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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 • EAT MORE FISH, 1917

Two Sheets to the Wind: 1905

Two Sheets to the Wind: 1905

Circa 1905. "Sailing on the beach -- Ormond, Florida." It'll never take off. 8x10 inch dry plate glass negative, Detroit Publishing Company. View full size.

 

Farking Along

Was the sailor's cap required?

Interesting how everything seems to have to have been done in costume.

Before the beach eroded

Visitors to modern-day Ormond and Daytona beaches wonder how they ever held auto races on such a narrow strip of packed sand. This picture shows what Florida east coast beaches looked like at low tide up until just 20 years ago. Even at high tide there was plenty of room for motor traffic. Alas, beaches, left to nature, ebb and surge just like the tide, albeit over generations rather than hours. All of Miami-Dade beaches are artificially renourished using dredge-and-fill, but the miles of broad, hard-packed beaches of St. John's and Volusia counties are but a memory.

Unusual wind

It seems like that's an offshore wind when it should be onshore, both from time of day (late afternoon) and from the trade winds. Not that it can't happen.

Footprints

Sometimes the most interesting thing about these pictures is what is not (any longer) there, and the clues left behind, like the horse and buggy that traversed this spot earlier. It contributes to the "unstaged" appearance of most all these pics in the archive.

Prairie Schooner

Thats what we call them in Missouri.

The opening line of the Rainmakers song 'Snakedance' even makes mention of it:

"I was sailing my prairie schooner one day, when I fell off the edge of the map."

Ancient Land Yachts

Land yachts designed by Simon Stevin in the 1500s.

 
THE 100-YEAR-OLD PHOTO BLOG
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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