Every one of the 350 pictures collected in Who We Were: A Snapshot History of America is worth a thousand words — and the Square America website offers an excellent, abbreviated introduction.
The project’s first photograph dates back to 1888 — the year George Eastman released the first Kodak cameras. The last was taken in 1972, by an Apollo 16 astronaut who left a shrink-wrapped snapshot of his family on the lunar surface. In between, you’ll find the public (a view of the destruction caused by the 1906 San Francisco earthquake) and the deeply personal (a Depression-era couple documenting their first kiss). The book’s editors dug through America’s dresser drawers and attics, sifting a million-plus photos before making their selection. Well done, but a question remains: Who’s saving today’s cell-phone snapshots?
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