Monday, March 23, 2009

Thanks to Sydney

This past weekend I uploaded over 300 pictures of folks from my hometown to the incredible social network called Facebook. Many of the pictures are of people who are long gone. In fact, a great majority of the people shown in the photos are people I buried.

I remember when the late Sydney Bryan (pictured here standing next to Jack Heath) took most of the pictures. He walked around town with a camera in the late 70’s for the sole purpose of making sure the faces of our little town would never be forgotten. He took a picture of everybody he could find. He put his photos in an album and wrote notes about each person on sticky notes and put next to their picture.

There was not a negative word written about a single person. I’m sure he could have thought of a few negatives to say about each person, but he chose to keep it positive.

If there was ever anyone who loved the little town of Reynolds GA and the people who lived there, it would be Sydney. He hoped the albums he left his family would be placed on a bookshelf and passed down to future generations of the Bryan family. He had no way of knowing that 30 something years later, we would have the capability of uploading his pictures on the world wide web and people anywhere in the world could instantaneously see them.

Several years ago I borrowed Sydney’s albums and scanned all his photos and created a few duplicate books for his children. I’ve had the electronic version of the pictures saved on a computer. It dawned on me the other day that Facebook would be the perfect place to share the priceless photos with others. So I did a lot of cropping and uploading this weekend.

And there have been a lot of smiles and fond memories from the folks who knew them.

But as I was uploading the pictures, it also dawned on me that there are stories about each person. And stories the rest of the world would enjoy and appreciate.

Some of the folks I have already written about here and you have already met. Others you may have read about in my book and you will be able to put a face with a name. But there are other folks you haven’t met yet.

The world sure has enjoyed the characters and the stories of the little fictitious town called Mayberry, NC. There are even Sunday school lessons created from those stories.

Now, thanks to the forward thinking of one Sydney Bryan and an electronic medium called a blog, the world is about to be introduced to more of the characters and stories of the real town of Reynolds, Ga.

And, thanks to Sydney, maybe we will find a few life lessons along the way.

Stay tuned.


Anonymous said...


As I mentioned to you on Facebook, the pictures are pricless. I can't wait to read about these great people from Reynolds. Keep up your great work. You are a blessing to many.

Ed Guinn

Judy S said...

I was looking at the pictures on Facebook yesterday. I laughed and I cried. There was one of Daddy that I couldn't figure out. When I talked to him last night, I asked him. The picture was him vaccuming. He said that Mrs Mary Lou decided to save on the electric bill and turned the heat of at the Bank on night and the overhead water pipes burst. He and many others were trying to dry out the Bank. I love the pictures.

Anonymous said...


I have really enjoyed looking at the pictures on Facebook. Even though I have never lived in Reynolds and don't know any of the people I was reminded of growing up in Cordele during that same time period, and it made me sad that no one thought to do that in my hometown. What a wonderful treasure.
-Mark Mitchell

Anonymous said...

I'll say again, the BEST photo collection of individuals ever assembled in Taylor County. What makes it so special, Sydney wrote a postive personal comment about each person and didn't exclude anyone.
Bob Cochran

teeny bryan epton said...

daddy would be very proud to see his pictures displayed for everyone to see. he loved reynolds and he loved people. it was always fun to get a new crop of developed pictures in from mr. leonard whatley's drug-store. daddy would come in from the farm for dinner and sit and write little yellow notes about each one before he carefully placed them into an album. these albums are truly a treasure. thank you bruce for posting them and also for the nice article about him.

Anonymous said...

how do you get to the pictres on facebook?

Anonymous said...

Thanks Bruce for posting Daddy's pictures on Facebook. He did love Reynolds and the people who live here. He would be very happy to know that his pictures are being enjoyed by so many people. Thanks also for the nice article you wrote about daddy. Rusty Bryan

Bruce Goddard said...

to join facebook... go to

And sign up.

You will learn your way around. The pics are posted on my Facebook page..

Anonymous said...


I have enjoyed these pictures so very much. It is so relaxing in the currently troubled times to see how we and our parents dealt with life in a simplier time. Thanks so much to you and Mr. Sydeny, for the time and energy it took to share all these with us.