23 March 2011

Old family photographs can be a treasure trove of wealth

A box of old photographs lay dusty on an attic shelf, or in a forgotten closet.  Photos may even be forgotten in an unused album on a shelf in a family room.  Wherever they are, old photographs can be a treasure trove a wealth when it comes to genealogy

I love looking through old photos, whether or not they have my family members in them.  My grandfather was a avid photographer and loved taking pictures of the world around him.  He was the photographer for many Waldspurger family events.  I never knew what happened to his many photo albums after he passed away, but the photos I have seen that he captured, such as this photo of his family in 1934 that was taken at his older brother Edward's wedding, show that how much he loved taking pictures.   Who knows what treasures lie forgotten in his many albums.

Waldspurger Family in 1934

Another thing I used to love to do is buy old photos from flea markets or antique shops when they were cheap enough (usually only a dollar or two) and try to match them up with families looking for photos.  I have only been successful once, but it was a time I was very happy indeed.  I haven't bought photos in some time, and the ones I have are boxed up somewhere.... I should dig them out and try anew. 

Old photographs tell stories.  From the way people are dressed to the style of the house, even a favorite place a person used to visit, there are stories to be told.  For instance, I knew my father had an elder sister who dies when she was only 21, but I wasn't able to connect a face to the name until I was shown several pictures of her while in college.  At that time, she had been the same age as I was when she passed away.  I was able to connect a family story to my own personal experiences because of a few simple photographs

Are there old photos you could be looking through?

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