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:
Street corner, Brockton, Massachusetts. January 1941. Two blurry figures pass by a fire hydrant in this time exposure by Jack Delano. View full size. Using the 125 above the door and the street sign as clues, we were able to find this building in Google Maps: 125 Pleasant Street at North Warren Avenue. It's the building to the right with the white roof, and seems to be more or less unchanged. Some of the apartments above the store are on the market as condos. The building the photographer used as his vantage point has disappeared, replaced by a parking lot.
Children in the tenement district, Brockton, Massachusetts. December 1940. 4x5 Kodachrome transparency by Jack Delano. View full size. These houses, which look to have been built in the 1890s, must have been imposing in their day. Note the elaborate woodwork and intricate system of gutters and downspouts.
Santa Fe R.R. yard at night, Kansas City, Kansas. March 1943. 4x5 Kodachrome transparency by Jack Delano. <View full size. to see the light trails made by the yard workers' torches in this time exposure, as well as a phantom number (3167, at right) that must have been on a train that paused in front of the camera.
Children in the tenement district, Brockton, Massachusetts. December 1940. Photograph by Jack Delano. View full size. These duplexes must have been fairly grand when they were new, probably around the turn of the century. They look like the house where Granny and Tweety Bird lived. Are they still there?