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.
Vintage photos of:
November 1910. Birmingham, Alabama. "John Tidwell, doffer in Avondale Mills." A closeup of the boy seen earlier today, this image was extracted from a scan of the original 5x7 glass negative, as opposed to the print used for the group shot. View full size. From a photograph by Lewis Wickes Hine.
1942. Inglewood, California. Riveting team working on the cockpit shell of a C-47 heavy transport at North American Aviation. "The versatile C-47 performs many important tasks for the Army. It ferries men and cargo across the oceans and mountains, tows gliders and brings paratroopers and their equipment to scenes of action." View full size. 4x5 Kodachrome transparency by Alfred Palmer for the Office of War Information. Happy Valentine's Day from Shorpy!
Shorpy is a year old today! Thanks to the many thousands of visitors and commenters and contributors who have helped make this Web site the remarkable place that it is. And of course we wouldn't be here without the efforts of the photographers whose pictures appear here, and the conservators and archivists who have preserved their work and made it available online through the Library of Congress. This might also be a good time to reflect on the life of our namesake, Shorpy Higginbotham, whose likeness animates these pages and spirit inhabits them. And now on with the show. Only a zillion more pictures to go . . .