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A glimpse into the thriving business of family history

Published: Wednesday, April 9 2014 10:52 a.m. MDT

In the first 25 years of his business career, Tom Taylor said he interviewed hundreds of people to analyze information and write about their business strategies. At one point, Taylor realized he was more interested in the people and their individual lives.

So Taylor started a business called Pictures and Stories, which helps clients preserve their life stories and experiences in custom books and videos. It didn’t hurt that his wife and business partner, Alison, had a background in photography, art and graphic design. Pictures and Stories, a full-time business for the Taylors, has been going strong for about a decade now.

“We’re not getting rich, but we make a respectable living,” Tom Taylor said of the Salt Lake City-based business. “We love our work. It’s a fascinating and wonderful experience. We become close to our clients and they feel like family.”

The Taylors estimate they have completed hundreds of projects over the years. They are busiest in the months leading up to Christmas. They work closely with each customer to make sure the project is progressing correctly, and they say they have never had a dissatisfied client.

“We know we’ve done a good job when we show a client the final product and they cry,” Alison Taylor said. “We want to give them something that will last.”

What do family history's smaller businesses, such as Pictures and Stories, have in common with the global genealogy websites? Everyone has a family heritage and a story to tell.

“You might think your life is not that interesting, but everyone has an interesting story,” Tom Taylor said. “It’s always an adventure.”

Email: ttoone@deseretnews.com Twitter: tbtoone

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