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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.

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[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Wise Valet: 1943

Wise Valet: 1943

May 1943. "New York. A tenement house in Harlem." Note the sign advising of COVER. Photo by Gordon Parks, Office of War Information. View full size.

On Shorpy:
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Red Cross stickers

During the Red Cross's many wartime "appeals" for donations, those who gave then received a red cross sticker, to be placed in their window. This also had a practical virtue, because it enabled door-knockers to concentrate on those homes with no such stickers.

The Cross in the Window

I wonder what the significance is of what appears the be a RED CROSS symbol in the second floor window above the tailor shop. Any ideas, Shorpyites?

Minus the storefronts plus some a/c units

Largely the same. I wonder how they decided which of the building numbers to use.

View Larger Map

They Got Me Covered

The poster in the window is advertising the Bob Hope, Dorothy Lamour movie with that title, released a couple months earlier in March of 43.

La Princesse

was located at 143 West 135th, AUdubon 3-7722, thanks again to the NYPL Direct Me NYC 1940 page.

Addendum: the website for the rental office gives a nice background on the block:

Duck and COVER

According to the Nov. 27, 1942 New York Times, the New York Department of Civil Defense started to install the "COVER" signs that month (beginning in midtown Manhattan), in order to mark places of safety in case of an air raid. It reported that "the signs, about eight inches wide and eighteen inches long, are marked with a large C followed by the word 'cover,' and an arrow."


Great architectural detail in these buildings. BTW, that's a 1938 Ford at the curb.

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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