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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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Playboy, Mansion: 1923

Playboy, Mansion: 1923

San Francisco circa 1923. "Jordan Playboy roadster." A car famous for the ad copy that sold it. 5x7 glass negative by Christopher Helin. View full size.

        Somewhere west of Laramie there's a broncho-busting, steer-roping girl who knows what I'm talking about. She can tell what a sassy pony, that's a cross between greased lightning and the place where it hits, can do with eleven hundred pounds of steel and action when he's going high, wide and handsome. The truth is -- the Playboy was built for her. Built for the lass whose face is brown with the sun when the day is done of revel and romp and race. She loves the cross of the wild and the tame.

        There’s a savor of links about that car -- of laughter and lilt and light -- a hint of old loves -- and saddle and quirt. It’s a brawny thing -- yet a graceful thing for the sweep o' of the Avenue. Step into the Playboy when the hour grows dull with things dead and stale. Then start for the land of real living with the spirit of the lass who rides, lean and rangy, into the red horizon of a Wyoming twilight.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

Gough near Clay

This house was torn down to build a stairway into Lafayette Park, I think the pillar is still there.

Here's a 1919 view of it on our OpenSFHistory site.

And a view of the stairway that was built.

[Thanks! No wonder I was never able to find it. -tterrace]

Somewhere West of Laramie

Jordan Playboy ad

Appearing in the June, 1923 edition of the Saturday Evening Post, the ad promoted the Jordan Playboy, in art by Fred Cole, driven by a cloche hat wearing flapper hunkered down behind the wheel in abstract fashion, racing a cowboy and the clouds.


Hmm, only one clue I could even sort of find, and it's clipped off by the car.

Hard to Think

Of a car today that would generate copy like that. Most cars today are just appliances that can be discarded after the lease is over.

BTW: Agree about that house, a real duesie!

Who cares about the car. It's the house that steals the show!!

Any ideas?
Still up?

The Copy Still Sells

Who wouldn't want to know or be that lass!

I understand the author was riding the Union Pacific across Wyoming at sunset when he spotted the unknown girl keeping pace with the train for a fleeting moment.

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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