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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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Engine 15: 1910

Engine 15: 1910

Washington, D.C., circa 1910. "Engine Company No. 15." Ten firemen and their firedog. Harris & Ewing Collection glass negative. View full size.


Engine Company 15 Rescue

Engine Company 15 Rescue Squad 3 is where I spent 16 of the best years of my career. Dave I hope you dig up some more pictures of the Old House.


Topright missed a button. Love the watch chains.

Maltese Cross

Ah the good old days of firefighting, when the value of a man was measured by the size of his mustash mustache.

The hat badges are a Maltese Cross for firefighters -- a single horn for the lieutenant an two horns for the captain in the middle. We still use very similar rankings nowadays.


Nine coats button left to right, one right to left. Seven bow ties, three neckties. Eight of one hat badge, two of another.

Engine 15 Now

2009 Engine 15 -- 2101 14th St SE, Washington.

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Engine 15 Then

Some Firedog

That hound's not a firedog!

THE 100-YEAR-OLD PHOTO BLOG | 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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