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America In Miniature

Posted on 05/25/2018 by Nathan Lewis in New Content Releases

Fort Frederick State Park Annapolis MD, This fort served as Maryland’s frontier defense during the French and Indian War.

Today, we are excited to announce that nearly 250,000 aerial photos of Maryland are now available to search and view online. Maryland is often referred to as “Little America” and a great deal of our early history as a nation took place right here. In 1696 the King Williams School opened which was the first school in the United States. During revolutionary times Rockville was known as “Hungerford’s Tavern” the name of its most familiar landmark. One of the first calls to freedom from British rule was heard at the tavern in 1774. Maryland is one of two states which gave up some of its lands to help build the nation’s capital of Washington, D.C in 1790. Throughout the years there were a plethora of stories that directly contributed to forging a nation free from British rule. This is one of my favorites, On the morning of August 10th, 1813 residents of Saint Michaels having been forewarned of a British attack, hoisted lanterns to the masts of ships and in the tops of the trees. The height of light caused cannons to overshoot the town. This first known “blackout” was effective and only one house was struck and is now known as the “Cannonball House.” One year later America’s national anthem was written by Francis Scott Key. It is believed Key wrote the anthem on September 14th, 1814 while watching the bombardment of Fort McHenry in Baltimore Harbor.

Maryland’s little-known nickname, “America in Miniature” comes from its agriculture being as diverse as that of the nation itself. As the state has grown in population, traditional dairy, grain, and livestock production, while still active, have given way to products more directly related to consumers. Poultry, nursery and turf production, seafood, dairy, corn, soybeans, racing and pleasure horse industries now dominate Maryland agriculture. 40% of its land is in agriculture covering over 2 million acres. This area is split into nearly 13,000 farms averaging about 160 acres each. Approximately 350,000 people, including nearly 6,000 full-time farmers, are employed in some aspect of agriculture, making it the largest commercial industry in Maryland. This agricultural industry contributes more than $17 billion in revenue annually. Many of these farms, home, and businesses that have contributed so much to Marylands economy and culture have been preserved in our collection.

We invite you to come and take a look these homes and farms in our nearly 250,000 aerial photos of this great state. Home is the place where you became you. Find your way back!

The Old Dominion

Posted on 04/06/2018 by Nathan Lewis in New Content Releases

The 1987 classic film “Dirty Dancing” was filmed almost entirely at the Mountain Lake Lodge in Pembroke, Virginia

Today, we are excited to announce that over 745,000 aerial photos of Virginia are now available to search and view online. Virginia is known as “the birthplace of a nation” nicknamed “Old Dominion”. It was named for England’s “Virgin Queen,” Elizabeth I. Virginia was the 10th state added to the union and has a long history. Contrary to the common story of the famous dinner with the pilgrims, the first Thanksgiving actually took place here in 1619. With ocean access and a centralized location, almost dividing north from south, Virginia has seen the worst of the wars in our country. Patrick Henry made his “Give me Liberty or Give me Death” speech in St. John’s Church in Richmond. Eight years later The American Revolution ended with the surrender of Cornwallis in Yorktown. During the Civil war, Virginia was the site of more Civil War battles than any other state, with more than 120 major battles being fought here. That’s an average of one major battle every 12 days. Today Virginia is the “Internet Capital” with estimates that 50 to 70 percent of all Internet traffic flows through data centers located in Northern Virginia. In fact, the images you see at Vintage Aerial are served from Virginia within Amazon’s data centers there.

Jamestown, the first of the original 13 Colonies was founded for the purpose of silk cultivation. After blight fungus destroyed the mulberry trees sericulturist planted tobacco as a cash crop. Today agriculture is Virginia’s largest industry by far! The industry has an economic impact of $55 billion annually. This agricultural production is one of the most diverse in the nation. Many of Virginia’s commodities and products rank in the top 10 among all U.S. states. These include tobacco, apples, grapes, peanuts, tomatoes, and cotton. Virginia has 44,800 farms with an average size of 181 acres. Farms cover 8.1 million acres about 32 percent of Virginia’s total land area. Amazingly, Nearly 90 percent of Virginia farms are owned and operated by individuals or families. 17% of these primary farm operators are female. With this long history of family-run farms, we hope to have preserved this history and the memories attached to them in our collection.

We invite you to come and take a look these homes and farms in our over 745,000 aerial photos of this great state. Home is the place where you became you. Find your way back today!

The Meeting Place

Posted on 01/12/2018 by Nathan Lewis in New Content Releases

Fort Loudoun, Built by the British in 1756 during the French and Indian War

Today, we are excited to announce that over 323,000 aerial photos of Tennessee are now available to search and view online. The name “Tennessee” originated from the old Yuchi Indian word, “Tana-see,” meaning “The Meeting Place.” Tennessee is nicknamed “The Volunteer State”€ which it won during the War of 1812 when volunteer soldiers from Tennessee displayed great valor in the Battle of New Orleans. There is a very old and rich history here, far too much to cover in this short blog. The city of Bristol is known as the birthplace of Country Music and if you listen to Country then you know Nashville. Nashville’s Grand Ole Opry is the longest continuously running live radio program in the world. It has broadcast every Friday and Saturday night since 1925. Nashville is home to 341 recording studios and nearly 40 percent of the entire music industry is concentrated in Los Angeles, New York, and Nashville. The music made in Nashville contributes a whopping $9.7 billion within the Nashville metropolitan area.

