While in Pennsylvania I visited my aunt and uncle to scan the photographs that they had of the Defruytier side of the family. This time I took a full size scanner with me so that I could get both sides of the photos no matter what the thickness was. I had tried a small hand held scanner on a previous trip, but any variation in thickness made a mess of the scan. And these photos have a lot of old glue and paper still stuck to them.
I scanned them in batches, loading up the scanner bed with as many as I could fit in, scanning and then flipping them all over in place. Later I would cut and paste them into sets that would show both the front and the back of the photo. Many of the photos had writing on the back of them, but it was covered up by the old glue and paper. I did a little research once I got home to see if I could find a product to remove the old glue and paper. It seems there is something called Un-Du that scrapbook people use. I’ll have to do some searching around and take it with me the next time.
I ended up with over 20 photos. Some I had scanned in the previous trip only this time I got both the front and back clear. One surprise was a photograp of my grandmother Mary Helen Siffrinn as an infant. I had promised my distant cousin in France that I would send him copies of what Defruytier photographs I had. After matching the fronts to the backs, fixing major scratches where possible and reducing their size, I sent them off in 3 batches. The first batch hit a home run straight off. His grandfather’s brother’s family was included in the first set. His grandfather was Jules Defruytier, born in 1880. His great uncle was Augustin, born in 1885. The picture showed Augustin, his wife Jeanne Maton and their only child, Margaret Flora.
Jules and Augustin’s relation to me is through their father Désiré who was a brother to my great grandmother, Clemence Mary Defruytier Van Houtte. I am waiting to hear back on the second batch of photos which contained some visible names, but I am unsure of the relationship. The third batch contained more photos of Marie and Germaine Defruytier, daughters of Jules Defruytier, Clemence Mary’s brother. At the time of her death Clemence Mary had more than 24 nieces and nephews and at least 7 great niece and nephews living in either Belgium or France.