Near the end of his life, my dad took up an interest in genealogy. He would write to relatives and friends asking for any relevant photo material. The response was pretty huge. He'd receive envelopes filled with vintage pictures on a daily basis -- and since he knew I was The Computer Savvy Family Member, he made me scan every single one of them. Over 600 pictures, postcards, birth/death certificates, etc.
My interests lay elsewhere, however. I would scan them high-res, save to disk, and forget about them without as much as giving the scans a look. Yesterday, I dug up the "Genealogy CD" and actually had a look at some of the photos.
My great grandfather. The setting is what Hollywood's Scary Movies are made of:
Here's my dad some time in the mid 50s, Greaser DeLuxe:
When talking about how they met, my mom always refers to him as a "50s BeBopper" -- which he was not, at the time. My dad was into Elvis, Fats Domino, Buddy Holly - that kind of music. He couldn't care less about Dizzy Gillespie, Charlie Parker or the novel freestyle jazz.
Delving further, I came across this:
There is no date on this but I'm pretty certain this photo was taken in my home town right at the end of the 2nd world war. Nazi collaborators were rounded up for photo-shoots. Women would have their hair shaved and have to pose for the photo session. I don't know who these people are, but the image is haunting.
Then there's this one from the late fifties. Members of WW2 Resistance receive a medal. My grandfather was one of them. He's 5th from the left.