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:
October 1938. Fire station at Greenhills, Ohio, a planned community built by the federal government (Suburban Division of the Resettlement Administration) during the Depression. The image, scanned from a print, is a composite, with the utility pole and fire alarm superimposed; the asphalt was retouched with an airbrush. View full size. The fire station photo is by John Vachon.
June 1942. Fort Knox, Kentucky. "A good job in the air cleaner of an Army truck. This Negro soldier, who serves as truck driver and mechanic, plays an important part in keeping Army transport fleets in operation." View full size. 4x5 Kodachrome transparency by Alfred Palmer for the Office of War Information.
January 1942. Bantam, Connecticut. "Defense homes. The heating unit is in the kitchen of Fred Heath's four-room apartment in the new federally-financed homes for 80 families just a few minutes from the Warren McArthur factory in Bantam. The well-insulated coal fire puts steam in the radiators and provides the heat for cooking. The tenants are well-pleased although on several nights when the temperature dropped to 10 degrees below zero they were forced to replenish the fuel every two or three hours. That cigarette Fred Heath holds is not tailor-made, by the way -- he likes to roll his own." View full size. Medium-format nitrate negative by Howard Hollem for the Office for Emergency Management.