In the face of racism, the great African-American jazz saxophonist Lester Young was “cool.” Credited with bringing the word into the modern American vernacular, “I’m cool” wasn’t Young’s reference to the sunglasses he wore day and night on stage, or the saxophone slung across his shoulder. It was his response to a divided society, a way of saying that he was still in control...
The Fed Up project has collected over 7000 student-submitted photos of school lunches from across the US. They'll be used to create a map and report to make a case for better school lunches. [more inside]
How the Wild West really looked: Gorgeous pictures show the landscape as it was charted for the very first time 150 years ago. Previously. [more inside]
"When the lights go out for good, my people will still be here. We have our ancient ways. We will remain."
In the Shadow of Wounded Knee. Along the southwestern border of South Dakota is one of the most poverty-stricken places in the United States—the Pine Ridge Reservation, home of the Oglala Lakota people. After 150 years of broken promises, they are still nurturing their tribal customs, language and beliefs. Via [more inside]
Between 1887 and 1892, John C.H. Grabill sent 188 photographs to the Library of Congress for copyright protection. Grabill is known as a western photographer, documenting many aspects of frontier life – hunting, mining, western town landscapes and white settlers’ relationships with Native Americans.
Alice Austen (1866-1952) was a pioneering American female photographer who documented life in turn of the (last) century Staten Island. Her home, Clear Comfort, is a National Historic Landmark where she lived for many years with Gertrude Tate. [more inside]
Land of the Free, home of the geek. Steven Schofield takes photos of british sci-fi fans, dressed in character in their homes. He treats it as 'found' photography, which seems to illustrate the subjects vulnerability. The title of the work is Land of the Free - and illustrates how American culture infiltrates, with the ironic edge of questioning the idea of the freedom of choosing to copy the look of these fictional characters. via kottke
Faces young and old, mothers and children, dolls; hunting rabbit, making fire, dancing: Archived photographs of Arizona's Indians from the turn-of-the-twentieth. Plus reference materials.
When you drive across America, you may or may not want to take a picture at every mile marker, but be sure to stay at vintage motels, eat at classic diners, and, above all, visit historic mental institutions. (Then thank the site with the Interesting Ideas.)