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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.

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[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Central Market: 1942

Central Market: 1942

November 1942. "Central Market in Lancaster, Pennsylvania." 4x5 nitrate negative by Marjory Collins for the Office of War Information. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

Market Baskets

I live near Lancaster, and so know that the community is mostly "upright Christian" -- the Pennsylvania Dutch values of keeping things neat as a pin are in evidence here. Mostly I was surprised by how many women had market baskets. I didn't realize that they were still so common in 1940's, but then this is Lancaster, so maybe the baskets were part of the plain approach.


Wow, it does look remarkably similar to what it looks like now. Except for the streets being changed to pedestrian walkways, I would think that picture was just shot in black and white yesterday. I go there every Saturday -- fresh fruit, vegetables, meat and milk can always be had. Its a very cool place to visit.

Love the Central Market

I live in Lancaster and try to make it to this market as often as possible. The streets around this market are still the original stone or brick. The scenery has not changed much at all besides the new convention center they are just about to complete. Other then that, this area is a blast from the past.


Wow, the first one I've seen of downtown Lancaster (small as that may be) on Shorpy! It's still a thriving little area, and Central Market is still a great place to get lunch on Tuesday and Saturday. I used to work in an office down the alley where the red truck is in the new picture. Our office had very dark tinted windows, so during the day the windows were closer to a mirror to people outside (and vice versa at night inside). A favorite past time was to laugh at all the people picking their teeth or adjusting their bras in front of the window, not knowing there were three or four people right in front of them watching.

Ahhh, I miss Lancaster!

Travel time

Our great interstate highway system really reduced travel time in the Eastern states. In 1939 it was a two day trip from Detroit to Philadelphia because of driving through, not around, cities like Lancaster. Same trip today takes half the time.

19 and 6

Interesting how similar the entire scene is today. Pedestrians now rule the road as cars are banned. In 1945, all of the 19 people are slender, as are the 6 people in the new view.

For once, a lack of change

The view is remarkably similar today.

[They covered over all that gray paint. I like it! - Dave]

Looks European

I think that may be because the streets look so clean. And they're oddly angled. Looks more like a European street scene. You're right. It does look like a set. Striking.

Is it still there? Yep.

A movie set

is what comes to mind. Something artificial about this scene.

SHORPY HISTORICAL 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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