SHORPY Historic Photo Archive & Fine-Art Prints
 
 
The Shorpy Archive
 
6000+ fine-art prints suitable for framing. Desk-size to sofa-size and larger, on archival paper or canvas.
 
Join and Share

 
Social Shorpy

  
Syndicate content
Syndicate content
Syndicate content
Daily e-mail updates:

 
 
 
 
Member Photos


Photos submitted by Shorpy members.

 
Colorized Photos


Colorized photos submitted by members.

 
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.

WEB SITE & CONTENTS
© 2018 SHORPY INC.

[REV 25-NOV-2014]

 
 
JUMP TO PAGE   100  >  200  >  300  >  400  >  500  >  600
VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • AUSTRALIA'S SUNNIEST CAPITAL, c1950

Eleventh and P: 1942

Eleventh and P: 1942

August 1942. Washington, D.C. "Corner store on 11th Street N.W. which is patronized by Mrs. Ella Watson, a government charwoman." Medium format negative by Gordon Parks for the Office of War Information. View full size.

 
On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

Speaking of Suspense

The block seen between the wheels is, indeed, one of the brakes on these cars. However, it is very hard (if not impossible) to determine from a photograph like this if this particular brake is applied. The blocks are known as track brakes, and are actually electromagnets which, when energized, are attracted to the rail. Thus, the force for the friction is not applied by the weight of the car, and also not through the wheels. Since these are electromagnets, they need to be close to the rail when not in use, so they are suspended on springs, less than an inch off the rail. They are very effective, and are normally used only in emergency or very slippery rail situations. They were controlled by a button, and were either off or on, with no ability to modulate the braking effort.

The cars had other brakes as well: dynamic using the motors as generators, and either air or electric (spring applied, electrically released) "parking" brakes.

Talk about suspense

To answer slr in tx, the sign is to get boarders to not block up the rear exit. Some cities allowed boarding from the back, others have waffled back and forth over time. In days gone by, conductors stationed by the back door at key stops would collect fares and allow boarding by the back door to speed things up.

Now, how did that streetcar get there? It is well parked with brake set (those blocks between the wheels) and its pole down. But where are the wires, either for the track its on or the adjoining track?

[The power supply is under the street. -Dave]

Dark Blue-Green & Gray

To accommodate the city's narrow streets and tighter corners the Washington, D.C. PCC streetcars were shorter than the ones used in the rest of the nation's cities. All the rest had 5 windows behind the rear exit where this one has 4.
The livery is shown here (later, when it was taken over by the owner of Trans-Caribbean Airlines it was given a bright turquoise/aqua/orange decor)

I'm in a state of suspense!

Does that coyly photographed public conveyance have a sign in front pointing out the rear entrance?

 
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.

Syndicate content RSS | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Photo Use | © 2018 Shorpy Inc.
sphere