Friday, June 11, 2010

Historical Breastfeeding Photo: The Cornstalk Madonna

My sister sent me another historical breastfeeding image.

This photo was taken by Orin Crooker 94 years ago, on May 15th, 1916. The mother is sitting on a wooden box next to cornstalks, feeding her child on a farm in Hoopeston, Illinois.

I tried to find more info about the photographer and stumbled across this entry in the August 1922 issue of Farm Mechanics, where he described how a local farmer was using electric power on his farm. I could not find any information as to whether Orin Crooker was a farmer or reporter or something else... So I can't know who this woman was or what the circumstances surrounding this photo were. But I love that the baby is so tuckered out that he's falling asleep on the job. :) And that the mother is peacefully letting him sleep while she enjoys looking at him. So lovely! And such a contrast to the fast-paced, sterile, convenience-oriented, expensive, powder-measuring, bottle-warming culture of formula that most American mothers participate in these days. What a sad loss.

You can find this photo at the Library of Congress website at this URL:

No comments: