Monday, 10 August 2020

1930s love letters uncovered in Vancouver home returned to family

1930s love letters uncovered in Vancouver home returned to family

From across the Pond in Canada comes this poignant story, once again featuring the surprisingly common instance of old documents - in this case letters from over 80 years ago - being found during a building renovation and nearly thrown away before being rescued by an understanding individual.

Unlike most other long-lost photographic rediscoveries I've blogged about in the past this one has a much more personal angle, being as these were love letters written by courting couple between 1938 and 1940 and as such they go far beyond any socio-historical aspect.  As the chap who found them rightly asserts, they were an important part of two people's lives - so much so, in fact, that the man Len was moved to keep them in what was undoubtedly felt to be (and as events proved to be) a safe place.  I find this to be a particularly moving part of the story, in that to my mind he obviously believed that they might one day be found by a subsequent family member living in the house.

source - Twitter @AshleyBurr_

For whatever reason, however, this was not to be quite the case and it was only thanks to the good sense of the builder who unearthed them that these touching letters were saved from oblivion.  What is perhaps even more remarkable is Mr Trampus's perseverance in attempting to track down the relatives of Mim and Len, seeing as the original discovery took place nearly fifteen years ago!  His patience ultimately paid off last month, though, and here again we see the positive benefits of social media and how it can work to the advantage of times past as well as the present; for it was through a Facebook group that he was finally able to locate the couple's daughter and reunite her with her parents' letters.  So in a roundabout way Len's intention came to pass in that his letters eventually made it in to his family's possession, although no doubt not in the way he would have expected!

One can clearly see from the accompanying video just how much this means to Mrs Pennell and I am so glad that she has been given this opportunity to reconnect with her parents even in this small way, 30 years after they passed.  I am equally pleased that there are people out there like Dario Trampus who recognise the importance of documents like these and appreciate them enough to hold on to them for over 10 years as they try to reunite them with their rightful owners and I feel sure this will not be the last time I feature a post like this on Eclectic Ephemera.

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