I love old photos. As a family history enthusiast photographs are an integral part of my life and research. In fact, I get a huge thrill when I see an old photo. The feeling I get thinking about the people who came before me and seeing their faces is incredible.
I was only when I began my research into my family history that I realised how few old photos we have. My ancestors weren’t wealthy so we have almost none from the time before photography became more accessible to working class folk. I have been fortunate enough to acquire a few though. Here are some of my favourites.
The wedding of my Great Aunt Norma
This photograph is one of my personal favourites. It was passed on to my Nan who, in turn, passed it on to me.
Auntie Norma married in 1948, I’m uncertain who some of the people in the photograph are but the bride is obviously my Auntie Norma. She was the oldest child of my great grandparents Ivor WILLIAMS and Martha Ann GIBBS. My Nan was their fourth child.
Next to Auntie Norma along the back row is her grandmother, Harriett Ann WEEKS, and her grandmother, William WILLIAMS. Far right is Ivor, the father of the bride. The mother of the bride, Martha, didn’t attend the wedding as she was due any day with her youngest child.
The young bridesmaid on the right of the picture is my beloved Nan. We lost Nan only recently and being able to look at the photograph of her as a 12 year old fills me with feelings I can’t describe.
My paternal grandmother – Mary
This is the only photograph of my paternal grandmother. She passed away in June 1970 aged 46 of breast cancer. My father was approaching his 10th birthday and, although we don’t press him, we know he faced far more than any young child should face.
When Nan passed away she left my Bamp and 6 young children. The youngest, twins, were just five years old.
I love this photograph and would dearly love to see the rest of it. I like to think she’s holding a young child.
My Great Grandfather, Edward
My great grandfather, Edward Evans, was a bit of a colourful character according to family. He served in the Monmouthshire Regiment during the First World War.
I believe this photograph was taken in late 1915, around the time of his marriage to my great grandmother, Maude. He left for the Western Front shortly after his marriage.
He was a victim of gas attack and was discharged medically unfit for service and died of pneumonia in the winter of 1940.
Great Uncle Oliver
My uncle, Oliver Hughes Hodges, is my Nan’s brother. Oliver was just 23 when he died on 4th September 1943. He was in the 467 (R.A.A.F.) Squadron. Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. The plane he was flying in, a Lancaster MkIII, was shot down over Berlin. He has a grave at the Berlin 1939-1945 War Cemetery.
I really could go on for hours about my old photo but this may be enough for one post.