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Most of the photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs, 20 to 200 megabytes in size) from the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) Many were digitized by LOC contractors using a Sinar studio back. They are adjusted by your webmaster for contrast and color in Photoshop before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here.

 
 
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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • CARNIVAL OF THE ARTS, 1937

Oh, the Places I'll Go: 1939

Oh, the Places I'll Go: 1939

June 1939. Migrant child in family car east of Fort Gibson. Muskogee County, Oklahoma. View full size. 35mm nitrate negative by Russell Lee.

 

Magnolia Oil & Mobil Oil

The Magnolia Petroleum Company was founded in 1911, consolidating operations of several smaller oil companies that had been operating in Texas since 1898. In 1931, Magnolia became an affiliate of Socony-Vacuum Oil Company. The Magnolia Petroleum Company merged with Socony Mobil Oil Company in 1959.

I grew up in East Texas where Magnolia Oil signs were rusting by the 1960's. The Pegasus logo was (and apparently still is) a downtown Dallas landmark. See previous comments.

[Dear Goober: Your comments would show up right away if you signed up for a user account, or logged in before posting. - Dave]

Socony

I remember the name Socony-Mobil for the oil company. Where did that name arise from?

[Socony = Standard Oil Company of New York. Wikipedia. - Dave]

The Kid in the Car

Is the star of a Photoshop contest over at Fark. Check out the entries.

Hoover Highway

>> Or they could be heading up to catch the Lincoln Highway, main cross-country route to the Northwest.

D'oh! Although in the part of Iowa where I used to live, it's called the Herbert Hoover Highway.

On the Road Again

It's possible they were from East Texas and went north toward Tulsa to catch U.S. 66 before heading westward. Texas was long famous for its quality roads (even dinky Farm To Market roads were exemplary), but Route 66 provided more opportunities to eat, rest and repair the auto than found on other roads in Texas.

[Or they could be heading up to catch the Lincoln Highway, main cross-country route to the Northwest. - Dave]

Lantern

Could that kerosene lantern be the tail light?

Pegasus

Thanks for the update, Rick. I obviously haven't been in downtown Dallas for several years. On closer inspection, it appears the medallion was cut or torn off of some sort of sign post. You can see the uneven stake below the horse. It was probably some sort of advertising thingamajig that this fellow used to create a "bumper sticker" on his truck.

It is curious that a Texas truck headed west would be in Muskogee, OK...maybe taking the scenic route - or swinging through Oklahoma to pick up the in-laws?

[Especially if they're on the way to Oregon or Washington via one of the northern routes. - Dave]

Pegasus

The Pegasus sign was still up in downtown Dallas (unlighted and non-rotating) until 1999, when the sign was finally taken down, rebuilt and put back up. The Magnolia hotel has been restored as well.

Pegasus

The Pegasus (winged horse) medallion is from Magnolia Oil Co., a Texas company that would later become Mobil Oil. There used to be a large red version of this logo on the top of one of the tallest building in Dallas in the 1950s-60s.

 
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