Looking at the Details

Group of women standing next to bookmobile When looking at photos in Nebraska Memories I think it’s important to spend a few minutes looking at the details of a photo. You never know what you may spot. I’ve spotted a few things that made me want to know more. For example go look at this photo of a Group of women standing next to a bookmobile.

It’s easy to see that this photo was taken in 1937 at the district library meeting. It looks like all of the women have on coats, hats and gloves. Most of them are holding some type of purse. Did you happen to notice the logo above the license plate? The first time I looked at the details of this photo I was surprised to see the AAA logo on the back of the bookmobile. To be fair I’ve never given the history of AAA much thought but I was surprised to see they were around in 1937. Looking at the AAA website I soon realized I shouldn’t have been surprised. The American Automobile Association was formed in 1902 and introduced services to stranded motorists in 1915. By the time this photo was taken AAA had already been helping stranded motorists for 22 years! I guess I’ll need to start looking at older photos to see if I can find any earlier photos of the logo.

Wilson Flower Shop Here’s another photo for you. This photo of the Wilson Flower Shop is from 1950. Can you spot the logo that I was surprised to see on the door of the delivery truck? Do you recognize FTD Mercury Man? A quick look at the FTD website and I learned that the Florists’ Telegraph Delivery was formed in 1910 and they have been using the Mercury Man logo since 1914.

Ray Julius Nye residence formal gardens As you can tell I come up with a lot of questions when I start looking at the details in a photo. Did you know gazing balls have been around forever? Saying forever might be going a bit too far but I found multiple sites on the web that say gazing balls date back to Italy in the 13th century. I should note however I’m not sure how reliable these sources are. I can say for sure however that there was a mirrored gazing ball in the garden of the Nye residence in Fremont in 1920-1921. It’s prominently featured in the photo of Ray Julius Nye residence formal gardens.

Unfortunately for me I can’t easily find satisfying answers. In this photo of the Interior of H. A. Sander Store, Papillion, Nebraska do you see all of the bananas along the left side of the photo? Interior of H. A. Sander Store, Papillion, Nebraska In 1912 how long and how far did the bananas have to travel to reach Papillion? This photo is 100 years old. How much do you think the price of bananas have changed between then and now?

I’m sure it won’t surprise you to read I have more examples of interesting things I’ve found in photos when I take the time to look at the details but I think I’ll save those for another post. Have you spotted any interesting details that make you want to know more? Leave a reply for me and let me know what you’ve found.

Visit Nebraska Memories to search for or browse through many more historical images digitized from photographs, negatives, postcards, maps, lantern slides, books and other materials.

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. Nebraska Memories is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information, or contact Beth Goble, Government Information Services Director, or Devra Dragos, Technology & Access Services Director.

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