Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.
Vintage photos of:
One hundred years ago -- yet it seems like just yesterday that we first posted this.
New York, December 1913. "Christmas tree, Madison Square." 8x10 glass negative, G.G. Bain Collection. View full size. Happy holidays from Shorpy!
From the "Linda" Kodachromes circa 1952 comes this Dutch door festively attired with spruce wreath and merry-maker. Won't you come in? View full size.
December 1942. "New York. R.H. Macy & Company department store the week before Christmas. Children line up to talk with Santa Claus. There are two Santas, concealed from one another by a labyrinth to prevent disillusionment of the children. Each child is presented with candy and tells Santa his or her desires." Photo by Marjory Collins for the Office of War Information. View full size.
December 1953. Continuing the Look magazine series "night photographs of houses decorated for Christmas." You know what they say about people who live in glass houses -- they don't throw Christmas parties. At least not until they can afford curtains. From photos by Jim Hansen and Bob Lerner. View full size.
Pennsylvania circa 1958. This little boy was evidently on the "nice" list. (Isn't it funny how Santa and Uncle Bert have the same eyeglasses?) Note the abundance of mid-century tchotchkes. 35mm Kodachrome found on eBay. View full size.
From around 1953, in a bathroom somewhere in New England, comes this curious Kodachrome from the "Linda" series of slides that your webmaster found on eBay. This would be a much less precarious scenario if the household observed a strict lid-down protocol. In any case we have a Christmas party to get back to, but business before pleasure. Excuse us for a sec, will you? View full size.