"In the Beginning, all America was Virginia."
William Byrd II
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Van de Vyver Institute Diploma

Industrialization

Are you ready to be an image detective? Do you think we can learn about history just by looking at an old photograph? Search for clues in each photograph to see if you can determine the WHO, WHAT, WHEN, WHERE, WHY, and HOW for each image. Don't worry, there are questions for each image to help you discover all there is to know about these old photographs. Are you ready?

What do you see in each photograph? Click on each image to enlarge it and see more detail. You may also click on the blue "i" in the corner of each image to read a description, or caption, of the photograph. Do you ever write descriptions about the photos you take? What information do you like to include? Some images will have more information in the caption than others. Why do you think this is?

Cotton bales, Norfolk

Cotton bales, Norfolk

  1. What does this picture show? What makes you think that?
  2. What might happen next in the picture? What make you think that?
  3. Choose one object in the picture and list as many adjectives as you can to describe it.
  4. If you had to describe this picture in just one word, what would it be?
  5. Cover up the bottom half of the picture. How does that change what the picture is about?
  6. Do you think this is an important picture to study? Why or why not?

Turkeyfoot mines, Big Stone Gap, c. 1906

Turkeyfoot mines, Big Stone Gap, c. 1906

  1. What does this picture show? What makes you say that?
  2. Notice where the tracks go into the tunnel. Explain what you think is happening inside.
  3. Follow the tracks away from the tunnel. Where do you think they lead?
  4. If you could see to the left or right of the picture, what do you think you would see?
  5. Why do you think there is writing below the picture?
  6. If you could come ten years after this picture was taken, what changes might you see?

Mining at Tom's Creek, Wise County

Mining at Tom's Creek, Wise County

  1. Estimate the number of buildings in the picture.
  2. How do you think the buildings were used? What makes you think that?
  3. Cover the bottom half of the picture. How does this change what the picture is about?
  4. Notice that the buildings do not rest on the ground. Why do you think they were built this way?
  5. If you had to describe using just one word, what would it be?
  6. Look at this picture, then look at the Turkeyfoot Mine picture. How do you think the two pictures are related?

Larus & Brother Tobacco Company, Richmond, c. 1911

Larus & Brother Tobacco Company, Richmond, c. 1911

  1. What does this picture show? Why do you say that?
  2. Estimate how many people you see in this picture.
  3. Describe how the people are dressed.
  4. Compare this picture with the other Larus tobacco photograph. How is it different? How is it the same?
  5. Give a new title to this picture. Why did you choose that title?
  6. Write one caption that tells about both pictures.

Larus & Brother Tobacco Company, Richmond, c. 1911

Larus & Brother Tobacco Company, Richmond, c. 1911

  1. What do you think this picture shows? Why do you say that?
  2. Estimate how many people you see in this picture.
  3. Describe how the people are dressed.
  4. Compare this picture with the other Larus tobacco photograph. How is it different? How is it the same?
  5. Give a new title to this picture. Why did you choose that title?
  6. Write one caption that tells about both pictures.

Launching of the "Herndon", Newport News, 1919

Launching of the "Herndon", Newport News, 1919

  1. Estimate the number of people in this picture. What are they doing?
  2. Is this picture old or new? What makes you say that?
  3. If you could see to the right or left of the picture, what do you think you would see?
  4. If you were in this picture, what do you think you would hear?
  5. Looking at the picture from right to left, what do you think will happen next?
  6. Why do you think the photographer took this picture?