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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State St. Fruit Company: 1890

State St. Fruit Company: 1890

Taken in my old hometown of Springfield, Massachussets and printed from an original 5x7 glass negative in my collection. The envelope protecting the negative is labeled "Corner of State & Dwight Str. City. Old house occupied by Mrs. Gordon and owned by RB & Co. May 29, 1890 4:30 AM."

On the telegraph pole to the right of the building is a broadside for Edison's Talking Doll, which was only in the market a brief few weeks in May 1890 before being recalled. View full size.

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Edison Talking Doll

The dolls (22" high, weighing 4 lbs.) were offered for sale in April 1890 at $10 each ($20-25 with a full dress), but of 2,500 shipped, only 500 sold, many of which were returned by unhappy customers, leading to an end of production in May. There was no spring motor so the child had to turn the crank at a steady speed to play the 6-second nursery rhyme.

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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