Saturday, May 12, 2012

Delightful old photos
 show up in antiques shops all the time.

I search for a particular style as a matter of historical reference - 
to study context of antiques, clothing and settings.

There is an innocent beauty to photos of children, 
newly married couples,
 families proudly posed
 before their hard-won house on the prairie.

We poke fun at the severe expressions
 on the faces of staid matrons and patriarchs,
without pausing to think that the act of photographing
 in those days required the subjects
 to remain
 frozen in their pose - completely still, 
for as long as two minutes.

It was a wonder
in the earliest days of photography
 Sunday School classes
 families with babies and small children
 ever achieved a photo at all!

The question is often posed,
"how did these photos in the shop
ever get away from their families?"

Why do they end up in antiques shops?

Sadly, I have seen cases where the last remaining family member has passed away,
leaving boxes and albums of photos that nobody wants.
There is no longer anyone to identify the posers,
no interest in the collection of precious family history,
no survivors.

The photos cannot be passed down,
the stories can no longer be heard,
the family history is lost.

 someone had simply tucked some information, 
names, dates,
a little history about the photos,
into the album,
 we could post them online at appropriate sites 
for another branch of the family to locate and claim.

It's a good idea!

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