SHORPY Historic Photo Archive & Fine-Art Prints
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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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The Homestead: 1895

The Homestead: 1895

A long shot of yardwork figures in the last of eight plates of the Douglas property in Takoma Park, Maryland, circa 1895. 5x7 glass negative by Edward M. Douglas (1857-1936) and donated to Shorpy by his great-grandson. View full size.

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Edward Douglas

My family members and I are very grateful and pleased to see these glass plates brought back to life on Shorpy. One minor correction is that Edward Douglas died in 1932. Going through our family archives reveals a really interesting fellow. He graduated from Columbia College (now University) in NYC in 1881, with a degree in civil engineering. In 1882 he gained a position with the U.S. Geological Survey, where he spent the years from 1883 to about 1904 as chief topographer mapping the states and territories of the Western US. He worked at USGS and later the War Dept, for 45 years. The photo below shows (click to enlarge) him and the family on the porch at TP around the time of the other photos. His interest in mapping and photography was life-long, and after his retirement from government service he worked at an early aerial photo-mapping company up until he had to quit for health reasons. No doubt Google Earth would amaze him.


To say that Takoma Park has changed in the last 120 years is not strong enough. It has been transformed. Of course, I've only known the area for the past 60 years or so. Reminds me of the Cohan song about 45 minutes from Broadway.

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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