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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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Shel and Jez: 1922

Shel and Jez: 1922

June 19, 1922. Washington, D.C. "Shelly & Jezebel." And that's all they wrote. National Photo Company Collection glass negative. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

I dunno about typical turtle names...

... but when I was quite small I had a tiny turtle that I named "Turdy". I didn't realize until much later why my older sister sniggered everytime I called it by that name. Obviously, "Shelly" is a much more suitable name! Fun photo.


I have a turtle named Toby....I think it's a great name!

A matter of taste

Cat: "Pretty good, huh?"

Turtle: "Blecchh! I don't see how you can eat this stuff! Give me some nice fat juicy grubworms any day!"

Another Shelly

A friend also has a turtle named Shelly. When he was a child (about 50 years ago) he and a chum each chose a small turtle from a pet store and named it Shelly. After a few years, he noticed he still had Shelly whereas his friend's turtle had died. He eventually became a biologist and discovered that Shelly was some sort of rare tortoise that typically lives 100 years or more.

He still has Shelly, 50 years on, and has put in his will that his niece is to take care of Shelly upon his demise.

I've always found that to be a fabulous story.

Getting along

Mice would get along better with cats, too, if they lived in a portable fortress and had bone-snapping beaks.

One nip is all it takes

When I was a kid I wagged my finger in front of a friend's box turtle. He gave me a good nip, thinking I was a juicy worm. If Jezebel ever put her nose too close to Shelly, she probably learned some respect for turtle power.

Turt Law

How can you NOT name a turtle Shelly?


So cool - why can't we humans get along like that?

Nine Lives: Worthwhile or not?

It's possible that Shelly is still with us. Jezebel, unfortunately, has most likely burned through all of her nine lives.

Are you a turtle?



How long before this shows up on I Can Has Cheezburger with a pithy caption?


A lapper and a snapper.

Turtle humor

"Shelly." I get it. Cute!

Still here?

I wonder if Shelly is still around, as box turtles can live to be 100 (although often much less than that in captivity, unfortunately).

Is "Shelly" the turtle equivalent of "Spot" or "Whiskers"?

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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