As you continue to sort your printed photos, you want to move quickly enough to make progress, but not so quick that you overlook important details and information. As you handle your photos check the front and back for information and make notes about what you see or flag the photo so you can come back to it later. You need to be a detective as you sort, so you can identify important people.

During my sort, I came across this photo of two elderly people that did not look familiar, and there were no other photos of them showing up in my collection.


On the reverse side of the photo, there were very few details to identify who they were, so I set them aside in my discard pile.

writing on back of photo

Several photos later, I came across this photo which is very small and somewhat blurry.

Family photo

The information on the back of the photo identified the elderly couple as Grandma and Grandad. With a magnifying glass, I could easily see that the elderly women were the same people. The way she wore her hair, the tilt of her head. Confirmation!

photo details

Of course, I’m not sure if they were maternal or paternal grandparents so these questions get added to my ‘list’ when I chat with my cousin to put the pieces together.

Read the fine print!

Here is a photo that I have seen my entire life, but I overlooked the fine print on this photo until now. When I was younger, it looked like a secret code 🙂

infant photo

As a mother, I see this information with new eyes and recognize the numbers clearly! I weighed 6 lbs-3 1/2 oz and I was 21 inches long,  born at 5:12 am! I’ll take a guess that I was delivered by Dr. Rose, and it’s possible that the room I was in at the hospital was room 424.

Thanks, Mom!

Be a detective, pick up your magnifying glass, look for clues and keep good notes! 

Lisa Kurtz, Association of Personal Photo OrganizersWhen Lisa Kurtz lost her mother, grandmother, aunt, and uncle in three years, she was left holding a box of unidentified photographs with nobody to ask about them. Lisa embarked on a lifelong quest to discover and preserve her mom’s story, for herself and her kids, which led her to a career in professional photo organizing. Today, Lisa is the Founder of Pix & TALES with her daughter and together they help busy moms manage their pictures and tell their family stories.