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    The History Of Photography Doesn’t Quite Click

    | PA, USA | Family & Kids, History, School

    (I have a paid internship at a small, obscure history museum and battlefield. This site is so unknown that most locals don’t even know what war was fought here. A visitor comes in with her bored-looking teenage daughter.)

    Visitor: “Hi! My daughter’s history teacher gave her an assignment to come to a local historical site, and we thought we’d come here!”

    Me: “Great! It’ll be $5 a piece.”

    Visitor: “So, this is a Civil War battlefield, right?”

    Me: “Actually this battlefield was a part of Pontiac’s Rebellion, a Native American uprising that occurred in 1763, after the French and Indian War. If you follow me, I’ll take you back to our 13-minute video about the battle, and Pontiac’s Rebellion. It’s a great synopsis of the history surrounding the museum.”

    Visitor: “Wonderful!”

    (Our theater area is located at the very back of the exhibit, in an area that has blown-up photos of our annual battle re-enactments. I turn the video on.)

    Me: “I will be happy to answer any questions at the end of the video.”

    (At the end of the video, the visitor starts pointing at the re-enactment photos on the walls.)

    Visitor: “So, these photos are from the actual battle?”

    (The visitor’s daughter starts laughing.)

    Me: “These are actually from our annual battle re-enactment held every summer.”

    Visitor: “Where are the photos from the battle?”

    Me: “Photography would not be invented for about another 80 years or so. Actually the first American war with any photographs was the American Civil War.”

    Visitor: “Oh. When was the Civil War?”

    Me: “1861-1865.”

    Visitor: “When was this [battlefield’s] war?”

    Me: “1763.”

    Visitor: “So, what war was this?”

    Me: “The French and Indian War.”

    Visitor: “So, how long was this war before the Civil War?”

    Me: *facepalm*