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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.

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[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Dishpan Hans: 1937

Dishpan Hans: 1937

September 1937. Effie, Minnesota. "Washing dishes in lumber camp." Medium format negative by Russell Lee, Farm Security Administration. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

More than just "pride"

I think he probably had a lot of "Pride and Joy" in his work.

I'll show my son this!

My 16 YO son works at a restaurant where he usually has to wash dishes. He does it using modern equipment, of course, but is still much happier when they let him do something else. I think maybe this picture might help him feel like he doesn't have it so bad, though! I wonder how many hours this poor young man had spent standing in front of that sink, and how many he still had to go!

Obvious Statement

Unless Dave is reviewing a similar comment not yet posted, let me be the first to note that:

This young man has a lot of Pride (tm) in his work.

[You may groan now]

All I can make out on the boxes is Pride Washing Powder. Performing a quick search online I found nothing - but Dave found the following images:

Gotta say

That he's a fellow with a lot of Pride in his work.

Who made this mess?

There are only about 90 people in Effie. Must have been more in 1937, when there were still trees to cut.

[This was a lumber camp near the town. The lumberjack population being somewhat transient. - Dave]

Definition of Rustic

Wow! Now that's a no-frills setup. I'd give my last molar to get a glimpse in the "sink." What do you want to bet he's got a couple of wash tubs in there? Nary a speck of porcelain in sight.

[Except on all those dishes. - Dave]

199, 198, 197 ...

It looks like he had to do a lot of washing by the amount of dishes in the picture.


Tacked up on the window frame just above his head is a rather bawdy picture of a young lady.

Maybe she is his only company in the kitchen, besides all those huge coffee pots hanging up. Seeing all those big coffee pots makes me want a good cup of coffee too.

Behind in his work

At least when the young man tired of scrubbing, he could look up and see the nice view! *wink*, *wink*

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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