Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Mothers and Children

Today's picture features Bedouin mothers and children. The picture was taken in the late 1800's in the middle east.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Bedouin Shepherds

Today we feature another photochrom print. The picture shows two Bedouin Shepherds. The picture was taken in the late 1800's. The picture was taken in Syria

Monday, August 29, 2011


Bedouin Week continues with this picture of the Sheik of Palestine. The picture was taken in the late 1800's. Looks like he might be smoking a cigarette.

Sunday, August 28, 2011


I have decided to make this Bedouin Week. We will spend the week looking at these nomads of the desert. We kick things off with this picture from the late 1800's. It is a photochrom print showing the Prince of Palmyra. The picture is from Tadmur, Syria.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Alfred Waud

Today we feature another picture of Alfred Waud, a Civil War Illustrator for Harper's Weekly. In this picture he is shown sitting on a rock at the Battle of Gettysburg, with his sketch book. I like this picture because it gives a little more perspective on the job these illustrators did. It is believed that Waud was the only sketch artist to draw Gettysburg Battle pictures "live". Below is another of his sketches.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Winslow Homer

Today we feature another portrait of Winslow Homer. For someone who was such a prolific artist, it is sure hard to find many photographs of him. As you know, Homer got his start working for Harper's Weekly. Initially he was used to create wood block carvings of Mathew Brady photographs, but later was used to sketch Civil War battles for inclusion in the newspaper. His two most famous sketches during the war were of the "Sharpshooter" and of the "Surgeon at Work in the Field", both of which are presented below.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Thomas Nast

I wanted to feature another picture of Thomas Nast. Nast is mostly remembered for his political satire artwork of the late 1800's. He was also responsible for creating our modern image of Santa Claus. The thing I wanted to point out is that he got his start as a war illustrator for Harper's Weekly. I consider him to be the best war illustrator Harper's had, and that is saying a lot, given that Winslow Homer also worked there at the time. 

Harper's Weekly published thousands of Civil War illustrations during the conflict, but I consider the absolute best to be "On to Richmond", shown below. Yes, it was done by Thomas Nast. Click on the illustration and look at the incredible detail in the drawing.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Alfred Waud

This would have actually made a good mystery person contest. The man pictured is Alfred Waud. He was a war illustrator for Harper's Weekly during the Civil War. Illustrators like Waud, Nast, and Homer were deployed to battle locations, and they would sketch the battles. The sketches were then sent back to New York to be printed in the Harper's Weekly newspaper. The sketches were printed by carving them onto wood blocks. Since time is of the essence in the news business, the problem is that it would take a long time for a single person to carve a sketch onto a large block of wood. So, the block of wood and the sketch were cut into two inch squares, and a different carver would carve each of the two inch segments of the drawing onto a separate small block of wood. This way, many people were working in parallel on the carving. Then the two inch blocks were screwed together, and you had one large block which could be used to "stamp" the image into the newspaper. 

Waud was at the battle of Gettysburg, and below we present one of his drawings which appeared in Harper's Weekly using the process described above.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Winslow Homer

Today we feature a portrait of Winslow Homer. He was one of the most famous artists of the 1800's. One of his most famous paintings was called "Snap the Whip", and showed children playing in front of a school. 

Winslow Homer got his start as an illustrator for Harper's Weekly in the Civil War. To begin with, he was responsible for transferring photographs taken by Matthew Brady onto wood blocks so a likeness of the photograph could be printed. This was done by creating line art of the photograph, and then carving the line art into a block of wood. The wood block was then used to "stamp" the picture into the newspaper. As time went on, he was used by Harper's Weekly as a War Illustrator, and he was sent to Civil War battles to draw the scenes of battle. After the war he became famous for his paintings.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Thomas Nast

Today's picture is of Thomas Nast. Nast was featured yesterday in the Mystery Person Contest. He was a satirist who got his start as an artist/cartoonist for Harper's Weekly during the Civil War. He was a staunch Anti-slavery republican, and a supporter of Abraham Lincoln. He is remembered for creating the popular image of Santa Claus, the republican elephant and the democratic donkey.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Old Car in Cuba

We wrap up Cuba Week with this picture taken in 1912. The picture shows Rafael's grandfatehr standing (upper) in the car. The picture was taken Finca Boning, Wajay, Havana.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Cuban Men

Cuba Week continues here at OPOD. This is another picture submitted by Rafael. This one shows his grandfather and a friend playing with a skull. I am sort of hoping that Rafael will chime in and give us more details on this one.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Cuban Hurricane

Today we feature another picture sent in by Rafael. The picture shows some of the devastation from the 1926  Hurricane in Cuba. I do not read Spanish, and so am not sure what the sign on the building says.

