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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.

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[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Bye, Y'all: 1939

Bye, Y'all: 1939

May 1939. "Booth in hamburger stand. Alpine, Texas." View full size. 35mm nitrate negative by Russell Lee for the Farm Security Administration.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

The Mysterious Fan

The fan is fitted into a hole in the wall, if you look closely you can see a dark line that is the edge of an adjoining building's roof. The hole above is a vent.

[The fan is not in the wall. Other shots from this series show it hanging from the ceiling. If the fan was in the wall, that would be the vent -- you wouldn't need a hole above it. The line is a reflection of the window across the room. See the comment below. - Dave]

The Fan

Since the fan has a silvered backing (reflecting a window across the room) I'd guess it has an infrared heating element. Or maybe it's a reflector for a lamp. Obviously it was in that hole in the ceiling. Looks like they remounted it to aim across the room.

Altered Pic?

This pic looks like it has been altered...the back of the fan is dead white like it was masked out. The fan itself looks like a cut & paste from another image. The reflection on the ceiling is not a good match for the fan. Look at the specular reflection on the rim of the is at 1 & 2 o'clock, and the glints on the Coke bottles are at 11 o'clock. What looks to be a car outside the window at the left looks way too modern.

[Um, no. - Dave]

Snuff Glasses

My grandmother used to dip Honest Snuff. It came in a really nice glass which was all she used for the kitchen. Anybody else remember Honest Snuff glasses?


We had some of those drinking glasses when I was a kid in the 70s, and called them our "Waltons" glasses, because we saw them on the TV show of that name. I have never been able to figure out the manufacturer, but their prevalence suggests they may have been made by more than one, and for many decades.

Swing a dead cat

This place was tiny! Three stools and this booth - Russell Lee must have squeezed in there to snap the previous photos posted here on Shorpy since you can make out the rounded corner of the booth in those photos as well.

So much to comment on in this picture ... the fan, the art, the wires (strung in a building that predated integrated electrical wiring maybe?) ...

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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