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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.

© 2018 SHORPY INC.

[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Catillac: 1903

Catillac: 1903

Detroit circa 1903. "Foundry and machine shop, Leland & Faulconer Mfg. Co." With bearded proprietors Robert Faulconer (left) and Henry Leland standing at either end, and two shop mascots in the top row. In 1905 the company, which made car engines, merged with Cadillac Automobile Co. Some years after selling Cadillac to General Motors, Leland started the Lincoln Motor Co., which was eventually bought out by Ford. Detroit Publishing glass negative. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

Back row

6th guy from the left, I am sure made a lot of girls weak in the knees, especially when he smiled.

Men's wedding rings

The current common practice of men wearing wedding rings is quite recent.

Although not unknown it was very rare for men at the time of this photograph to have a wedding ring - it was deemed something for the wife to do.

However, that changed during World War II when it became much more common practice as the men went off to war for them to wear a token reminding them of their loved one back home.

Mama cat

Looks to me like mama cat, on the right, is keeping her eye on her baby kitten, at the left.

An Observation

Did you notice that not one individual wears a wedding ring? I wonder if that was out of safety, or they just couldn't afford one.

A fine selection of whiskers

Oh, man, I love this photo. Especially the guy next to one of the cats, trying not to laugh.

re: re: Beyond Casual Friday

@oldguy - I agree that in a factory clothes standards were/are not high. Would machinists then roll up their sleeves to guard against getting caught up in their work (too literally) or is safety awareness among the workers a more modern thing?

[I don't think common sense was a 21st century invention. - tterrace]

Casual Friday

Most places where I worked (and wasn't just employed) there was nothing casual about any day of the week. Put out or get out and by virtue of doing some work, your clothes would get dirty. Maybe I should change my name to oldgal.

re: Beyond Casual Friday

Maybe you should use the word employed instead of work. I worked in a machine shop for forty-three years and no one was ever sent home for ill fitting or dirty clothes.

Pest Control

Out of high school I worked for a short time at a fertilizer plant where they kept a small herd of cats to keep the rats and mice at bay. Fed them just enough so they were still hungry enough to hunt.

Body Language

Crossed arms. We might eliminate merely feeling cold. The standard protective or separating barrier is possible, but another meaning is that the men are just too tired to pay attention.

Beyond Casual Friday

Try dressing in torn, faded, and ill-fitting clothes like so many of these fellows have on, and you'd be sent home, even on the most casual of Fridays, where I work. You can really tell the management from the workers in this photo.
But everyone (except the two rodent control officers) in the picture has a hat on.

Masters of Percision

Henry Leland was a Connecticut Yankee machinist who brought the skills that allowed Detroit's young auto industry to produce interchangeable parts that require no final adjustments before installing.

He also lead Bible readings / discussions at lunch time for his employees who wished to attend. In the summer time these meetings took place outdoors under a shade tree, next to the shop.

[Gimme that old-time "percision." -Dave]

Everyone knows

Real men love cats. Wonder if they were strays or the lads took them on as their mascots? Either way, what a rich time they lived in. Magnificent work!

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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