These are a few of the objects you told us you would save. You can <a href="">read more about your valuable objects here</a>.

These are a few of the objects you told us you would save. You can read more about your valuable objects here.

If your home were on fire — if you had to flee from disaster — what would you take with you? Years ago, this may have been a prized family photo or a box of important documents. But today, these objects are usually digitized. The cloud holds them for us.

But what can’t be replaced? An heirloom, maybe, like jewelry from a grandparent? Or perhaps a keepsake that can’t be replaced, like a trophy won from a harrowing competition or a beloved stuffed animal? Or maybe it’s something you’ve made — that you’ve imbued with a unique meaning, like a journal or a movie ticket stub from a first date.

For their book What We Keep Bill Shapiro and Naomi Wax asked 150 people, from Ta-Nehisi Coates to Cheryl Strayed, what objects mean the most to them.

What makes an object meaningful? And what does it mean to lose that object?

Produced by Avery Kleinman.

For the Disaster Distress Helpline, call 1-800-985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746


  • Jennifer Battle Hurricane Harvey Survivor; Program Director, Crisis Services, The Harris Center; @battle4justice
  • Bill Shapiro Author, "What We Keep"; @Bill_Shapiro
  • Christian Burgess Director, Disaster Distress Helpline; @cburgessDDH

Related Links

Topics + Tags

Most Recent Shows