The Virginia National Bank /NEWS RELEASE


February 28, 1979


by Mary Beth Patterson, Public Relations Officer

NORFOLK, Virginia-


A display of black and white abstract photography will be shown in Virginia National Bank's continuing program of artistic and photographic exhitbits.

The exhibit, a Canadian-American Portfolio of Photography by Bob Sutton will be on display during the month of March.

Mr. Sutton has been hailed by critics and artists alike as having"a most sensitive eye creating an aesthetic purity of images." He has studied the teaching of such notable photographers as Adams, Jacobs, Vestal and many others.

Mr. Sutton finds his subjects close at hand: the planes of a wall, an ironing board, a light bulb reflector. Dorothy Knowles, noted Canadian artist says, "Fine images in a good new direction..... I like what I see."

The exhibit of over 20 pieces of photography may be viewed weekdays from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and on Friday evenings until 6:00 p.m. at Virginia National's headquarters building in downtown Norfolk.

Source-owned by daughter Carol Lorraine Sutton

Robert William Sutton, wins blue ribbon, Stockley Garden Arts Festival, Norfolk, VA, 1979 Gem_Blue.gifA proud Bob Sutton ( R.W. Sutton) with his blue ribbon award for first place in photography, Stockey Gardens Ghent Art Show, 1979. Daddy's photograph on the far left is a black and white photo taken from a detail of a handmade quilt by his daughter Carol Sutton. The lower photo subject is an art deco style ceiling lamp, which he always admired from the Smith & Welton Department Store Main floor on Granby Street, Norfolk, Virginia. Above is the blue ribbon. Next to it is a title work 'Bob Sutton' with corner photo taken by his daughter Carol Sutton of Robert Sutton with his camera and below is a text plaque of critics comments.

Gem_Blue.gifThe church in the background is where Bob Sutton son, Robert Porter Sutton married Marcia Shipp. An extra note, Robert William Sutton and Nancy Chester Sustare Sutton lived at 709 Stockley Gardens in an apartment as a young married couple.

Daddy is holding one of his black and white photographs.

Date: June or July of 1979.

Place: Stockley Gardens, Ghent, Norfolk, Norfolk County, Virginia, U.S.A.

Photograph by: Carol Sutton, daughter of photographer Bob Sutton.




DoNut dinette founder omituary, where Robert W Sutton, photographed 'stack of plates'black & white, 1977 by Carol Sutton , Jan 18, 2003

As was posted on a pivate Copyright © 1998-2002, Inc. website: www.Sutton/

Sutton/Davis Family History from New Jersey to West Virginia - posted by: Carol Sutton - Jan 18, 2003  

Categories: INDIVIDUAL FAMILY NEWS (i.e., Graduation, Birthday or Marriage, etc.), OBITUARIES, SUTTON HISTORIES

    Hi. This obituary was found by luck on Jan 18 2003. It is the obituary of the founder of a Norfolk, Virginia landmark,

Ruby Schneider Massengill.Post Script: Doyenne of dinette made doughnuts and lasting friends

By FRED KIRSCH, The Virginian-Pilot

© December 29, 2002

NORFOLK -- Ruby Schneider Massengill used to call it ``a dinky little place.''


Gem_Blue.gifThis local stop was on the route my father, Robert William Sutton, drove almost each work day, from Lochhaven, on Hampton Boulevard, down Colley Avenue, and then on to Onley Road, ending up at Sutton Manufacturing Corporation, at 112 West Wilson Avenue. Dad knew Ruby for sure, as he was a local and loyal customer for over 25 years at the DoNut Dinette.
Once with his Nikon camera, Dad took a wonderful shot from where he sat on his chosen vinyl morning stool [ 1 of the 15 described in the omituary article], of what he usually stared at - the stack of plates on the stainless steel shelf. This simple everyday object done in black and white photograph, is in the tradition of art still life photograph, such as those done by Joseph Sudek, the famous Czechoslovakian photographer. Like him {Sudek} my Dad, "Red" Sutton,   was committed to photographing the close world around him, the world he bumped into each day, his own first hand experiences, and by the genius of his vision he took the ordinary things things he saw, in this case the stack of white plates in his local breakfast stop, the DoNut Dinette, and transformed this humus into photographic art with depth and feeling. A sort of quest for the ordinary. {Read film critic/ philosopher - book: 'In Quest for The Ordinary- Lines of Skepticism AND Romanticism', by Stanley Cavell; University of Chicago Press, 1988}
I think that this   'Stack of white plates - DoNut Dinnette' photographed by Dad probably around 1977, was once shown in his exhibition at the Chrysler Museum in Norfolk, Virginia. It was included for sure in the local bank show, at Virginia National Bank , that was written about.
See link: Virginia National Bank/News Release on Photographic Exhibition of Robert William Sutton's Portfolio,February 28,1979


