W.R. Meador of Olustee Oklahoma is the photographer of this real photo postcard. I assume the general store is close to Olustee but, it is not marked and I see nothing in the photo to help ID the town.
I am that guy, the one who buys other peoples memories. You know the weirdo with boxes of old photos, home movies, letters, handwritten recipes, and anything else that tells a story. I buy these things because it is important to remember the things that were important to those before us.
There were many triggers that were tripped within me that made me realize I needed to collect, archive, and share these items.
The first was the number of personal letters, cards, and photos that would be at a person’s estate sale or the auction. I always felt it was sad that no one in the family cared about these things that once meant so much to someone they loved. I remember buying a stack of what looked to be unused greeting cards from the 1960s. These were neatly stacked and in amazing condition. And, yes some were unused. But, some were used and signed “Love” so and so. This woman kept these cards for over 40 years. By now owning these, I wanted to understand why they meant so much to her and began reading some of the notes that were written within. “Happy Birthday. I love you.” “It was great seeing you last week. Hope to do it again soon.” Nothing was earth shattering, but it connected me to her through this snippet into her life.
Then, a bit later, I realized that some of these items were available because the person didn’t have any living loved ones. That the items were there because they had to be. I often think of those folks who didn’t have someone who would want those items. And, I feel that I owe it to them to carry their story forward.
Normal life needs to be celebrated as much as the famous life. We all are important in moving our country forward. One man can change the course of another’s life without knowing it at the time. And, these memories and stories are changing me even after these people have passed on.
It is amazing to see a time long gone from the point of view of that person through letters, postcards, greeting cards, recipes, photos, and film. This is why I am that weirdo. Please join me because it is important to remember the things that were important to those before us.