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.
Vintage photos of:
May 1864. "Rappahannock River, Virginia. Ruins of bridge at Germanna Ford, where the troops under General Grant crossed May 4." Wet plate glass negative by Timothy O'Sullivan. View full size. (Though the caption on the negative sleeve says Rappahannock, Germanna Ford seems to have been on the Rapidan River.)
December 16, 1963. Fire destroys the old gymnasium at the College of Marin in Kentfield, California. Arson suspected. The building had already been condemned for public assembly and was scheduled for demolition. In a way, the beginning of the end of the mission revival architecture of this institution, of which nothing remains on the present campus. Also: 1960 Thunderbird; vintage Van Pelt fire engine, but I can't identify the original truck make. Plus a really vintage, even for 1963, pedestrian signal at the extreme left. 35mm Kodachrome. View full size.
A New Jersey lunch counter and soda fountain circa 1950. View full size.