Human history becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe.

Posts tagged “black and white photo

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First Lady Grace Coolidge (1879-1957) with the Coolidge family’s pet raccoon, a gift from the town of Peru, Mississippi

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Nine European Kings; May 20th, 1910.

This photo was taken at the funeral of British King Edward VII, May 20, 1910.

"So...what do you all think about having a little tussle with the French in a couple years?" "Only if the Russians join in..."

“So…what do you all think about having a little tussle with the French in a couple years?”
“Only if the Russians join in…”

Standing from Left –

Haakon VII, King of Norway
Ferdinand I, Tsar of Bulgaria 
Manuel II, King of Portugal
Wilhelm II, German Emperor 
George I, King of Greece 
Albert I, King of the Belgians

Seated from the Left –

Alfonso XIII, King of Spain
George V, King of Great Britain
Frederick VIII, King of Denmark

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Men of the 8th Battalion, East Yorkshire Regiment going up to the line near Frezenberg during the Third Battle of Ypres; ca. 1917

WAR… what is it good for? Absolutely NOTHING.

“See that little stream—we could walk to it in two minutes. It took the British a month to walk to it—a whole empire walking very slowly, dying in front and pushing forward behind. And another empire walked very slowly backward a few inches a day, leaving the dead like a million bloody rugs. No Europeans will ever do that again in this generation…This western-front business couldn’t be done again, not for a long time. The young men think they could do it but they couldn’t. They could fight the first Marne again but not this. This took religion and years of plenty and tremendous sureties and the exact relation that existed between the classes. The Russians and Italians weren’t any good on this front. You had to have a whole-souled sentimental equipment going back further than you could remember. You had to remember Christmas, and postcards of the Crown Prince and his fiancée, and little cafés in Valence and beer gardens in Unter den Linden and weddings at the mairie, and going to the Derby, and your grandfather’s whiskers…This kind of battle was invented by Lewis Carroll and Jules Verne and whoever wrote Undine, and country deacons bowling and marraines in Marseilles and girls seduced in the back lanes of Wurtemburg and Westphalia. Why, this was a love battle—there was a century of middle-class love spent here…All my beautiful lovely safe world blew itself up here with a great gust of high explosive love…”

-Dick Diver (Tender is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald)

From Wikipedia:

The Battle of Broodseinde was fought on 4 October 1917 near Ypres in Flanders, at the east end of the Gheluvelt plateau, by the British Second and Fifth armies and the German Fourth Army. The battle was the most successful Allied attack of the Battle of Passchendaele. Using “bite-and-hold” tactics, with objectives limited to what could be held against German counter-attacks, the British devastated the German defence, which prompted a crisis among the German commanders and caused a severe loss of morale in the German Fourth Army. Preparations were made by the Germans for local withdrawals and planning began for a greater withdrawal, which would entail the loss to the Germans of the Belgian coast, one of the strategic aims of the British offensive. After the period of unsettled but drier weather in September, heavy rain began again on 4 October and affected the remainder of the campaign, working more to the advantage of the German defenders, who were being pushed back on to far less damaged ground. The British had to move their artillery forward into the area devastated by shellfire and soaked by the return of heavy rain, restricting the routes on which guns and ammunition could be moved, which presented German artillery with easier targets. In the next British attack on 9 October after several days of rain, the German defence achieved a costly defensive success, holding the approaches to Passchendaele village, which was the most tactically vital ground.


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Ice covered and burnt out shell of the Equitable Life Assurance Building of New York City, ca. 1912

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A telephone operator wears a “portable” headset made by the American Bell Telephone Company, ca. 1923

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The Marmon Herrington Rhino, ca.1950s

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Men observe the giant statues of Easter Island in Polynesia, ca. December 1922

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British WWI body armor; ca. 1917

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The last pair of St John’s Water Dogs, a now-extinct breed; ca. 1980

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An Aboriginal woman carrying a pet possom, Northern Territory, Australia; ca.1922

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