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About the Photos

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.

© 2019 SHORPY INC.

[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Gridlock: 1941

Gridlock: 1941

May 1941. "In the convict camp in Greene County, Georgia." A show of hands. Photo by Jack Delano for the Farm Security Administration. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

Not Much to Say Except

"What we have here is a failure to communicate."

Things have certainly changed.

This one made me cry

My split second reaction was that this was a picture from a slave market. The way these men were used probably wasn't any better. I hope their lives improved.


Must have been a nightmare to live through and it's nightmarish to see this: Claustrophobic. Dark. Anonymous hands coming through a wall.

Almost defies caption

I assume these prisoners' day job is working on a road gang or rock pile (making little rocks out of big ones), and just when the temperature hits triple digits, they come "home" to this. These poor souls are definitely not free-range inmates.

It's hard to imagine

the abominable conditions behind that grid.

Too Sad for Words

What a haunting image. I hope these guys lived to see at least some of MLK's dream realized.

SHORPY OLD 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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