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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • FLY CANADIAN PACIFIC, c. 1950s

Main Street: 1907

Main Street: 1907

Circa 1907. "Main Street, Rochester, N.Y." At left, the renowned Hotel Eggleston. 8x10 inch glass negative, Detroit Publishing Company. View full size.

 

The most desirable articles

From The Catholic Journal (Rochester, NY), Friday, May 28, 1915.

The View Today

Further to Robo's description, here's what it looks like today.

Advertising Opportunity

Bare wall, approximately 70 feet high, rising above it's building on one corner of Breaker Street across from Burke Fitzsimons. Perfect billboard for Uneeda Biscuit, Fletcher's Castoria, Coca Cola, Kodak or Starbucks.

Long gone

from the corner of Stone St. and West Main, the Hotel Eggleston has been supplanted by the modern Hyatt Regency just down the block. The two 5 story buildings on the near right side of the picture were newly constructed at the time this photo was taken, their predecessors having been destroyed in the disastrous Sibley's Fire of 1904. The tall building at right center is the Granite Building, which survived the great fire and all the intervening years up to the present. Most of the other structures visible in this scene are gone now except for the Powers Building tower in the distant background.

It's always amazing to see the level of pedestrian and commercial activity in these old photos. Nowadays these same downtown streets are fairly barren of midday activity except around the bus shelters.

Noticeably Absent

I'm not seeing any dentists on the upper floors or "chop suey" signs as we usually do in these street scenes, but I do see two people balancing themselves on the roof of the Burke Fitzsimmons building. As for the variety of dime stores all in a row, that is how they used to be lined up in cities when I was a kid, so that would be the location I'd do most of my shopping. Toys were not packaged but were loose and touchable in compartments on the counter tops and cookies and candy were sold by the lb. from glass windowed cases where a lady would weigh them out on a scale and bag them for you. Good times.

 
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Shorpy.com | 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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