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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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Primary Colors: 1943

Primary Colors: 1943

February 1943. Milwaukee, Wisconsin. "War production workers at the Heil Co. making gasoline trailer tanks for the Army Air Corps. Elizabeth Little, age 30, mother of two, spraying small parts. Her husband runs a farm." 4x5 Kodachrome transparency by Howard Hollem, Office of War Information. View full size.


Zinc chromate

Why is Mrs. Little not wearing gloves to protect those beautifully manicured hands from yellow paint?

Is that blue outfit the factory-issued work coveralls for her home clothing? (So why are the sleeves so short? Why no hair covering?)

Or is that blue outfit her everyday clothing when she is not painting? (So why is it not protected here against paint smears?)

[The ladies were usually posed for these OWI Kodachromes without gloves and such. - Dave]

THE 100-YEAR-OLD PHOTO BLOG | 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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