Men eating bananas outside the store

What it is:

Snapshot measuring 4.5 x 3.5 inches, with the remnants of album mounts in the corners.

What I know about it:

Photo was printed by Day and Night Studio of Sedalia, Missouri.  Otherwise undated and unidentified.


I keep staring at this photo, wondering what the story is.  Is this the sort of general store where people gathered to socialize, or were these guys just passing by?  Did they all need a snack and bananas happened to be on sale?  And what person felt that this moment needed to be documented with a photo?  And mounted for posterity in an album?  Who on earth would come upon this photo down the road and find it interesting?  Oh, well, I guess that would be me.  🙂

6 comments on “Men eating bananas outside the store”

  1. I wonder who was it with the camera who took this? It’s just a snapshot, so someone who loved photography. I feel a kindred spirit with the photographer. Love the guy with the crossed legs. Great image to look at later. Just a simple one that of course later on is very appreciated by those who don’t know a thing about it. 🙂

  2. I’m inclined to see a private joke in this since the men are so well dressed and the store so run down. “See how the mighty have fallen”? Anyway, it’s fascinating.

    • Agreed, in the right frame of mind there is something almost arch about this pose. I’ve even wondered if this might not be the back of the store, given how shabby it is, and given the lack of signage. Or if I’m mistaken in thinking it’s even a store at all.

  3. We take the availability of fruit for granted today. Depending on how long ago this picture was taken and how rural the setting, bananas may have been a relatively rare item worthy of a picture.

    • Something along those lines crossed my mind as I was posting this, and I did a quick internet search on that topic. I thought I saw something that said that the availability of bananas in the U.S. really took off in the 1920s and ’30s, which I think is around the time of this photo, though now I can’t find that reference. Regardless, I’m sure you’re right that bananas would have been a more unusual treat then than they are now.

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