Unidentified Artifact – East Branch & Lincoln Railroad (1893-1948)
Can You Identify These Artifacts – When documenting historic sites in the New Hampshire White Mountains one of the biggest challenges I face is trying to identify some of the artifacts I photograph. In the big picture of my historical work, identifying what the artifact is and its purpose is important. And because of this, I have to do an extensive amount of research on some artifacts.
So I want to share with you some of the artifacts I have come across that I have yet to identify. I suspect a few of you out there can identify these artifacts. And I would be thrilled if you would share your knowledge with me. I plan on adding a few more artifacts I have yet to identify to this blog article in the future.
Heritage Sign – Benton, New Hampshire
Preserve History, Don't Remove Artifacts – Here in New Hampshire, outdoor recreation is growing at an alarming rate. And there has been a surge of people exploring historical sites in the White Mountains. As a conservation photographer, I am obligated to create awareness for the laws that protect our American heritage. For historic preservation to be successful, it is imperative that we promote the protection of historic sites.
As you explore the abandoned cellar holes, farming communities, logging camps and other historic sites in the White Mountain National Forest, please keep in mind that the removal of historical or archaeological artifacts from federal lands without a permit is a violation of federal law. The destruction of artifacts and historic sites is also a crime. And keep in mind, you can’t dig at historical sites. So metal detecting anywhere in the White Mountain National Forest where there could be artifacts is risky business. See the links at the end of this article for the laws that protect these special places.
Mad River Log Drive – Waterville, New Hampshire
Historic Logging Camps, White Mountains – Most of this summer season I have been documenting history and culture subjects in the New Hampshire White Mountains. The last few blog articles have been historical in nature so today I am going to continue with this theme and introduce you to the late nineteenth and twentieth century camps of White Mountains logging era.
Some consider the artifacts that remain on National Forest land to be nothing more than junk. But I see them as a window to the past that allows us to, to some extent, see what life was like for the men who worked and lived in the forests of the White Mountains during the twentieth century.
Beebe River Logging Railroad – Harp Switch Stand
Harp Switch Stand, New Hampshire – Popular during the early days of railroading, the harp style switch stand was a manually operated railroad switch, which allowed trains to transfer to another section of track. This was accomplished by a railroad worker pushing or throwing the long bar (above). The included images are part of my environmental image collection that is focused on abandoned railroads.
During the railroad era, harp switch stands were used on many New Hampshire railroads, including the logging railroads. Most of the harp switch stands along the logging railroads were removed back in the 1900s when the railroad track was picked up, but a handful of them were left deep in the backcountry of the White Mountains. Now considered historical artifacts these switches are a reminder of the land destruction that once took place in the White Mountains many years ago.
Artifact Notice Sign – White Mountains, New Hampshire
Artifact Removal Is Illegal – As you explore the logging camps and historical sites of the White Mountains, New Hampshire, keep in mind that removal of historic or archaeological artifacts from federal lands without a permit is a violation of federal law. Destruction of artifacts is also a crime.
Stormy Weather, Bondcliff – White Mountains, NH
Perspective, Pemigewasset Wilderness – One of the challenges of a photographer focused on the New England environment is finding a different perspective of locations that have been photographed thousands of times. I approach this issue by focusing on entire areas, such as the Pemigewasset Wilderness, and not just one popular location in the Pemigewasset Wilderness. The included photos show a perspective of the 45,000 acre Pemigewasset Wilderness you may have never seen.
The above shot of a hiker surrounded by storm clouds on New Hampshire's Bondcliff Mountain shows a side of the wilderness some do not see. Most photos from Bondcliff show the scenic landscape. And there is nothing wrong with this, but so many scenic shots exist that a stormy weather shot will make the viewer look twice.