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Living in the Future, Looking into the Past

Irish Woman unboxed her “Merry Christmas to Me” present tonight.  She bought herself a new Epson photo scanner, and was running some old negatives she got from the lady who raised her through it. It’s something she’s wanted to do as long as I’ve known her, but scanner technology just didn’t do it well enough.   It took her a while to figure out how to use it, but then old snapshots of family started coming through.  There were the shots of men fishing, children posed in their Sunday finest, and such.  And then she found this:

That’s her mother as an infant being held by the uncle who raised Irish Woman for the first few years after her mother and father died.  Irish Woman’s mom was born in 1926, so that negative is 86 years old.   This is the only photo that Irish Woman knows of that has her uncle and her mother in it.

To say that Irish Woman is excited is an understatement.  She has a few mementos of her parents and their families, but only a couple of pictures.  Most of the photos she has are well-staged portraits and such, so an intimate snapshot like this is a wonderful find.

We have a big box of negatives in the basement.  A lot of them are from photographs that I took when I was stationed in Europe, with a heavy leavening of shots of the kids when they were little.  Irish Woman has hundreds of her own negatives to scan, and of course she has that envelope of old odd-shaped negatives from almost a century ago to go through and bring her family back to life.  I think I’m going to look forward to this project.

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