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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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A Female Drummer: 1898

A Female Drummer: 1898

"Chas. E. Blaney's Big Extravaganza Success." This is a lithograph advertising the theatrical comedy "A Female Drummer," c. 1898. View full size.

Drummer In Context

Drummer in this sense means salesperson, from the practice of peddlers banging a drum to alert housewives they were approaching. Drummer in this sense began to fade from usage in the 1920s as "salesman" and its derivatives entered common use.

A Female Drummer

The show opened on 26 December 1898 and closed 22 May 1899 after 56 performances at the Star Theatre, the Grand Opera House, and the Manhattan Theatre. The opening day cast can be seen here.

THE 100-YEAR-OLD PHOTO BLOG | 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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