Virginia National Bank/News Release on Photographic Exhibition of Robert William Sutton's Portfolio,February 28,1979

Gem_Blue.gifI have a web link up to a page of this exhibition review in my small family site in yahoo.[Note: Joseph Sudek, was was working in the poetic tradition of Eugene Atget.
Article: 'Josef Sudek's- Theater of Objects', by Jean Dykstra, from: Art on Paper Magazine, page 33, Volume 4 No. 1, September-October 1999. - Special on Photography issue.]
Another link between photography and the DoNut Dinette is that the current owner Sheila Mullins has a sort of in house exhibit of photo shots taken by various local artists of the place hanging up inside the cafe. Some are the DoNut Dinette, from the outside view of the diner on Colley Avenue, while others are photographs taken on the inside of the restaurant.
I took a few myself in May of 2002, and mailed them to Susan Mullins recently December of 2002/ or early Jan 2003. Mine were an echo of what my Father Robert had shot twenty or thirty years earlier; chose if not almost identical as the view was virtually unchanged as it was described by FRED KIRSCH in his article. Mine were in color, and Dad's were in black and white. At least I thought so until I got back to my studio in Toronto, Ontario, and upon looking at Dad's plates shelf photo I thought that Dad's are superior to mine, as his hold that magic just right vision, the contrast of the black under shelf bracket weighed in as a counter point to the stack of grey white plate edges. I also did a few portraits of Sheila, taken while she was at work making a supply order; sitting on one of the now famous stools.
Anyway, here is the link and the text to the obituary of   Ruby Schneider Massengill, mother of Sheila 'Lynne' S. Mullins, current owner and president of T/A DoNut Dinette of Norfolk, Virginia.

Added POST NOTE: {Now added to SUTTON?DAVIS SITE:}
I do not think that my father, Robert William Sutton was influenced by Joseph Sudek. At least I never heard Dad speak of Sudek's work and I can't remember talking about Sudek with my father.
Dad probably knew of his photographs from various photographic journals that he subscribed to; but Sudek was not widely touted in the 1970's.
I came into contact with knowledge of Joseph Seduk's photographic work via my ex art dealer in New York City, Salander/ O'Reilly. Now run by Lawrence Salander and William Edward O'Reilly, who exhibit Seduk's photographs. by Carol Lorraine Sutton, January 19, 2003.


News > Obituaries


Post Script: Doyenne of dinette made doughnuts and lasting friends

By FRED KIRSCH, The Virginian-Pilot

© December 29, 2002

NORFOLK -- Ruby Schneider Massengill used to call it ``a dinky little place.''
When she and her first husband bought into the Do-Nut Dinette in 1961, there were no
booths, no tables. Just an ancient yellow Formica counter and 15 stools.
In the 23 years Ruby owned the eatery on Colley Avenue, she never changed anything.
Not the color of those pale green walls. Not that counter where grooves began to form from customers'
elbows. And certainly not how she made those glazed donuts
dripping with tons of sugar or her fried chicken, the Thursday special.
She might not have changed the place, but Ruby transformed it: into a Norfolk landmark. Thousands of
customers, from dockworkers to doctors, hunkered down on those shiny stools. Most of them, like Ernie Johnson, just kept coming back. `It was more than the atmosphere and
food that made it special,'' said Johnson, who became an ``instant regular'' after his first visit years ago.


