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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 • ABOUT PARIS, 1895

Overheated Horse: 1910

Overheated Horse: 1910

"New York City: Horse overcome by heat." Circa 1910. View full size. George Grantham Bain Collection. Hopefully the equine ambulance was on its way.

 

Mane Street

I was born long enough ago to remember when horses were used on the streets of my hometown. It was always upsetting to witness the aftermath of a collision between a horse and a vehicle.

What was most upsetting, however, was to look up the block at the next intersection catching a glimpse of a horse that gotten loose, galloping by. Within a few seconds, a car passed in hot pursuit of the loose steed with someone standing on the running board holding on for dear life, arm outstretched in hopes of getting hold of the animal before it got in a horrendous accident.

I always felt sorry for these beasts of burden having to weave in amongst the vehicular traffic.

Some things never change...

It's amazing how dead horses draw the same kind of crowds today!

Kid on the right

I love the boy on the far right in the hat with the doofy smile. It obviously wasn't his horse.

Re: Humane Societies

From August 1911, a photo of "free shower baths for horses" somewhere in New York. Click to enlarge. G.G. Bain Collection.

Origin of Humane Societies

Some of the earliest humane societies and SPCA style organizations were started in the late 19th century because of scenes like these. Instead of dogs and cats, they were concerned with the welfare of the working horses. Lame or sick or overheated horses were often left to die.

p.s. The cheezburger jokes are so tired!

where are the cat photos?

[Yew with want fries? - Dave]

Equine Ambulance

Funny, why does the ambulance say "Alpo Factory" on the side?

What to do?

If only there was an establishment nearby where I could procure an alternative conveyance of transportation.

Scarred for life

My first thought upon seeing this was, "What a horrible thing for these children to see! I'll bet they were scarred for life, constantly seeing this poor horse in their worst nightmares. We need to think of the children...the children!"

But then I remembered that I'm not an overly-concerned, middle-aged parent who thinks their little smoochiekins is the most precious, beautiful thing to have ever graced God's green earth. Kids are tough. It's too bad people have forgotten that.

By the way, do you think someone was beating this dead horse? *Badump-dump*

 
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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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