Boing Boing.net 
Monday 27th July, 2009
Carrie McLaren is a guest blogger at Boing Boing and coauthor of Ad Nauseam: A Survivor’s Guide to American Consumer Culture . She lives in Brooklyn, the former home of her now defunct Stay Free! magazine .
Should you ever care to delve into America’s history with eugenics, the Image Archive on the American Eugenics Movement  is a handy thing indeed. It’s hard to believe eugenics was as popular here as it in fact was without seeing the visual evidence. The images here include Fitter Family contests , where white Americans competed at state fairs–much like cattle–to determine who had the best breeding. (Make sure to check out this traveling exhibit .) Also, lots of documents and flyers linking criminality  to immigrants  and heredity . (Oh, the irony of using the swastika  to indicate the racial inferiority of Germans!) The interface is pretty clunky but it’s worth pecking around.
For background on the early 20th century American eugenics movement, you could do worse than my interview with historian Daniel Kelves .