There’s a 1940s era picture of my great-uncle’s car that I have in my possession. I only know it is his car because someone wrote “Herschel Neill’s car” on the back.

The person who wrote it was my Mother.

I doubt if she ever saw the car. The uncle was not her uncle. It was my Dad’s uncle. I can’t ask her how she knew because she’s passed away. I can’t ask my Dad. I can’t ask my Dad’s uncle. The picture was in an album of pictures from my Dad’s family. I’m surmising that Mom bought the album after Grandma died and put the pictures in it and that someone else told her what the picture was of.

The point is that her knowledge was not first hand. Someone likely told her.

So when you use information someone provided on the back of a photograph or in an official record, ask yourself–how did they likely come to know that information?



No responses yet

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Get the Genealogy Tip of the Day Book