How to Scrapbook a Sensitive Difficult Topic

Do you have artifacts for your ancestors about school? Would you like to include it on a scrapbook page? I do and I did. I have a copy of my father’s high school graduation certificate. How can I use the certificate when I don’t have a story about my father’s childhood or schooling?
Sample heritage scrapbook page
Education Layout for Robert Geiszler
Last week, I mentioned the need for Story Pages in your heritage scrapbook. Education makes an excellent topic for a Story Page.
I have one photograph of my father near his graduation day. I also have a photo of him from his senior year in high school. I looked for a scrapbook template that would accommodate three photographs and use the digitized certificate instead of a photograph.
That was the easy part of this layout. The story was more difficult. I knew my father graduated at the bottom of his high school class. I knew his beloved grandfather was a physics professor at Ohio State University. I knew his other grandfather, who he didn’t talk about much, worked for the railroad. My father valued education as the key to prosperity. So, I tied these things together in a journaling block.
I often used phrases like “It is believed” or “the contrast” to include what facts presumably contributed to his view of education. I wanted to help my reader know that this is not fact, it’s my opinion based on the facts I had available. You can use similar statements to convey that this is what you infer based on the facts you have when you don’t have stories as proof.
I kept with the color scheme that I selected for my father’s album: blues and greens. I chose simple accents of brads and a key (key of education symbolism). The simple, metal accents complete but do not overpower the page. Personally, I feel that pages featuring a man should be really simple.
So if you have a man in your life, school documents and no ‘story’, you can make a scrapbook page worthy of inclusion in your scrapbook album. And these same principles can apply to other pages you want to correct when a story might be incomplete.
To learn what other pages you should include in a family history scrapbook, purchase the eBook Create a Family History Scrapbook Digitally in 12 Simple Steps at
Devon Noel Lee

Devon Noel Lee

Devon Noel Lee is passionate about capturing and preserving family stories so no one alive today has to be researched, or forgotten, tomorrow. She has authored 6 how-to books, a memoir, two published family history biographies, and over 60 family scrapbooks. She's an enthusiastic speaker who energizes, encourages, and educates at the same time.

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