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:
At the Palm Springs parade in February 1955. I found this 35mm Kodachrome slide in a collection at a swap meet. View full size.
Another in a series of Kodachromes taken by my dad in the late 1950s as he traversed the country with wife and daughter in tow. View full size.
My grandmother Myrtie Crabtree (first girl from the left) with her parents John and Ida Higginson Crabtree, and brothers, late 1903 or before Spring 1904. Others may be relatives or their neighbors, the Pence family. Photo’s original border: J.J. Wall, Gross, Nebr.
Around May 1892, the Crabtree family moved (because of terrible dust storms) from their sod house on homestead land near Norden, Nebraska, to Bonesteel (near the Rosebud Sioux Reservation). Bonesteel the town was just starting. My great-grandfather John was the Postmaster at the trading post for six years. After the Postmaster position, John owned a the wagon shop where he fixed buggies and wagons.
Sometime after spring 1904, the Crabtree family moved to a farm in Mondamin, Iowa. John had traded his successful business (mud and all) in Bonesteel, for property he had not seen. Myrtie, her dad and brother had typhoid fever in Iowa, possibly contracted in Bonesteel, where many people had been sick with typhoid before they left. View full size.
This is my great-grandfather John Crabtree, last seen in the Bonesteel photo. After living in several locations, John and Ida moved to Long Pine, Nebraska, where John had an up-to-date shoe repair shop from about 1912 to 1921. He then moved his equipment to his home, also in Long Pine.
Great-Grandpa had polio when he was around six (1861) that left his right leg paralyzed. The story is that John learned shoemaking so he could make specialty shoes to fit himself and others. In Long Pine (according to his daughter Myrtie), John was known for how perfectly he made shoes. Workmen on the Railroad (including the conductor) brought him shoes to work on from all along the line, because he did such good work. View full size.
This picture was taken in the early to mid-60s. My Uncle Wayne was in the Army. This was taken as he completed training before he headed for Germany. He was born and raised in Louisiana and Texas. View full size.
None the worse for wear, this engine in 1960 struck a moose which was thrown into a switch, leading to the locomotive's derailment. Fortunately, there were no injuries (excepting the moose). Built by General Motors' Electromotive Division in 1953, this FP7A served Alaska Rail until 1986. Traded a couple times since then, 1512 retains the same number today but with a bright new livery, pulling sightseer excursion trains out of Sedona, Arizona for the Verde Canyon Railroad. Scanned negative from the Frank Burch photo collection. View full size.
Our dear darling Myrtle, who was our live-in babysitter as long as I can remember, holds puppy Tobie. Me holding the cat and my sister. Our very first dog Daisy who was expecting when my dad brought her home after she was abandoned. Daisy died giving birth and the neighbor next door had the cat which had recently had kittens. That cat nursed those puppies and saved them. We kept one, named her Daisy 2, and gave the others away. The cat and puppies made news and was pictured in the Binghamton Press.