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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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Society Clowns: 1923

Society Clowns: 1923

A "society circus" held on April 4, 1923, most likely in the vicinity of Washington, D.C. From the National Photo Company collection. View full size.


B. Google under the hat?

I'm going to surmise that the broad-brimmed hat clown is supposed to be Barney Google, given what seems to be strange eye makeup, and the "Spark Plug" label on the horse.

A different Barney and Spark Plug made an appearance a few months later. (Shorpy #4445)


when I was little I was scared of clowns, except Bozo.

Scary looking clowns....

They probably could scare the be-jesus out of little kids,
especially the guy with the wide brimed hat: "mamma I had another nightmare about them clowns, can I sleep with you and daddy?"

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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