Xu, an 84 year old grandma found a picture of herself as a teenager for the first time among the household registration cards that was made available to the public by the Nanjing Archives in the capital city of east China’s province. The organization has invited local residents to look through the household registration cards of the Republic of China (1912-1949) on May 26.
The archive has completed the digitization process of the sorted and categorized household registration cards. The archive has added 1.5 million cards to the fourth list of China’s archival document heritage, to help local residents to trace the life of their family history.
Xu, who came to look for her father’s file, found the household cards of all her family’s members, including herself aged 15, all registered in 1947. On her card, the photo featured a vigorous face and a pair of bright eyes. She was still registered as a high school student under her original family name “Lu.” She was later renamed Xu by her relative, who took care of her.
“I didn’t expect to see this photo. Actually, my family never had such a photo,” said Xu with smile.The Nanjing Archives stated that these household registration cards are of great value to researchers, as they provide reference to study Nanjing’s historic changes, records of Nanjing’s then population, residents’ occupations, educational backgrounds as well as personal photos and also allowing residents to search for their missing relatives.