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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.

© 2019 SHORPY INC.

[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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How to Dress for School: 1955

How to Dress for School: 1955

My mother made darned sure I was bundled up enough for this (presumably) chilly late winter morning in early 1955. My brother shot this on Ektachrome in our front yard as I was about to set off on my 5 block walk to my third grade class at Larkspur-Corte Madera School. I can't remember what the theme of my lunchbox was. It was either "weapon against bullies on my way home" or "please don't let my Thermos break again." View full size. Later on: This and That.

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Yeah. Earflaps in the Bay Area might be going a little far, but it gets pretty nippy for sure. Of course, there can be many feet of snow in the Sierra Nevada mountain passes, but not many folks live up there year-round, unless their last name is Donner.

The Thermos

I laughed so hard . I had forgotten how many of those stupid glass thermos mugs I broke as a child (born in 1951 so I know of what you speak) and how frustrated my mother must have gotten. It really didn't matter if it was in the lunchbox; it still got hammered, mostly because we couldn't resist swinging the thing around while we twirled in a circle like a governor or spun the box on a finger and sooner or later it slid off and...well, you know the rest.

After a while Mom gave up on the thermos mugs and sent me to school with money for milk, hopefully with the extra 2 cents (3 for white, 5 ...) for CHOCOLATE!

Love the hat!

I started school in 1960. In our district girls had to wear dresses or skirts and boys had to wear regular pants. No "dungarees".

Did you take the hat off when you got far enough away from the house?

Well you should have!


"The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco"
-- Apocryphal Twainism

I think that about says it all.

California is COLD in the winter!

Just because our families left snow country doesn't mean we don't have winter--it's just a different kind of winter!

And tterrace, you look adorable.

[There's no snow in the Sierras, Yosemite, etc.? - Dave]

Somewhere tropical?

I see leaves on the bushes and no snow. Can't be that cold...

[Maybe it's one of those exotic "evergreens." This is in the jungles of northern California. - Dave]

What I want for Christmas...

I just have to know... did you ever get that official Red Ryder carbine-action 200-shot range model BB gun with a compass in the stock? Or did you shoot your eye out?

My goodness, Peter Billingsley and you could have been brothers or at least cousins. You also resembled a young Robin Gibb.

I also can deeply relate to the over-protective mother bundling up the kids so tightly that they cannot move and you can't fight off the bullies because you can barely breathe.

SHORPY OLD 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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