Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Wood Working Class

Today's picture was taken in 1899, and shows a woodworking class. The striking thing to me in this picture is how much things have changed in the last 110 years. First, look at how trim everyone is. Not an ounce of body fat in this picture. Second, look how neatly dressed the children are. They are striving to look like gentlemen in the hopes that they can one day be part of polite society. Look at how well groomed they are . . . neat haircuts, and hair neatly combed. Also, I would bet they are attentive to the instructor and diligent to follow his guidance.

So as a society when did we decide we wanted to look like thugs, cover ourselves with garish tattoos and piercings, be overweight, and disrespect our elders. Have the changes since this picture been for the better? . . . I think not.


  1. I really love this photo. I loved woodworking when I was in high school and I regret that I had to give it up! One day though I will pick it back up when I have enough space.

    Being the age I am (mid-twenties) it is hard for me to imagine a time without everything being electronic. I barely even remember the last days of letter writing in the 90s. It seems like everything was much simpler and understandable before computers took over everything. Now with so much work being done on computers, you have to rely on companies to produce these machines which very few people understand and whose parts can't be produced without special equipment. The world relies on just a few computer companies for everything now....

  2. I am an avid hobbyist woodworker, and I think our schools have dropped the ball somewhere along the line by eliminating most shop classes, including woodworking.
    I learned quite a bit from my shop teachers and wish I had paid attention even more.
    It is striking, the difference in the way society dresses and acts today compared to then.
    I like this photo very much.
    Thank you.

  3. I really think they knew it was Photo Day, and got dressed up for the occasion. If you notice the clock, that it is either 15 before 12, or 9 o'clock, and there isn't a piece of wood or even any sawdust anywhere.

  4. Please help to bring back vocational classes to schools. Many students would excell with hands on skills rather than being pushed into college bound courses. There is so much wasted talent. Shame.

  5. PS...Could you please enable your photos to open enlarged in a seperate window?

    1. Right click them, there's a menu choice to open in a new tab/window. I do that so I can zoom in to see more details.

  6. Young man, you hit the nail right on the head!!!
    I just don't get kids today, what with their danged underwear halfway showing up their oversized trousers and their earings and tattooos.
    In my day we had a tattoo or two too (some sentence, huh!!) but usually we earned that right by serving in the Army or the Navy or another military branch. ANd it usually was just one smalltattoo on your arm with your best gals name on it or a patriotic symbol.
    Not like the satanic garbage you see today. And all over thier bodies too!!!
    No wonder the young punks are occupying Wall Street! Who would ever hire someone who looks like a giant lizard!!!!
    Parents need to be harsher with their young and tell them if they get a tattoo they get an apartment====with their own money!!!
    FOrget the government....its all on mom and pop!!!
    God, how I wish it were like it used to be!!!!
    You keep printing these fine pics young man and I'll keep lookin' at em'.

  7. The class picture that I loved the best was the one you posted on 10/10/2007. It was a girls high school class on auto repair. They had coveralls on and high heels. It is still one of my favorites. Love this site--thank you for a look into the past every day. lam IL

  8. ps it is in the roaring 20's section if you want to have look. lam IL

  9. 'tis true! there is no saw dust nor mess! but I still love this photo and the manner of dress and grooming. It is a measure of how much we have changed. But look! that boy in the center? He's holding his phone up to text or to check messages! ; )


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