How Do I Know That’s It?

I shared a 1938 aerial image of my grandparents’ farm. The closeup only showed their house and barns and some of the nearby acreage. The closeup made it difficult to see that it was actually their farm.

There was no context. And, even showing the neighboring properties would have made it difficult for someone to “know” that the farm was theirs. The shed and the additional barn was missing from my grandparents’ farm. The subdivision across the road was not there.

I could have included a modern plat map showing the property borders and the modern location of the house. That map shows the same shape of property as the photograph does–as the railroad tracks form the western boundary of the property.

I could have included the fact that my grandparents’ farm was a few miles north of the county seat and that I spotted the county courthouse on the map, moved north until I found the city cemetery and followed the state highway as it crossed a creek and worked its way to my grandparents’ house.

But I need to make my case in some way or another. That simple cropped image that I say was my grandparents farm could easily have been just about anything. It is always a good idea to include how you know what something is when it is not crystal clear.