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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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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • THE TOY DEPARTMENT, 1913

Gold Coast: 1905

Gold Coast: 1905

Florida circa 1905. "The beach at Palm Beach." Making a cameo appearance here: our old friend Alligator Joe. Detroit Publishing glass negative. View full size.

 

A light perambulator, of adult size

Henry James, the great novelist of the American expatriate experience, made a ten-month return visit to the United States in 1904-05 and described his impressions in "The American Scene."

In Chapter 14, he describes tourists at Palm Beach traveling "by means of a light perambulator, of 'adult size,' but constructed of wicker-work, and pendent from a bicycle propelled by a robust negro."

And where were they going? To visit a citrus grove -- or, as James calls, it, a "jungle."

But they never get them wet!

For all that ocean, and all those bathing suits, somebody should be getting wet, yes?

Clothes

I don't know why half of them aren't dying of heatstroke. Especially the men in dark three-piece suits and hats. And in that salty and sandy environment... makes me itch just to look at them.

[It's winter, or thereabouts. - Dave]

Move along, folks

The crowd down by the water's edge is looking at something. The only thing we can see are the two guys in the rowboat and a few guys between them and the beach. Was something dangerous happening? Or does Alligator Joe have a new exhibit in the water?

CSI Miami - 1905

Someone call Horatio Kane - from the looks of the beach strollers, the remains of a homicide victim have been discovered off the boardwalk behind the wall. It's going to take the whole forensics team and trite dialogue to solve this case.

Finally some African-American faces!

They may not have been permitted on the beach, but at least they got to enjoy the sun and breeze while propping up signs and peddling velocipede-chairs.

Swimming Attire

Is the person to the left of the umbrella actually wearing a tie in the water? I didn't realize Palm Beach was so dressy back when.

 
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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