Historic Photograph Exercise

Objective: To illustrate the importance and usefulness of historical photographs as primary source data.  

Demonstrate your understanding of the use of photographs in archaeological research:

1. Choose a historic photograph that contains visible and identifiable objects.

        Machine Gun at Water Tank Hill, Courtesy, Denver Public Library, Photograph by Stuart Mace, Western History Collection, X-60543.

        Near view of ruins of Ludlow Tent Colony, Courtesy, Denver Public Library, Western History Collection, Z-199.

2.  Write a paper or discuss:

    A. What can be learned from the photograph alone?

    1. Why was the photograph taken?

    2.  Is this picture a part of a larger scene? Is there information that could be missing from this photograph that would affect how it is interpreted?  

    3. What are the people in the photograph doing and why? or What are the identifiable objects in the photograph and why are they being photographed?

    B. Can you find any objects in the Object Image Gallery at www.teachludlow.com that are present in the picture? If so, what are they?
    C. What does the photograph tell you about the objects?

      1. How are they being used and by who? 

    D. How do you think photographs help archaeologists in their research on a site?

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