Left Behind Family History: Part Two


This is a follow up to a post I did last summer. I am doing this because I wanted to see if the disregard of family heirlooms is as widespread as I thought. It wasn’t. It was worse! My granddaughter Nicole and I spent the summer months photographing these lost heirlooms. The few pictured here were picked from almost a thousand photos. So I am going to let the pictures tell the story. The picture at the top of this post was taken at an outdoor flea market. I could not help trying to imagine how they ended up at an outdoor flea market. This next picture was taken at a church rummage sale. The frame was for sale for twenty-five cents. When I looked behind the picture of the Marine, I found two others behind it. The name on the back of the three  photos confirmed they were all of the same young man. I can’t help but wonder what happened.



I was dismayed to find so many wedding pictures that had been discarded.  Families draw together at weddings. These could be a major find of one’s relatives. Below you will see two such wedding photographs.



I found discarded yearbooks everywhere. They were priced from five dollars and up. Pictured below are just some of the hundreds of yearbooks that I found over the summer.

I would love to have any of my relatives school yearbook. I would be happy for any, grade school, high school, or college.  Not only would the pictures be welcome but the sentiments  written in the yearbook would be nice to read. A year book could make a relative you scarcely knew come to life or give you some insight on a relative you thought you knew very well. 

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The next picture is of a championship sports team that was taken in 1950. So in this picture is somebody’s father, grandfather, and maybe a great grandfather. This is a great picture of young men in their prime. I wonder if their descendants ever think about them in this context. If they had this picture I am sure they might. 

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The next few pictures were taken in a photographer’s studio. They are someone’s ancestor and should be with the proper family.

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This next photograph is of two fun loving people. They seem to be on a roof top as they strike their pose for the photographer. Wish I could find some pictures like that in my family.

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The next picture was perhaps my best and worst find. The best because of the great story it told. It was about a soldier in World War One. It had pictures of his family and his buddies in the army. Notations on the edge of the map were about places he had been and battles fought. Cartoons of the day were displayed that related to his experiences.  It was rather large but what a great story it told. It was my worst find because somehow this great heirloom has been lost to his family.


The following pictures show boxes and boxes of lost family history. Most of you put in much time and labor into your genealogy. What have you done to make sure that this will not happen in your family? How do you know that all of your work will not be lost? What have you done to secure documents and pictures from family members? Pleas leave a comment. Share your thought on this. I look forward to hearing from you.

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101 Responses to Left Behind Family History: Part Two

  1. Pingback: Left Behind Family History | Making Life an Art

  2. What a tragedy that so much history is lost! And yet so many people do not even care about their history, their ancestors or where they came from.
    I am the holder of much of our family history, and I just hope that my youngest son will care for the photos, stories and documents when I am gone. If he doesn’t then I don’t know what to do except to bequeath my records to a museum somewhere.

  3. chill777 says:

    I’m scanning old photos into my computer and digitalising them. Then I attach the photos to each relative in my family tree on ancestry.com.

    • chmjr2 says:

      That is a good way to save pictures. I am planning a photo book of the ancestors. Will have someone like shutterfly print them. I will give them out to family. This is an other way to save pictures. The cost is on the low side also.

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