SHORPY Historic Photo Archive & Fine-Art Prints
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About the Photos

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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Ghost Town: 1913

Ghost Town: 1913

Washington, D.C., circa 1913. "The Mode -- Hatters and Haberdashers, 11th and F." National Photo Company Collection glass negative. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

A minor correction...

The Stieff family that made STIEFF PIANOS were cousins of the "Silver Stieff's" The Preakness cup is called the WOODLAWN VASE. While Kirk Stieff closed in 1999, the Woodlawn Vase is still provided to the Preakness today.. thru James Stieff.

Photos of The Stieff Company, the Woodlawn Vase and silver being made are available at THESTIEFFCOMPANY.COM, a free site.


Below is the identical view from September of 2009.

Moving Pianos

Stieff Piano moved to the next block in 1917, making room for the United Cafeteria, seen in this Shorpy photo.



Poor man's Steinway

Stieff pianos were manufactured in Baltimore from 1842 until 1951. They were commonly sold by Steinway dealers as a durable, high-quality affordable alternative. I owned a Stieff upright for many years.

The Stieff family also produced Stieff silver, and made the Preakness cup until the company closed its Baltimore facility in 1999.

Many ghosts but no Spooky Guy

Where is the obligatory spooky person in a window? I thought that was a law or something.

The Player Piano building is still there!

You can see the building from which Culley & Sons sold Kimball pianos and organs is still there among the taller DC office buildings.

[The innards are gone but they left the facade. A nice touch in my opinion. - Dave]

View Larger Map


How long was the exposure that so many of the people only appear as ghosts?

[Three paces. - Dave]

Stieff competition

Right around the corner is Kimballs' pianos. Easy comparison shopping for the best deal


On the left, barely in the picture, is a partially visible wall with a list of products painted on it. Obviously a drug store of some size. The Coca Cola company, in their advertising wisdom, commands the top and bottom of the signage. They probably paid for the entire sign and both the druggist and the Coca-Cola bottler got his money's worth.

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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