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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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Anniston: 1914

Anniston: 1914

October 1914. Anniston, Alabama. "Housing conditions at Adelaide Mill. The village is run down and greatly in need of sanitary improvements." Photograph and caption by Lewis Wickes Hine. View full size.


Company Town

Anniston was begun in 1872 by Samuel Noble (of England) and Gen. Daniel Tyler (of Connecticut) as a company town supporting Woodstock Iron Co. Incorporated through the state of Alabama in 1879, the town was opened to the public on July 3, 1883, with great fanfare. The mill mentioned here made cotton yarn — representing a diversification of industry as well as employment for the laboring class women — and was built on the site of a former Woodstock furnace. It's deplorable that sanitary improvements were noted as lacking, since the city had then and still has a bountiful source of fresh water in the form of a great spring. The city is currently developing its mostly-abandoned Army base and an observance of its 125th year of public existence is planned for this summer. (The local library is a repository for glass-negative images detailing life and residents in the city's middle decades.)

THE 100-YEAR-OLD PHOTO BLOG | 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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