My father died in Orlando, Florida, in 2004 and was buried on his 89th birthday. His widow, my stepmother, passed away eight years later. As her four children began cleaning out our parents’ home, they discovered photos and an album they did not recognize. They handed their finds off to me since I am the family historian and it was assumed that since none of them knew the people in the photos, they must be from our family.
The album was from the early 1900s and had several photos on each page, each carefully laid out and glued in place. There were several picture postcards, some from a small town in Georgia and others from a town in Florida, and there was also a clipping of an obituary that listed both towns. But not a word or name written in it anywhere, and I didn’t recognize a single face.
There was also a loose snapshot of a young couple with two small children. Only this time, the children’s names were on the back. I guessed at the age of the photo—probably from the 1930s.
I searched the 1930 census for the children and found them in St. Petersburg, Florida. Now I had their parents’ names. I searched Ancestry.com for an online family tree that included at least one of the parents. Bingo! When I contacted the owner of the tree, I found out that she lived about two hours away, near Knoxville, Tennessee. The little girl in the snapshot was her mother, who is still living in Florida. I began scanning the album and emailing images for her to identify. It turned out that the photos were all from my stepmother’s stepfather’s family. I was delighted when I could finally bundle up the album and send it on to loving hands.
Thank you Ancestry.com