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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.

 
 
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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • THE NEW ZEALAND FOREST, c. 1950

Old New Stock: 1920

Old New Stock: 1920

Washington, D.C., circa 1920. "Universal Auto Co., interior." The parts of old, beset by mold. National Photo Co. Collection glass negative. View full size.

 

Violet Ray Auto Lens


Commercial America, July, 1920.

The Daylight Lens

The Violet-Ray Lens, designed to lessen the glare and thus make night driving safer, is manufactured by the L. E. Smith Glass Company, Mount Pleasant, Pennsylvania.

The ordinary lens produces a shaft of blinding light caused by its glaring red and yellow rays and is the source of a great many night accidents. Exhaustive laboratory experiments and tests with the constituents of light and its projection have resulted in the development of a steel blue glass, which, by eliminating the glare of red and yellow rays and retaining the full power of light, produces in effect an artificial daylight. The danger of night driving is thus greatly minimized.

The Violet-Ray lens not only lights the road directly ahead but diffuses the light equally on either side and relieves the driver of a great deal of eye strain. It is in effect a good imitation of daylight. The lens is made in all sizes and is easy to install.


The Blue Lens with Black Visor

Upgrade

Yes, I'd like a set of platinum spark plugs for my Model A please.

Mazda Lights on the Counter

Didn't realize they had Mazdas back then much less make special lights just for them!

If I had known eBay was down the road

When I was restoring my Ford '33 three-window coupe many years ago, a search for parts brought me to the attic of an old Ford dealership in Bedford, Pa., where I saw shelves full of parts as in this photo. But all I wanted was a grille, which I bought for $5, shiny and still wrapped with twine in heavy brown paper from the factory. Next to it were a couple of the banjo spoke steering wheels used on mid-1930s Fords. Oh, if only!

Hi,

I'd like one of those klaxon (auuuugah) horns on the top shelf please.

Theft Proof

In the bottom of the display cabinet at left, an accessory locking steering wheel, or shall I say an *unlocking* steering wheel-- a turn of the key in the spoke, and the wheel spins freely on its hub-- making the car difficult for a would-be thief to control.

On top of the box of Eveready-Mazda lamps, another form of theft-deterrent: A wheel lock that wraps around a narrow tire and through the wooden spokes, hobbling the car similar to today's Denver Boot.

On the counter behind the books on the desk, Edison-Mazda lamps, to go with the Evereadys. Also a nifty display of Klaxon horns, both hand-powered and electric, with a windshield-post-mounted spotlight with integral convex rear-view mirror, and a MotoMeter (radiator cap with a built-in thermometer visible from the driver's seat).

The horns on the top shelf next to the Violet-Ray headlight lenses are Stewart brand, later part of Stewart-Warner of gauge and fuel-pump renown.

The Globe Steel Boxes on the shelf are running-board-mounted tool boxes, ubiquitous on Model-T Fords, though not limited to them.

A wonderful photo for us gearheads, mold or no.

New and Old

Everything for your Model-T and your Miata.

Whitewall Attire

Even in an auto parts store, of all places. Imagine going into an Autozone and seeing the help there in vests, starched collars and ties.

But the clerks are bold

Or so I'm told.

Manny Moe & Jack

There's a Steering Wheel for the wreck seen here:
http://www.shorpy.com/node/10991

"Once you're inside
they won't take you for a ride
they got a good deal for you
and your automobile.
for the right price
they will sell you fuzzy dice,
and leather hand grips for
your steering whee-al
Manny Moe & Jack".

From The Dickies song, Manny Moe & Jack.

 
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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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