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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 • PROTECT HER FROM TUBERCULOSIS

American Dream: 1942

American Dream: 1942

February 1942. Akron, Ohio. Firestone Rubber. "Conversion. Beverage containers to aviation oxygen cylinders. After shatterproof oxygen cylinders for high altitude flying have passed all tests in the metal division of a large Eastern rubber factory, hot air is blown through the cylinders to remove all trace of moisture. The cylinders are then sealed and stacked for painting." 4x5 nitrate negative by Alfred Palmer for the Office of War Information. View full size.

 

Air mortars

I used to work in the special effects craft for the movie industry, and these tanks, when we could find them, made great air cannons. We'd cut a two-inch hole in one end, and weld on a half-coupling. To this would be connected a big ball-valve, with an air ram and solenoid valve rigged onto it, so we could remotely "dump" the tank instantly. Often there would be a big funnel screwed to the ball-valve's outlet, and with lightweight debris loaded into the funnel, you could safely simulate an explosion, like a mortar hit on a battlefield.

Farktory Job

Private Enterprise

An enterprising company (Sanborn) bought a bunch of these after the war and used them to make portable air compressors. I used to own one.

Invasion

I think I have seen pictures of these alien pod things before.

 
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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