wishing you soaring joy: the camera man’s gifts

I DIDN’T KNOW WHAT TO GIVE YOU for the holidays, and so I went window-shopping up and down the aisles of the internet, where suddenly I found just the right thing: the uplifting images by “the camera man” Leslie Jones, from the Boston Public Library’s massive collection. Consider this slideshow my holiday card to you.

Jones (1886-1967), who modestly called himself “the camera man,” worked for “The Boston Herald-Traveler” newspaper from 1917-1956, creating a photographic history of Boston—both the mundane and magical—that now seems to transcend any specific place. The Leslie Jones Collection of about 34,000 photographic plates lives on the 5th floor of the Boston Public Library. Read more about the treasure trove, which was donated by Jones’s family in the early 1970s.

the slideshow

Click on the first thumbnail to start the show, then toggle from slide to slide using the arrow keys on your computer or the arrows beside each caption. May your holiday season be filled with soaring joys. May the preposterous come true as it does in these images selected from Jones’s legacy.

browse the vast collections

All photos Copyright © Leslie Jones. Courtesy of the Boston Public Library, Leslie Jones Collection.

more, more, more

Still hungry for more? Remember the slideshow I did of botanical Louis Prang chromolithographs from the BPL collection? Or the Edward S. Curtis photos of Quentin Roosevelt, youngest son on President Theodore? Or the story of little-known Chicago street photographer Vivian Maier? Enjoy. (It’s OK to stray from horticulture this week, I think, isn’t it?)

Categorieswoo woo
  1. Susan says:

    Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year. Thanks for sharing all your wonderful gardening tips, pictures and recipes (your baked beans is our Christmas dinner :)

  2. naomi says:

    Great pictures – thanks for the link. I often wish you had a “like” button, because I enjoy your words and any I add seem superfluous. As we’re near the end of the year, I’m putting some down now to thank you for your wonderful writings and pictures and positivity. I look forward to reading your thoughtful blog in 2012. May your holidays be peaceful, and your new year be the best yet.

    1. Margaret says:

      Thank you and hello to Carol and Carole — and all of you! Fun to look at old photos together and free-associate and dream as the year winds down. Noel!

  3. Lynne says:

    Merry Christmas to you too Margaret! Thank you for sending great gardening gifts our way every day. Here’s wishing for preposterous events for you too!!

  4. Deborah B says:

    Merry Christmas and thank you for another wonderful year of blog posts. Yours is always the first I check every day, and if there’s not a new post, I sometimes enjoy linking through some of the older ones. Here’s hoping your season is bright and that your new book is in the bag, or close to it!

  5. nancy nichols says:

    Thank you, Margaret, for the visual cookies. Wishing you and Jack a very Merry Christmas and a Happy and Healthy 2012!

  6. Charlotte Neuville says:

    Thank you so much for these delightful pics, Margaret!! I can always count on you. I am wishing you a year of peace and enchantment AND of course, SOARING JOY!!!



  7. Mary-Ellen says:

    —thank you Margaret—right back at cha!!! I bet all of our hopes are for a happy, healthy New Year and tha’ts what I wish for you!!!!

  8. Phyllis says:

    Thank you thank you thank you!
    This made me smile and laugh! The photo of the snowy pigeon Santa just took my breath, amazing.
    Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!

    1. Margaret says:

      Hi to Phyllis, Dawn, and all the latest contributors here. I feel vindicated that my photo-hunting wasn’ t pur procrastination about my book manuscript that’s due soon. :)

  9. Lisa says:

    Merry Christmas Margaret! I love looking at old photographs so I love the slideshow. Thanks so much for sharing and hope you have a wonderful Christmas and Blessed New Year! :)

  10. Lorie says:

    You made my day!!! Thanks for all your efforts to bring us so many things outside the box while you teach, teach, teach. May the new year bring you the best of everything.

  11. Florence says:

    As usual, a visit with Margaret made me smile. Merry Christmas! Re: your manuscript… I’ll bet you work well under pressure. ; )

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