The Past And The Present

My bro just sent me a whole new disk of old family color photos that prompted my husband to note, "Holy shit. I married Harry Potter."

But the restoration of old color pictures of the early twentieth century really does help clear the historical air. I don't think we fully appreciate how black-and-white images always somehow distance the recent past from the present - so we see events like the Second World War or the First World War as further away than they really are in the sweep of human history. I thought of this when looking through this album of rare color photos from Michael Ryan Shaughnessy. They are of sleepy German locales from 1906, more than a century ago. I stopped short at this one:


A bucolic, restful idyll - that would one day become something utterly different.

This is Dachau.