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About the Photos

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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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • CLASSIC CHRISTMAS ART

Room to Read: 1950

Room to Read: 1950

        Enlighten the people generally, and tyranny and oppression of body and mind will vanish like evil spirits at the dawn of day.

-- Thomas Jefferson

Washington, D.C., circa 1950. "Thomas Jefferson Reading Room, Adams Building, Library of Congress." 8x10 negative by Theodor Horydczak. View full size.

 
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Usufruct, And Yet Another Shorpy Rabbit Hole

On the south wall, the panel over the clock contains a quotation about the Living:

THE EARTH BELONGS ALWAYS TO THE LIVING GENERATION. THEY MAY MANAGE IT THEN AND WHAT PROCEEDS FROM IT AS THEY PLEASE DURING THEIR USUFRUCT. THEY ARE MASTERS TOO OF THEIR OWN PERSONS AND CONSEQUENTLY MAY GOVERN THEM AS THEY PLEASE.

Jefferson to James Madison, September 6, 1789

Not so much room now

The former Jefferson reading room in the Adams Building's fifth floor has become the Science and Business Reading Room. The floor space is now shared between rows of stacks and restored original tables and chairs. The murals high on the walls depicting Jefferson's life and words could use a restoration.

 
SHORPY HISTORICAL PHOTO ARCHIVE
Shorpy.com | 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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