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Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.

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Country Church: 1936

Country Church: 1936

1936. "Church, Southeastern U.S., probably Alabama or Tennessee." 8x10 safety negative by Walker Evans for the Farm Security Administration. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

Re: that Cross add-on

A follow-up:
My friend Dr. John Sasser ( noted this in reference to the cornerstone, and church name:

"The African Methodist Episcopal Church, with the "cross +" between the M and E, i.e., M+E has a very exciting history that is embedded in African tradition, i.e., voodoo, folk-lore or whatever you wish to call it...."

(this cross example may) " with some African-based religious practices that have been labeled voodoo are (in fact) biblical."

[Or it could be a bit of bracing on the back of the cross that's come loose. - Dave]

This Site Teaches me So Much!

Thank you Mike. I love the collaborative effect this site has in broadening my knowledge.

And thank you Dave, for my absolute favourite site!

That Cross add-on

My first impression is that the small upright remembers the Thief on the Right at the crucifixion. Remember? The thief on the left scoffed at Jesus and blamed others for all that had happened to him,almost demanding that Jesus save him on his own terms.

The thief on the right admitted his guilt and simply asked Jesus to remember him.

The Orthodox Church’s cross has an additional shorter piece above the main crosspiece,and at the bottom is a smaller slanted piece. The upper piece represents the sign placed above Jesus’ head (on the Orthodox cross). And the lower piece slants toward the right as a reminder of the thief on the right.


Super-Enhancing Go-Go Gadget

Could you also employ your ultra-flux-capacitor, U236, turbo-rastermatic, Fireball, perma-firm, sofa-wide powers to explain . . .

Okay, so it aint funny and I caint spell aint.

Still, your scans are the best and your site(s) are my favorite(s) on the web. Keep up the good work.

Foy Blackmon
Las Vegas

What a Letdown...

It's a bit of wood.

Thanks anyway!

Southern Cross

What is that thing on the middle cross. It doesn't look like a bird. Dave, can you use your super enhancing powers? Go go gadget magnifier?

[Ta-da. - Dave]

Unusual Design

I don't know that I've ever seen a church quite this style in the South -- the wood looks added on to a secular building of some kind. The three crosses are interesting, and the one in the center is crooked--and is that a bird perched on it? There's also no signage over the doors, which is odd. Fascinating building, clearly cobbled together.

[Look again. There is a sign. Plus a cornerstone. - Dave]

SHORPY HISTORICAL PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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