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:
My grandfather Peter Lawrence, left, and his son Harry operated a welding and blacksmith shop in Erie, PA from the 1920s to 1948, when Peter died. They began by shoeing horses, but with the advent of cars, they switched mainly to heating, tempering and sharpening chisels and other steel devices used by the city workers who operated air hammers in street construction and repair. Peter was a native of Riga, Latvia and never learned to drive or to speak English.
Look closely at the cars on the Ferris Wheel. They're huge--like small train cars almost--exactly what I imagined the cars on the original Ferris Wheel looked like at the 1893 World's Fair in Chicago. This Ferris Wheel appears to have been located in Paris, according to the writing on the bottom of the photo. I can't be absolutely positive, obviously (if anyone just so happens to be sure of the location, please let me know). According to my estimation (some of the cars are obscured by the building at the bottom), it even has 36 cars, like the original Ferris Wheel.
I read in The Devil In The White City (a fantastic book by Erik Larson) that each of the cars on the original Ferris Wheel weighed 13 tons, bringing the total to about 1 million tons.
Diamond Bar, California, August 1965. The owner of the MG across the street isn't having quite as good a day as my niece and nephew. I shot this on 35mm Kodachrome. View full size.
Looks like I've got at least a pair of kings, so I'm pretty happy. Can't quite read my future brother-in-law's expression. He's either wary, amused, or maybe he's just glad that I've grown out of the kick-sister's-boyfriends-in-the-shins phase and now just challenge them to a friendly game of five card draw.
I always liked to have a glass with a finger or two of Pepsi on the table; looked sorta like it could be whiskey and we were in a saloon in a western movie. 2-1/4 square Kodacolor negative.