Exhibitions/ Art Object

Carving One of Our Watermelons

Artist:
William H. Martin (American, 1865–1940)
Date:
1909
Medium:
Gelatin silver print
Dimensions:
Image: 8.7 x 14 cm (3 7/16 x 5 1/2 in.) Frame: 55.9 x 71.1 cm (22 x 28 in.) (Multiple postcards in frame)
Classification:
Photographs
Credit Line:
Twentieth-Century Photography Fund, 2010
Accession Number:
2010.188
Not on view
The tall-tale postcard was a uniquely American genre that flourished in the Midwest between about 1908 and 1915. The earliest master of the genre was William H. “Dad” Martin, a studio photographer in Kansas who established a successful sideline crafting photomontages of outlandish agricultural abundance. Intimately familiar with the tribulations of Midwestern farmers, including a fierce drought that parched the land for most of the 1890s, Martin lampooned the inflated promises of fertile soil, abundant rain, and hardy livestock that land companies used to lure settlers westward.
Inscription: See scan of verso.
[Gary Edwards, Washington, DC]

Related Objects

Great Sport Shooting Rabbits in Iowa

Artist: William H. Martin (American, 1865–1940) Date: 1909 Medium: Gelatin silver print Accession: 2007.460.7 On view in:Not on view

A Load of Fancy Poultry

Artist: William H. Martin (American, 1865–1940) Date: 1909 Medium: Gelatin silver print Accession: 2007.460.5 On view in:Not on view

Harvesting Wheat in Iowa

Artist: William H. Martin (American, 1865–1940) Date: 1909 Medium: Gelatin silver print Accession: 2007.460.8 On view in:Not on view

A Unique Bungalow

Artist: William H. Martin (American, 1865–1940) Date: 1909 Medium: Gelatin silver print Accession: 2007.460.6 On view in:Not on view