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The Detail Reveals the Clues

johnriley1uk

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The Detail Reveals the Clues

21 Jul 2021 12:20AM   Views : 249 Unique : 200

I am researching the house where I was born and raised, known in the family by the shorthand description "Number 1". I have often thought that in the future the concept of a family photo showing old Aunty Bessie in Cleethorpes, or whatever it might show, was being reduced by digital imaging to something that really would be lost forever on some defunct hard drive or some obsolete floppy disk or CD. Who would bother to fire up a computer to view thousands of pictures that would maybe or maybe not be of interest?

In the same way, I have been scanning and looking at a mass of old negatives that I found hiding in the shed when we demolished it. One of these has revealed some more clues as to the lie of the land at the back of Number 1, although to decipher it I might have offer some help to the viewer. The image itself is barely there:
22471_1626822772.jpg

So I decided to annotate what we were looking at:
22471_1626822810.jpg

As you can see, I have recognised various points in the image, for example the boundary wall on the left, as it was in the 1930s. By the time my childhood came along in the 1950s that wall had been reduced to less than half its height and the bricks used to build features in the garden, behind us in the picture. At our feet in the image lies the old alleyway that I discovered covered in a lawn, in the days that I did the gardening. The observant will notice a ghostly yound lady (my mum) on a swing that has been erected just beyond the wall. Unless of course it was a gallows, but I don't think my mum and her sister were that badly behaved.......

The next phase also came to hand in that I have also found the deeds to the house, which includes maps of the whole area as building plots, dating back with details to 1899 or so. Amazing stuff. And to think that the further reesearch was motivated by scanning an old discarded negative; what were the chances?

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