Wow, we had a definite lack of comments yesterday compared to normal days. Is it that people do not like Cuba, or don't like to see people baptized in the river. I think Cuba is pretty cool because I am looking forward to the day that Cuban cigars are once again legal in this country. Secondly, I think it is pretty cool when a guy that was a criminal turns his life around and brings revival to the very park where he used to party. But that's just me.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011


Cuba week continues with another picture submitted by Rafael. This picture was taken in 1912, and shows a communion service. His grandmother is shown just to the right of the cross.


Wanted to share with you that we had a great weekend. We helped host a real Old Time Revival in the park by the South Concho River. We had a large sound stage, and had ten live bands that played throughout the weekend. We had free BBQ and an inspiring message each day, and the speaker was a former drug addict who has spent the last 20 years in and out of prison. God miraculously delivered him from his addictions, and now he preaches. I had the wonderful opportunity to work with him all summer, and must say I have never seen someone so on fire for the Lord. The revival culminated with an old fashioned River Baptism, which you can enjoy below.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Mother and Son

This week we are featuring photographs of Cuba submitted by Rafael. The picture above shows his father and mother on a street in Cuba. The picture was taken in 1939. He also sent a similar picture of his father and mother taken 8 years later in 1947.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Cuban Bodega

Welcome to Cuba Week here at OPOD. We had a treasure trove of photographs sent in by Rafael, and so I wanted to share them with you this week. I hope Rafael will tell us more about these pictures as the week goes on. This one shows a Cuban "Bodega". Rafael's father is on the right of the picture.

When I think of Cuba, I think of fine cigars. They really are the best cigars, and I wish that you could purchase them here (legally).


I had mentioned several weeks ago that my daughter, the lovely Miss EAM, will be departing on September 5 to serve as an RN for the Mattaw Children's Village in Africa. Unfortunately, orphans have no money to pay for a nurse, so I brought the need to you all. I am pleased to announce that you all responded with overwhelming generosity. Between visitors to this blog, and some local churches she visited, she has raised the funds needed for her airfare over, 6 months of living expenses, and her airfare home. In addition, she has raised money that can serve as a start to buying equipment to put together a small clinic for the village.

We greatly appreciate your support for her work. I have one additional request. The area she is going to is a very unstable part of the world. There is great turmoil in the neighboring countries, and that type of trouble can quickly spill across borders. I would appreciate your prayers for her for safety while doing this work, and that her work might be successful.


Several years ago, I described a young man to you, Dustin, who was a very troubled young man who was making an incredible turnaround in his life his senior year of high school. Many of you were a huge encouragement to Dustin, and we got together and provided some funding to him to help (You can read Dustin's story here). We have not talked about Dustin in a while, so wanted to give you an update. He did in fact go on to college, and he successfully completed his certification as a Wind Turbine Technologist. He graduated at the top of his class. To be honest with you, I have been very concerned about Dustin. When it became known that there were lucrative jobs in the Wind Industry, there was a huge rush of people into technical schools to get certifications to work on wind turbines. So, there were LOTS of people going into that field. Then, with the financial crisis of 2008, many of the big wind farms that were planned were cancelled because they could not get financing. So you had the perfect storm of oversupply and people looking for jobs, and a collapse in Wind Farm projects. Bottom line . . . virtually no jobs in the Wind Industry now.

