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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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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • FLY CANADIAN PACIFIC, c. 1950s

Cars+Trucks

Formal Thursday: 1903

Formal Thursday: 1903

November 1903. "General office, Leland & Faulconer Manufacturing Co., Detroit." At left: Henry Leland, founder of both the Cadillac and Lincoln motor car brands. 8x10 inch glass negative, Detroit Photographic Co. View full size.

 

Weaverville: 1934

Weaverville: 1934

March 10, 1934 "Weaverville, Trinity County, California. General view looking west." Not much evidence of a Great Depression other than the NRA sign in a store window. Photo by Roger Sturtevant for the Historic American Buildings Sur­vey. We wonder if he ever crossed paths with Dorothea Lange. View full size.

 

Tractor Pull: 1920

Tractor Pull: 1920

Washington, D.C., circa 1920. "Army car at Connecticut Avenue Bridge." Another view of the modified Model T last seen here under review. Note the repurposed New York license plate with U.S. ARMY ORD(NANCE) DEPT painted on the back. Harris & Ewing Collection glass negative. View full size.

 

The Old Mint: 1940

The Old Mint: 1940

        U.S. Government bought property of Curtis, Perry & Ward, assayers, for $335,000 and reconstructed building as fireproof three-story brick. Opened as U.S. Mint April 3, 1854. Old building razed 1874. New Sub-Treasury built 1875-1877, four-story pressed brick on granite sills. Building partially destroyed by fire and dynamited in 1906 earthquake ($13 million in gold saved in basement vaults). Restored as one-story building. Passed into private hands in 1915. —HABS, 1940

March 1940. "McCoy Label Co., old U.S. Sub-Treasury & Mint, 608 Commercial Street, San Francisco." Break time for the label-gummers. Photo by A.J. Wittlock for the Historic American Buildings Survey. View full size.

 

T Rex: 1920

T Rex: 1920

        UPDATE: Click here for another view.

Washington, D.C., circa 1920. "Army car at Connecticut Avenue Bridge." A sort of Model T on steroids. Harris & Ewing Collection glass negative. View full size.

 

Flood Mansion: 1940

Flood Mansion: 1940

        James Clair Flood Mansion (now Pacific Union Club), 1000 California Street, San Francisco. Built 1885-86; Augustus Laver, architect. Reputed cost of about $1 million. Flood died 1889; Mrs. Flood, 1897. Descendants occupied until fire of 1906 gutted interior. Acquired by Pacific Union Club about 1909 and remodeled by Willis Polk in 1910. New England brownstone shell (said to be first brownstone west of Mississippi); Italianate ornamental details. Fence of bronze by W.T. Garratt, at cost estimated from $30,000 to $60,000. Only Nob Hill house to survive fire. —HABS, 1940

March 1940. The Flood Mansion in San Francisco, last seen here after being gutted by fire following the 1906 earthquake, 108 years ago today. Photo by A.J. Wittlock for the Historic American Buildings Survey. View full size.

 

Mizpah Arch: 1908

Mizpah Arch: 1908

Denver, Colorado, circa 1908. "Welcome arch at Union Depot looking down 17th Street." The arch, with the Hebrew benediction "mizpah" soon replacing WELCOME on the other (departure) side, was torn down in 1931. View full size.

 
 
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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