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Clairvoyant Bird: 1900

Buffalo, N.Y., 1900. "Labor Day parade, Main Street." The city's Good Humor men pass in review. 8x10 glass negative, Detroit Publishing Co. View full size.

Buffalo, N.Y., 1900. "Labor Day parade, Main Street." The city's Good Humor men pass in review. 8x10 glass negative, Detroit Publishing Co. View full size.


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Stick Men

I would guess the sticks were to prod the horses used in whatever business these men made their living by.


Whatever these guys do, they clearly have a distinct uniform and the special pokey-thing they carry is part of their trade recognition. White designates cleanliness. If you could wear white uniform all day it meant you didn't work with oily machinery or coal fires. Those sticks they are carrying must be emblematic of the trade. Any chance of some ShorpyZoom on one them?

Official Monthly Magazine.

Devoted to the interests of House, Sign, Pictorial, Coach, Car, Carriage, Machinery, Ship and Railroad Equipment Painters, Decorators, Paperhangers, Hard Wood Finishers, Grainers, Glaziers, Varnish Enamelers and Gilders.

Labor Day, 1903.

Buffalo, N.Y.

It was but just that the painters, decorators and paperhangers of the city should have the right of the line, for they made a magnificent showing, the opinion being general along the line of march that these men made the finest appearance of any organization. All were clad in immaculate white. The trousers were white duck, the shirts were snowy cambric, the belts were white leather and each man wore a white yachting cap and a handsome boutonniere, and Marshal Chapman, who led the line, rode a splendid snow-white horse. There were cheers for the painters along the line of march and there were predictions that the union will gain its fourth silken banner because of its showing, having already won three for making the finest appearance in annual Labor Day processions.

Sword wielders

Perhaps the original Buffalo Sabres?

The gift of prophecy

I'll bet the Clairvoyant Bird knew that parade was going to take place months before it actually happened.

One thing is for certain: there is no stopping them

The Good Humor men will soon be here. I’d like to remind them that as a trusted Shorpy contributor, I can be helpful in rounding up others to toil in their underground ice cream caves.

Good Humor men?

Are they really good humor men, and do they carry swords (sticks) Just how big was Buffalo in 1910 that they would need hundreds of men distributing ice cream.

Men In White

Since the Good Humor Company wasn't founded until the early 1920s, we have to guess again. I'll take a shot in the dark and say it was the Buffalo version of NYC's White Wings, their Department of Sanitation.

Sword-wielding ice cream overlords?

Each of them appears to be holding a sword -- for dividing ice cream sandwiches that stick together? Or something more menacing?

Also, an impressive number of bicycles and bicycle racks -- I doubt there are anywhere near that many (if any at all) in the current stretch of road.

And, oops, one of the flags in the third floor windows of the Miller Block is flying upside down.

Where's The Law?

In a like public venue today the boys in blue would be found every ten yards or so. Wow, patriotism was evident ever more so than today, judging by how well Old Glory is represented.

After Labor Day

No white pants until Decoration Day 1901.

I, for one

... welcome our ice-cream-wielding overlords.

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