SHORPY Historic Photo Archive & Fine-Art Prints
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About the Photos

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.

© 2018 SHORPY INC.

[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Blinds, Frames: 1940

Blinds, Frames: 1940

April 1940. "Dubuque, Iowa. Sash and door mill." 35mm nitrate negative by John Vachon for the Farm Security Administration. It's a Vachon-a-rama here at Shorpy, thanks to high-resolution versions of this photographer's 35mm work being recently made available online by the Library of Congress. View full size.

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Farley & Loetscher

This is the Farley & Loetscher Manufacturing Company at 750 White Street. The building is still standing, but the original parapet has been covered over, along with the tops of the upper row of windows, and the painted wording on the upper edifice has been sandblasted off leaving a row or lighter colored bricks encircling the structure. A recent photo of the building is below.

Farley & Loetscher was originally founded by Christian Loetscher in 1875. By 1879 Jesse Farley had joined the firm, and he had invested $85,000 for the firm's new building. The company grew to such an extent that it eventually had it's own electrical plant and telephone system. The wood, shavings, and sawdust leftover from the manufacturing processes was gathered up, shredded, and then fed into a furnace to heat the various plants. Their buildings, except for a few warehouses, were all interconnected by a series of bridges over the city roads. Employment eventually peaked at 1,250, but increasing wages and lower demand for millwork eventually caused the firm to be purchased in 1960 by Clear Fir Sales Company. The firm ended production in April 1962. An advertisement form the 1939 Dubuque city directory below shows the wide array of products available from the firm.

The Encyclopedia Dubuque states that the firm made the millwork for the Navy torpedo boat Ericsson and Revenue Cutter Windom, the interior of the Willard Hotel in Washington, and the outer doors of the main chambers of the U.S. Supreme Court, in addition to many other structures.

A good smoke

I'm old enough to recall the billowing smokestack being a symbol of prosperity.

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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