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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Here It Is: 1924

Here It Is: 1924

Washington, D.C., 1924. "Indian Refining Co. -- Havoline Oil." The "Wasson Motor Check" at 14th Street and Florida Avenue NW, glimpsed earlier in this post. Details of "this wonderful machine" in the comments below. View full size.

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!

Streetcar Conduit

Every time a Shorpy picture includes a streetcar line with a Conduit for power supply, it seems it's inevitable that someone will ask about the system. Washington, DC and New York City were the primary users.

These drawings from a 1901 textbook on Electric Railways illustrate clearly how the system worked.

Street tracks

The streetcar tracks seem to have a groove in the center of the rails. Does anyone know if this is for an electrical pickup, or more of a cable car type of arrangement? If it is an electrical pickup, does this have a special name other than "third rail"? There certainly are no overhead wires.

[The center slot provides access to an electrical conduit. -tterrace]

Before Strunk. Before White.

All on the wondeful machine which has cast in the discard all theories as to what oil should do by showing what oil really does in a running engine.

Motor Check Details

Ad from the Aug. 2, 1924, Washington Post. Click to enlarge.

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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