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About the Photos

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 • NORTH TUSCANY COAST, 1948

Best Christmas Ever: 1922

Best Christmas Ever: 1922

"Dorsey Christmas tree, 1922." Merry Christmas to all from Shorpy! National Photo Company Collection glass negative. View full size.

 

Icicles

I love the tree. When I was a kid my friends and I would go along the street after Christmas and take the icicles off the trees and make them into balls, I think they were made of lead. Look how straight they hang. You won't see that anymore.

USB Rex

"Radio Rex" has been reinvented as "USB Guard Dog - Desktop Rex":

Rockola

Rockola doesn't qualify as a true "Ola", as would that wondrous 1914 soft drink Gay-Ola, or the Play-Ola toy shown here.

David Rockola founded the jukebox company. That was his given name. His surname, by the way, rates infinitely higher on the "cool" scale than "Yanitz." Trust me on that one.

No batteries required

One cannot help but notice that none of these fabulous and now valuable toys require batteries. As for the "ola" ending, Rockola Jukeboxes were some of the niftiest. Also Wurlitzer. If Santa saved all the original boxes that came with these toys, the price doubles or triples. Who knew? And thank you for ALL the wonderful memories evoked from your "best ever" website. I cannot get through 24 hrs. without it. Stay healthy and know we appreciate you.

[The Radio Rex toy did use batteries. And thanks! - Dave]

Thanks, Dave

Thank you, Dave. Everyday, you gave us the gift of a view into a virtual time machine. Everyday is Christmas at this site. Wishing you and yours a happy holiday and a happy new year.

[You're very welcome! I feel are warm and tingly inside. And not just from the eggnog. - Dave]

Fire trucks

At least 3 fire trucks!

That kid is seriously spoiled. I am sooo jealous, all I got is 1 fire truck back in the early 70's!

Photobucket

You'll also notice the awesome blackboard, the John Scary book and the GI-Joe helicopter!

Haircut

Wow, I have seen many Shorpy pictures with that horrible haircut--when did that come into "fashion" and when did it leave? They actually shaved the kids' upper napes to get that hair line? On the other hand, I love those CD-like ornaments at the top of the tree with the angels.

Love the Christmas gift!

Just look at the other wonderful gifts - wheelbarrow, pool table and do I see a tin ear (eh, sonny?) on the Play-Ola? I bet the cars might still be around if they survived the war scrap metal drives.

[The tin ear is probably the phono pickup for the Play-Ola. - Dave]

"- - - Ola"

"Ola" at the end of product names was all the rage during the Taft-Wilson administrations.

The Gay-Ola bottling company brings to mind a leading example of an "Ola" product name that would not be easily introduced into today's marketplace.

There is a Fortune Here

That was quite a haul in its day, and today you are looking at a tidy fortune.

That is a Toonerville Trolley, foreground. At a current value upwards of $1,500, it is far from the most sought toy shown here.

What a treasure trove. Best Christmas ever, indeed, and ever growing in value.

Expression

The look on the kid's face says it all, and who can blame him?

Radio Rex

"Radio Rex" is considered to be the first "voice-controlled" toy - words spoken at a particular frequency (if I remember correctly) would cause a relay to cycle, pushing Rex out of his doghouse.

Radio Rex ?

"Radio Rex" is an interesting name for a dog.

I assume that this is a reflection of the radio use explosion that was occurring in 1922.

[Below: ads from 1922 and 1931. - Dave]

Play-ola

Isn't it great! just put "ola" after any word and it becomes so cool.

 
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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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