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:
Washington, D.C., circa 1919. "George Parezo & Co., Ninth Street N.W." An electrical appliance store in the early years of that retail category (top sellers included irons, coffeepots, vacuums, table lamps and toasters), on the eve of the emergence of a new a mass communications medium. "Wireless" transmissions, at first mostly marine and military telegraphy, now included civilian audio broadcasts heard on crystal-set headphones. Before long loudspeakers connected to vacuum tube receivers entered the mainstream, and "radio" was born. National Photo Company Collection glass negative. View full size.
Circa 1880-1899. "Majestic Building, Detroit." And a good view of one of the "moonlight tower" arc lamp standards whose base can be seen in the previous post. Some of these towers are said to have made their way to Austin, Texas, where they are the sole remaining examples of their kind. View full size.