Scanning the Back of Photos with Writing

When taking on the task of digitally archiving that old photo collection, it’s easy to rush into it and focus on scanning the photos themselves, but overlook writing on the back. A photograph loses meaning without the answers to the questions “who, what, when, where, and if you’re lucky… why”. As a photo ages, any information about that moment in time becomes more valuable. In the case of tracing family ancestry, the names, dates, and places become clues to assemble the puzzle of history.

If you scan the back of the photo itself rather than transcribing another way then you are also preserving the original handwriting for posterity and true digital archival. To ensure clarity with the front and back, name the front file with an A at the end and the back file with a B. i.e. “Family-024A.jpg” and “Family-024B.jpg”

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