Preserving family memories
How can you preserve family memories? If you are like me and most other people, you have boxes of old photos, slides, videos and memorabilia from several generations. For example, I inherited a few boxes of old photos and memorabilia from my parents and grandparents that include boxes of my dad’s old super 8 movies, dried flowers from weddings, holy cards from funerals, matchboxes, army uniforms, dishes, and scores of seemingly meaningless objects that are filled to the brim with memories. When parents and other loved ones pass on, it is often no easy task to divide these memories. More often than not, they end up packed away in a basement or attic until no one remembers why they were ever saved in the first place.
In an effort to reduce the amount of boxes, over the years I have discarded many old newspapers, for example, without thinking that they could have easily been photographed and kept on a DVD or hard drive. Now I wish I had done it. Today it is easier than ever to digitize your memories, even those old 8-tracks, records and tapes that can no longer be enjoyed because the equipment is outdated. The preservation of documents, pictures, recordings, and digital content is important for anyone who wants to create a family history, historical documents, scrapbooks and family trees as a legacy for their loved ones.
Old film, color negatives and prints
Are you one of those people who saved all the color negatives from the many rolls of film you shot of your children, so that they could be duplicated for others? Color negatives and color prints can fade away to nothing in a short period of time. The photos in my wedding photo album, for example, are now yellow and faded, while the black and white photos of my parents’ wedding are still intact. That is because black and white photographic films using silver halide emulsions are the only film types that have proven to last for archival storage. Color prints made on inkjet printers have a very short lifespan that can be measured in months rather than years. If you think that all those boxes of childhood memories will be treasured for generations to come, you are wrong. It may already be too late.
How to create a legacy
We offer several ways to create a legacy that will preserve your family memories for many years to come.
- A website may showcase old photographs, videos, audio, interviews with grandparents, and new photographs of the family home or treasures from the past. We can scan documents, photograph anything that has special meaning for the family history. This can include favorite music, residences, and artifacts from the past, as well as video interviews with any living relatives who are willing to participate. The website may be password protected and open to comments from your loved ones.
- If you are thinking of writing your memoirs, we can help with ideas. We can edit and publish your autobiography in digital form with a print on demand option. Photographs can be included. This beautiful book can then be printed and shared with anyone, for years to come.
- We can produce a narrated and captioned slide show or video. This will preserve your family history in a form that can be enjoyed for many generations.