SHORPY Historic Photo Archive & Fine-Art Prints
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6000+ fine-art prints suitable for framing. Desk-size to sofa-size and larger, on archival paper or canvas.
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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.

© 2018 SHORPY INC.

[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Can We Go Home Now?

Can We Go Home Now?

Circa 1890s New Zealand. "Carte de visite portrait, Maori woman and child from Hawkes Bay." Glass negative, Samuel Carnell studio, Napier. View full size.

On Shorpy:
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Update on Moko

The derelict movie theatre was the Oxford Theatre, originally built as the Grand in 1914, renamed Oxford after being acquired by a large cinema chain in 1939, demolished 1973 or soon after.

Textile Treasure

The kiwi feather cloak (called a Kahu kiwi) worn by the child was an important prestige garment believed to have protective properties (for the wearers if not for the kiwis). The thousands of feathers forming the pile were attached to a foundation of finger-woven New Zealand flax fiber.


It's rare to see facial moko (tattooing) on Maori people today, but when I was growing up in Auckland in the 1960's they were quite common, even on women.

I particularly remember (1964) the group of Maori women with facial moko who would smoke pipes and sit chatting on the steps of the derelict movie theatre in lower Queen Street opposite where the Britomart Centre is today.

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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