Material History of American Religion Project

Picturing Faith: Religious America in Government Photography, 1935 - 1943

Boy Scouts
John Collier, Jr.
January 1943
Peñasco, New Mexico

John Collier, Jr. spent over two months photographing a series of villages in New Mexico. In the same spirit as Gordon Parks’ series on Ella Watson, Collier followed the daily activities of one person: Father Walter Cassidy, the parish priest of Peñasco. Born in New Mexico and bi-lingual, Father Cassidy was highly involved in the day-to-day lives of his congregation. In this photograph, he leads the boys in the Boy Scout pledge after blessing their merit badges.

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