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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 • STAY ONE JUMP AHEAD OF TROUBLE, 1945

Mrs. T and Trailer: 1925

Mrs. T and Trailer: 1925

Washington, D.C., 1925. "Mrs. Carl T. Thoner with 'Trailer.' " National Photo Company Collection glass negative. View full size.

 

Rose and Carl

Carl Thoner's most famous photo was taken in 1918, of Mrs. Woodrow Wilson christening the Quistconck (renamed, after Lend Lease, the Empire Falcon), the first ship built at Hog Island, near Philadelphia. When the photo of Rose and Trailer was taken he was probably working for the old Washington Times.

His last few months weren't particularly kind. He was the foreman of a Florida grand jury that indicted nine WPA officials for corruption, and soon thereafter, the WPA fired him from his job as a photographer. Westbrook Pegler smelled scandal and retaliation, and made his firing national news, in order to embarrass the WPA and Roosevelt. A few months before Thoner's death, Pegler wrote that Thoner "is not strong physically and naturally is much upset."

Setting

I wonder what the story is with the setting. A striking photo of a nicely dressed woman and her dog in what appears to be a vacant lot. Why not someone's lawn, or maybe a park?

Pierogies anyone?

Surely this is not the same "Mrs. T" who makes the famous frozen Polish pierogies, right?

Rose Forrest Thoner

Based on census records and Carl's obit, her name is Rose Forrest Thoner, age 33 at the time of the photo.

Boy, what a gorgeous dog!

Boy, what a gorgeous dog! Mrs. Thoner has some great leather cut-outs on her shoes. The camera has caught some pretty amazing detail, there.

Rose Forest Thoner

Here is Rose Forest Thoner, born Aug. 11, 1891, in Ohio; died Aug. 5, 1981, in Tampa. Rose was the wife of newspaper photographer Carl Thorwald Thoner, born Nov. 30, 1888, in Massachusetts, died Dec. 14, 1938, in Florida; buried in Arlington National Cemetery. He was a lieutenant in the Signal Corps.

In the census of 1920 the couple were living in Washington, D.C., with three boarders. There seems to be no listing for any children for Rose and Carl.

 
THE 100-YEAR-OLD PHOTO BLOG
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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