I love old magazines; they don’t mince words. In their retelling of how toddler Peter Jackson came to be the “sensation of the late London season” at the Horse Guards Parade, they made sure to make mention that he was only there because his poor father was jobless and had nowhere else to be, since he wasn’t supporting his family. Was that necessary?
Two-year-old Peter, overcome with emotion, could not simply watch the Mounting of the Guard. He had to be a part of it. It was not a protest at all, but imitation in the highest. Slipping away from the supervision of his father, Peter dashed out onto the grounds, secured his toy rifle (albeit on the wrong shoulder), and marched with military form, to the delight of onlookers. In this image, he is shouting an order, immediately followed by a fearful reaction to his own voice, and flees back to the arms of his papa.
July 6, 1911. It’s hot. It’s humid. It’s New York. Hygiene is sorely lacking. There’s no chilled Coke. No frosty A&W. No Slurpees available. So why don’t we stick some blocks of ice on the hot asphalt of a dirty city street and invite some unvaccinated urchins to come lick it? It’s not like it’s a bat or anything.
Two-year-old Billy Jones of Wilmot, South Dakota plucked a geranium from his mother Jean’s flower box in August of 1957, and shoved it into the face of sister Lois Ann, 1. We can only hope that Lois gathered her rosebuds while she may, and lived a life of being fully present and carpe-ing the diem. We also hope that neither sibling is perched atop red diner chairs anymore, as a broken hip could only make 2020 that much worse.
Chicago, Chicago, that toddlin’ town, that toddlin’ town … ♪♫♪ No wonder they were toddling! Rolling on rubber was like skating on clouds with Chicago roller skates. This ad hails from my March 1926 issue of Child Life. You can bet they had a WAY better March than we just did. What do you make of this lantern-bearing imp?
The stock market was years away from crashing, so Easter was going to be LIT. Who wouldn’t want kraft toys of bunnies and ducks that ROLLED, just like those boss Chicago skates?
Or this disturbing gender-ambiguous amputee? What fun!
Little boys evidently wore ties when they colored and crafted. Mother, look, I dressed like Papa!
But when coloring was done, it was time to pull out the old Lanky Tinker (Tom Tinker’s cousin).
Yep, this is the classic National Geographic you know and love. Nearly naked barefoot bushmen covered in dust. And while their bellies look distended, the author asserts that is due to swaybacked posture, and neither gorging nor starving. At any rate, the toddlers seem to be enjoying the ride on a discarded cape, making due with what they had and using their imaginations to create fun. Such is life in the veld.
veld: wide open rural landscape in Southern Africa