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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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The Wrong Side: 1938

The Wrong Side: 1938

November 1938. "Houses along the railroad tracks. Omaha, Nebraska." Photo by John Vachon for the Resettlement Administration. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

Paint and tarpaper

When looking at Depression era (or even some later) pictures of buildings, I am always struck by the fact that tarpaper is substituting for shingles, and the walls clearly haven't been touched by paint for a long, long time. Even abandoned homes in places like Detroit don't seem to show that level of neglect today.

Agreed that those turkeys are living on borrowed time, or their owners are quite vigilant!

Omaha, Sure?

@rcadog: The 1940 Omaha White Pages lists Gross Mfg & Box Co at 610 Leavenworth (ATlantic-9414, if you had a nickel).

On today's Google Maps, 610 Leavenworth is between 6th and 7th Streets, about a quarter mile west of the river, and just north of the present-day Amtrak station, which abuts a former rail yard. It is also just west of railroad tracks that run north-south along the west bank of the river.

Perhaps the elevated structure in the Shorpy image that ends to the right of the Gross building was a track (or road) leading to/from a bridge over the river.

A period map of Omaha might provide the answer.

Omaha? Are you sure?

Couple of my Omaha friends and I have been trying to site this shot, but are striking out. First, we have not found Gross Manufacturing in any of the City Directories for the 30's - either before or after 1938.
Next, we see a UP and a C&NW box car in the upper left, but the locomotives in the upper right look like CB&Q engines. We are not objecting to the scene as depicting Omaha poverty in the '30's, but are trying to place the buildings and location. No doubt Vachon was photographing in the area of the UP and CB&Q yards in and near the Missouri River (witness the coal-fired power plant earlier) but this shot is tough to place!

Some of that turkey's descendants roam my neighborhood even today!!!

Gross Manufacturing Co.

Merged with Disgusting Products in 1952.

Cold Comfort

I sure hope that small square structure in the left foreground with the lattice work isn't the "necessary". It's going to be awfully cold in Omaha during the winter while using that thing.

Bad press

Omaha has not been getting a lot of good PR on Shorpy these last few days. Very slovenly.

John Vachon, storyteller

Wow! This scene just about has it all -- forlorn woman, old cars, derelict buildings, turkey, scrap pile, outhouse. Got to be a country song in here somewhere.

Lucky Turkey

I'm amazed the gobbler managed to get that big in this neighborhood. He's definitely living on borrowed time.

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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