Sunday, 13 November 2011

Photos and Other Treasures

When I started out looking through old photos yesterday, I had forgotten there were a few other interesting things in the box. I have a lot of old pictures, as I seem to have become the 'keeper of old treasures' in our extended family. I am not complaining, I'm just saying that sometimes I forget what is there.

Many of these are already scanned and saved to my computer, and copies are saved in a series of places, as I want to be careful not to lose the images. The originals remain in envelopes and boxes, and some are filed by family. They are becoming a bit fragile, so I do not generally display them. The electronic copies can also be fragile, so I've made a few backups.

Annie, Dorothy, and Stanley May in front of the old sod house in Saskatchewan.
Thanks to my mom's cousin, Dorothy Whitcomb for this photograph (and more!).

As I sifted through the Lockerbie and May photos, and went on to a few from the Smiths and the Waites, I came across a bag with a folded piece of paper in it. My aunt Marion had written on the paper, and inside I rediscovered the buttons from my great grandmother's wedding dress. Cool! There were a few other items in there, such as a pearl cufflink, a 'Band of Hope' pin/medal (from the Prohibition), and a gold chain with a small medallion from the International Order of Odd Fellows.

As I continued, I realized most of the photos had already been scanned, but I had misplaced them in my labyrinth of electronic files. Honestly, that is one big area I need to improve! It's a good thing I have attached many of the pics to our Ancestry tree, as at least they are all in one place, and attached to the correct people.

For today, have a look at some of what I found. There are many more treasures here, so if you're ever interested, come on over for a coffee and we'll look through them together. There are many memories in the boxes, and I'm always happy if someone writes down their story and attaches it to a picture. There are also many people who are not identified, and I need help with that as well. If these pictures would mean more to someone in another branch of the family, I will gladly hand them over after I scan them.

Jack & Mabel - early

Jack & Mabel - later days

Thanks to Aunt Marion, who passed these along, which belonged to Jack & Mabel Waite

Saturday, 12 November 2011

Old Photographs

I have seen many photos posted on social media this week, as it was Remembrance Day yesterday, and people wanted to honour the ancestors and family members who have served over the years. I checked our family, and there were a few in the military, but not many. Nonetheless, I remembered that I have a couple of big boxes in the basement gathering dust. Some of those photos have been scanned, and are posted to our Ancestry tree, but many have not.

Today is supposed to be a blustery day in Calgary, and I can't think of any reason to put the project off. Thinking optimistically, if the boys are out of bed before noon, I might even enlist their help. If I can determine who is in the pictures, we'll be in good shape to work together, as they are much better at scanning, renaming, and filing.

If there are some we can't identify, perhaps a Skype session with Gramma & Papa will be in order. I'm sure they'll know who's in the pictures, and looking through pictures usually sparks some good conversation around memories of the past.

We have only a handful of photographs for Doug's side of the family, and I hope to obtain more in the next while. We have a few family gatherings coming up soon, so I will put the word out that I am looking for some balance. My mother-in-law has recently retired, and although she is not tech-savvy, she may be willing to help me with identifying people while I scan pictures. I am hoping she will also help me to track down some of these images.

As much as I find it interesting and challenging to research our family history, and feel it is important to obtain proof of each person's existence, I also think it's important to collect & share the 'soft' information, such as stories and photos. Not everyone cares about the facts, but they enjoy hearing the stories. Others are not so interested in reading, but they may like the pictures of the people, the houses, and the surrounding landscapes.

Stay posted -- I hope to be able to post a few new photos soon!