SHORPY Historic Photo Archive & Fine-Art Prints
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About the Photos

Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.

© 2019 SHORPY INC.

[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Homeschooled: 1939

Homeschooled: 1939

January 1939. "Negro sharecropper mother teaching children numbers and alphabet in home. Transylvania, Louisiana." Medium-format nitrate negative by Russell Lee for the Resettlement Administration. View full size.

On Shorpy:
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To stay online without a paywall or a lot of pop-up ads, Shorpy needs your help. (Our server rental alone is $3,000 a year.) You can contribute by becoming a Patron, or by purchasing a print from the Shorpy Archive. Or both! Read more about our 2019 pledge drive here. Our last word on the subject is: Thanks!

News Paper on walls?

Why was this common? Was it to keep the mosquitoes out? Just curious.

[Insulation against drafts. - tterrace]

None Better

There's never been a more poignant picture on Shorpy. From the CARDUI calendar, the Natchez newspapers on the wall, the irons by the fireplace, it is perfect. Thanks Dave and Russell Lee

The Thirst for Knowledge

The grammar may not be quite the King's English, but this picture eloquently illustrates the thirst for knowledge, the desire to learn, and the will to make sure that happens for one's kin. In the Jim Crow South, it also pictures the ongoing daily resistance to the harsh indignities of a nation that sometimes seemed more devoted to the practice of denying the rights of various groups of its citizens, rather than ensuring everyone enjoys them.

This is exactly the sort of image that makes Shorpy such a great resource for educators trying to open difficult conversations about our past.

At least she's trying

Under the circumstances she seems to be doing the best she can with the available resources. Hopefully, those children were able to go to school at some point. I don't fault anything in this photo.


That mother wants a better life for her children and she knows exactly how they'll obtain it.

SHORPY OLD PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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