Disasters are always difficult to handle, of course. When victims of fires, floods, tornadoes are asked about their losses, the first reaction often mentions the loss of family photographs. In May, Joplin, Missouri, was hit by a tornado that left 160 dead and obliterated a third of the city. Photographs and most everything else flew into the funnel cloud. Luckily, many photographs were recovered. However, how do you match photographs with their owners?
Days after the May 22 storm, Angela Walters, a genealogist in Oklahoma, noticed some of these photos on Facebook pages. Many listed bare-bones information: streets where the pictures were found, a contact phone number. Why not put all of them in one place, Walters thought, so their owners could find them? So many people had lost so much, surely they'd cherish any trace of their past.
A new web site for the lost photographs of Joplin is now available at http://joplinrescuedphotos.org/
You can read a fascinating story of the recovery efforts written by Sharon Cohen and published by Associated Press at http://goo.gl/8eZSb
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