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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • UNFAIR TO BABIES, 1936

Our Little Pony: 1915

Our Little Pony: 1915

Washington, D.C., circa 1915. "Dorothy in Lindsay's pony cab." Dorothy French (center) was the daughter of National Photo proprietor Herbert E. French; tot on the right is Elizabeth Lindsay. National Photo Co. glass negative. View full size.

 

Piebald pony

I believe that's what's known as a governess cart.

Got tears

Got cried when I was reading a message from Dixie Boy. Really touching.

Dixie Boy

A similar photo of this group appeared in the July 19, 1914 Washington Post. The caption read:

Dixie Boy, winner of the ribbon at Rock Creek park, July 4. Driven by Elizabeth Virginia Lindsay, age 10 years, daughter of F.G. Lindsay, 2247 Mount View place, Anacostia D.C.


Washington Post, Oct 18, 1914

Dear Aunt Anna: I have never written a letter to the cousins' club before but I had my picture in the children's page last sunday.

I am a small Shetland pony. My name is Dixie Boy. I am black and white spotted; only 42 inches high, and weigh 280 pounds. I take my two little girls out for long rides in the country. I love to get the fresh air and hear the birds sing. I have a good warm stable to sleep in when the nights are cold and in summer I love to get out in the daytime and roll on the green grass.

My little mistress feeds me lumps of sugar, and all the little children who are my playmates divide their cakes and apples and candy with me. Before going to bed the children come and hug and kiss me good-night, and see that I am put away snug in my little bed. None could be happier than we are, for they all have so much confidence in me. Sometimes I have six children in my little cart at once.

With love to all the little children and to the other pets, I am,

DIXIE BOY.
(The Shetland Pony.)

Owned by Elizabeth Lindsay, aged 10 years, Anacostia, D.C.

Dixie Boy, your letter has not been printed before because you wrote on both sides of the sheet and the letter had to be copied. -A.A.


Aunt Anna seems like a bit of a pill. I don't understand why it would take 3 months to copy half a letter which eventually needs to be typeset anyway. On another note, I believe that this is the first time on Shorpy where we have a first-person account from an animal appearing in a photo.

We all had ponies

Apocryphal quote later attributed to Dorothy French:

"When I was a little girl in Washington, D.C., we all had ponies. My sister had pony, my cousin had pony. He was a beautiful pony! And I loved him."

Framing

One of the things I learned in my beginning photography class was to check whether the subject had a tree or lamppost growing out of his head. The maple sapling behind the pony reminds me of the plumes sported by hearse horses.

 
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