By William Carter

Photographer, Author, Jazz Musician

Signs of the Times

with 2 comments

America’s Corn Belt Speaks for Itself

Digging deep in my files as part of an ongoing effort to gather a legacy of vintage prints, I stumbled on some unpublished treasures. Forty years ago I photographed these signs along the back roads of Indiana, Illinois and neighboring states while working on my second book, Middle West Country (Houghton Mifflin, 1975).

Now the signs are mostly gone — but not the inherent modesty, chuckling humor, and serious spirit of America’s heartland.

Photographs © William Carter 1972, 2010

Sign: Pickneyville Home Style Beans





Oak Ridge Friends Church

Church Float


Annamae Wife

Churchyard, Henry Cty Ill, Sharon

Copyright statement: William Carter papers, © Stanford University Libraries. Click here for a detailed usage guide.


Written by bywilliamcarter

June 10, 2017 at 12:00 pm

2 Responses

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  1. […] unearthing vintage Midwestern signs (see earlier blog, “America’s Corn Belt Speaks for Itself“), I found earlier traces of homespun eloquence in the Far West.  Most of the photographs […]


  2. bill what, no burma shave signs? i loved these photos. thanks and bests jon r


    jon randal

    August 25, 2012 at 11:03 am

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