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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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Dime-Store Jewels: 1941

Dime-Store Jewels: 1941

December 1941. Washington, D.C. "Christmas shopping. Salesgirls at Wool­worth's." Photo by John Collier, Office of War Information. View full size.

On Shorpy:
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Good Values

Ah yes, the good old days, when a guy could satisfy all the females on his gift list for under $5. Woolworth's was the best.

Inflation 2

$0.25 in December 1941 would be $3.94 in 2017 dollars.

The girl in the glasses is stunningly beautiful. The other is beautiful too.

Upstretched arm

Today that might be a dramatic gesture of stretching out a knot, or an arm that fell asleep. But I assume this gal is calling for a supervisor? (And aren't the two of them just so darn cute?)


My wife currently sells earbobs of this vintage anywhere from $1-$40 a pair. Lots of these show up at estate sales.


That's what my grandmother called these. Some were hinged and some screw back. My shopping days began in the 1950s at Woolworth's. It had a particular aroma (odor?) of popcorn, nuts, and various toiletries I remember to this day.

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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