I enjoy walking through flea markets, consignment shops and thrift stores and attending Estate sales. You just never know what vintage treasure can be found. But there is one thing which I often see that saddens me deeply. It never seemed to bother me before, but recently it has. I often find old family photos in a box for sale. I sift through those images and see handwriting from someone who has written the date, names of individuals and/or special events/holidays. Why on Earth would anyone want to sell those family memories!
I recently read a story about someone who purchased a Soldier’s Purple Heart at a Good Will-type thrift shop for $4.00. That is reprehensible. There is no excuse for that Purple Heart to end up in a thrift shop. Are individuals so irresponsible that they would throw their family member’s Purple Heart into a box of clothing/items to donate to their local thrift shop? I compare that act to the action of selling vintage family memories for a quarter a piece.
I know what some may say. Maybe those individuals have no one else in their family to pass on their memories. Even if that is the case, wouldn’t their be someone else whom they feel close to who would take those family memories to pass on to their family members? They could remind their children/grandchildren about their good friend Mary and pass on other memories of her time here on Earth. That would be much better than selling her memories to complete strangers who don’t even know her story. I now worry that my photography/family images and heirloom pieces will end up in a consignment shop in 75 years or on someone’s yard sale table. It seems like many younger generations don’t seem to have the decency to keep their grandparent’s images and heirlooms in the family.
Thankfully, the individual who bought that Purple Heart for $4.00 has morals and they took time to research and find family members of that Soldier. They returned that Purple Heart and didn’t want a $4.00 refund for doing it. I just pray that the family has learned a lesson from all of this; that they will keep it safe and become more responsible and it won’t be thrown into a box for the thrift shop.