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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 • CARNIVAL OF THE ARTS, 1937

Avondale Mill Boys: 1910

Avondale Mill Boys: 1910

November 1910. Birmingham, Ala. Workers in the Avondale Mills in Jefferson County. (The Avondale Mills in St. Clair County burned today in Pell City.) Smallest boy is John Tidwell. Photo by Lewis Wickes Hine. View full size.

 

Shoes...

I have to admit, it gets me every time I see kids in old pics working with no shoes on... I can't imagine having to work in a mill without any protection on my feet.

Avondale Mills

The mill that burned today was not the one visited by Hine in 1910. Hine photographed workers at the mill in Avondale, a formerly independent town in Jefferson County, Alabama that was annexed into Birmingham in January of that same year. That mill, seen here at the Birmingham Public Library's digital collections, has long been demolished.

The mill which burned today was located in Pell City in neighboring St. Clair County. It was in the process of being dismantled by a salvage company when cotton dust in the ductwork caught fire.

[Well gosh. I'll fix the captions. Thanks for the information. - 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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