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I was in Grade 8 the first time my grandmother showed me the pine box. Inside it were books, personal letters, and business documents from Ireland.

This summer, I took the time to learn the story behind the box – how all of these things relate to my family – and to begin to do some research. The oldest document is from 1805.

These books, mostly Bibles and prayer books, were published in 1827. While some of the books in the box are in excellent condition, these were not.

Vintage Books

“A series of books, dilapidated and faded, sit bundled together. Most of the bindings are separating from the yellowed pages, but each is at home in its battered state. Their wrinkled pages and discolored skin tell not of old age, but of a good life. These books, unlike so many others, were not just read, but revisited, loved, and experienced.” – Kelseyleigh Reber, If I Resist

To see more monochromatic photos, click here.