SHORPY Historic Photo Archive & Fine-Art Prints
The Shorpy Archive
9000+ fine-art prints suitable for framing. Desk-size to sofa-size and larger, on archival paper or canvas.
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About the Photos

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.

© 2019 SHORPY INC.

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Mount Gretna: 1912

Mount Gretna: 1912

Mount Gretna, Pennsylvania, in 1912. Relaxing at National Guard training camp. View full size. National Photo Company Collection glass negative.

To stay online without a paywall or a lot of pop-up ads, Shorpy needs your help. (Our server rental alone is $3,000 a year.) You can contribute by becoming a Patron, or by purchasing a print from the Shorpy Archive. Or both! Read more about our 2019 pledge drive here. Our last word on the subject is: Thanks!

The Smell of Canvas, Burlap, and Hay in the Morning

Can't you just smell it? Anyone who has ever slept in a canvas tent knows what I mean - the cotton fabric is usually coated with some sort of boiled linseed sealant which, when combined with a winter's worth of mildew, gives off a very distinctive aroma when unfurled to dry in the sunshine. Burlap and hay also have "earthy" smells. I once used old burlap coffee bags to "wallpaper" a room in a college rooming house. Though it was very bohemian and cool, the room smelled like a feed store. Chicks didn't dig it.

I wonder what the cylindrical bags hanging on the post are all about. They appear to have leather bottoms and notched straps. Canteens, maybe? I've seen canvas water bags used for radiator water slung from the hood ornaments of old cars...maybe these are the ancestors of today's military's personal hydration systems.

[Those are cavalry feed bags. - Dave]

SHORPY OLD 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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