Why I Love Old Photos (And You Should, Too!)

By Maureen A. Taylor

Happy New Year!

Collection of the author, 1898

It’s that time of year for resolutions. If you feel you need to make one, here’s an easy one that’s simple to keep—but very important: Take care of your photos.

Investing in a few of the right kind of storage containers, archival-quality acid- and lignin-free boxes, will keep your images around for the next generation. You can find archival storage materials at these online suppliers.

Here are three reasons why I love old photos:

  • Each one tells a story. The people and places depicted in each one are a part of your family tale. Decipher the clues and find out more about your ancestors.
  • Each one is a time portal. I love time travel plots in stories, don’t you? Every old photo takes us into a different time and place. There’s history in those pictures. Forget wishing for a time machine, you have that already. It’s an old picture.
  • Each one is an artifact. Your old photos are ancestral artifacts just like furniture and silver. Learning more about the history of those images offers insights into how much they cost and their importance to your relatives.

You can learn more about your old family photos by following this blog. Every week brings a new tip, technique or identification example. If you love old photos too, tell me why by adding a comment. It’s great to hear from you.

Identify your old mystery family photos with these guides by Maureen A. Taylor:

  • Family Photo Detective: Learn How to Find Genealogy Clues in Old Photos and Solve Family Photo Mysteries
  • Fashionable Folks: Bonnets and Hats 1840-1900
  • Finding the Civil War in Your Family Album
  • Hairstyles 1840-1900
  • Photo-Organizing Practices
  • Preserving Your Family Photographs
  • Searching for Family History Photos: How to Get Them Now
  • Save