May 26, 2012

Awesome old-timey photos

From the early 1870's by Timothy O'Sullivan.


Blogger Viceroy De Los Osos said...


May 26, 2012 at 5:17 PM  
Blogger The Other Front said...

Let me just say: holy crap.

These led me, through various Internet byways to this magnificent tome, written in 1892 to educate Americans, and particularly those effete "educated" ones enamored of unpatriotic tours of Europe or the lands of the Hindoos, that there were equal or greater treasures right here in the U.S.A.

The book is a masterpiece, and was written, as nearly as I can tell, before irony was invented. A few choice excerpts:

"If we would cease to depend so much upon other countries for our models of life and thought, we would have taken the first step toward the Americanism which should be, but is
not, ours."

"Very few Americans see the Grand Canon — shamefully few. Most of it lies in an absolute desert, where are neither people, food, nor obtainable water...and yet the canon is easily reached at some
points. A good stage-line has just been started
from Flagstaff, and I went on on the second trip, unwilling to advise travelers except from personal knowledge... There are comfortable hotels in Flagstaff, the stages are comfortable, the three
relays of horses make the sixty-seven-mile journey easily in eleven hours, and there is nothing in the trip to deter ladies or young people."

"The first scientific exploration of this deadly area [the Great American Desert] was Lieutenant Wheeler's United States survey in the early fifties; and he was first to give scientific assurance that we have here a desert as absolute as the Sahara."

I had not known until I began reading this little tome that the true name of the Statue of Liberty was Liberty Enlightening the World.

May 26, 2012 at 5:51 PM  

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