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Most of the photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs, 20 to 200 megabytes in size) from the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) Many were digitized by LOC contractors using a Sinar studio back. They are adjusted by your webmaster for contrast and color in Photoshop before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here.

 
 
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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • CARNIVAL OF THE ARTS, 1937

Brighton Beach: 1901

Brighton Beach: 1901

Brooklyn, New York, circa 1901. "Brighton Beach." Where, as noted on the sign, "Neither indecent bathing suits nor immodest deportment will be tolerated." 8x10 inch dry plate glass negative, Detroit Publishing Company. View full size.

 

Many Brightons

I think every English-speaking nation must have a Brighton Beach. We have at least one here in Oz and I know that England has one.

The Deportment Department

The fellow second-right from the "no tolerance" sign appears at-the-ready to detain anyone even CONTEMPLATING an act immodest or indecent!

Bronzed Lifeguard

Seems like our capped guardian of the water is popular with the crowd. On the left side near pole.

I wouldn't mind an hour or two relaxing in those suspended beach chairs. I suspect my drink and hotdog would be found lying in the sand when I woke up.

Re: Young boy

To me it looks like he is holding a hot-dog purchased at the concession stand in the lower right.

Little Odessa

In order for the decency caveat to work today it would have to be written in Russian as well.

Parkway Baths

A postcard view of the Parkway Baths. Lost in 1917 in one of the great fires that swept the New York City beaches in that era.

Young boy

Is that young boy in the middle front taking a picture of the portrait with his cell phone?

Good Behaviour

I love the way such things were worded then and "immodest deportment will not be tolerated," well, if only that were so today!

God, I love this one!

I really love this old beach photos, and this one in particular is awesome!
Does anybody know what is that picture in the near right?
Oh! There's another one in the middle.
I'll take my time to enjoy all and every detail, it's full of them.

The framed photos(?)

Does anyone have an explanation for what looks like framed photos on the easels in the foreground?? Perhaps some type of memorial??

[They're advertisements for the souvenir portrait studios that lined boardwalks of the era, or one of their roving photographers. - Dave]

Complete coverage

Nothing says let's head to the beach like a black wool suit, starched shirt, tie and bowler. Heaven forbid that you expose an earlobe to the opposite sex!

 
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Shorpy.com | History in HD is a vintage photo blog featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1950s. The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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