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:
June 1913. Poughkeepsie, New York. "Washington Varsity 8." View full size. George Grantham Bain Collection. So why do some of the rowers in these pictures (above, and also two men here) have bandaged abs ... chafing from where the oars hit? Intra-crew knife fights?
A world's record 384-pound black sea bass caught by Franklin Schenck of Brooklyn with rod and reel off Catalina Island, California, on August 17, 1900. View full size
Just in from NASA, a spectacular image assembled from 48 frames taken by the Hubble Space Telescope of the Carina Nebula 7500 light-years away, which means we are seeing these stars as they were in 5500 BC — making this the oldest picture on Shorpy so far. The bright star at left is Eta Carinae, which can be seen throwing off two enormous lobes of gas prior to exploding — possibly in the next few thousand years, maybe tomorrow — as a titanic supernova. We're offering this as a JG fine art print, made using NASA's 480mb master file.
Four prize winners in the 1922 beauty show at Washington Bathing Beach, Washington, D.C. Left to right: Gay Gatley, Eva Fridell, Anna Neibel, Iola Swinnerton. View full size. National Photo Company Collection.