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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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William Suarez Prieto: 1943

William Suarez Prieto: 1943

"To Ernest. Sincerely, William Suarez Prieto, Panama, 1943." There are two addresses for William, one in Panama City, Panama, the other in Sancti Spiritus, Cuba; and the words "agua dulce." View full size.

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Prieto is a very common last name in Latin America too. I've also seen some small towns been called "Agua Dulce" too, mostly those towns where, in ancient days, there was a largish source of sweet water.


"Agua Dulce" translates to sweet water. I think there was an alcoholic beverage in the old days with that name in Cuba. "Prieto" means dark and was a common nickname for dark-skinned Cubans (sometimes derogatory in later years).

Zoot Suit Riots

Dressed in his finest Zoot Suit, in 1943 the year of the infamous "Zoot-Suit Riots" in Los Angeles.

Style Incarnate

He embodies perfectly the adage that "Fashions come and go, but style is forever."

The Good Old Days

When mustaches were thin and trousers were wide.


Is William Suarez Prieto famous? I've never heard of him, if he is.

Delusions of grandeur

Not on the part of the cool and pretty William -- as he is grand -- but on mine, as the photo was shot in Havana, during the years that a famous author named Ernest owned a home near there. I don't really believe Ernest is "the" Ernest -- but it is possible!

Technical question

Does anybody with darkroom savvy know how they achieved the embossed watermark effect?

[With an embosser. - Dave]

In Webster's you'll see him listed as...

the epitome of suave.

You can't be "that" cool ...

unless you "know" you're cool! Great portrait.

Mi Haberdasher...

...been berra, berra good to me!

William, Prince of Cats

Even if I live several lifetimes, I'll never be that cool.

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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