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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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Washington Slept Here: 1925

Washington Slept Here: 1925

Washington, 1925. "Ford Motor Company. Capitol bedding truck." In a rare stab at whimsy or wit or whatever you want to call it, National Photo shot this Capitol Mattress truck in front of the actual Capitol. Tee hee! View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

How Much?

What did a Tempur-Pedic sell for in '25?

Graham Bros 1½ Ton

This photo appeared in the May 10, 1925 Washington Post, captioned:
"Graham Brothers 1½-ton truck on 158-inch wheel base with body designed to carry bulky goods."

It still makes no sense why Ford would commission the photo. Perhaps a transcription mistake occurred later.

[The transcription is correct. Graham Bros. manufactured the chassis. The powerplants were supplied by a third party, generally Dodge or Ford. In 1926 the company was bought out by Dodge Bros. - Dave]

Fine lettering

The high point of this pic is the lettering on the truck. This was an expensive job rendered by a highly skilled signpainter. Look at the split-blended shading on the main copy, and the detail in the Capitol image.

Questions, Questions

I was getting ready to launch a comment about how this isn't a Ford, but fortunately calmed down long enough to read the comments and see it had already been mentioned. I do wonder, though, why FoMoCo wanted the portrait of a Dodge Truck. Comparative study?

Also, it looks like the truck driver backed right up to large tree that would block unloading.

Lastly, I'll just say I love that old iron fencing in the yard to our left.


Sanitary is always a good quality when it comes to mattresses. I didn't know you had a choice?

East Capitol Mattress

Photographed on East Capitol Street- view today is very similar. An ad from 1919 Washington Post reveals that Capitol Brand Mattresses were locally manufactured and distributed through many local stores including

  • S. Kann Sons Co., 8th and Market Space
  • The Hub Furniture Co., 7th and D Sts.
  • Lansburgh & Bro., 420-430 7th St.
  • Sachs Furniture Co., 8th and D Sts.
  • R.W. Henderson, 1109 F St.
  • Sanitary Bedding Co., 903 G St.
  • W.E. Miller, 7th and E Sts. S.W.
  • Hopkins Furniture Co., 415 7th St.
  • Diamond Bedding Co., 739 7th St.
  • Wilson, Proctor & Co., 717 7th St.
  • Nelson Furniture Co., 508 H St. N.E.
  • Cut Rate Furniture Co., 937 7th St.
  • Palais Royal, 11th & G Sts.
  • The Hecht Co., 513-517 7th St.
  • National Furniture Co., 633 H St. N.W.
  • Julius Lansburgh Furniture Co., 512 9th St.
  • P.J. Nee, 7th and H Sts., N.W.
  • Walker-Thomas Co., 1015 7th St.
  • Cornell's Wall Paper Co., 714 13th St.
  • Baum Furniture House, 2004 14th St.
  • People's Dept. Store, 8th and Pa. Ave. S.E.
  • Globe Furniture Co., 1012 7th St.
  • Thompson Bros., 1220 Good Hope Road
  • Hutchison Bros., 1814 14th St. N.W.

Faint praise

"Serviceable?" That seems perilously close to damning with faint praise. "Why, yes, our mattresses are deeply adequate!"

Perpendicular Parking

Typical, even in 1911 these truck drivers think they can park right in the middle of the road!

Ford Motor Company

Lovely, brand new, truck, but it's not a Ford.

[Ford Motor would have been the client who commissioned the photo. The truck is a Dodge. - Dave]

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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