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:
1925. "Motion pictures by radio are very near, predicts C. Francis Jenkins, who has designed this small radio-vision receiving set for use in the home. It is only a few inches square and is attached to the regular radio receiving set. A miniature motion picture screen is placed on the wall of your home, as shown in this photo. The first of this machine to be made. The photo was taken in Mr. Jenkins's laboratory at Washington, D.C." Harris & Ewing glass negative. View full size.
1940. "Lana Turner and Artie Shaw with audio recording system in their Beverly Hills Home." Possibly rehearsing a movie script. Photo by Earl Theisen for the Look magazine article "Lana Turner and Artie Shaw at Home." View full size.
Dec. 5, 1929. Ignition interference from airplane engines on aircraft is largely a myth according to C. Francis Jenkins, Washington, D.C., inventor who has designed a radio receiving set which he says does not pick up noises from a flying power plant. In this photograph is shown Mr. Jenkins (right) and his laboratory assistant.
Video pioneer Francis Jenkins, seen here last week, and an anonymous protege who has a telegraph key strapped to his leg. By our reckoning this counts as early mobile texting. Harris & Ewing Collection glass negative. View full size.
JoeH has identified the mystery man as Washington inventor and television pioneer Charles Francis Jenkins (1867-1934), pictured here with what might be considered an early flat-panel video display, its 48-pixel-square grid composed of small neon lamps.
Washington, D.C., in 1928. "NO CAPTION" is the caption for this one; again we turn to the crowd-source wisdom of the Shorpy masses to inquire: What the heck is it? (Close-up here.) Harris & Ewing Collection glass negative. View full size.
September 1942. "Linotype operators in composing room of the New York Times newspaper." These machines cast lines of type (Linotype) from molten lead prior to their assembly by compositors into the printing plates that go on the presses. Photo by Marjory Collins for the Office of War Information. View full size.