I am pleased to announce, however, that Dustin was able to get a job in the industry, and was just hired to be a Wind Technologist near Big Springs, Texas. What a wonderful ending to this story you helped make happen.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Friday, August 12, 2011

Brother Baseball

We wrap up Old Family Photo week here at OPOD today with these pictures. The picture above was submitted by Duene R. This is the information she sent along with the Photo:

"This photo was taken in Chicago in 1929.  This is the Marlatt Brothers baseball team, from Hawk Springs, Wyoming.  They were in Chicago to play in the championship game for brothers baseball.  The uniforms they are wearing were from the Chicago White Sox.

All of the men on the team were brothers, except two, who were nephews.  My grandfather is standing, far left, and my father is standing far right. 

There were also seven sisters in the family, who stayed at home in Wyoming."


In addition, I wanted to share this photo, which was submitted by Sandy B.

Sandy indiacated:

"This photo of my husband’s relatives was taken in Oracle, Arizona in 1907 as they traveled out west from Dayton, Ohio. They are the Landis family who owned a tobacco company which was destroyed in the Great Dayton flood of 1913.

They traveled out west In part to see if the western air would help Herman who suffered with TB. We were told they traveled by “auto.” But, now wonder how that could be possible in an automobile such as this (although the gateway to the west, old National route 40, is on the outskirts of Dayton.) The man driving the auto is a “chaperone” as written on the back of the photo.

Another interesting tidbit: the Landis’s were neighbors of Orville and Wilber Wright."

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Civil War Veterans

Today's picture was submitted by Duene, and she provided the following information:

This is a picture of my great uncle Henry Albert Dixon - Henry is on the left. Henry was a soldier in the 73rd Ohio Volunteer Infantry during the Civil War.

After the war, Henry Dixon served as a Justice of the Peace for 20 years and attended many patriotic gatherings. He was called on to speak at political rallies and was an ardent Republican. When in his 90's, Henry Dixon returned to the Battlefield at Bull Run nearly 75 years after he had fought there. Later that year, he and W.B Southerton, a fellow Civil War veteran, unveiled a monument dedicated to Civil War veterans in Athens, Ohio.

He made it a point to celebrate "Decoration Day" every chance he could get. Apparently, he was very popular. This was especially true because he was one of the oldest civil war veterans in the Athens-Meigs county area.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

More Family Photos

Today's picture was submitted by Charles Leck. It is a picture of his father, taken in about 1917. He was born in the Bronx to German parents. In the picture he is in training in Texas. He was sent overseas to fight the Germans in World War I. This was somewhat awkward, as it was the homeland of his parents.

Also today we feature this picture submitted by Donald Farr. It is a picture of his father and sister. His father was stationed at the Pentagon during World War II.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Moonshine Still

Today's picture was submitted by Mike Ciosek. The picture is from around 1910, and it show's Mike's great grandfather (Mikhaile Russak) being arrested by Russian police for running a still. I wonder what the punishment was for that crime?

This next picture was submitted by Nancy Hofmeister. It is a picture of her father-in-law, Dale, and it was taken in 1944 in Bakersfield, California.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Killough Brothers

Today's picture was submitted by Donna Perry. The picture was taken around 1935 in Hubbard, Texas. Donna's grandfather is in the picture, behind the man with the guitar. Her grandfather was George William Killough. Also in the picture are his brothers. I like this picture . . . guns, dogs, and guitars! This is a real classic.

As a bonus, we include the picture below, submitted by Kevin B. This picture was taken around 1900, and shows his great grandparents. The boy on the man's lap is Kevin's great grandfather. He had 6 children, but was killed when a train his his Model T, which had become stuck on the tracks.

Sunday, August 7, 2011


Today's picture was submitted by Betty Hartley. It was taken in about 1910, and shows her grandmother on a horse. The following story was submitted with the photo:

This is my grandmother, Nancy Ellen Baker, Grover King Bond.

She's on her favorite horse, Buttons and wearing a divided riding skirt.  This photo was taken near Cook's Peak, New Mexico, approximately 1910.

On her first day in the third grade, her father deserted the family and she had to quit school and become the "man" of the house.  She took care of the cattle, goats and horses.  Her two oldest daughters had lots of stories to tell about their mama.  They said she could pick up a goat by its horns and toss it over the fence.  I don't know why that was necessary, but I'll bet that certain goat never messed with her again.

