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Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.

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[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Pony Boys: 1905

Pony Boys: 1905

The Jersey Shore circa 1905. "Ponies on the beach -- Atlantic City." In the distance, the Steeplechase and Steel piers. 8x10 glass negative. View full size.

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Time of Day, Year.

Is it morning or afternoon?? In summertime, the sun sets such that shadows grow long toward the ocean. As autumn nears, the setting sun seems to almost set in the south on certain beaches in New Jersey, turning the shadows north toward Brigantine. If I had to guess, and judging by the heavier coats worn by four of the boys, the picture was taken on a late afternoon in October. Not a tourist in sight.

Messy Beaches

As if the beaches are not clean enough, you need to have horses walking around on them all day. It must have been like a minefield out there. This was not a case of the good old days.

My guess isn't that these

My guess isn't that these kids are out for a fun morning. It's more likely that they hired the ponies out, taking paying passengers for rides on the beach. This would have been taken at the start of their business day, early in the morning before the tourists came down to the sand.

The kids with little traps would drive and the passengers would sit behind. The mounted kids probably led their ponies around, with the paying passengers riding. That's why the kid on the pinto has his stirrups so long.

Off Roading

I guess this was the 1905 equivalent of having your Jet Ski or Dirt Bike at the Shore.

What fun!

Now these are some "Jersey Shore" kids that I could stand to hang out with. I wonder why no one adjusted the stirrups for the boy on the pinto pony.

SHORPY HISTORICAL PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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