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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 • SUMMER IN ITALY, 1951

Rhapsody in Brick: 1940

Rhapsody in Brick: 1940

December 1940 or January 1941. "Detail of industrial building in Massachusetts." 35mm Kodachrome transparency by Jack Delano. View full size.

 

Blue Skies

The blue of that sky brings tears to my eyes. Hooray for Kodachrome.

Powerhouse

This looks like the powerhouse for a factory, as evidenced by the whistle and steam exhaust stacks. I wonder if the engine(s) pulled a lineshaft or generators.

The Height of Humankind's Creativity

I'm sure that the architect who designed the industrial building with smokestack often said, "This was my greatest achievement, thank goodness they used brick. I weep for the future."

Beautiful brickwork.

You're right,it is pleasing to the eye. But look at that newer brickwork on the right; at first sight it looks like a cavity wall outer skin with all the stretchers showing, but in fact every seventh course is stretcher, header, stretcher, header, which makes it more likely to be a solid nine inch wall. Is this a well-known American bond? I don't remember ever seeing it before.

The warmth of brick

How much more pleasing to the eye is the brick structure than one made of grey concrete? This is from the days when artisans, not labourers, turned an architect's design into reality. Anyone can mix concrete but it takes talent to lay a course of bricks correctly.

 
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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