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Most of the photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs, 20 to 200 megabytes in size) from the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) Many were digitized by LOC contractors using a Sinar studio back. They are adjusted by your webmaster for contrast and color in Photoshop before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here.

 
 
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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • THE TOY DEPARTMENT, 1913

Greenhills: 1938

Greenhills: 1938

October 1938. Fire station at Greenhills, Ohio, a planned community built by the federal government (Suburban Division of the Resettlement Administration) during the Depression. The image, scanned from a print, is a composite, with the utility pole and fire alarm superimposed; the asphalt was retouched with an airbrush. View full size. The fire station photo is by John Vachon.

 

Gotta love those Gamewell boxes

Some towns still use the old style Gamewell alarm boxes. When our department did away with them they were sold as scrap to some guy who bid on them. He turned around and sold them on eBay for a small fortune. For folks who still use a landline they can be wired up with a phone line and installed in the back yard with a phone inside.

Fake sky too?

It appears that the sky was also pasted on. You can see something of an edge over the trees and the firetruck's front.

[You're right. The original is below. - Dave]

Why manipulation?

I think I would have liked the original photo better. The depth of field is unnatural, the pole seems to be a hazard to vehicles coming out of the fire station and who needs a remote fire alarm right in front of a fire station?
Who did the (digital?) doctoring and why?

[This would have been done for something like a WPA poster or fire safety exhibit (it was cropped to be two feet tall -- see below). The print is over 60 years old, so it's not digitally doctored. - Dave]

 
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Shorpy.com | History in HD is a vintage photo blog featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1950s. The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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