Greetings Cosmic Americans!
Pinterest, for those of you a little late to the game (as I was, until yesterday), is a pinboard photo-sharing social media website. It has been around since 2010 - at first in closed-beta developmental stages and then it picked up steam with the public in August 2011.
The idea is a simple one - as you wander through the seemingly infinite universe of the Internet, you can "pin" images that strike your fancy to your very own virtual pinboard. Others can follow you (and you can follow others) and pin and repin your images. Such images are tracked back to their originating websites.
What a fascinating concept - and possibly an exercise in self indulgence. I mean, why would anybody care what I or anyone else thinks is interesting? But that's just it...it seems people do care. In less than 24 hours since I launched the Cosmic America pinboard - with its paltry number of images - I have already had several "repins" of some very (in my opinion) evocative Civil War images. I have repinned others' vacation shots of monuments, battlefields, etc.
And thus I consider this an experiment in aggregate imagery narrative. I will keep most of my non-historical interests to myself...or at least on Facebook - and use Pinterest to combine groups of images together thematically...arranged in roughly chronological order. Perhaps, this exercise will enhance my efforts to bridge the gulf between academia and an informed public. Bringing the Civil War world closer together, as it were.
At the very least - within a few weeks, I should have cataloged a healthy dose of Civil War shots - some you may be familiar with, others of the more rare variety. You will no doubt find perusing them useful.