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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 • ROSES BY VINCENT VAN GOGH, 1890

Little Rock Garbage: 1908

Little Rock Garbage: 1908

Little Rock, Arkansas, ca. 1908. "City Hall." With a sampler of interesting signage, and an elaborately rigged street light. 8x10 glass negative. View full size.

 

How Green Was My Lumber?

Several of those light poles/power poles are pretty warped--wonder if they used green lumber and are now paying the price? And the horizontal marks on the bottom of the pole at the corner--from years of people lashing horses to the pole, as on the next pole down?

Still City Hall

The mayor of Little Rock has had an office for 103 years in this building. The garbage sign pictured was on the east side of the building and across the street from what now is the Robinson Auditorium. I watched Jerry Seinfeld's show in that venue two years ago. My wife and I and 2500 other folks had a great time.

Horse Hair

Having lived in an old home that had walls plastered in the early 1900's, I became aware of the use of horse hair to reinforce the plaster. We had removed the build up of old paint and paper from the walls. When it would rain or the weather was damp, the walls would emit an odor of wet animal hair. This persisted until we sealed the walls with an stain sealing undercoat and then painted the walls.

No Parking

I'm curious. Was it against the law for horses to be parked within 15 feet of a fire hydrant?

Horsehair-

was also very handy for keeping horses warm.

100 year old mailbox

I'm amazed that the barrel-top US Mail collection box was around 100+ years ago.

[They were in use as early as 1906.]

The doomed dome

From a 2008 press release of the City of Little Rock, relating to the 100th anniversary of the City Hall building:

By 1955, the Dome which sat on top of City Hall needed severe repairs. The wooden supports and the copper cladding were both in dire shape. Mayor Pratt Remmel set aside money for the dome to be repaired. After defeating Remmel in his bid for a third term, Mayor Woodrow Mann scrapped plans for the repair and, indeed, scrapped the dome.

Following the lead of County Judge Arch Campbell who had removed the tower at the County Courthouse, Mann proposed removal of the dome. He had an informal survey which had three options: repair the dome, replace the dome with an aluminum one, or remove it. This was open to anyone to respond – voting eligibility or Little Rock residency did not matter. By a slim margin, remove the dome won – so the dome was removed.

Plastered

Some things don't change -- the mailbox and garbage companies, but what in the world would you do with the hair? I guess mix it with the plaster for that new wave look. (Pun intended)

[Horsehair was mixed with plaster to reinforce the matrix. - Dave]

Hair?

Ark. Brick and Mfg. Co.
Brick, Lime, Cement.
Hair, Plaster, Sewer-tile, Sand.

Hair?

[Horse hair was used for insulation, and also mixed with plaster as a strengthening agent. - Dave]

Das Hund

And man's best friend keeping an eye on the photgrapher. Does anyone know why the dome was removed? Storm damage? Structural?

Dome De-Dome De-Dome

Completed in 1908. Here it is today, minus the red dome:


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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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