Thursday, December 27, 2012

Snow Days: Back at the Ranch, Cottonwood, Idaho, 1942

Ranchers may appreciate having snow replenish their watersheds, but I think they could probably do without drifts in the barnyard, and icicles hanging from cows' bellies.

These shots are scans from rectangular negatives. The materials and chemicals used in film processing can affect how negatives age, but more often than not, it's careless storage that shortens their lives. Something has affected many of these negatives, causing a light rectangle to show up in the image.

I have reason to believe that the ranch may have been in or near Cottonwood, Idaho. Other negatives in this group were shot at a wedding at a church which has the name Cottonwood in its stained glass sign over the door. The visible license plate in one of these shots shows 42. I can't quite make out all of the text on the plate but it may say "World Famous Potato" across the bottom. The state name is not readable.

The negative group shows a horse-powered activities and I would suspect they were being used for two reasons: First, WWII rationing would have cut down on the use of machinery and second, it was probably easier to get around in that part of the country by horse when it was covered with snow.

This might have been part of an "upland" section of the ranch.

Moving the cattle.

Collecting firewood with the two-horsepower tractor. 

Back at the house for lunch? You might want to tie him to something.

OK, I told you to tie it to something, didn't I?

Well, there's more where that one came from.

OK, where did the hay go? Note the icicles under its belly.

More icicles, tilted at an angle thanks to the wind.

It's your turn to dig a path to the privy! Note the light, rectangular oval. Perhaps some moisture got between the negatives.

OK, who left the window rolled down? Why dig the car out, the road is buried!

This is the car with the 1942 plate, but it's about a 1938 model...Plymouth?

A 1941 Plymouth, going nowhere fast.

This is from another estate but I thought it went well with the theme. Photo was probably taken in the same time frame.

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