September 2001 Photo Essay

Like most citizens of the United States of America (at least, of those over the age of about 25), I have some fairly specific memories of where I was on September 11, 2001.  Like many tragedies, the details stick in our minds, cemented by the emotions that we felt as we learned more details from the news.

However, in the weeks after 9/11/2001, I noticed something: The ever-present signs that advertise the latest specials and sales at local businesses started to take on a different tone.  Rather than just selling hamburgers and automobiles, there was a specific trend towards faith and patriotism.  So, with the help of a friend or two, my wife and I went out to document some of these signs with a little 35mm camera.  This photoessay is a collection of some of those pictures.

While the images may not have the polish of modern digital prints, they offer a reminder that we – as a country – are at our best when we are aligned with the God, as the source of truth and good.  (Click on any of the collages to see more details of the images that they contain.)

As we looked for “signs of the times”, so to speak, the most common message was, “God Bless America”.

Examples of patriotism abounded, as well.

Reminders of unity and inspiration could be found in various signs.

Some signs called Americans to prayer.

Other signs called Americans to take specific actions to help their fellow citizens.

Finally, I would be remiss if I didn’t point out that our requests of “God Bless America” should be accompanied with actions that show that “America Blesses God”.  While I can’t change an entire country on my own, I hope that you will join me in thanking God for His blessings to our country – even when we probably don’t deserve it.

Thank you for sharing in these memories with me, whether you experienced it yourself, or have only learned about this event from others.  Let me know if you have any questions or comments.

A couple of disclaimers:

  • These pictures were taken with a 35mm camera (and probably not the best one that was available at the time), and the prints were scanned in years later.  As a result, they may lack some of the polish of modern digital photography.
  • No endorsement or commentary is made about the respective business displaying these signs – in fact, some of them probably aren’t even around, anymore.  But, this was what the camera found that month.

3 thoughts on “September 2001 Photo Essay”

    1. Thank you for sharing. Back in 2001, the signs promised, “We will never forget”. However, as with our spiritual journey, our memories and our promises can fade if we don’t keep reminders in front of us.


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