Why I Love My Job: Reason Number One

Why is my job so interesting? Because of things like this:

Commencement 1988 1990

What’s so interesting about this? Nothing, really, about the content of the image itself. I came across it while looking through a box jammed full of commencement photos, all slides, that we organized by year and put into transparent sleeves. I’d never looked at them intently before but since Alex Dessler gave me that loupe a few weeks ago I’ve been on a slide viewing binge. What slowly dawned on me as I made my way through the box was that although the slides were all stamped by year, almost all of them were the same two years. Then I found this one and I had to sit back and laugh:

Commencement 1988 1990 2

It looks like there are about six or seven different commencements that are stamped either “1990” or “1992-93.” I find this completely hilarious and I look forward with some glee to figuring out which are which. I guarantee you that by the time this is over I will know precisely how long George Rupp’s hair was every May. I’m deeply grateful to my friend Tommy LaVergne for this opportunity.

Bonus: P1080753

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11 Responses to Why I Love My Job: Reason Number One

  1. Molly Hubbard says:

    You are SO cool. Xo Molly

    Sent from my iPad

  2. Many slide mounts are stamped with the month and year they were processed. This is an inkless indentation, so I usually need to sidelight it with a penlight. I’ve been using these to date my Dad’s slides that I’ve been scanning.

    Kodak-processed slides are always stamped, starting in the late 50’s (at least 1958). Some other processors did not stamp them. This photo was earlier, so I asked my mom about the kittens.


  3. Melissa Kean says:

    What a stunning photograph.

    Thanks for the tip on the dates. I’ll check first thing in the morning.

  4. Grungy says:

    Tommy’s stamp doesn’t have a changeable year field.
    Or it didn’t back then…

  5. Tommy LaVergne says:

    Why do you think I gave all of them to you? Heck, I can’t even remember when they were taken. We never had enough budget to buy a new stamp! Eventually, you’re going to run across a few that just have my name on them. I thoughtfully shaved the date off with a razor blade. If the slides are Kodachrome, they should have an indented date pressed into the cardboard border. That date will always be correct. (Process date at least). Always add about 2 days to the Kodachrome as we had to ship that to Dallas for processing!

  6. Tommy LaVergne says:

    When you look closely at the 2nd photo, you can see pressed into the cardboard, May ’88! This is a Kodachrome slide. Should be yellow on the other side.

  7. Pingback: Humanities Building Groundbreaking, With a Bit of Self-Indulgence | Rice History Corner

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