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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 • EAT MORE FISH, 1917

Campbell's Empire: 1904

Campbell's Empire: 1904

Circa 1904. "Empire Theater, Detroit." Valet parking for bicycle patrons! 8x10 inch dry plate glass negative, Detroit Publishing Company. View full size.

 

Only 17 years old

and already sort of run-down and "old" looking.

Follow-up info

After my previous post I did some googling and according to this website- http://www.jankaulins.com/p691.html this theater didn't even open until 1910 so somebody's dates are off. And that "provocative" picture I was asking about is apparently two wrestlers- not what I first thought.

[You're confusing the Woodward and Lafayette Avenue addresses. Before the Empire opened on Woodward in 1910 it was at 15 Lafayette -- the building shown in our photo. Listed as being there in the 1897 Polk business directory. Check the storefront address numbers seen in the photo. The theater is also shown at far right in this Shorpy post. The web page you cited is also mixed up about the two addresses, as well as the date of the photo. This image appeared in the 1906 Detroit Publishing catalog. The "Saturday June 4" on the handbill in the photo dates the poster to 1904. - Dave]

[addendum: Thanks for the clarification. And Dave, I'll always take your info over anybody's else! ;-)]

Provocative poster

The picture on that left F.D. Cutcher poster looks pretty provocative. Can we have a close-up?

[Racy wrestlers. - Dave]

These two children?

Given the subject of the photo, perhaps Ice gang is referring to these two children:

Those children

One is cleverly disguised as a middle-aged guy, the other as a bicycle.

The two children.

I'm confused. What two children.

The Address

15 Lafayette Avenue.

White Out

It looks as though somebody "erased" the building behind the clock tower on the right. Or am I misinterpreting something.

[You are correct. The sky has been masked out. - Dave]

Look, Up in the Sky!

It's a bad Photoshop job!

All I see

are two CHILDREN in destitute times and the feeling is the same as looking at photos of the poor children of Oklahomans heading to California with flour sack skirts and also shoeless, I hope all these helpless children found a touch of a better life, let's hope.

[What an interesting interpretation. - Dave]

 
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