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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 • SYPHILIS ... SIX OUT OF TEN CURED, 1941

Neumann Grocery: 1910

Neumann Grocery: 1910

The Edw. Neumann grocery at Broadway Market in Detroit circa 1910. 8x10 glass plate negative, Detroit Publishing. View superjumbo full size. (Which is still less than half the pixel dimensions of the full-resolution, 6100 x 5000 image -- i.e., less than a quarter of the available detail!) Who'll be the first to count all the cans?

 

I. am. overwhelmed.

I cant imagine any store doing enough business to move that many artichokes before they went bad, I work in a very busy produce store, and we can sell basically any obscure fruit or vegetable, but this is incredible. I love love LOVE this, I wish time travel were possible

Pass the peas please

Replying to Joe Manning: I found the can of peas; or at least A can of peas. Look just under the Edw. Neumann sign. The picture shows peas (still in the pods); of course, everything had the label "Enco", so I can't be sure if these are Brillat Imported Canned Peas or not.

Beautiful

My father was in the grocery business. He passed away September 2009, he would have loved this picture. This is so beautiful, imagine this much food in a store in 1910. I grew up in rural south Georgia, and it seems all the older people I knew were so poor and had bare necessities. Looking at all these pictures makes me think life in the North was so much more advanced and modern. Maybe that is just me. I don't know, but this is truly a beautiful store.

Broadway Market

My grandfather was Edward Neumann from Detroit. Although I cannot be certain, I think that I was told that he did have a store in Broadway Market before the store on Farmer Street (1420 Farmer Street, just behind J.L. Hudson Co) in Detroit. The display in the picture is very much like what I remember from the produce department at the Farmer Street Store. Of course, I was a very, very little girl at the time, but I do have pleasant memories as well as a lingering preference for Crosse & Blackwell foods.

Amazing

This photograph and "Extra Fancy" never fail to fascinate me. I used to work at a grocery store, and it's amazing how much processed and prepared foods have overtaken fresh ingredients. I'd touch cans more than vegetables. And somehow I never realized that there was a time when grocery stores weren't self service.

The Detail

On the Super Jumbo Sized photo is incredible! I can even see the patterns of the water from the mop on the floor. Now that is pretty darn cool!

Libby's Cannery

The Libby's cannery in Sunnyvale was on the north side of the tracks from Evelyn Street. Brings back lots of memories. In 1964 we moved into a new subdivision in Sunnyvale and lived in a cherry orchard - five cherry trees in our yard. In spring it was pure joy riding our bikes in the street with all the blossoms. Next subdivision over were in a plum orchard. The entire "Silicon Valley" Bay Area used to be farm/orchard country, the soil and climate were perfect. It sure has changed.

Baskets and lilies

Baskets and lilies - it must be Eastertime.

And a very lonely bunch of bananas, well I think they are bananas, anyway.

[Could be Easter. Or shopping baskets. Or both. - Dave]

Refrigerated

Looks like a cooler on bottom - I count six frozen-over condensers.

"I'd like...

a can of asparagus, please. No, up there, on the left. That one; thanks. No, right next to it... NO! the one NEXT to it; yes, THAT one! Thanks. Oh, is this the large size; do you have anything smaller?"
Denny Gill
Chugiak, Alaska

Neumann Grocery

I found this on Google Books. It’s from Bulletin No. 200-201, May-June, 1912, issued by the State of Michigan Dairy and Food Department.

“No. 26135, S.705. Sample of Brillat Imported Canned Peas handled by G. & R. McMillan Co., Detroit, and procured from the store of Ed. Neumann, Broadway Market, Detroit. Colored with copper sulphate and held to be injurious to health.”

Anyone see a can of peas on the shelves?

Edw. Neumann Grocery

I found this book listed on a culinary website: "Selected Recipes and Valuable Food Information," by Edw. Neumann Stores, Detroit , MI, 1932. This is the link.

http://clarke.cmich.edu/cookbooks/author.htm

It's in alpha order as Edw. Neumann Stores

Libby's Asparagus

If you look at the cans at the top of the store, the labels read "Libby's." This was a large cannery that my mother worked at in California. The original name of the cannery was Libby, McNeil, Libby.

I believe it was located in the Mountain View area near El Camino Real. My mother told me she was around 16 years old at the time and worked night shifts. She said it was really loud due to the machinery and the trains arriving to pick up the canned goods.

She also told me she processed a variety of fruits/vegetables and would have to pit them by hand. I still have her tools.

Neumann Grocery

Thanks Shorpy, sure enjoyed this photo. I am amazed at the sheer weight of the filled glass jars in the upper cabinets.

Neumann Market

Can I get a time machine and go work there for a few weeks? Isn't it just wonderful.

Beautiful display

Compare this to the 1952 Grand Union photo ... the Neumann Grocery is so much more inviting and interesting than that sterile, fluorescent dead zone of the 50s.

[Yes it is very pretty. And of course there's another difference -- the Grand Union is all self-service. - Dave]

Neumann Grocery

This display is a work of art, although it must have been a stockboy's worst nightmare. The amount of detail is just incredible.

Considering the amount of perishable fruit and vegetables on display, this store must have done a high volume of business. And the refrigerated cases were a surprise for 1910. Who knew?

All that white asparagus, both fresh and canned, is beyond yummy!

 
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