11 Ways That Historical Photos Provide Clues About Our Ancestors Lives

I have always been mesmerized by my ancestors’ photographs. Just to see what they looked like and to compare their facial features with those of my close relatives has been a very interesting endeavor.

But as I have been able to collect these old photos, I have also been quite interested in the surrounding “information.”  For example, the clothes that they wore; the props in a portrait taken by a professional photographer; the early automobiles that they were sitting in; their homes and the architecture; and even the locations of the beaches and lakes that they visited in their “off time.” All of this information “spoke” to me as a third dimension to understanding the stories of their lives.

And the additional information in these photos can certainly be useful in uncovering the typical date information that we like to document for our genealogy and family history research. These surroundings as depicted in photos can be great clues as to when and where they lived.

So let’s list some of the many ways that a photograph can provide us with important and useful information about our ancestors.

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Here is a Quicksheet Quick Reference Guide that you can download for free by clicking on the Download button below:

For all the previously published Quick Reference Guides, click on QuickSheets

Genealogy QuickSheets – Frequently Asked Questions

Quicksheets are also known as Quick Reference Guides. They are generally a one or two page PDF that is downloadable. A few QuickSheets are as large as a five page PDF.
Every QuickSheet is in a specific post on The Ancestor Hunt website. Just bring up the post, and at the bottom of the page is a big brown Download button that allows you to view and/or download the PDF when clicked.
Yes! You can view or download as many as you wish.

One reply on “11 Ways That Historical Photos Provide Clues About Our Ancestors Lives”

Good tips! We have a mystifying bunch of unidentified photos for one branch of our tree, so this is a favorite topic of mine. (If you wanted, you could write an 11-part series on the tips, caveats, and landmines for each one of your points here!)

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