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Once Upon a Playground

A Celebration of Classic American Playgrounds, 1920–1975

Before today’s safety-minded structures of wood and plastic, America’s playgrounds were full of tottering seesaws, dizzying merry-go-rounds, and towering metal slides. Documenting the evolution of American playgrounds between 1920 and 1975, Once Upon a Playground is a visual tribute to these iconic structures, celebrating their place in our culture and the collective memories of generations. In it, contemporary photos of vintage pieces of playground equipment are juxtaposed with images of the very same pieces as they were shown in classic catalogs, postcards, and photographs. The result is a haunting time capsule showing a rapidly vanishing part of our country’s cultural heritage. Whatever the playgrounds of your childhood looked like, the gorgeous photographs in this book will transport you back in time and remind you of just how important play can really be.

188 pages | 8 1/2 x 11

Art: Photography

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Table of Contents

Foreword, by Susan G. Solomon • Introduction • 1920s & 1930s • 1940s & 1950s • 1960s & 1970s • Afterword, by Darell Hammond • Acknowledgments • Photo Locations • Historical Image Credits

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