Who Are These Women? An Update

More than twenty thousand people on social media have viewed these images of the mysterious women in uniform. That's a whole lot of eyes. Thank you for all the leads! Here's the update. The Buildings The United States Army built Spanish Colonial buildings at many of their bases. All had tile roofs and stucco exteriors, however, if you look closely at the details of the structures there are differences. Roof lines vary, as do the ...    Continue Reading

Orphan Photos: Cobbler in Franklin, New Hampshire

The details in this picture are plentiful. A man in an apron holding a shoe. Patriotic bunting. A house.   It's so lovely I couldn't resist. I bought it at an antique shop in Franklin, New Hampshire. A sticker on the front of the glass frame says: "Cobbler Shop, West Bow St., Franklin."  Other than that this photo is an orphan. No names or dates. There is nothing like a photo challenge <smile>. Let's see how ...    Continue Reading

After Disaster Strikes…Photo Recovery

As Houston recovers from Hurricane Harvey and Florida from Hurricane Irma.  It leaves me with a sense of déjà vu. Almost five years ago Hurricane Sandy stormed into the East Coast of the United States destroying property and taking lives. As with every disaster, generations of family photographs were caught in the weather. The storm surge washed images out of homes and into the streets.  In the midst of the aftermath and chaos, Jeannette von ...    Continue Reading

House Stories: Finding the Clues

I love pictures with houses in the background. They represent a deeper family history mystery. Not just a question of who's in the picture, but details about the dwelling. When we bought our house a few years ago, an archivist friend gave us the perfect house warming present.  It was a document showing who lived in our house around the time it was built.  A Mrs. Mary P Clewley took out a permit for drainage ...    Continue Reading

Ask Maureen – Episode 8: Google’s “We Wear Culture!”

Show Notes In this episode of Ask Maureen, Maureen Taylor, The Photo Detective, shares information about a new resource from Google, in partnership with museums around the world, called We Wear Culture. It is an amazing resource dedicated to 3,000 years of world fashion. Then, as we prepare for the upcoming solar eclipse, Maureen shares a glimpse back to a 1923 Solar Eclipse and gives a few helpful tips on photographing eclipse events. And finally, a peek ...    Continue Reading

FGS Conference News

I hope to see a lot of you at FGS in Pittsburgh August 30th through September 2nd.  I'll be in booth 707.   It's a full week of activities in the exhibit hall besides the regular conference lectures.  I hope you'll stop by and take advantage of these FGS only deals: Bring photo mysteries with you on your phone, tablets or laptops and stop by for her special conference consult pricing of $20/a picture. This year’s ...    Continue Reading

Where We Lived

One of my favorite books is Jack Larkin’s Where We Lived: Discovering the Places We Once Called Home, (Taunton Press, $40.00). When I pass by an old house I can't help but wonder about the everyday lives of the original occupants. Larkin lets us peek into that past with gorgeous photographs and fascinating stories.  Houses, schools, slave quarters, houses of worship, public structures, and even outhouses. It might sound strange, but his book makes me think ...    Continue Reading

Revolutionary War Roots on Ancestry.com

About 6 in 10 of us have a family member who lived during that period of American history while only 1 in 40 have ancestors that participated in the war.  Finding the documentation for those war-time ancestors is easier than you might think.   Take a look at the Ancestry.com military records page for the Revolutionary War and view the types of resources you can search   That’s a lot of Revolutionary War related links   Here are ...    Continue Reading

Ask Maureen – Episode 7

Show Notes In this episode Maureen unravels threads of a complex photo mystery that involves two orphan photos taken nearly 50 years apart and newspaper clippings spanning 16 years all discovered together in one frame. She also weighs in on the recent Amelia Earhart photo mystery.  If you are curious how a photo consult works, this episode of Ask Maureen provides a glimpse behind the curtain to see what Maureen can help you to discover. ...    Continue Reading

Adopting an Orphan Photo

The young man on a cream colored card now occupies a place of honor on my desk. He came with a name and a place. A few quick clicks and I found his history. A story of fame, love and despair. I wish I could say that he’s the only abandoned photo I’ve ever found but he isn’t. Walk into any antique shop, browse eBay or go to an estate sale and you’ll see family ...    Continue Reading

Ask Maureen – Episode 6

Show Notes In this episode of Ask Maureen, Maureen gives some great tips and points the way to some great resources, including some recent podcast appearances. What do you do with that box of photos with no names?  How do you scan originals vs. slide copies? How should you deal with old black paper photo albums? Plus, you are invited to help The Photo Detective by participating in a survey about photo ID  problems. Can you ...    Continue Reading

Deciphering the Past One Family Hero at a Time

I’m not sure what came first the story about this picture or finding the image in my family photos. The two are intertwined in my mind seamlessly joined. This faded color photo depicts my grandmother on her 75th birthday. My mother, her daughter-in-law, made her a cake and threw her a small party. I was there. As soon as Gramma saw the cake, she started crying. It was her first birthday cake and party. It ...    Continue Reading

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