Someone way back when said “You shouldn’t copy photographs repeatedly because the exposure to extreme light will fade it.” What everyone heard was “You should never ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever copy or scan a photograph.”
I run into this problem all the time; folks are hesitant to let me scan a photo because they think it will fade it. Have you ever seen a photo fade from existence after one scan? It won’t…well, it will but very, very, very slightly. The danger comes if you copy or scan it hundreds of times. But, if you scan it ONCE, you can make an infinite number of copies from that one scan.
The value of a photograph comes not from the physical paper but from the image on it. Therefore, in order to preserve the value of a photograph you must scan it. Creating a digital copy of your old photographs is the easiest way to copy and share those with your family and friends.