Human Rulers and Silver Sheen

Using the human body as a form of measurement is a powerful
way to demonstrate size. Throughout work on the American Canal Project, men
were used to stand in, near, and around completed sections of the Canal to help
communicate its sheer size. The image begins the sixth annual history
of the All-American Canal Project, created in 1939. In the table of contents the
image is described as the “Frontispiece” of the document, and given the title, “All-American
Canal, Looking Upstream from Point of Left Bank near Station 1005+00.”

overlooking the canal 1939.jpg

While it cannot be seen in the photo, there is a silver
sheen to the original document. This is because it is a silver gelatin
photographic image on double weight, developing-out paper. Glossy photographs
are commonly used in this, and all, of the annual histories. Thus making this particular
image stand out as a decorative touch.

Series: All-American Canal Project Histories, 1948-1954.
Record Group 48: Records of the Office of the Secretary of the Interior,
1826-2009. National Archives Identifier: 2292770