Beginning to research our family’s genealogy seemed to be the signal for the relatives to clean out their closets and under the beds. After visiting family members, I would return home with boxes of photographs and family keepsakes. Turns out my ancestors were pack rats. Thank goodness they were! They just were not the best organizers when it came to their photographs and papers. As a result, the photographs and papers were complete disarray. Most smelled so musty the boxes had to be opened outside in fresh air on the deck. The photographs were not labeled and no longer in their albums. Would I ever know who was in these photographs?
I set about to learn about vintage photographs and my ancestors. As I talked with other genealogy researchers, I realized many of you also have unlabeled photographs of our ancestors. Worse, you have no idea how to go about identifying the individuals. I wanted to share the strategies I used to identify those unknown ancestors with you.
Your Ancestors’ Photos Do Not Have To Remain A Mystery
Trying to identify those unknown individuals in your ancestors’ photographs can be quite a challenge! But…..it does not have to be an impossible task. Using strategies to analyze your photograph alongside your family history, you can identify those individuals. The process is frequently not quick. Time is required, but it is possible to identify those individuals.
On those occasions when you still cannot definitively identify an individual, you will certainly learn more about them and increase your chances for success for a positive identification in the future.
What You Can Expect
- Instruction on an effective strategies for dating and identifying your photograph.
- Tasks related to each strategy.
- A workbook to use for analyzing your photographs.
- Exclusive Facebook group to serve as your mastermind group where you can chat and share your successes and questions with other like minded readers.
Frequently Asked Questions
- What if I have questions as I go through the strategies? The private Facebook group is a great place to ask those questions! I will be there as well as others working through the same process.
- What if I still don’t know the identity of my ancestor at the end of the process? This may happen (and that’s okay!), but regardless, you will know more about your photograph than when you started. This will increase your chances of identifying your photo photograph in the future.
- What if my unknown photograph is from a different country? Great question! Identifying Your Ancestor In That Photograph is geared toward photographs of the United States. All of the examples shown are of photographs taken in the United States. However, the strategies will work for photographs of all countries. You may need to research information about the specific country and its customs if your unknown photograph is from a different country and/or culture.