I have always loved photo albums and have spent countless hours sitting sifting through our family albums, recounting holiday memories, loved ones and childhood. Photographs are precious because our memories fade and grow weak. It's a fantastic feeling to see happy moments captured to cherish forever, reigniting and sharpening those memories.
One thing I started to notice as I grew older is that sometimes not all photographs stay within their family. Sometimes these precious items end up in car boot sales or eBay. I'd see them listed in 'lots', hundreds of mixed items grouped together so that they were all portraits, landscapes or from a certain period, separated from their original albums and essentially lost from their original families. I guess there are many reasons why this sort of thing happens. Some people don't see the importance in old photographs so wouldn't think twice about selling them or chucking them out. There are those that will die without anyone to hand them on to. Some will simply be lost perhaps when moving house.
Seeing these sorts of lost photographs made me incredibly sad and I decided that if they didn't have a home, I'd give them one. That's how my collection started. I display some on my shelves as if they are my own family and deeply cherish all of them, keeping them safe and in their original albums as best as I can. Today I'll show you the first part of my collection, a small section belonging to a collection I bought off eBay containing an unknown woman's entire family albums.
Above are some of her loose photographs but for this post I'm going to be mainly showing the photographs contained within one of her albums, 'snapshots'.
To start with there is a small handwritten note on the inside...
This album seems to be mainly filled with groups of friends from what looks to be the 1930s/40s. There are small handwritten notes below the photographs but some don't seem to match up with the photo they are with. I think some photographs from this album have been previously removed or lost so their order might be a bit mixed up.
Below are a couple of loose photographs that are larger in size. The wedding photograph looks to be from a similar period but the other seems to be a lot earlier. By the way, check out the hairy dog in the bottom of the photo...
Here we have another loose photo that is a double exposure.
I love the group shots of the women with their fantastic hairstyles and amazing style. Some of the individuals can be seen popping up again and again through the photo collection. I'm not sure if they are sisters, best friends or work colleagues. At some point I'd like to sit down and try to see if I can work out some kind of connection.
Below are some of the other photographs from this album. I particularly like the one that is labelled 'dad' on the bottom right. This makes me wonder if this collection is in fact the unknown women's parents photographs and perhaps the woman herself is one the children pictured.
Looking through these photographs I often feel really pleased to have been the one to end up looking after them. They are full of happy looking times and wonderful friendships which by saving them from being lost, haven't been completely forgotten.
I'll be posting part two soon, continuing on with this particular collection. There's a lot to get through!