One Man’s Quest to Decipher His Grandpa’s Past through Old Photos

Grandpa’s Photos: a beautiful website that enlists the help of users to identify the locations of photographs from long ago

Jul 7, 2014

Image from Grandpa’s Photos

Stephen Clarke traveled frequently for his job, and while abroad, happened to take stunning photographs of the places he visited. Five years ago due to his declining health, Clarke went to live in a nursing home. His family came together to clean up his old house and Clarke’s grandson, Dave Tomkins an art director, happened upon a box of slides with photographs of places that his grandpa had documented on his trips around the world. Impressed by his grandpa’s photography skills and looking to enliven him in the nursing home, Tomkins asked where the photos were taken and what stories were behind the shots; but his grandpa had long forgotten the locations.

This sparked Grandpa’s Photos, a gorgeous website of Clarke’s photography that enlists the help of users to identify the locations in the photographs. The virtual exhibition and tribute to Clarke who passed away last year has set Tomkins on a quest to visit the places his grandpa captured and photograph them as they are today. The beautiful site serves as a shining example of the power of memory preservation and reinforces how important it is to learn the stories and adventures of our elders.

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