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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.

© 2019 SHORPY INC.

[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Nightline: 1920

Nightline: 1920

"Election night crowd at White House, November 1920." The chosen one was Warren Harding. National Photo Company glass negative. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5


The high resolution/quality really makes me appreciate the content on this one. It would be impossible to make out all these disgruntled faces on a picture half the size. One of the things I've always admired about Shorpy is not only the interesting subject matter, but the high quality of the images themselves. This is a shining example.

Hey Copper

I love the look of the cop on the left, nightstick ready for those who may step out of line. Didn't they carry guns back then?


At what age was it customary for boys to stop wearing knickers and put on their "big boy pants" like their fathers? The boys in this photo look to be in their teens.

Pipe the swell

What in the hell does pipe the swell mean?

[Pipe = slang for "look at." - Dave]

Not a slob in the entire crowd

As a previous poster mentioned, every single person in attendance is presentable, indicating respect for the occasion. Psychologists believe that well-dressed people also behave better and usually obey the law more conscientiously. (Tell that to Bernie Madoff and all the other white collar crooks who have absconded with our retirement accounts).

Criminal Mastermind?

Pipe the swell on the far right, gazing levelly at the camera. Oh, he's a cool one, all right.

Jeepers Creepers

Startled looks on some of them, indeed, Tipster. The Charles Boyerish fellow fourth from the left, in particular, has a whole lot of eyeball going on.

Holy cow!

Just about everybody in this alarming photo looks as if they'd "fit the profile" by today's tense standards. Were they all arrested just minutes later?

Top That

Not a hatless head in the entire crowd. And no man without a necktie. Wow.

Deer in the Headlights

It's surprising just how many people in this crowd are looking straight at the lens, and if startled to attention by the photographer, and just in time to lose their night vision for a few minutes to a burst of flash powder. I wonder what he said, or if he fired a track pistol.

Ia! Ia! Shub-Niggurath!

It's the so-called "Innsmouth look". I hear it's all the rage this year in Arkham, Massachusetts.

Patiently waiting for the black or white smoke

Patiently waiting for the black smoke or white smoke. Incredible resolution, is it a 8 x 10 plate?

[6 x 8, seen here at one-quarter resolution in the "full size" view. - Dave]


Check out the fourth guy from the left and his bulging eyes. Must have been a tense night.

Mrs. Wethen

The very indignant lady at the far left takes a wonderful picture! Mother of the loser?

SHORPY OLD 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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