She was married off at the age of fourteen.  At the time they lived in a tiny mining town in New Mexico and she said that she thought her only choice in marriage was Grover, or the village idiot, and she made the wrong choice.  (That's a quote.)

Grover was mean to their first daughter and would pinch her to make her cry and then spank her for crying. 

One day, Grover slapped their daughter so hard he tipped her high chair over.  My grandmother reached for the rifle behind the door.  Grover Laughed.  He had removed the gun first.

When she became "with child" a second time, she wanted to go visit her ailing mother.  Jeff would not let her leave.  The Ku Klux Klan came to him and told him that he was to let her go visit, or else.  (This was in Arizona, and its the only good thing I ever heard about the Ku Klux Klan.  No, my grandmother did not know anyone in the Klan.)

She boarded the train with her daughter and never came back.  She was only about 17 at the time.

Her two daughters said she could cowboy with the best of them and could wear a man's hat band for a belt.  After "cowboying" all day, she rode horseback for miles to the dance at the school house, then rode back home, arriving about dawn.

Years later, she married my grandfather, King, who died of tuberculosis.  Many years later, she married Bond, who was killed in a mining accident.

Her mother signed her name with an "X" --- she herself, had a second grade education --- her kids ranged from 8th grade education through high school graduate --- and three grandchildren received college degrees.

And she lived to see a man walk on the moon.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Friday, August 5, 2011

Barber Shop

Good Friday Morning to you all. If I have not used your submitted photo yet, don't panic . . . I plan to make next week Favorite Family Photo Week as well. I have enough material for almost another week, but still need a few more people to submit photos. Then, I had a nice group of pictures submitted from Rafael on Cuba, and plan on having an entire week on Cuba. That will probably be week after next.

The picture above was submitted by Sue Williams. This is a picture of her Grandfather, Andy, and it was taken in New York in 1935. If you click on the picture to enlarge it, the printed material on the window is interesting.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Brooklyn Tavern

Today's picture was submitted by Caitlin Brown. The photograph shows her grandfather, Pat Costello in the center. They are standing in front of the 6th Avenue Tavern in Brooklyn, New York. I don't know the date of the photograph.

Also today we feature this photograph submitted by Chelsea Meyers. The picture shows her grandfather, and his mother. The picture was taken in the 1930's in New Jersey.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Castleford Grade

Favorite Family Photo Week continues here at OPOD with this picture submitted by Tim. It is a picture of his grandfather. The picture was taken in 1928. Pictured is John Snoderly, who grew up on a homestead in Buck Flat, Idaho. The homestead was near the small town of Grassy Hill (which is north of Three Creek, Idaho).  This area was a Homestead Act project in the middle of the Idaho desert, where farmers dry farmed the land.  In the 20's there was a rangefire that decimated the town, which was never rebuilt. I find these pictures interesting from the 1920's . . . such big smiles, nice clothes and optimism. What a big change occurred in such a few number of years.

Also today we have the photo above submitted by Robert Waters. He is the little guy in the picture, shown with his sisters and mother.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Dental Visit

Today's picture is from 1942, and was submitted by VM Sehy. Her dad is the assistant standing in the right of the picture. He as in the Navy Dental Corps, and assisted several different dentists during the war. I find these WW II photos interesting. Even though there are no military insignia in the photograph, the picture screams "G.I.". I wonder what about this makes it look like a government photo?

As an added bonus today, we have this photo submitted by Joe W. It shows his mom (the little girl) and his great grandparents. His mom was raised by the grandparents in the picture.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Military Ancestors

I hope you all are as excited as I am about this being the week where we show Family Photos which you submit. I have gotten lots of interesting pictures, and hope you all will continue so submit pictures. Also, please try and include any information you have on the photograph. The picture above was submitted by Dale Moore. The picture shows his Grandfather, John Roberts from Lawrence County, Tennessee. His grandfather is on the left in the picture. He is pictured as a WW I soldier. I wonder if this picture was taken in US or overseas.

The picture above is from "Joe in NC", a long time visitor and commenter to this blog. The picture is of his dad in the 190's. The picture was taken in Shanghai. Joe . . . does that mean your dad was "Shanghaied"?

Folks, keep your favorite old family photos coming!