Last winter I had the immense pleasure of pouring through an old photo album that belonged to my great uncle. By the age of many of the pictures, I believe it might have actually belonged to my great-grandmother but the album was in the house of my late great uncle Ed.
So many people don’t really think about pictures and what all they can mean to future generations. However my uncle and great-grandmother labelled nearly everything. It made it much easier to determine who was in the images and what was happening at the time. I also loved that most of the photos in the book were dated. Even a simple 1933 at the bottom would give me a little thrill.
I’ll admit, when I started my genealogy journey, I wanted to know the names and numbers. But now I really want to help put the meat on the bones. I’ve got names, but I really would love to know some stories behind them. Who were my relatives? What did they do for work? What did they do for fun. I may never know, but some of these images can really help shed some light on it.
I cannot stress enough how important it is to capture some of those images. Take them with you. When your loved ones pass, you may not be the one to get the photos. I certainly wasn’t. But if you can scan the images, or take pictures of them and make notes and ask questions, you might be able to capture some of that history. Keep the images alive so that a simple black and white print doesn’t just become a black and white print. It becomes a person, a place, a story. Keep those stories and hold them tight. Share them and store them. You never know when they will make you smile.