``She made every person who walked in feel like they meant something to her.''
Ruby Schneider Massengill, 80, died Monday of pneumonia. A native of Alabama, Ruby and Ken
Schneider, who died in 1975, were working to raise a family that would grow to six children when they took over the tiny diner on the north edge of Ghent.
Jean and Herb Johnston, now in their 70s, had already been regulars for years by then. ``She was the glue who held it together,'' said Jean Johnston. ``She'd be in at 4:30 to make
the doughnuts. And they had to be perfect -- `like a picture,' she'd say. She made breakfast
and the lunch special. If the help didn't show up, she worked the counter.''
But no matter how busy she was, the little woman in
the white apron always had time to tell a customer the latest joke.
``Most were clean, but she would have to lean over and whisper a couple,'' said Bucky
Parker, a 40-year regular.
Customers loved the place so much that when Ruby,
who later married Bill Massengill, decided to sell the place, one of them bought it, fearing it
would change. In 1987, Ruby's daughter, Sheila Mullins bought the place back. Not many days went by over the past 15
years that Ruby didn't drop in to put on her apron on and make the doughnuts.
Yesterday, the day of Ruby's funeral, the Do-Nut Dinette was open for breakfast. ``She
would have liked that,'' said Herb Johnston.


Obituaries articles

· Death notices for Sunday - Dec. 29, 2002  

Attachments:  { 4 LINKS}

Cavell, Stanley-In Quest of the Ordinary- book-at:
Doyenne of dinette made doughnuts and lasting friends By FRED KIRSCH, The Virginian-Pilot , currently {Jan 2003} online at:}
Josef Sudek, Still Lifes, ©all photograph images , at: or
Joseph Sudek(1896-1976) , biography at:

Copyright © 1998-2002 by Carol Lorraine SUTTON, daughter of Robert William SUTTON, All Rights Reserved & Copyright 2009.

Copyright © 1998-2002, Inc. and its subsidiaries. All rights reserved.

P.S. I will try to scan this plate photo in soon.


Robert William Sutton



Sutton side,my Father's side - family tree of Carol Lorraine Sutton

,descendent of Cornelius Sutton; also Thaddeus S. Sutton and Martha J. Norman




of my SUTTON paternal family:Sutton side, family tree of Carol L.,descendent of Thaddeus S. Sutton and Martha J. Norman

Thadeus Sutton[1844-1906] and Martha J. Norman[1847-1921] - My Great- Great-Grandparents


Thaddeus S. Sutton --Martha J. Norman ( 10 children)-My Great- Great-Grandparents

SUTTON LINE: Thaddeus S. Sutton (4), (George J. Sutton (3), John N. Sutton (2), Cornelius Sutton (1) &

NORMAN LINE: Martha J. Norman (6), Seymore Norman (5) , James Norman Sr.( 4) [& Mary Nedley], John Norman (3 [& Lydia Brown], James Norman (2), {& unknown wife] England, James Norman (1) (abt 1678, Holbrook, Duffield, Derby, England,


Dakota Territories that became North and South Dakota-1860


Distribution of SUTTON surname on 1850 & 1880 US Census Map

Cornelius Sutton - Elizabeth Applegate, (11 children) My 5th Great-Grandparents

John N. Sutton - Rachel Davis (12 children) My 4th Great-Grandparents

George J. Sutton -- Eleanor Davis (George had 10 children) My 3rd Great-Grandparents

Thaddeus S. Sutton --Martha J. Norman ( 10 children)-My Great- Great-Grandparents

James E. Sutton, ("Mack")---Alvertie M. Queen. My Great-Grandparents

Porter Odry Sutton--Margaret Lorine Crocker-My -Grandparents

Robert William Sutton--Nancy Chester Sustare- My parents

Twelve Children of my GreatGGG Grandfather John N. Sutton & my GreatGGG Grandmother Rachel Davis & their grandchildren are listed on this page.

