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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.

© 2018 SHORPY INC.

[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Mid-Century Picnic

Mid-Century Picnic

I'm sorry I don't know the specific years of some of my photos as the paper slips they're in don't have dates written on them. But if I had to hazard a guess I'd say this photo is from the early '60s. Does anyone know what the container with the yellow lid contains (unless it's just a regular container that happens to have a bull on it). Scanned from a Kodak safety negative. View full size.

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How to slice ham

It looks like the ladies are supervising the slicing of ham.

If I squint it looks like the cow on the yellow container has horns. Perhaps it contains milk as there is a coffee pot.

No Tupperware or Rubbermaid

I'm struck by the total absence of plastic or injection molded rubber containers on this table, which even by the late fifties had been adopted by my mom for transporting all sorts of foods and beverages to picnics, potlucks and church bake sales. Looks like your family members were veteran outdoor eaters. Those metal beverage containers evoke forgotten memories of displays in the camping section of fifties sporting goods stores and hardware stores. I think the green jug had been in production since at least the mid-1930s. And the plaited-splint picnic basket looks like it had been on campaigns since then or even before. After inheriting my parents' house about a year ago I've been turning up things like these in the very stuffed garage and in the back of the kitchen cabinets.

That yellow jug

makes me think of Sun Tea.

The other yellow container

The one on the bench, a box for a Kodak Brownie Starflash Outfit, undoubtedly the camera used to shoot this picture. The Starflash was made from 1957 to 1965, and was a brother of sorts to my Brownie Starmite II that I used in 1960-62. Both used 127 film that produced square images, one benefit being that slides fit into 2X2 mounts compatible with 35mm slide projectors.


Since there are three of them, my guess is that one is spiked. Well, at least that is what my dad would do. Couldn't hide it, though, because every professed teetotaler (male with the exception of my sister and me) would gather around like bees. I always wondered who they thought they were fooling.

Yellow container

It looks like one that a friend had that was used for iced tea.


Methinks the man is doing something the ladies think he is quite unable to do and they're ready to step in and take over!

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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