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:
February 1937. Gee's Bend, Alabama. Descendants of former slaves of the Pettway Plantation. They are still living under primitive conditions there. Meat in sacks hangs from tree limbs to be cured. Medium format nitrate negative by Arthur Rothstein for the Farm Security Administration. View full size.
1865. Charleston, South Carolina. Archibald McLeish's Vulcan Iron Works on Cumberland Street. Left half of glass-plate stereograph, from photographs of the Federal Navy and seaborne expeditions against the Atlantic Coast of the Confederacy, 1863-1865. View full size. Note the unusually elaborate sign, as well as what seem to be the giant wheels of an artillery carriage.
1943. Japanese-American internees at the Manzanar War Relocation Center in California. "Players involved in a football game on a dusty field, buildings and mountains in the distance. Note: Be sure and straighten horizon when printing." Medium-format nitrate negative by Ansel Adams. View full size.