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Leaving Your Family Legacy

Who gets the pictures? Who Tells the Stories?


My Father’s Postcard Collection

I like to write about what I know the most - my life, my story. It isn’t particular interesting, it just happens to be mine. I want to remind you again that every person has a story to tell. Every child, every person should have one book to hold that tells them how important they are, their history with pictures and stories of their life.

That was then...

Valentine’s Day is approaching. It will be here soon. Every year I think about my Father’s postcard collection as Valentine’s Day approaches. I love his postcards. I love looking at them, getting them out, holding them, thinking about who sent them or exchanged them with him. That was the early 1900’s. People exchanged post cards. It was called Cartophilia an early term describing the hobby of sending and preserving greeting cards. Today it is called Deltiology. Early 1900 card collecting was possibly the biggest craze ever to hit civilized countries. Germany mass produced cards which were sold on most street corners. World War I marked the end of this practice. Most large collections of the early period remained preserved in card albums and were not disseminated to other family members until the 1930’s and 40’s when the family moved away from the old house and cleaned out the attic. In my case, it was the 1980’s. I received my father’s postcard collection from my Aunt Elna, my dad’s sister. She wanted me to have it because it was my Dad’s.

The Original Postcard Album opened to Christmas Cards

That was still then...

Fast forward to late 1990’s. I took the postcards out of their original album because neither the album nor its green scrapbook pages were photo safe. The cards were now over 85 years old and I knew what acid and lignin would do to the cards which also are not photo safe. I transferred each card to a photo safe scrapbook album and arranged them according to holidays and other types of cards. I labeled each card with the writing on the back. Everyone I have shown the collection to marveled at the collection – particularly the quality of the cards.

And this is Now...

So now the postcards are approaching 110 plus years old. I have always wanted to scan them, and possibly pick my favorites to frame and display in my home or even to break up the collection and to pass on. Whoa! Did you just get what I said; break up the collection!!! So here’s a big ahah. Future trends - My kids and my Grandkids probably – no, more than that, absolutely will not want my photo collection, my postcard collection, or any other collection. They probably won’t even want my good china! What they will want and will love however is one photo book with pictures and stories of our beautiful family treasures including my Father’s postcards. All postcards from Valentine’s Day have now been scanned and are going to be part of my Family Heirloom Photo book. All scanned images of my postcards are now preserved and uploaded into cloud Storage. My favorite cloud storage program is Forever. Check it out at

And last, before the big reveal, imagine tomorrow’s technology if you can. What I know now is that because I love this particular postcard collection, I have taken the time to preserve and share it. Technology keeps changing and advancing. Will there be better way to preserve and share the images of my father’s postcard collection in the near future? Perhaps, but for today I have embraced the technology that allows me to both preserve and share it.

Two new digitally created pages for our “Family Treasures” Photo book

I encourage you to look at your collections and use the advances of technology today and to look back with an eye on the future.

Marianne Behler

Certified Photo Manager

Lifetime Photo Solutions



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