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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 • UNFAIR TO BABIES, 1936

Rear Window: 1938

Rear Window: 1938

July 1938. "Slums in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania." 35mm nitrate negative by Arthur Rothstein for the Farm Security Administration. View full size.

 

I Say It's Derry Maine

Any fan of Stephen King can see that this is the start of a classic King tale.

Four young boys, 2 well dressed and 2 somewhat unkempt, and a hole in the ground are all the master needs to spin a tale.

Surely they just heard a low rumbling sound just after they saw an alien creature disappear down the hole.

Wasn't this the alley where Jim Kelly was last seen during a rare December tornado in New England?

There is another rumor that if one goes down the hole he goes back in time to a year before Abraham Lincoln's assassination.

Useta live…

in Pittsburgh. Funny thing is that although there's a Hill District alright, in Pittsburgh, EVERYwhere is the hill district!

Handy gadget

I like the multi-arm clothes dryer -- energy efficient I'd say.

Room With a View

Looks like a meal on the table in the second floor window on the right. The two boys in clean denim overalls and white shirts look like twins. The other two, both in rumpled, soiled clothes, have their breakfast "to go" as it appears they have baguettes or rolls to nosh on. They must all be good jumpers to have managed to get past the missing steps without serious injuries. I'm guessing they have probably just seen a rat scamper by and slip down into that hole. A childhood friend of mine lived in a similar neighborhood in Connecticut and yes, even Ct. had such places.

[But it was the West Side that had rumbled clothes. -Dave]

Okay smarty pants, I corrected it.

Get away from that hole!

The boys seem to be milling about waiting for their friend Vinny to come out of the hole in the ground; what is that, a foundation for an old outhouse, now a garbage heap?

First step is a doozy

The stairs seem to be missing a few treads.

The Hill

From the looks of this, it was probably taken somewhere in Pittsburgh Hill district.

 
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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