Sunday, June 29, 2008


About five years ago, after my Uncle Rudolph died, we got a call from the realtor selling his family home in Avon Park, Fla. Seems several boxes of stuff had been left in the house, including some family photos and documents. Did we want them?

Uncle Rudolph was my great uncle, my grandmother's brother. The house being sold was the one where both of them grew up. Certainly we wanted this stuff. At the next opportunity, my mother and I drove down to Avon Park and retrieved it.

Included in the boxes was this scrapbook, which my Aunt Laurita -- who died in the mid-1990s -- compiled of a trip she and Uncle Rudolph took to Europe in 1968. That was back when flying was stylish and traveling was more exotic than it is today. They did the grand tour: London, Paris, Amsterdam, West Germany, Austria, Rome, Madrid and Lisbon.

Aunt Laurita was something of a journalist -- she wrote a newspaper column in college and vivid letters all her life. The scrapbook reflects that. It's not just a collage of mementos, but also a collection of handwritten notes about what they saw, from people in their hotels to landmarks and facts about each country.

I love this scrapbook. I love all the '60s-style writing on hotel stationery and napkins, and the photos of my great aunt and uncle. I love the notes she took about getting lost in London -- and lost again in Paris. She was funny, my Aunt Laurita.

I put a few pages of the scrapook on Flickr. To see each photo, click on the thumbnail, and scroll your mouse over the page for notes. To see an even bigger version, click the "all sizes" tab above each picture. I wish I'd been able to photograph every page, but there's just too much!


  1. what a treasure. I'm happy that it found a home with you. it's tragic when these types of family artifacts get lost or even worse end up in a landfill. off to check out the flicr album!

  2. The album is terrific. I especially enjoyed her comments. I am surprised at how formal people looked in 1968. That's the year I graduated from high school and I had forgotten. Thanks for uploaded the pages.

  3. Your Aunt Laurita was a Blogger well ahead of her time. She just didn't have the audience of the Internet. The album is a real treasure! Great idea to take pictures of the pages.

  4. A great story! So glad you have this incredibly important piece of your family's history. Thanks for visiting my blog! Yours is very cool.

  5. Poor Aunt Laurita. I think about her every once in a while, sitting with us upstairs and grandmother's and teaching us card games and telling us stories while the adults boored themselves to tears in the living room. She was, and is, one big amazing memory.

  6. Dennis thinks it is so cool-- Dennis has one a great Aunt gave him-- she was a big band cat. The comments are so fun to read!

    thanks for posting them on Flickr