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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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Money Machine: 1920

Money Machine: 1920

Washington, D.C., circa 1920. "Post Office money order machine." A sort of typewriter-cash register hybrid. Harris & Ewing glass negative. View full size.

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Safety pin

Did anyone notice a safety pin in back of this fellow's tie? Dressing tricks have been used a very long time.

Other picture?

tterrace references another photo that shows a money order being fed into the machine; where do I go to see that photo?

[Library of Congress online catalog here. - tterrace]

Money Order Form

Here is the money order form he is working on.

[That's the C.O.D. mailing tag that had been attached to the parcel. It has the names and addresses for both sender and addressee along with the amount to be collected, here $5.91 + $.08 money order fee, total $5.99. The Post Office gets to keep the 8¢. - tterrace]


A little Photoshoppery shows us the details of the page in the ledger (click for larger image):

It's interesting that the amount appears numerically in two columns and spelled out in a third. I guess they *really* didn't want any misunderstandings or errors, especially with such high finance (that $8.77 to Hayes Wheel must have nearly broken the bank).

[Note also the figures in the sixth column: 05 & 08; those are the money order fees, which the recipient would have paid in addition to the amount due the sender. Apparently 5¢ for under $5 and 8¢ for over. - tterrace]

[UPDATE: the other shot taken at the time shows a money order being fed into the machine, so the spelled-out dollar amount is probably done to be imprinted on the order, and the same operation prints all the details on the ledger. - tterrace]

M.O. purpose

He's making out a money order for a delivered C.O.D. parcel; that's a USPOD C.O.D. mailing tag on the ledger.

Also, talk about shallow depth of focus; looks like about 8 inches, max.

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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