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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.

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Red All Over: 1942

Red All Over: 1942

Chicago, April 1942. "Dancing to the music of Red Saunders and his band at the Club DeLisa." Photographer Jack Delano swaps the train pictures for a taste of cafe society. Med. format negative, Office of War Information. View full size.

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Not unheard of, but

I suspect that a racially mixed clientele, even in Chicago, even in a jazz club, even under more relaxed wartime observance of social customs, was more the exception than the rule.

The original Club DeLisa

opened in 1934 and burned down before this photo was taken, so this has to be the New Club deLisa, as it was called. Red Saunders led the band in residence. His name was for many years practically synonymous with local Chicago jazz. Nineteen years after this photo was taken, I produced a session on which he played. I did several albums on that trip and recorded many veteran musicians, most of whom had played in a Saunders band at one time or another.

I hope we get to see more shots from that evening—they are available online, but not with that magic Shorpy (sharpy?) touch.

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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