SUTTON LINE: John N. Sutton (2), Cornelius Sutton Sr. (1) &

DAVIS LINE: Rachael Davis 5, William 4 ,T. William 3, John 2, William1)

John N.Sutton,Rachel Davis & children data by Carol L.Sutton

The generation prior to Thaddeus Sutton

George Johnson Sutton [1808-1845], who married Eleanor Davis [1812-1892] had 11 children, parents of Thadeus Sutton[1844-1906] -My 3rd Great-Grandparents

SUTTON LINE: George J. Sutton (3), John N. Sutton (2), Cornelius Sutton Sr. (1) &

DAVIS LINE: Eleanor Davis (6) (, Rachael Davis 5, William 4 ,T. William 3, John 2, William1)

George J. Sutton, 1808-1845,married 1830 to Eleanor Davis,1812-1892,in Harrison Country, Salem, West Virginia.

James Edward Sutton, ("Mack") [1869-1954] & Alvertie M. Queen [1873-1959] My Great-Grandparents

SUTTON LINE: James Edward Sutton, ("Mack") 5, Thaddeus S. Sutton (4), George J. Sutton (3), John N. Sutton (2), Cornelius Sutton (1) &

QUEEN LINE: Alvertie M. Queen (6) , James Pritchard Queen (5) & Angeline Bean, William Burrell Queen (4) & Sarah Catherine Pritchard , Levi Queen (3)& Catherine Coburn , Charles W. Queen Jr.(2) & Mary Haley, Charles Queen or MacQueen 1, {1)


Second page: James E. Mack Sutton & Alvertie Queen + ,Porter Odry Sutton & Margaret Lorine Crocker; + Robert W. Sutton and Chester Sustare

Porter Odry Sutton [1896-1962] & Margaret Lorine Croker [1898-1930] My Grandparents & parents of Robert William Sutton

SUTTON LINE: Porter Odry Sutton 6, James Edward Sutton, ("Mack") (5), Thaddeus S. Sutton (4), George J. Sutton (3), John N. Sutton (2), Cornelius Sutton (1) &

CROCKER LINE: Margaret Lorine Croker 3, Rufus Webb Crocker, Captain 2, Capt. David Crocker or Croker 1

Newspaper Article- P. O. Sutton, Engineer, Also Interior Decorator, July 8, 1959, my paternal grandfather-


Memories and genealogy notes on Porter Odry Sutton, my paternal grandfather-at:


Father Robert William Sutton [1918-1995] , who married Nancy Chester Sustare [1920-1997]

Obituaries- Robert William Sutton, "Red" or "Bob" 76, of Norfolk, an industralist, died Monday, February 13, 1995

SUTTON LINE: Robert William Sutton 7, Porter Odry Sutton (6), James Edward Sutton, ("Mack") (5), Thaddeus S. Sutton (4), George J. Sutton (3), John N. Sutton (2), Cornelius Sutton (1) &

SUSTARE LINE (Sistare): Nancy Chester Sustare 7, Beverly T. Sutstare (6) & Clara Nannie Williams, Barnum Alexander Sustare (5) & Sarah Amanda Ferguson , James Hiram Richardson Sustare (4) & Holly Elizabeth Hemby, John Thomas Sistare (3) & Mary Gwendolyn "Polly" Outen, Captain Lazaro Jose Gabriel Sustare Jr. (2) & Elizabeth Beebe, Don Gabriel Sistare Sr. (1) & Marie Mitzavila or Mityavila, from Spain.


Virginia National Bank/News Release on Photographic Exhibition of Robert William Sutton's Portfolio,February 28,1979


Chesapeake Beach Volunteer Fire Department (CBVFD) & Robert William Sutton new3.gif

About 1945 - Location: current: Virginia Beach, Virginia

WAY BACK WHEN: Cornelius Sutton Sr. [1750-1850] , who married Elizabeth Applegate [1758-1789]; parents of John N. Sutton [1785-1857], who married Rachel (Ruth) Davis [1792-1853], who were parents of George Johnson Sutton. Mystery man CORNELIUS SUTTON BY CAROL SUTTON-


Sutton family buried in Blandville,Doddridge Co.,WV Cemetery, Middle Island 7th Day Baptist

Sustare Maternal Line:

Main Sustare LEAD

Nancy Chester Sustare Sutton

Nancy Chester Sustare Sutton, born in Greensboro, North Carolina,

e-mail Carol Sutton at - email image - SEE MY ART:

All Rights Reserved and © on all images, art, links, and text,Page & site design by Carol Sutton