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Fading Out: Aging and Beyond RSS feed

Is scanning family photos part of your in-case-of-fire plan?

Kathleen Hughes' daughter, Isabel, 15, was home alone when fire raged through the neighborhood. Neighbors were packing and getting out. What should she pack? Here's what Hughes would say now: "Quick, get the 32 boxes of photographs and the 39 photo albums from my bedroom bookcases. Then grab the four cardboard boxes of family papers that are down in storage. Please—very important—take all the framed photographs off the walls."

In Scanning My Life (WSJ, 7-16-12), Kathleen Hughes writes about her adventures in scanning her life: in photos, letters, old articles, college term papers, and so on.

Even if you don't have a fire, scanning the best of the family photos is a good idea if it allows you to share the photos and maybe create photobooks with captions that family members may actually leaf through -- photobooks with enough copies that if one house burns down someone else in the family will still have the photo archives.

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