Blog » January 2011

Mystery Monday (1/31)

Welcome to the first installment of “Mystery Monday!” Our photo archive contains 25 million aerial photos covering nearly a 50 year time span. Within the archive are some ordinary, some famous, and some more mysterious photos. This blog series will be used to post a “Mystery” Photo once a week and see if our readers can identify it. So, with that, here is this week’s photo.


New Blog Series Coming

Most people can identify the subject in our photo above. While this image helps show the vastness of our photo archive, not all of our images are as recognizable. So, starting Monday we will be rolling out a new contest called “Mystery Monday.” Here are the details…


A Mug from Heidi

Yesterday one of our veteran librarians, Tom Wolff, got a wonderful gift in the mail from a grateful customer. Heidi Fahrenbacher wrote about the customer service she got from Tom on her blog. Here.


The Wonder of a Photo

When I got to the office today I made my standard tour of the sites I like to visit. Several Ag-related blogs I enjoy reading, a few news pages, and of course a few social media news sources. In today’s tour I came across this article that Mashable posted last night.

A few days ago a guy in Brooklyn posted a video about a new adventure he is in, all surrounding a roll of film. As I watched I was reminded, in a very distinct way, of the wonder that is held in a roll of film. Todd, in the video, seeing these images for the first time, is left to fill in the details. It is up to him to develop the stories and backstories of these images. And it made me realize, again, all that is captured in a single photo, a single roll.

Our archive has 700,000 rolls similar to this one in their mystery. All containing close to 40 images of peoples personal histories. What an amazing collection of stories and wonder. Ok, take a look at the video…


50 Years & Counting - Hopes for 2011

In the analog world of 50 years ago the Aerial Photography business had a simple goal, to capture a photographic memoir of a family farm to preserve it for the benefit of future generations. Simply put, to create an heirloom. This was a cottage industry, made up of Mom and Pop companies which would send airplanes into a county to photograph homes and farms without any advance assurance that anyone would want to see or buy them. A salesperson would go door-to-door showing the owners their pictures from aloft.

I have been in and around this industry for over 33 years. My family happens to have been the largest in the country starting in 1962. I quickly became one of the sales guys who saw the importance of preserving family history in this way and so I took to the road. The challenges were many; sometimes people were not home, or didn’t feel the product to be necessary or see the immediate or long-term value of it at all. However, many people wisely did invest in their personal histories and still highly value these photos decades later.  


"It will be cherished by my family for generations to come..."

When we came across this story from Sherrie we couldn’t help but share it on the blog. The photo is wonderful and the story really brings it to life. Thanks to Sherrie for sharing! This is why Vintage Aerial exists. Enjoy.

This land, located approximately 10 miles north of Ashburn, Georgia, off of highway 41, was first owned by J. H. Odom. Upon his death in 1943, his heirs were given property per his will. My grandmother Corrie Miles Odom Collins was his oldest daughter of 11 surviving children. She received 166.2 acres for the “sum of $5 and other valuable consideration” in Turner and Crisp County. This deed was signed on April 3, 1948. The land was used for farming and to grow cows and hogs and raised a family with a girl and 2 boys.

Where the tractor is in the picture was one acre that my grandmother sold to my father, Donald Gene Collins, for the sum of love and affection when he and my mother married in 1966. They bought a TINY single wide mobile home and lived there until 1976. I was born in 1968 and my brother was born in 1974. We lived here until we moved to Rebecca Georgia in 1976.