Mother and child make their way down Congress Street in Portland, Maine during a winter afternoon in 1968. Mother seems to be contemplating an early retirement in Florida.
And I’m pretty certain they don’t evolve into human orchids.
SHORPY: Ca. 1863. “Unidentified soldier in Union uniform with forage cap carrying a bone handle knife in breast pocket.” Sixth-plate tintype, hand-colored. Liljenquist Family Collection of Civil War Photographs, Library of Congress.
Per wikipedia, the Civil War the M1858 forage cap, based on the French kepi, was the most common headgear worn by union troops, even though it was described by one soldier as “Shapeless as a feedbag”. What do you think? Pretty slouchy?
So often, we see pictures of Civil War soldiers, and they look creepy/eerie/stiff, nothing like a man in 2017. But this one is different. Maybe it’s the goatee or the penetrating gaze. He reminds me of someone I’ve seen. Just to put this in perspective, let’s remember that Civil War facial hair often looked more like that of Major General Alpheus Williams.
Not that this beard isn’t AMAZING. Because it is.
2PM: New Harbor, Maine menfolk swap stories and play checkers on a winter afternoon at Lester Russell’s barbershop. The horn-rimmed glasses, calendar, radio, and cans of Barbasol all make for an authentic portrait. But what’s the young man wearing? Shin guards? Rubber waders? I don’t get it.
Speaking of barber shops, today is Howard McNear’s birthday. Born in 1905, he played barber Floyd Lawson on The Andy Griffith Show. After a stroke paralyzed the left side of his body, he left the series for over a year to recover. Andy encouraged him to return to his role, but he could not walk or stand. Audiences noticed his speech was slower, as well as his movements. If you click on any post-stroke youtube videos, it’s obvious. The show’s crew accommodated his disability, filming McNear seated or standing with support. Many scenes were shot with him sitting on a bench outside the barber shop, as opposed to actively trimming hair as before. In most of his post-stroke scenes, McNear’s left hand would hold a newspaper or rest in his lap, while he moved his right arm and hand as he spoke his lines.* Well, I’ll be.
One hunches and one cranes as neighbors exchange news in the Viennese Inner City of Griechengasse (Street of the Greeks).
I found this little nugget in a new-to-me yearbook (that reeks of cigarette smoke and has little torn football ticket halves inside) this morning. Every bit of it makes me smile. The dark-bearded fellow in the floral shirt evokes the (not-then-yet released) movie Urban Cowboy. The fellow in crimson and cream is clearly the aggressor, perhaps Bud-induced, and his failure to don a belt makes me cringe. Beltless jeans make me crazy.
The towheaded guy in orange reminds me of a younger (perhaps more Appalachian) Terry Bradshaw.
Bradshaw Fun Fact: Dallas Cowboys’ linebacker “Hollywood Henderson” infamously said Bradshaw “couldn’t spell ‘cat’ if you spotted him the ‘c’ and the ‘t.'” OUCH.