Friday, January 22, 2010
Small Towns in Mississippi: Hermanville
Hermanville is a small agricultural town about six miles east of Port Gibson on MS Highway 18. The town was probably more prosperous in the past, but not much is happening here now. People hang around, stores are closed, and the shopette sells cigs and beer coolers. The surrounding area has cotton and soybean fields and timber. What can be done to revive towns like this? We can send a trillion Dollars to bail out the politically-connected investment banks in New York but yet allow small towns to rot away?
A friend and I stopped to take photographs. The locals were a bit curious and friendly. They may not get many tourists here.
Drive west on Highway 80 towards Port Gibson and you come to "The Store," a classic Mississippi juke joint. We stopped to photograph. The proprietor came by in a pickup truck full of little kids. She was very nice and said she was trying to make a living and did not allow any violence or drugs in her place. She invited us to come by some Friday night.
I took the color photographs with a Sony DSC-W7 digital camera. And I exposed the black and white frames on Kodak Panatomic-X fine-grain film using a Fuji GW690II 6x9 camera. I developed it in Rodinol 1:50. The classic thin-emulsion Panatomic-X is my all-time favorite film. Used carefully, it shows astonishing detail. I still have plenty in the freezer and plan to keep using it.