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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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The Ponce: 1905

The Ponce: 1905

St. Augustine, Florida, circa 1905. "Court of the Ponce de Leon Hotel." 8x10 inch dry plate glass negative, Detroit Publishing Company. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

They were probably trying to stay cool

1905 was before most places had Air Conditioning, so it was probably unbearably hot inside. It is a different concept than today when being outside during the hottest part of the day is foreign to us. The wicker chairs allowed the wind to flow through, cooling them off a little when the wind was blowing.

[Florida was a winter resort -- keeping cool in January was not a problem. - Dave]

That is

GLORIOUSLY beautiful! Can I go there now? Where is Doc Brown and his DeLorean?

Flagler's legacy

Henry Flagler built these fanciful hotels up and down both coasts of Florida, apparently. They were destination spots for the railroad line he built, including the Overseas Railway to Key West. There's another amazing hotel-turned-college in Tampa. Looks like a Moorish pavilion.

Still nice

A beautiful place then as it is now. I've toured it and it is still positively gorgeous.

No Time Travel Required

St. Augustine's old Ponce de Leon Hotel is still there in all its glory; only now days they call it Flagler College. If you've got the tuition, you can even stay there!


Randy Newman must have seen this photo before he wrote; "It's a jungle out there."

It's still there for you

I'm a native Floridian with fond memories of "Old Time Florida", not as old as in this image but the way Florida was even 50 years ago.

My fav place nowadays is St Augustine. All those magnificent buildings build by Flagler are still there and the atmosphere is relaxed and carefree. Even older structures dating to the 1500's attest to the claim as "America's First City". You can spend mucho bucks on luxury or nada on the simple pleasure of enjoying the atmosphere. There are several 'character' bars where you might expect to meet the likes of Hemingway. Go there and you will not be disappointed.

A View from the Outside

It really is quite something left over from a different era.


I was born in the wrong age. God, what a beautiful place! I'd like to be there right now. Having a nice chat with the gentlemen and drinking some tea (or even Moxie). Looks so peaceful, so sunny, so perfect! Gotta get an omni.

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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