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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.

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Owl Drug: 1935

Owl Drug: 1935

June 1, 1935. "San Francisco. Union Square at Geary and Stockton." Where businesses vying for your trade include Owl Drug, Stubo Furs and Ann DeBritz's "School of Fashionable Dressmaking." 8x10 acetate negative, formerly of the Wyland Stanley and Marilyn Blaisdell collections. View full size.

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It's Cold and It's Damp

"The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco."

-- Apocryphally attributed to Mark Twain.


They don't seem dressed for June weather.

[Obviously you've never lived in San Francisco! - Dave]

Uncle Frank

Way up on the 16th floor of the Whittell Building, the one disappearing skyward center right, my Uncle Frank is working in his lapidary shop. It's the tall brown one in the street view below.

Foster & Orear

Neighbors? Still there.

The Owl and the Pestle

Owl Drug Company, founded in San Francisco in the late 19th century, was something of a California institution. Among other things, it manufactured its own medicine bottles, which enjoy considerable popularity among collectors of such things.

Safety First

I see a return of the Eclipse Streetcar Fender. With all the pedestrian traffic visible here, I can see why they were popular in the day.

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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