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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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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • GEORGE WASHINGTON CROSSING THE PIES

The Vollrath Kid: 1923

The Vollrath Kid: 1923

Washington circa 1923. "Dulin & Martin window. Vollrath Co., Mrs. Varney." The store, which extended from 1215 F Street NW to the other side of the block at 1214-18 G, burned down in 1929. National Photo Company. View full size.

 

The kid

She looks very real and I betcha they put her there just for the picture.

Window Shopping

I absolutely love these old storefronts. I wish I could have lived back then, but with the advances we have now in some technology and medicine. They still had storefronts like these when I was growing up and the towns I grew up in still do have them, but updated. I can still remember the smells of wood and the aromas of the candy and soda counters. Not like that today.

Vollrath

Mr. Vollrath's company is still alive and well, after he launched it in the 1800s. He was from Sheboygan and introduced the porcelain enamel coated cookware we see here.

The Mysterious 1920's...

... domestic helper android line in action again!

In and Out

The dual nature of this image is a blast! First you examine what's inside behind the window, and then the real fun starts when you begin to see what's outside in the reflection. The photographer, the bystander, the buildings ... and call me crazy, but isn't that Barney Rubble reflecting in the window around the corner?

[I like the white horse and the old man with the mustache. And yes, that is Barney. They were having a sale on granite iceboxes. - Dave]

Refrigerating Machine

My still in service 1927 General Electric Monitor Top refrigerator has a plate on it that proclaims "General Electric refrigerating machine." This has always led me to believe that the word refrigerator was coined later. This neat 1923 Shorpy photo proves my notion wrong.

Was the poor girl, who appears to be real, really made to stand in this store's window pointing to the open refrigerator all day?

[As we can see below, the word goes back at least to the 1700s. As for the kid, I dunno. - Dave]

 
THE 100-YEAR-OLD PHOTO BLOG
Shorpy.com | 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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