Another major stop in Tennessee is the city of Memphis. Elvis Presley’s home called Graceland is located here and is the second most visited house in the country. Every year I take a short road trip and the last two years were Nashville and Memphis. In Memphis, we enjoyed the nightlife on Beale Street and ate some of the best BBQ I have ever had at Central BBQ. We took the Gibson Guitar Factory tour where they still hand make each guitar just as they did when they first started, this was an amazing experience.

While most commonly known for its music and history Tennessee has a strong backbone in agriculture. Tennessee farming is far from the mule-and-plow stereotype of the past. By keeping up with the technological times and embracing sustainability, agriculture and forestry have remained vital sectors in the Volunteer State, contributing $74.8 billion to Tennessee’s economy each year. Leading agricultural commodities are cattle and calves, broilers and milk, and also soybeans, corn, hay, wheat, cotton, and tobacco. With just over 67,300 farms spread across 9 million acres of land Tennessee contains many prosperous traditional farming operations. More than 349,000 Tennesseans are employed in both the agricultural and forestry industries. We invite you to come and take a look these homes and farms in our over 323,000 aerial photos of this great state. Home is the place where you became you. Find your way back today!

The Old North State

Posted on 10/06/2017 by Nathan Lewis in New Content Releases

Wright Brothers National Memorial at Kitty Hawk

Today, we are very thrilled to announce that over 900,000 aerial photos of North Carolina are now available to search and view online. North Carolina is the 29th largest state with 48,718 square miles of land. There are 1,500 lakes of 10 acres or more and 37,000 miles of freshwater streams. Roughly 8.1 million people live in the Tar Heel State. Tar Heel? You might be asking what is a Tar Heel and how is that the UNC mascot? The origin of this nickname is mysterious, it supposedly came from the days when NC produced a lot of tar, and someone saw a set of footprints made by someone who had stepped in the tar. North Caroline has a very old and rich history, my personal experience with this was a family trip to the Biltmore Estate when I was young. The Biltmore Estate in Ashville is America’s largest home and includes a 255-room chateau, an award-winning winery, and extensive gardens. I did not get to enjoy the wine but I did love the underground indoor bowling alley.

I feel I am not doing The Old North State justice without at least some key points form it’s very significant American history. The first English colony in America was located on Roanoke Island. Walter Raleigh founded it. The colony mysteriously vanished with no trace except for the word “Croatoan” scrawled on a nearby tree. Many people believe that North Carolina was the first state to declare independence from England with the Mecklenburg Declaration of 1775. North Carolina is the 12th state to ratify the United States Constitution on, Nov. 21st, 1789. In 1903 the Wright Brothers made the first successful powered flight by man at Kill Devil Hill near Kitty Hawk. The Wright Memorial at Kitty Hawks now commemorates their achievement. This is also how the state claimed its slogan “First in Flight”. Finally, Babe Ruth hit his first home run in Fayetteville on March 7, 1914.

North Carolina is one of the most diversified agriculture states in the nation. The state’s 50,200 farmers grow over 80 different commodities, utilizing 8.4 million of the state’s 31 million acres. The average farm size is 168 acres and North Carolina leads the nation in furniture, tobacco, sweet potato, brick, and textile production. The state ranks seventh nationally in farm profits with a net farm income of over $2.8 billion. With over 900,000 photos of these rural farms, we hope to preserve and share this history with you. Hopefully, you will find a piece of your history here too.

New York, The Untold Story

Posted on 07/07/2017 by Nathan Lewis in New Content Releases

Family farm in Cortland County, just north of Pitcher NY

Today, we are excited to announce that over 400,000 aerial photos of New York are now available to view online. When I think of New York mainly what comes to mind is all the sights and attractions of New York City itself. The City of New York is one of the main cultural centers of the world with a little over 8 million people speaking over 800 languages. It has the Empire State Building, The Statue of Liberty, Wall Street, and Central Park just to name a few of the many attractions. All that the City of New York has to offer is just a small part, roughly 0.6% of the total area of New York. The real story and what keeps New York alive is its agriculture.

New York is a leading agricultural state, worth $6.36 billion in 2015. It is ranked number one in the production of Yogurt, Cottage Cheese, and Sour Cream as well as number two in Apples, Maple Syrup, and Pumpkins. Dairying is New York’s most important farming activity with over 18,000 cattle farms. Milk sales account for 50% of the total agricultural receipts. The oldest cattle ranch in the US was started in 1747 at Montauk on Long Island. About 23% of New York State’s land area, or 7 million acres, is farmland. This Industry has nearly 36,000 family farms producing some of the world’s best food. With over 400,000 images now available we hope to share this untold story of New York through our images and your stories connected to them. We hope you come take a look and experience New York’s rich rural history.