SHORPY Historic Photo Archive & Fine-Art Prints
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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.

© 2018 SHORPY INC.

[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Chain Gang: 1910

Chain Gang: 1910

Chain gang of convicts engaged in road work, Autumn 1910. Pitt County, North Carolina. The inmates are quartered in the wagons, which are equipped with bunks and move from place to place as labor is utilized. The central figure is J.Z. McLawhon, county superintendent of chain gangs. The dogs are bloodhounds used for running down any attempted escapes. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

Skip James

I have a compilation of Skip James & Son House music entitled "Hard Time Killin' Floor" and this photo is featured on the cd cover. It was issued by Yazoo Records, which I thought usually does a good job on research regarding the music.

I'm a little disappointed (in Yazoo) to learn that this has no direct relevance to either of their lives besides illustrating the general plight of rural black Southerners.

I suppose evoking that atmosphere was the intention, but it just seems too specific and documentary in nature to be used when it's apparently not even contemporary with the music on the disc.

Skip James

I do believe that's famous bluesman Skip James on guitar over there.

[Skip James was 8 years old in 1910. - Dave]

Chain Gang

I especially enjoy the Cream of Wheat guy next to the guitar player.

Pitt County, NC

This website is so neat, I live in Pitt County, NC. It's interesting to see all these old pictures.

Chain Gang

'Nuff to give ya'll the blues!

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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