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.
Vintage photos of:
April 1912. 10:30 p.m. at Center Market in Washington, D.C. Eleven-year-old celery vendor Gus Strateges, 212 Jackson Hall Alley. He sold until 11 p.m. and was out again Sunday morning selling papers and gum. Has been in this country only a year and a half. View full size. Photograph by Lewis Wickes Hine.
Waco, Texas. November 1913. Isaac Boyett: "I'm de whole show." The twelve-year-old proprietor, manager and messenger of the Club Messenger Service, 402 Austin Street. The photo shows him in the heart of the Red Light district where he was delivering messages as he does several times a day. Said he knows the houses and some of the inmates. Has been doing this for one year, working until 9:30 P.M. Saturdays. Not so late on other nights. Makes from six to ten dollars a week. View full size. Photograph by Lewis Wickes Hine. (Shorpynote: Isaac was born March 20, 1901, and died in May 1966 in Waco.)