On Thursday, Feb 1, my Grandmother Martha Randall left this life for the great dance floor in the next. My husband, kids, and I drove home to PA on Friday and spent the weekend with my parents and the rest of my family. We did as so many others do when there is a loss; we sat around together, looking at Gramma’s photo albums. My Gram apparently had a camera with her at all times- something I didn’t know. Seeing the photos of us and her travels, the photos of her with my Great Grandma Ross who seems to have snuck into 3 out of every 5 photos ever taken, reading the captions she wrote in margins, in her own handwriting… that time capsule of Ross/McGaughey/Randall was such a wonderful piece of history. Someday, your photos will be your living legacy. They will be the last physical piece that you existed in this life. For the Great Grand kids who won’t have memory of Gram, they will be able to see her smiling while holding them- they’ll be able to know they were loved and have been loved for decades. They can see the roots of their family tree, in more than just the faces of the people around them.
I am guilty of not printing as much as I should this myself, and realized it when I was scrolling through my Cloud storage looking for photos only to realize, it was too late- I had no way to print any of the digital files I had saved. I had photos of my Gram holding one of my daughters on the day my daughters were born- the three ladies share a birthday (Molly, Lilly, and my Gram that is), photos of Gram and Dave (my step grandfather who loved my Gram to the ends of this earth) at weddings, Gram with my Dad and my daughters just visiting and hanging out together. But I had no way to print those digitals. Nothing says “quality family time” like passing around your cell phone, and trying to teach others how to scroll through, right? 😦 Had I printed those pictures when I took them, I could have brought albums with me back to PA to share with everyone. Instead, I felt selfish and foolish for not having *anything* to contribute.
While going through Gram’s photos, I found these wedding photos from when she married my Grandpa. While their marriage was hard (they suffered losses no parent should every suffer, multiple times at that) and their lives grew apart, it was really a treat to see the beginnings of our family.
The wedding photos had yellowed considerably since they were shot in 1948. I asked if I could take two of the photos home, to try to restore them and I think I got it 🙂 If I recognize the scenery correctly, I believe these were shot at the house my Gram grew up in, on Clay Street in North East, PA. I feel like I can see some pink in the bouquets, but I think that was painted in, and the bridesmaids gowns look like they might have been blue, but again I’m not sure if that was painted onto the image afterword.
My Grandma would have been twenty in these, my Grandpa about the same age. I plan to print these, and will be able to have copies made for any family who may want one.
A couple from Cmas 2015, at Gram and Dave’s house that again, I’ll be printing for my daughters. Print your photos. Get IN photos. Don’t get deleted from your family history.