50 Years Ago and 50 Years from Now

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What will life be like 50 years from now? I don’t know and you don’t know, but God does know. Worrying about the future is easy, but trusting God with it is much easier because, well, He’s God and He loves us and He’s invited us to trust Him.

Yesterday I decided to search for pictures that show what life was like 50 years ago. The folks in those pictures didn’t know what life would be like right now, but the ones who trusted God in the way that He offers for us to trust Him were the ones who were living in peace then, in spite of what was going on around them.

All of the photos printed here are by Thomas O’Halloran. O’Halloran was a native of Washington, D.C. He served in the Army Air Force in Europe during World War II. After the war, he worked at a portrait studio before becoming a photographer for U.S. News & World Report. He retired as their chief photographer after 35 years. O’Halloran and his wife were married for 57 years. They had four children. He was a longtime member of St. Mark the Evangelist Church in Hyattsville, Maryland.

O’Halloran left a photographic record of life in the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s. Many are part of the Library of Congress’ digital prints and photographs division. Here is a peek into what he saw through his camera lens in 1971.

Children play at a day care center.

A man stands in the stacks of the U.S. Patent Office.

Young men register for the draft.

Young people protest the Vietnam War.

An Army Reserve unit participates in weekend training in Virginia.

Veterans get help at a veterans assistance office.

A consumer price agent checks prices at a grocery store.

A graphic artist prepares a consumer price index chart — with a T-square and triangles!

Commuters experience rush hour.

Students register for college classes at the University of Maryland.

Workers monitor a nuclear power plant.

A member of the Apollo 14 crew walks on the moon.

Visitors view an African elephant in the rotunda of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History.

A farmer works on his farm in Illinois.

Our soul waits for the Lord;
He is our help and our shield.
For our heart rejoices in Him,
Because we trust in His holy name.
Let Your favor, Lord, be upon us,
Just as we have waited for You.
Psalm 33:20-22

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  1. How nice to get such a nice reminder and happy thought during my busy day. i sorely needed that. thanks and God bless.