Speaking from the Past.

My maternal grandfather died shortly before I graduated from college, in 1994. As an interesting side note, I was such a crummy student that he was one of the few people who knew I’d eventually get out. I think it’d tickle him pink (one of his favorite ways of describing things) that I grew up to be a college professor.

My grandfather was a bunch of things in the 79 years he was alive. He’d served in the Army during World War II, he’d been the principal of an elementary school, he’d been on the highly acclaimed Virginia Union basketball team called “The Dream Team,” and he’d been a Mason. The thing that I remember best about him though — not that I remember a lot of the stuff that I mention here — is that he always had his camera around. I’m certain that the first 15 years of my life are well documented through the lightproof boxes he had.

This is what makes this post interesting. Since his death, no one from our family has really been through his photographs. In fact, since my grandmother died a couple of years ago, not many of us have been in the house. On a recent foray, my father found twenty some odd medium format negatives which he gave to me and tasked me with scanning. We looked at them in the kitchen of my folks’ house and speculated on who the people in the images are. I’ve scanned them and I can honestly say I don’t know who any of these people are. I don’t recognize them.

That doesn’t mean that they don’t seem to have really interesting stories, however. I’m planning on printing the lot of the images and giving them back to my mom so that perhaps she can figure out who the people are. Everyone else in her family who might be able to help has died so I’m counting on her.

Anyway, here are a couple.

image 4.jpg

image 2.jpg

UPDATE: My mom and dad have had a look and it turns out that the smiling face second from the left is my grandmother! The only pictures of her I’ve seen are when she must’ve been in her 30s. My parents speculate that she was in high school during these. I can hardly wait to get the prints to my mom.


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May 2008
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