28 April 2020
While cleaning up computer files during this time of sheltering in place, I stumbled upon a Powerpoint I had made 13 years ago, and completely forgotten. The subject was my mother’s trip to Sweden in 1939, on the eve of World War II. The PowerPoint was based on her diary and photos from her old photo album, black pages with photos fastened in with corners.
At one point she writes to her father, “39 of the 40 pictures turned out,” calling to mind how very different photography was then then now. She visited Helsinki (Helsingfors) where the 1940 Olympic Games were to be held. Those games were cancelled because of the war, not to be held in that Olympic stadium until 1952. Her diary and photos depict a vanished world that was about to be turned upside down.
Her passport has a notice that travel to Spain was not allowed. Spain was in the midst of its brutal civil war. She traveled in a suit, as did her father. Women wore hats. She would never return to Sweden, although I made trips there and visited some of these same relatives in 1979 and 1991. The powerpoint contained pictures of my visit in 1991 with my husband Ed and our two children, who were eight and twelve years old at the time.
I visited again in 2008. Those pictures and the original scans from the 1939 photo album are posted on Flickr.
I converted the PowerPoint to iMovie, and added music. Enjoy!