Suitcase Full of Memories

Unpacking History One Discovery at a Time

About

Stored in the back of the master-bedroom closet was my mothers old, battered suitcase full of photographs, cards, mementos and memorabilia.  Until the year before my mother’s death, I saw inside the suitcase but a handful of times.  Once I was with her when she was pulling out photographs to be copied for her siblings.  Another time she was looking for a picture of one of her brothers.  It wasn’t that the suitcase was a secret or that it was private, but it was personal to my mother and not something she opened up very often, at least in my presence.

The year before she died my sister and I sat with my mother and went through the suitcase.   Her wedding album was there– I had never seen it before– as well as her engagement scrapbook and dozens of photos some of which are now displayed in my small house in Seattle.  Through these photos my mother’s early life became clearer to me;  more vivid, more complex, more dimensional.   These photos got my mother talking about memories she had long-since stopped talking about.  They weren’t bad memories, just memories that hadn’t had a time or place to come to light for a very long time.

I miss my parents nearly every day.  My husband and I have no children.  Our legacy is the discovery and sharing of our families’ history.

Valerie Sanford
Seattle, Washington

July, 2013

Member of: Fiske Genealogical Library, Minnesota Historical Society, New England Historic Genealogical Historic Society, Pennsylvania Historical Library, Rehoboth Antiquarian Society, Seattle Genealogical Society, Smithsonian, Southern California Genealogical Society, Washington History Society,  Wisconsin Historical Society,

Certificate: Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh ( Your Immigrant Ancestors’ Stories: Writing a Quality Narrative with John Philip Colletta, Ph.D., FUGA.)

Summer Afternoon Picnic

Lowell and Juanita [Riggle] Sanford on a Summer Afternoon Picnic about 1950 in Los Angeles, California

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

The Northwest Genealogy Conference

Improving Genealogy through Better Education

The Val Sanford Group

A Strategic Communications Practice

Genealogy Certification: My Personal Journal

a journal about my experiences becoming a certified genealogist

Eleventh Stack

A books, movies, and more blog from the staff at the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh - Main.

No Regrets Adventure

Living life to the fullest

Moore Genealogy

Fun With Genealogy

The WordPress.com Blog

The latest news on WordPress.com and the WordPress community.

Map of Time | A Trip Into the Past

Navigating Through Someplace Called History

Cherith Runyon

Where Inspiration Strikes

good(wo)man

Just another WordPress.com site

From Axer to Ziegler

Linda's Ancestors from A to Z

Ascending the Stairs

Because each step tells another story of our ancestors

WordPress.com

WordPress.com is the best place for your personal blog or business site.

%d bloggers like this: