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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.

© 2018 SHORPY INC.

[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Marshall House I: 1860s

Marshall House I: 1860s

Alexandria, Va., 1861-69. "The Marshall house, King & Pitt Streets." Wet plate glass negative, right half of stereo pair. Photographer unknown. View full size. Who'll be the first to put this together with its companion image in a very short flipbook and post it to YouTube? Or it could be an animated gif. Either way, we'd have the world's earliest (and shortest) HD movie.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

+145 (approx.)

Below is the same view from December of 2010. The building visible behind the wagon in the 1860s still stands on Pitt Street.

Re: Google Maps

At that intersection today is another hotel - the Hotel Monaco (which used to be an extremely nice Holiday Inn for years). On the King Street wall of that hotel on the corner of Pitt is a plaque noting the Jackson-Ellsworth incident.

Google Maps

Google maps shows large industrial or commercial buildings at that intersection.

View Larger Map

The two almost work

Despite being from two different stereo pairs, these two images of the Marshall House work well as a stereo pair, other than the moved carriage and people in the streets. The only other differences are that someone has closed the lower center window of the building in the foreground, and the shutters have been closed on the second window from the right on the other building.

[These are not from two different pairs. The images are the pair -- successive shots made with the same camera. - Dave]

Col. Ellsworth, Fire Zouaves

Very significant early Civil War site. The text below is from the Alexandria, VA website which sums up what occurred there very neatly.

On May 24, 1861, the morning of the Federal invasion, Col. Elmer Ellsworth led a contingent of his "Fire Zouaves" to capture the telegraph office. On his way, Ellsworth spotted a Confederate flag defiantly waving from the rooftop of the Marshall House hotel. James W. Jackson, the hotel's proprietor and an ardent secessionist, raised the banner a month earlier during a pro-secession rally vowing that the flag would come down over his dead body.

Incensed, Ellsworth climbed the three stories to the attic, cut the halyards and pulled the flag down. As he and his men descended the stairs, Jackson stepped into the darkened stairway with a shotgun and shot Ellsworth, killing him instantly. One of Ellsworth's men, Cpl. Francis Brownell, retaliated by fatally shooting the innkeeper. Ellsworth became famous as the first Union officer to be killed in the war.

Both Jackson & Ellsworth are regarded as martyrs for their respective causes. The Battle of First Manassas had not yet been fought. The war was just over a month old by the time of this incident.


Makes one appreciate asphalt.

SHORPY HISTORICAL PHOTO ARCHIVE | 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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