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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.

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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • LIBERTY ENLIGHTENING THE WORLD, 1883

Playboy, Mansion: 1923

Playboy, Mansion: 1923

San Francisco circa 1923. "Jordan Playboy roadster." A car famous for the ad copy that sold it. 5x7 glass negative by Christopher Helin. View full size.

        Somewhere west of Laramie there's a broncho-busting, steer-roping girl who knows what I'm talking about. She can tell what a sassy pony, that's a cross between greased lightning and the place where it hits, can do with eleven hundred pounds of steel and action when he's going high, wide and handsome. The truth is -- the Playboy was built for her. Built for the lass whose face is brown with the sun when the day is done of revel and romp and race. She loves the cross of the wild and the tame.

        There’s a savor of links about that car -- of laughter and lilt and light -- a hint of old loves -- and saddle and quirt. It’s a brawny thing -- yet a graceful thing for the sweep o' of the Avenue. Step into the Playboy when the hour grows dull with things dead and stale. Then start for the land of real living with the spirit of the lass who rides, lean and rangy, into the red horizon of a Wyoming twilight.

 

Farm to Table: 1939

Farm to Table: 1939

October 1939. Greeley, Colorado. "Mrs. Milton Robinson, wife of Farm Security Administration borrower, in the kitchen of her farm home." Medium format nitrate negative by Arthur Rothstein for the FSA. View full size.

 

Wash and Dry: 1943

Wash and Dry: 1943

September 1943. Cincinnati, Ohio. "The children of Bernard Cochran, a Greyhound bus driver, doing dishes after Sunday dinner." Medium format negative by Esther Bubley for the Office of War Information. View full size.

 

See Legs: 1938

See Legs: 1938

1938. "Swimwear model on bow of skiff at Marineland." You've come a long way, baby. Medium format negative by Toni Frissell. View full size.

 

Surprise: 1909

Surprise: 1909

December 20, 1909. "Firemen spraying burning building on West 14th Street, New York." 5x7 glass negative, Bain News Service. View full size.

        Three million gallons of water from the high-pressure mains were pumped into a fire that destroyed a large seven-story factory and loft building at 180-188 West Fourteenth Street yesterday morning, and for five hours the fire, which raged until the afternoon, completely cut off traffic on that street. The pavement and sidewalks and many buildings for almost a block were coated with thick mid-Winter ice. Fire and water together provided a spectacle for thousands of Christmas shoppers who crowded both sides of the street.
        Although there were no injuries from the fire, it caused damage of $200,000. Workers at the training school of the Salvation Army headquarters, adjoining the building on the east, were routed from their beds. It is not known what started the fire.

-- New York Times, 12/21/1909

 

Alabama Stop: 1937

Alabama Stop: 1937

April 1937. "Coal miners' housing in Birmingham, Alabama." Photo by Arthur Rothstein for the Resettlement Administration. View full size.

 

Bus Kennel: 1943

Bus Kennel: 1943

September 1943. "Indianapolis, Indiana. A Greyhound bus station." Photo by Esther Bubley for the Office of War Information. View full size.

 
 
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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