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Most of the photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs, 20 to 200 megabytes in size) from the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) Many were digitized by LOC contractors using a Sinar studio back. They are adjusted by your webmaster for contrast and color in Photoshop before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here.

 
 
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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • GEORGE WASHINGTON CROSSING THE PIES

Arlington: 1922

Arlington: 1922

"Arlington National Cemetery, 1922." With the USS Maine Memorial rising at left. Harris & Ewing Collection glass negative. View full size.

 

91 years later

The photo below is from the same perspective, taken in June, 2013. It appears that the two trees just right of the Maine Memorial in the original photo have grown up, and now hide all but part of the pedestal from this perspective. The Memorial Amphitheater is partially visible in today's photo, just barely out of frame in the 1922 shot. The distinctive markings on the graves are easily seen in both photos, though the gravestones are sitting higher out of the ground in 2013 versus 1922 (not sure why). Harry Brooks and the woman visiting his grave remain a mystery.

Details on the Grave

The woman is kneeling at the gravestone of Harry Brooks, D Company, 10th US Cavalry, in Section 22 of Arlington National Cemetery. Brooks died of acute gastritis on October 21st, 1900, in Holguin, Cuba. The 10th US Cavalry at the time was a segregated, African-American regiment, an original "Buffalo Soldier" unit that also fought alongside the Rough Riders in the Spanish-American war.

The backs of the gravestones to the right of Brooks' and just beyond the woman match in markings to those pictured on the Arlington website. The shadow across the graves in the foreground is from the large memorial to Claude Christman. This was a big help in pinpointing the specific headstone the woman is kneeling on, after getting a close read from the alignments of the gravestone rows with the background.

Location of the Grave

Arlington's precision layout and a bit of sleuthing indicates that this is almost certainly the grave of Harry Brooks. Who is Harry, how and when did he die, and who is the woman is not as easy to uncover. He is surrounded mostly by graves of Rough Riders, whose bodies were disinterred from Cuba and returned for burial in the US in April of 1899 (less than a year after the battles). But unlike the others he is not listed in the rolls of the fallen, nor is there a date of death on the Arlington online database.

The photo above lines up on a diagonal (1 grave across, 1 grave up, ...) which points to the right of the Maine memorial. From another photo in the collection, we know the west facade of the Memorial Amphitheater is just out of frame to the right. Using the photo's other grave alignments to the right and left, one can draw lines on a present day view of the cemetery and hone in on the location. That alone would get you close, but the clincher is the shadow along the row of graves in the foreground. It is definitely the shadow from the memorial to Claude Christman, who died in the Philippines in 1899.

More left to discover. This is why I love Shorpy.

And here's Maine's foremast

At the US Naval Academy.

God Bless Those Who Serve (Past & Present)

I placed flags on Memorial Day on the graves of my Dad (Hawaiian Islands, Philippine Islands), and my father-in-law (Burma, China, India).

THANKS DAD (BOTH OF YOU) - because of your sacrifices, I am free to write this today.

To those who have passed - let us never forget them!

To those who serve now - Thank You for your service!

Thank You

To all members of our armed forces current and to our vets, thank you for your service.

Lest We Forget

Never

 
THE 100-YEAR-OLD PHOTO BLOG
Shorpy.com | History in HD is a vintage photo blog featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1950s. The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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