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About the Photos

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.

 
 
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Mod Cafe: 1943

Mod Cafe: 1943

Sept. 3, 1943. "U.S.O. canteen, Penn Station, Harrisburg, Pa. Serving bar." Our second look at this proto-Googie extravaganza, brought to you by Travelers Aid and the Pennsylvania Railroad. Gottscho-Schleisner photo. View full size.

 

Aerial Washington: 1911

Aerial Washington: 1911

Circa 1911. "Washington from Washington Monument." Points of interest in this first installment of a six-segment panoramic view include B Street (today's Constitution Avenue), running diagonally from the Potomac Electric powerhouse at lower left; Louisiana Avenue, branching off in the general direction of Union Station at upper right; the Old Post Office and its clock tower at left-center across Pennsylvania Avenue from the Raleigh Hotel under construction; the Agriculture Department greenhouses in the foreground with a corner of the Smithsonian "National Museum" at far right, just below Center Market; Liberty Market at upper left, below what looks to be a vast tent encampment; and, at right-upper-center, the Pension Office north of Judiciary Square and the District Court House. 8x10 glass negative, Detroit Publishing Co. View full size.

 

Exploded View: 1920s

Exploded View: 1920s

Washington, D.C., circa 1920s. "Wrecked house" is all it says on this undated (and moldy) 8x6 glass negative. Are there enough clues to fill in the blanks of this bricks-and-mortar mystery? National Photo Company. View full size.

 

BFF: 1938

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BFF: 1938

1938. Stuttgart, Germany. "Von der 6. Reichstagung der Auslandsdeutschen (Hitler Youth in tent during festivities for the 6th Annual National Days of Foreign Germans)." Photo by Heinrich Hoffmann, Kochstraße 10, Berlin. View full size.

The Rites of Spring: 1943

The Rites of Spring: 1943

        Step on a crack ...

June 1943. Arlington County, Virginia. "Arlington Farms, war duration residence halls. Sunbathers on the sidewalk in the back of Idaho Hall." Photo by Esther Bubley for the Office of War Information. View full size.

 

Alley Cad: 1954

Alley Cad: 1954

1954. Washington, D.C. "Hibbs Building, 15th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue. Exterior." 8x10 acetate negative by Theodor Horydczak. View full size.

 

Rugs & Bric-a-Brac: 1905

Rugs & Bric-a-Brac: 1905

Circa 1905. "Main Street -- Mackinac Island." Where pedestrians may avail themselves of Bailey's, a Buffet, Bazaar and Bric-a-Brac. View full size.

 
 
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THE 100-YEAR-OLD PHOTO BLOG
Shorpy.com | History in HD is a vintage photo blog featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1950s. The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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