It was published by AP and UPI the next day. High tech then.

    • They Said I Do
      October 6, 2014 - 6:56 pm | Permalink

      Hi Mike, thanks for stopping by and sharing your personal connection! I can’t even tell you how thrilled I was to read these comments. I can only imagine what a great collection of photos he must have had.

  • Pete Evans
    September 12, 2014 - 6:26 am | Permalink

    I grew up with their Son, Rick. They were like 2nd parents to me and always made me feel welcome in their Berkley home. Weren’t the 60s a great time in Detroit!

    • They Said I Do
      October 6, 2014 - 7:02 pm | Permalink

      Hi Pete, knowing that people who actually knew this couple are getting to see this picture really made my day!

      I wish I could get in a time machine to the 60s right now. Thanks so much for stopping by.

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