Lens-Artists Photo Challenge: History

When I saw that Patti’s challenge to us this week was History, I knew just where to look in my photo files — Old World Wisconsin. I was a historical interpreter for this 480-acre living history museum for three seasons. I interpreted 19th century life in Wisconsin dressed as an Irish immigrant, a German immigrant, and a church organist in a settler’s Village.

When I was allowed to bring my 21st century camera on site, what I wanted to capture was the simplicity of that life and its harmony with nature.

The ideas of “progress” and “technology” were quite different in the day. I used to ask school children if they saw any technology being used, and they always said, “No.” What I quickly pointed out was that there was plenty of technology, just a different kind – mechanical or hand tools instead of electronic ones.

It’s important never to neglect or abandon the simpler items in our tool kit. It’s quite possible that we may depend on them again. In fact, the U.S. military sent a division to the museum to learn how to use 19th century farm equipment so that they could assist in re-development projects in Afghanistan. Watching them walk down the dirt roads of the Village dressed in their desert camouflage uniforms was mind-boggling.

The lesson of history is that wisdom takes a long view.

13 thoughts on “Lens-Artists Photo Challenge: History

    • We stand on the shoulders of our ancestors every day. So much to be grateful for. Thanks for the compliment, but I’m glad I don’t wear a corset and bustle every day. It felt so great to get out of those costumes at the end of the day!

      • Oh, I can feel that…I have tried such clothes…and nowadays I happily wear jeans every day and dressing up is not that fun anymore…

  1. Beautiful photos of you in these dresses. To know U.S. military sent a division to the museum to learn how to use 19th century farm equipment… is quite a moving story.
    A wonderful post for this week’s history challenge.

    • Thanks, Amy! I am indebted to co-workers and visitors for the photos of me. That one of me in the church was the Best of Show winner of our annual photo contest. The photographer, Jay Filter, gave me permission to post it on my blog.

  2. A splendid selection of images for this challenge, Scilla! I love your dresses and you have captured something of what life must have been like in earlier times beautifully! I’m looking forward to visiting Old World Wisconsin again. Such an interesting place!

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