Photographs are what we use to look back in time – like a visual memory bank of sorts. They often hold sentimental and nostalgic value and can depict the world in a whole new light.
These records of moments and memories can help us record events to look upon later on. And, they help us connect the past to the future.
Enjoy these rare historical photos that give you a glimpse at incredible moments in time!
1. Annie Edson Taylor and Her Niagara Falls Journey
As part of a PR stunt on her birthday in 1901, Annie Edson Taylor planned to get something out of doing a barrel ride over Niagara Falls. With a watertight, cushioned barrel made especially for her, she tested it out with a feline friend to accompany her.
Luckily, she and the cat survived the adventure. On that fateful day of October 24th, the 63-year-old retired teacher embarked on an unforgettable journey. Afterward, she was met by a boat awaiting her arrival.
2. Cigarettes Bought from a Hospital Bed in the 1950s
Before the Surgeon General’s message came out linking tobacco usage to a host of illnesses, the medical community still didn’t think it was bad. Actually, it was considered to be a soothing aid that suppressed appetites.
Even though it seems absurd, hospital patients would buy packs from their hospital beds – and could even smoke in the rooms if they were allowed!
3. A Manually Operated Traffic Control Machine, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1922
Not long after automobiles were introduced on the streets cars began getting into accidents. It became obvious that laws and other necessary safety measures had to be put in place to ensure the safety of individuals.
So, motorists began using signals to know when to stop and when to proceed through a junction. These were pre-electric traffic signals and the only alternative was to have manual signs. A traffic stop operator manually changed the sign from “stop” to “go.”
4. A Man on Top of the Golden Gate Bridge During its Construction
The Golden Gate Bridge construction required bravery and courage. In the 1930s, there was an unspoken rule about high-steel bridge-building projects such as this one.
Engineers anticipated one employee incident for every $1 million spent. The $35 million Golden Gate Bridge project boasted a remarkable safety record, with only 11 incidents. And, about 19 people are said to have been saved because of a giant net underneath the construction site.
5. Route 50 (AKA America’s Loneliest Road)
It’s easy to see why Route 50 was given the name of “The Loneliest Road in America.” From West Sacramento, California, to Maryland’s Ocean City (about 3,073 miles apart), the lonely roadway separates large swaths of barren terrain.
The slogan for Route 50 has since gained popularity and the state of Nevada adopted it as the road’s designated marketing slogan. According to Life magazine, there are “no places of interest” along the road (which is fitting considering there truly is nothing around).