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Marking time

Marking time in June 2003

Saturday 28 June 2003

Why I don’t sing in public

This could happen to me. Thanks to Jeremy for the link.

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Thursday 26 June 2003

A Lewis Hine scandal

The Atlantic Monthly website has an article by Richard B Wood­ward, Too much of a good thing: photography, forgery, and the Lewis Hine scandal. Here’s the blurb:

The theoretical physicist who ignited the biggest firestorm in the history of the American photography market was sim­ply trying to figure out if his vintage photos were gen­u­ine. By the time he learned the answer, two of the country’s best-known photography scholars had come under a cloud of suspicion.

Part of a photo of Lewis Hine photographing children in a slum, c. 1910 [link to the whole image on the George Eastman House website]

About Lewis Hine: From 1905 this American sociologist-turned-photographer recorded and publicised the plight of migrants, workers and children. Hine helped establish the camera as a tool for social activists. See online collections of his work held by George Eastman House, the New York Public Library and the Library of Congress.

See Lewis Hine biographies (with links to more images) on the Getty Museum, Multimedia Library, Photocollect Gallery and Masters of Photography websites.

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Monday 23 June 2003

Tool patents online

Some of my cheerful companions on the OldTools mailing list have helped to build the Directory of American Tool and Machinery Patents. This is a searchable database that opens the historical records of the US Patents Office. Here you’ll find patent specifications for great leaps in American tool design (like Justus Traut’s 1888 plane iron lateral adjuster, used ever since by the Stanley company), and for thousands of smaller steps forward.

Patent drawing

Illustrations to Justus Traut’s patent 386,509 for improvements to bench planes

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Thursday 12 June 2003

Cuban bike revolution

From the culturechange.org website: A fresh wind from the south: Cuban bike revolution:

At a time where most third world countries are trying to hit the eight- lane highway of “automobilisation,” Cuba is pres­ent­ly undergoing a real revolution in the field of sus­tain­able and efficient transport. For an island which had vir­tu­al­ly no cyclist culture until 1990, bicycling is rapidly becoming a central tool of transport….
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Saturday 7 June 2003

Merry Xmas!

To celebrate the coming winter solstice, here’s an unusual Tasmanian carte-de-visite. Scenic views are not common carte-de-visite subjects, and I don’t remember seeing a CDV Chrismas card before.

'Wishing you a Merry Xmas and a Happy New Year!' -- front of a carte-de-visite

A sticker on the back credits the photographer H T Waterworth. The only record of Henry T Waterworth in The mechanical eye in Australia: photography 1841-1900 is that he was operating in Burnie in 1896, and in Hobart (at 89 Liverpool Street) in 1900. So, the card was probably published around 1900. The handwriting says (in ink) from Edward and (faintly in pencil) to H Hill.

'H T Waterworth, photographer, 89 Liverpool St. Hobart' -- back of the carte-de-visite

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Tuesday 3 June 2003

Salam Pax is real

Peter Mass has written a piece for Slate about meeting Salam Pax:

Baghdad was hectic when two blogging friends e-mailed me to suggest that I track down “Salam Pax.” I had no idea who or what they were talking about. I could have handed over the job of sorting out this Salam Pax thing to my inter­preter​—​he was a clever and funny Iraqi who never failed to provide what I needed, whether it was interviews or pizza​—​but I let it pass. I thought I had better things to do.

(Salam Pax is going to write fortnightly pieces for The Guardian).

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On this page
Why I don't sing in public
A Lewis Hine scandal
Tool patents online
Cuban bike revolution
Merry Xmas!
Salam Pax is real

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