Friday, May 11, 2018

A Family Legacy, in Pictures

If you look at my family tree on my mother’s side, you will see a lot of sons and relatively few daughters. I am the only granddaughter, the only niece, and one of a few great-nieces. In my family, that means one thing: I inherit stuff. I have my grandmother’s china set she built piece by piece through the Depression, my great-great grandmother’s porcelain bowl she brought with her from the old country. They are easy to notice, full of memories. My great-great aunt left me her postcard albums, and it was only recently I realized what a treasure they are.

Most date from the early 1900s, so are 100 years old or more. They show a world few have seen these days.

Take the one above. That is Multnomah Falls, in the Columbia River Gorge. I’ve visited many times, driven past it many more. According to the USDA, more than 2 million people come to view the falls each year. Here’s a similar photo from 1982. 

My husband spotted the difference right away. The bridge crossing the river is missing in the original picture. It was built in 1914, 5 years after that photo was taken.

Here’s one from Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition in Seattle in 1909. (And the exposition is a post all on its own—dibs!). This one is near to my heart because the buildings and land for this world fair because the current home of the University of Washington, my alma mater.

Then there’s an entire series of ones taken of family members. Around the turn of the century, it was possible to take pictures yourself and have them printed on postcard stock. On the back, this one reads: “Bringing in the hay this year. That’s me at the top of the stack.”

Yes, I inherit stuff. But, thanks to my aunt, I have been given a piece of history.

1982 photo of Multnomah Falls by Andolent at


Evelyn said...

The most educational tool I have is my now extensive post card collection which is worldwide. I started collecting internationally right away because I wrote to pen pals from all over the world who subsequently sent me post cards of their locale or even further depending on what was available to them. When I was a teen it was a trading hobby which was wildly popular. As my collection grew I started to think about what I'd given away in trade and started keeping the collection to myself. My largest and most prized windfall came with a trip to an antique store in Paris which sold post cards. I have a full collection of the Victory Day in France when troops from all over Europe marched through the Arc de Triomphe! Hence, these are National and International legacies as well.
Happy Collecting ! The Castle Lady

Ann707 said...

Most younger people do not see the history but I have hope because my cousins ' sons love to read and like older stuff as they call it. There is a story to most thngs. Thanks for sharing Reginia.

QNPoohBear said...

What a lovely area you grew up in! I'm descended from all daughters! My maternal grandmother is an only child and her only first cousins were adopted and apparently not interested in the family history. My dad's family came from Italy with very few possessions but we have recipes and stories passed down to the 6 grandkids and my two nieces are old enough to JUST barely remember the very old lady in the nursing home who held them and sang to them. They're aware of their Italian heritage and I hope when they are older they will inherit the family archive from me and carry on telling the stories of our family. I think I was probably born to be an archivist, I just didn't know it!

Happy Mother's Day to Regina and Marissa!

Regina Scott said...

Evelyn--what a wonderful collection!

So glad to hear some of the next generation are enjoying history, Ann707. My youngest just graduated with his Master's Degree, but he had a minor in history with his Bachelor's.

I do believe I live in one of the prettiest parts of the world, QNPoohBear. :-) Hang on to those recipes and stories! They are priceless!