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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 • BUY WAR SAVINGS STAMPS, c. 1918

Beantown Bathers: 1906

Beantown Bathers: 1906

South Boston, Massachusetts, circa 1906. "Bathing at City Point." 8x10 inch dry plate glass negative, Detroit Publishing Company. View full size.

 

Bygone boats

A great collection of catboats, sloops and schooners, plus a couple of Noman's Land boats and apparently electric launches.

Makes me itch

When viewing these beach scenes all I can think about is the salt and sand working its way under those dark, heavy, sometimes wet clothes (and hats). It must have been a miserable feeling, but I guess that was an acceptable level of misery back then.

And you can get there on the MTA!

One of trolley cars in the previous photo was heading to City Point. There must have been public changing rooms with lockers.

I Just Knows

That gal under the left umbrella is as cute as they come.

The Bobbing Question

I wonder if there is a shark harpooned to each of those barrels.

The blue-lipped boy

Looking at this photo, I was reminded of my youth at beaches and mudholes where we would go for a swim to cool off on summer afternoons and immediately realized that there was always at least one frail kid who would turn sort of grayish-white immediately upon exiting the water and invariably would start shaking and his teeth would chatter uncontrollably and his lips would turn blue. Then he would rush to wherever he left his clothes, cover up with everything he had while he wrapped his arms around himself and just trembled until the sun warmed him up again. There is one particular child seen from the back near the middle of this picture who looks like a little tent with a hat on. I think he was one of those kids. Seems there is one in every crowd.

 
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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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