The Shorpy Archive
 
6000+ fine-art prints suitable for framing. Desk-size to sofa-size and larger, on archival paper or canvas.
 
Join and Share

 
Social Shorpy

To love him is to like him. Our goal: 100k "likes":

 
Syndicate content
Syndicate content
Syndicate content
Daily e-mail updates:

 
 
 
 
Member Photos


Photos submitted by Shorpy members.

 
Colorized Photos


Colorized photos submitted by members.

 
About the Photos

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.

 
 
JUMP TO PAGE   100  >  200  >  300  >  400  >  500  >  600
VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • EAT MORE FISH, 1917

Whiskey Wine Brandy Gin: 1939

Whiskey Wine Brandy Gin: 1939

September 1939. "Liquor store in Gateway District, Minneapolis." 35mm negative by John Vachon for the Farm Security Administration. View full size.

 

Ignored

The antennaless car behind the Mercury is a 1939 Chevrolet that has an accessory hood ornament.

This was the last year that you could obtain a rear mounted spare tire on a Chevy until the availability of "continental kits" in the 1950s. Chevrolet discontinued these last car models without modern trunks early in the model year.

Motorola Antenna

Here's another, more elaborate version of the antenna on a '38 Plymouth in a photo taken in summer 2010.

32 Washington Avenue

The Minnesota Historical Society has Hughes Drugs at 32 Washington Avenue South. It was housed in a block of buildings which contained several addresses on the east side of Washington.

[The address here is, as we can see, 38. Stores move, or can have more than one location. - Dave]

re: Motorola

Thank you! I posted the photos on a classic car forum and someone speculated that it might be a Motorola, but I wasn't able to find anything on it myself.

Motorola

The antenna:

Positively Second Street

As best as I can tell, these addresses were on the northeast side of South Second Street (a block south of the Great Northern Railway station, which was at the foot of Hennepin Avenue). Vachon, a St. Paul native, would have known the area well. In the 1950s, as scorched-earth urban renewal was on its way for the Gateway, young University of Minnesota sociology students, led by Theodore Caplow, conducted groundbreaking field research in this area on the thousands who called the Gateway's cage hotels, missions and alleys their home. This spot is now on Gateway Greenway, a one-block auto-free path.

Merc gizmo found

I finally found a match for the "gizmo" on the Mercury's roof. It is indeed a radio antenna, and here's another one on a 1939 Lincoln Zephyr. Maybe it was a Ford product. What an incredibly cool thing.

[I just knew TT would find this. Several commenters opined the gizmo was a "scratch on the negative" (which would have been black lines, not white) or part of the sign behind the car. - Dave]

Chicago Service

The regular daily train between Minneapolis and Chicago ran to a station just along here, which may be the origin of the cafeteria's name.

Chicago Service

Does the cafe feature surly waiters? Or is that called "New York service"?

"Chicago Service"

What is it?

Letters

Some signpainter was in business for a while after that job!

September 1939

It was the worst month in modern history of my country (Poland). However, nice to see such a pretty place, at the same time, but other side of the ocean. And this car, I always thaught, that body is postwar style. Not just a while before the WW II.

Drugs, trusses, rubber goods

One-stop shopping!

Hmm

I wonder what they sell at this store? I'm kidding! Great photo -- I especially like seeing the film perforations.

Handsome

I can see where my PV 544 got his good looks. This could be the Toad's grandfather.

Drugs, Booze ...

What! No gambling? At least you can buy a truss. Today this enterprise would be run by the Government.

Blimey!

Whiskey, wine, brandy, trusses, rubber goods AND cut-price drugs?

Merc gizmo

So what is this? I speculated that it was a flashy antenna, but a cursory Google search didn't come up with anything like it. Merely decorative? Whatever, I love it.

Merc

Brand spankin' new '39 Mercury sitting front and center. First year for the new marque. 1939-2011 RIP

 
THE 100-YEAR-OLD PHOTO BLOG
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.

Syndicate content RSS | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Photo Use | © 2014 Shorpy Inc.