Sunday Afternoon on the Porch: Reflections of a Small Town in Iowa, 1939-1942

Sunday Afternoon on the Porch: Reflections of a Small Town in Iowa, 1939-1942

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by Everett W. Kuntz
     
 

In 1939, just before graduating from high school in the small town of Ridgeway in northeast Iowa, Everett Kuntz spent his entire savings of $12.50 on a 35mm Argus AF camera. He made a camera case from a worn-out boot, scraps from a tin can, and a clasp from his mother’s purse. For the next several years, especially during the summers when he worked on his

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Overview

In 1939, just before graduating from high school in the small town of Ridgeway in northeast Iowa, Everett Kuntz spent his entire savings of $12.50 on a 35mm Argus AF camera. He made a camera case from a worn-out boot, scraps from a tin can, and a clasp from his mother’s purse. For the next several years, especially during the summers when he worked on his parents’ dairy farm, he clicked the shutter of his trusty Argus all around the quiet town.

Everett bought movie reel film in bulk from a mail-order house, rolled his own film, and developed it in a closet at home, but he never had the money to print his photographs. More than two thousand negatives stayed in a box while he married, raised a family, and worked as an electrical engineer in the Twin Cities. When he became ill with cancer in the fall of 2002—sixty years after he had developed the last of his bulk film—Everett opened his time capsule and printed the images from his youth. He died in 2003, having brought his childhood town back to life just as he was leaving it.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Everett Kuntz captures well a time when small-town life is about to change, a time between two eras, when the residents enjoy the security of a small community. His images remind us more exactly what the past looked like, not exactly as we remember it, but as it was at the time. Then we may truly know the place from which we came.”—Dwight Hoover, author, A Good Day's Work: An Iowa Farm in the Great Depression

"These pictures, resting like treasures in a time capsule from 1939 until now, are delights. They will take you backward almost 70 years. They show you the faces, fields, and porches of an America before World War II, a rural, almost innocent world. A little nostalgic? So what. Never has a country needed a little sane nostalgia more than this one. The photographs are garnished by Jim Heynen’s quick, witty, affectionate commentary. It nudges us smartly into the time capsule ourselves. If 2007 looks insane to you, peruse for a while this lovely, charming book that reminds us of what we used to look like—even sometimes be like." —Bill Holm

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781587296536
Publisher:
University of Iowa Press
Publication date:
06/28/2007
Series:
Bur Oak Book Series
Pages:
116
Product dimensions:
7.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.70(d)

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