The Shorpy Archive
 
6000+ fine-art prints suitable for framing. Desk-size to sofa-size and larger, on archival paper or canvas.
 
Join and Share

 
Social Shorpy

To love him is to like him. Our goal: 100k "likes":

 
Syndicate content
Syndicate content
Syndicate content
Daily e-mail updates:

 
 
 
 
Member Photos


Photos submitted by Shorpy members.

 
Colorized Photos


Colorized photos submitted by members.

 
About the Photos

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.

 
 
JUMP TO PAGE   100  >  200  >  300  >  400  >  500  >  600
VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • STAY ONE JUMP AHEAD OF TROUBLE, 1945

Capitol Gas: 1922

Capitol Gas: 1922

Washington, D.C., circa 1922. "Capitol gas station, First Street and Maryland Ave. S.W." National Photo Co. glass negative. View full size | Another view here.

 

Octane

At 28 cents per gallon gasoline was expensive in constant dollars. It was also 40 to 60 octane compared to regular today of 87 octane. It wasn't until the late 20's that octane ratings were increased with tetraethyl lead. Gasoline engines early 20's had a compression ratio not more than 4.3:1 compared to 10:1 or more today. The good old days.

Mental Invisibility

Thanks, the other pumps were right there and I didn't see them. Which reminds me of a story:

Years ago the legendary engineer Phil Irving was a houseguest and during a visit to my shop I asked him if he ever had the experience of laying a spanner down on the workbench, going elsewhere to do something, and upon returning the tool is just gone.

He told me it happens so often that he coined a term for it:
mental invisibility. The spanner is where you left it but you just don't see it in your mind. I've always wondered about this.

Jingle

"You can trust your car to the man who wears the star" The old advertising song popped into my mind when I saw the Texaco sign.

Pretty!

That has got to be the most beautiful gas station in the country!

Oil pumps

I have seen the old square bulk engine oil tanks with the hand pump to fill a spigot quart can. Such a can seems to be next to those three odd looking devices in front of the lattice fence. Are they fancy oil pumps?

[There are two sets of these in the photos. The ones on the left are labeled with signs. In the second photo they all have signs. - Dave]

Inflation

That 28 cents a gallon would be $3.57 in today's money.

 
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.

Syndicate content RSS | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Photo Use | © 2014 Shorpy Inc.