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March 12, 2008

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It just shows that things change over time. Everything about 100 year old photos will likely be different. I have some old photos ranging from a farmer behind a mule driven plow, a one legged civil war vet, to an unidentified photo of some family member who looks to be a prisoner in stripes! I don't rationalize or justify, I am just glad that someone in my family took the shots, and that someone else found a way to save them.

I find it very sad that the person who was actually responsible for the nurture, feeding, and actual SURVIVAL of the babies is not identified in the photo.

If it's supposed to be degrading for the caregiver I find it interesting that she has the best of lifes jobs.
Does that make sense?

I actually thought it a rather attractive photo but agree that it is sad that the black young lady wasn't identified. Not everyone treated their servants well just as we've all had jobs where we felt like slaves. My mother-in-law's long time cleaning lady, who watched my ex-husband grow up, was invited to our wedding. Mary was an absolute doll.

Not even fifty years ago, my white parents employed a black woman in our home for housecleaning and babysitting. "Nancy" was the surrogate mom for my siblings and me. She taught us many things. bell hooks writes about this whole phenomenon in the chapter of her book Yearning: Race, Gender, and Cultural Politics, entitled "Homeplace: A Site of Resistance." The African American women so employed would have to mother children twice, first those of the white family and then those of her own. The children, hooks says, learned resistance to this whole system by watching, but more by listening as the black mothers told stories of the whites power. Powerful stuff. As worth remembering as the photo you show.

What a photo. It says worlds about race and women in this country.

What a photo. It says worlds about race and women in this country.

sorry for the double posting. I hate it when that happens.

I think of her as a babysitter. But it is sad her name wasn't given -- which, I guess, was the way things were done.

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