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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.

 
 
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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • NORTH TUSCANY COAST, 1948

National Motor Club: 1920

National Motor Club: 1920

1920. "Times house, 922 New York Avenue." Photo taken for the Washington Times. Headquarters of the Washington, D.C., branch of the National Automobile Association, an early rival to the AAA. National Photo Co. View full size.

 

Blend

Nice mix of facades in these three buildings. Three solutions to one problem.

Nationality

Either every businessman was trying to keep up with the Joneses by naming their business National This or National That, or the National family held all the cards when it came to operating in this neck of the woods.

Free legal tubes

Free legal tubes, batteries....thank heavens. I was afraid they would be illegal tubes and batteries.

Anyone have any back story on the free legal tubes? Obviously they mean tubes for inside tires...but legal? I'm guessing it has something to do with being constructed to a specific standard.

Or perhaps they mean free legal all by itself, like free legal advice?

[Try reading across the emblem. - Dave]

A face at the window

Behind the lamppost.

Why Wait

My assumption is that the cobbler would be happy to fix the shoes immediately while you sat in those small booths in your stockinged (socked?) feet. His edge would be that he was paid on the spot. Alternatively, he would fix them later and wrap them and put them on the shelf with all those other packages of repaired footwear, waiting for the owners to get up enough money to bail them out. Hence the "Not Responsible for Goods Left Over 30 Days" signs with a statement that wasn't legal.

Shoe repair

There was a shoe repair place in my home town that had a sign that also read "shoes repaired while you wait."

I always assumed the sign meant that you could have your shoes repaired at the time they were brought in. That was until I took shoes in to be resoled and learned that I would wait at least a week while the shoes were repaired.

So the shoes would indeed be repaired while I waited!

 
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.

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