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.
Vintage photos of:
New York municipal lodging house circa 1909. "Fumigating clothing." From the New York Times: "There is a basement and subbasement, the latter containing the boiler and batteries for lighting and heating. The basement contains the shower baths for men and the steam and formaldehyde cleansers, the laundry, and the vacuum sweeping apparatus. ... All applicants for accommodations will be forced to undress before going to their rooms, which they will enter after they have taken a bath and their clothes have been thoroughly fumigated. The arrangements for the latter are most novel. The clothes are placed in small crates or boxes, which are then wheeled into large steam and formaldehyde retorts. When they are finally taken from their place before the men and women to which they belong are ready to leave the house in the morning, they are entirely cleaned." 8x10 glass negative, George Grantham Bain Collection. View full size.
"Bread & Coffee." The new Department of Public Charities municipal lodging house at 432 East 25th Street in New York, which opened in February 1909 after four years of construction. "The first municipal lodging house fitted up by the city was a boat moored at the foot of East 26th Street in 1895, followed a few years after by the building at 398 First Avenue, just north of 23rd Street." (NYT) 8x10 glass negative, George Grantham Bain Collection. View full size.
February 1943. Heil & Co., Milwaukee. "Agnes Cliemka, age 23, husband may be going into the service any day. Agnes used to work in a department store. Checking fuel hose on gasoline trailer before it is turned over to the Air Force." 4x5 Kodachrome transparency by Howard Hollem. View full size.