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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 • CARNIVAL OF THE ARTS, 1937

Sands of Glen Echo: 1943

Sands of Glen Echo: 1943

July 1943. Glen Echo, Maryland. "Sun bathers on the sand beach at the swimming pool in the Glen Echo amusement park." In the foreground: The photographer's sisters Claire and Enid Bubley. Photo by Esther Bubley, OWI. View full size.

 

The white swimming cap.

My mom is Claire -- the one closest to the camera with the white swimming cap. I'll ask her whether the third woman, the one with sand on her back, was with them.

And if you happen to run across any Esther Bubley photos of a wedding, please let me know. Esther took photos of my mom's wedding--it was either 1947 or 1948--but never was able to find them, or at least never made any prints (that my mom is aware of). So, the wedding remains photo-less.

[The archive of Esther's 2,100 photos taken for the government is here. - Dave]

Hey, I'm next, darn it

Sad to see so many people waiting to use that solitary beach chair. I sure hope the guy with ankle grabbed didn't forget his swim trunks again.

That's my Mom!

Wow! Esther Bubley was my aunt, so I've seen a lot of her photos. I have some of hers--that she printed--in my home. And when I was maybe 6 years old, she took a series of me and my sister.

But I'd never seen this one, or any that she'd taken at Glen Echo. Interestingly, another sister--Anita--would move close to Glen Echo (in Bannockburn, just across the road) about 10 years later. Anita died a few years ago, but her husband, Harry, still lives there. And I have some nice memories of Glen Echo from when I was a kid, back around 1960.

Thanks for the memories.

[You're welcome! Which one is your mom? - Dave]

I love you

Claire and Enid.

Foy
Las Vegas

Tan Am

"Sandy" is going to have one goofy looking sunburn when the day is done. Rookie mistake.

I'm becoming an Esther Bubley fan

This is such an eloquent picture of everyday people. Unobtrusive, not calling attention to itself, just capturing a moment in a way that presents it most beautifully.

I also love the picture of the two kids watching the parade. I'm sure they and their parents treasured this photograph! It's so real, authentic, representative, unposed, and funny, all at the same time.

A lyin in the sand

Here we see indisputable proof of the efficacy of the beach towel.

Another Photographic Argument

For the classic Bikini.

One piece

In the background, I notice that the topless male bathing suit is making its historical appearance. Shudder! (At least in most cases.)

Two-Piece

I've always loved those two-piece swimsuits in cheerful prints that were so popular during the war! A good deal more flattering to most women's bodies than the totally unforgiving bikini

 
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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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