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In "The Big Bang Theory" episode "The Closet Reconfiguration" (S06E19), the gang gets Sheldon to tell them the contents of a letter he found in Howard's closet from his father. Later, they give Howard various theories on what it contained and he declines from knowing which one was actually true. Of all the options, Bernadette describes a picture of his father holding Howard on the day he was born and on the back was written: Howard my son, my greatest gift.

In an episode in the next season: "The Thanksgiving Decoupling" (S07E09), in a scene set in Howard's house, there is a picture of a man holding a baby in the background (in the stairwell; at around 04:52 into the episode). Could this be the contents of the letter? Making Bernadette's theory the correct one? This would include the assumption that someone removed the contents from the envelope as Howard lights it up and then throws it into the sink. Or that they managed to salvage it before it was completely destroyed.

Howard with the picture in the background

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I think the picture's probably more a coincidence thing. While they do call backs to their careers or relationships, they don't seem to be heavy on any kind of episodic continuity like more dramatic shows. The One Ring from the LotR-themed season three episode "The Precious Fragmentation" was never mentioned again after spending an entire episode devoted to each character desperately wanting to own it. Apparently Leonard or Penny just owns it now even though Sheldon (at least) knows it. –  Meat Trademark Jan 24 at 22:57
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To this moment, the letter has never been mentioned past the one episode. Nor has the contents of it. –  MyCodeSucks Jan 27 at 4:17
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1 Answer

Later in the "Closet" episode, Howard is seen looking through pictures of him (one with cornrows) and his father under the label "Photos of Wolowitz family before father left forever."

It is plausible that there was a picture included with the letter and Sheldon chose to organize the picture and letter separately.

Regardless of that possibility, the episode was specifically about the contents remaining in the envelope and the understanding that each cast member's (minus Sheldon's) explanation was showing regret from the father for leaving and pride in who Howard has become.

As for the photo, it appears to be a grandfather holding a child.

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