Episode 91: Suffragists and Suffragettes: Fashion and the Vote

Our nineteenth and early twentieth century female ancestors couldn’t vote but that doesn’t mean they didn’t want to.  In the mid-nineteenth century a group of female activists tied together dress reform, political activism and abolition using dress to broadcast their beliefs and their daughters and granddaughters followed in their footsteps. After listening to my guest’s…

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Episode 90: Ancestral Swimwear and a Passion for Pictures

All this hot humid weather has me thinking about how our ancestors coped in the heat. Long dresses and undergarments in light weight cotton seemed like a sweltering combination. One of my podcast guests loves dressing in period attire. She claims that the outfit is cool, but I’m not convinced.   Hot summer weather makes me…

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Episode 89: Is Family History Part of Your Personality

It’s likely that if you listen to the Photo Detective podcast that you love family history from the stuff to the stories, but do you love all the parts of collecting, preserving, and sharing your family history?  I bet there are pieces that appeal more than others.  According to my guest, genealogy might be part…

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Episode 88: Ancestral Tours of Battlefields and Bonefields

Forget the luxuries of early 21st century travel, early 19th century tourists who visited wartime sites usually dealt with bad roads and shoddy lodgings. Instead of the romantic visions of history depicted in paintings and writings, they found sites littered with discarded armaments and bodies of the fallen. Veterans greeted these tourists with reminiscences of…

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Episode 87: Our Ancestors At Work

Scratching your head over what your ancestor did for work? The answer is usually in a census or city directory, but it also might be in a photo. The late 19th century saw an interest in capturing people at work and businessmen in formal portraits. Such images hold clues to the kind of business in…

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Episode 86: Every Thing Tells A Story

Everything has a story. That hat your grandmother wore at her wedding. The china passed down for generations. A photograph perhaps. Or maybe you have inherited something else. It might be something that’s special to you from your lifetime. Sharing the story of the “things” in our lives can help us share the past with…

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Episode 85: Pinup Photos and Modern Women

Pinup photos usually feature young barely dressed women, at least that’s what’s popularized by Sports Illustrated but suppose I told you they don’t have to be.  That you could pose in period dress and look like a glamorous turn of the century, Evelyn Nesbit or like a silver screen star ala Gloria Swanson. Pick a…

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Episode 83: Your Favorite Photos and Mine

A few weeks ago I was in the kitchen of a cousin on my Dad’s side scanning her photos and recording her thoughts on them.  All of a sudden she leaned over and pointed at an image. “That’s my favorite photo,” she said. “ I don’t know why. There is nothing special about it.”  The…

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Episode 82: Building An Archive For Our Times

These are very interesting times in which we’re living.  I feel the need to leave a record of this behind for my descendants and maybe you do too. Thankfully my two guests are busy collecting and documenting our experiences in a project for the State of Rhode Island. If you live here you can participate.…

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