Two weeks ago, Stephanie Tanner’s co-worker at the Mariner King Inn in Lunenburg, N.S., came across a mystery photo album that had been left behind years ago.
The co-worker didn’t have the heart to throw it away.
There was a sticky note on the album indicating that it had been left at the hotel in 2012. The photos inside were dated as early as 1988.
Tanner said she recognized some of the local landmarks in the photos but couldn’t identify any of the people.
“There were holidays, like birthdays, some celebrations, a wedding,” Tanner said. “So we knew it meant something to somebody.”
So she turned to social media to try to return the book of family memories to its rightful owner.
Tanner posted some of the photos to a Lunenburg community group, saying that the inn had a mystery photo album with only first names in it. She asked for anyone with information to get in touch with her.
People started responding within hours, Tanner said, with some even tracking down her phone number and calling her at home.
Within a week the mystery was solved.
Nancy Bird, who lives in Calgary, said when the inn contacted her about the album, she was initially perplexed until she heard that it was left there in 2012.
Bird said her father died in 2012, and she and her husband had returned home to Lunenburg for the funeral. They had stayed at the Mariner King Inn.
She said the album had a great deal of sentimental value, so she was surprised she had left it behind.
“The funny coincidence of it is … that I came back to Lunenburg for my friend’s daughter’s wedding, and then I was also back to Lunenburg one other time to take a friend to Lunenburg,” Bird said.
“Both times we stayed at the inn. So I’ve been back there and it’s like I could have picked it up, twice.”
One of Tanner’s colleagues sent sample photos so that Bird, who isn’t on Facebook, could identify some of the people in them.
Bird said she has seen photos of her children when they were younger, a cousin’s wedding and photos of her parents on what appeared to be her father’s birthday.
Tanner, who said reuniting the album with its owner was the highlight of her summer, hopes to send the album off to Calgary within the week.
For her part, Bird is grateful to Tanner and her colleagues at the inn for going to the trouble of locating her halfway across the country.
“It just speaks to the spirit of Lunenburgers and how we like to stick together and make sure that we look after each other,” Bird said.