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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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You Better Watch Out: 1941

You Better Watch Out: 1941

A Christmas window display in 1941 or 1942, photographer unknown. 35mm Kodachrome transparency, Farm Security Administration. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

Re: Lead

Lead can be pretty shiny too, and I also remember balling up those icicles and firing them at my siblings. Tin or aluminum ain't that heavy or soft.

Red Ryder

I think he might be wondering where his Red Ryder BB gun with a compass in the stock, and this thing which tells time is.

Great photo, brings back many memories!


Back in the late 1950's in the Germantown area of Philadelphia there was a price war on icicles just before Christmas. The two businesses involved were Comer Paper (6241 Germantown Ave) and Doc's drugstore half a block south. Doc's is long gone but Comer is still in business. I think they usually had a price war on icicles (which I believe was motivated by just wanting to have a little fun) but sometime around 1959 they got carried away. Doc's advertised icicles at 15 cents. Comers countered with 12 cents, Doc's dropped to 9 cents, etc. over 2 or 3 days. Final prices were in the 1 cent range.


I think they were thin strips of tin, or possibly aluminium, both of which can be a nice shiny white, whereas lead is pretty dull and gray. I remember them, too.

Good Old Lead Poisoning

I remember the "icicles" back then being made of lead or something, unlike the wimpy mylar of today. If you put too many on a weak branch, it might break.
When we took the tree down on New Year's Day, they'd be stuck in the carpet. My brothers and I used to race to collect the strands. We'd squeeze them into a tight, and surprisingly heavy lead ball, which we would then toss at each other while my dad yelled at us to stop. Ah, the memories...

Doubl-glo icicles

Those Doubl-Glo Icicles cost 38 bucks a box nowadays!

[Amazing. I've always been partial to the old-style Christmas decorations myself. Vintage Christmas cards too. eBay is a great help. - Dave]

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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