No names. Blank staring faces, people wearing old-fashioned clothes, willing you, the observer, to acknowledge names, thoughts, joys, and troubles.

How many family historical journeys start with a tattered cardboard box of old photographs with no names? I inherited such a cardboard box. The box had lain for years in the rafters of a storage area of a relation’s garage in Saskatchewan. The old photographs are in excellent condition, thanks mainly to the dry climate of the Canadian prairies; frigid in winter and hot in summer. The provenance of the garage ownership, and therefore of the box, confirmed to me that the photos had belonged to my great-grandparents Thomas WATSON (1854-1932) and his wife Jane MUIR (1865-1933).

Who were these people with no names? And, as intrigued as I continue to be about who the people were, I am even more curious about the why and the how of the photographs. I believe that the collection of photographs was started in Scotland before my great-grandparents immigrated to Canada in 1910 since at least one photograph was taken in 1897. Other photographs, such as those of men wearing 1914-1918 WWI uniforms, were obviously added to the collection after my great-grandparents immigrated in 1910. Many of the photographs were taken in professional photographers’ studios in Ayr, Scotland. Who in Scotland sent these photographs to the family in Saskatchewan? Why were the people in the photograph, whoever they are, of family importance?

It is time to let the people in the photographs tell TheirOwnStories.

NOTE: No information or photographs about living family members will be posted.

[This page was last edited on 24 March 2013]

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