10 Most Common Family Heirlooms

Posted January 14, 2016 by Amanda | 2 Comments

Family heirlooms are often precious artifacts linking the present to your family’s heritage. They hold stories and memories from the past about the lives of loved ones that are no longer around.

10 Most Common Family Heirlooms

Usually passed down from generation to generation, family heirlooms provide us with a greater personal connection to our ancestors, perhaps more so than a census record or death certificate could provide. They often provide a unique insight into your family’s history and hold deep meaning for each generation.

Here are 10 of the most common family heirlooms:

1. Family Bible

The family Bible is a very common and precious heirloom passed down between generations. Often the family Bible will contain great genealogical information written in the hand of your ancestors. If you have one, be careful to comb through each page to look out for handwritten notes or hidden treasures tucked away between the pages.

2. Jewelry

One of the most common pieces of jewelry to be passed down within families are engagement rings. The tradition of passing down antique engagement rings are wonderful ways to continue your family’s traditions into new marriages.

3. Clocks and pocket watches

Another valuable family heirloom often passed down are pocket watches and clocks. Many old pocket watches and timepieces are even personally engraved.

4. Recipe books

Many family members are delighted to receive written family recipes that have been passed down between generations. Meals crafted from the family recipe book can elicit strong memories of family meals and experiences. They are also wonderful for sharing parts of your family history with other family members and friends.

5. Furniture

Lots of families pass on furniture after a loved one passes away. Each scratch and dent holds a unique family memory with it.

6. Military heirlooms

Families with relatives in the military will often find their military relics passed on to other family members. These commonly include military uniforms, medals and even weapons.

7. Letters and diaries

Old family letters are a wonderful source of insight into the lives of your ancestors. They really give you a unique perspective into their thoughts, feelings and experiences. When you see the words written in the hands of your ancestors, you can’t help but feel a personal connection with the items.

8. Photographs and photo albums

Beloved family photographs help keep the memories of our loved ones alive. If you’re lucky, these old photographs are labeled, but often enough, you may end up with a few mysteries you may not be able to identify.

9. China and silverware

One of the more expensive and valuable heirlooms, china and silverware is often passed down between generations.

10. Quilts

Often handmade and passed down between families, a family quilt is the perfect way to wrap yourself in your family’s history.

Do you have any of these family heirlooms? Share what they mean to you in the comments below!

Post written by Amanda

Amanda is the Marketing Communications Manager at Geni. If you need any assistance, she will be happy to help!

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  • Henry Lucas Jeanneret

    I would’ve thought that photos/photo albums would be closer to number one, if not number one.

  • Anna Wireman

    A past experience is rare and not all are related but find other experiences.