Inspiration for this blog post came from @geneablogger and their Treasure Chest Thursday. You are supposed to write about 'a family treasure, an heirloom or even an every-day item important to your family'.
Unfortunately, we don't have any family treasures or heirlooms in our branch of our family. We should have though, and would have, had it not been for my Great Uncle.
My Great Grandmother's children traveled all over the world and as you might expect wrote letters home. I remember the mirror in my Great Grandmother's house being decorated with the latest airmail envelopes. These letters, and the many photographs that I know would have existed, would have been the greatest family treasure and I would dearly have loved to have them. They would have contained so much information about the family, their overseas adventures and perhaps information about the wider family.
But it was not to be the case.
The story goes that when my Great Grandmother died her son wanted to find a letter that he had sent to his mother that he did not want anyone else to read. I guess because of the large number of letters, photographs and documents that would have been in the house he had difficulties finding it. His solution was to take every document, letter and photograph that he could get his hands on into the garden and set fire to them. So the greatest family treasure that we could have had, in our branch of the family, was gone. Although, to be fair some of the photo's survived although a couple are burnt.
The ironic thing is that I learned, recently, that the letter he was looking for is the only letter to have survived. It is currently held by his sister who refuses to reveal the contents to me.