Have you got boxes and boxes of old photo albums sitting your closet? If so, it may be time to go through all those old photos again!
Nothing takes us back like a tour through those old snapshots from our past. Although there’s nothing wrong with the new technology that lets us pull out a cell phone, take a precision shot on half a second’s notice, and fire it halfway around the country instantly, something seems to be missing from modern-day photography.
In the good ol’ days we didn’t normally walk around with photographic devices in our pockets or purses. The camera stayed home most of the time. If we saw something spectacular, we didn’t normally have a camera with us to get a picture. Picture-taking usually had to be planned. If we were taking a trip or going to meet an old friend, that would be the sort of occasion where we’d plan to take some pictures. A sporting event would suggest we ought to try to get a few shots of a superstar up at the plate or at the foul line—or of a family member making us proud by scoring the winning run in a Little League game. No doubt about it—photos used to be special, and looking back at those special photos from decades ago can still make your hair stand on end.
If you’re like me, you can look through old photo albums and intimately remember the circumstances surrounding almost every one of the old photos you see. Sure, there are a few cases of “Who was that?” but you’re not likely to get confused very often when you look over those old pictures. Most of us were a lot more selective in our picture-taking back when we had to plan to bring the camera, get film, and limit those shots to the really good ones for fear we’d run out of film before getting every picture we wanted.
Tours of those old albums have provided some of the greatest quality time shared by parents and children, and grandparents and grandchildren. Those old photos are a wonderful family history document, and they tell a great deal about changes our country has gone through over decades and generations. Cliches are often overblown or downright misleading, but when you share those old photos that have so much meaning to you, and learn how much they seem to mean to the people you’re sharing them with, it’s hard to argue with the adage that “a picture is worth a thousand words.”
Some of our subscriber profiles include old photos—including Polaroids! We’ve found some wonderful, touching photos, and it’s clear why people have posted them on their profiles.
We suspect many more of our subscribers and readers have some great photos going way back in time … all the way to the good ol’ days.
We’ve especially enjoyed looking at photos recently from the 1940s, the fifties, and the sixties. And why not? That was the era that made the present day possible—and what didn’t happen between the 1940s and 1960s?
Do you remember …
- The introduction of the T-shirt in 1942
- Ballpoint pens entering the market that same year
- Slinky going on sale a few years later
- A lot of men’s favorite—introduction of the bikini
- The country getting back to normal after World War Two
- Invention of the Polaroid in 1947—the same year Jackie Robinson broke the major league color barrier and Chuck Yeager broke the sound barrier
- Introduction of the Peanuts comic strip in 1950—the same year a lot of Americans went to Korea
- TV starting to hit it big
- The introduction of seat belts in cars in 1952
- The discovery of DNA the next year
- Roger Bannister’s four-minute mile in 1954, the same year the US Supreme Court finally came around and realized there is no such thing as separate but equal
- The opening of Disneyland and the founding of McDonald’s in 1955
- Rosa Parks standing her ground that same year
- Publication of The Cat in the Hat and the launching of Sputnik in 1957
- Introduction of Lego and the peace symbol in 1958
- The quiz show scandal
- Invention of the laser in 1960
- Bay of Pigs and building of the Berlin Wall in 1961
- JFK’s “Man on the Moon” speech and founding of the Peace Corps, also in 1961
- The first men in space, also 1961 … what a year!
- Andy Warhol’s soup can in 1962
- Johnny Carson starting his 30-year stint on The Tonight Show in 1962
- The Beatles’ first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1964
- Passage of the Civil Rights Act and the introduction of GI Joe, also in 1964
- The Great New York City Blackout the following year
- A lot of men’s second favorite: Introduction of the miniskirt in 1965
- The introduction of Star Trek in 1966
- The first Super Bowl in 1967
- The first moon landing in 1969
- Woodstock, the same year
- Debut of Sesame Street, also 1969—can you believe Big Bird is 43?
(Source of many of the above references: about.com)