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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • UP N' ATOM: c. 1950s

Sidelined: 1942

Sidelined: 1942

1942. "Effect of gasoline shortage in Washington, D.C." Medium format nitrate negative by Albert Freeman for the Office of War Information. View full size.

 

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It's a Stretch

The author of the original caption was clearly having a bad day, logic-wise. This is a short-term parking lot, filled nearly to capacity with cars that presumably came from somewhere and will return there at the end of the day, consuming gasoline in the process. With no pre-rationing baseline for comparison, this photo could as easily reflect the situation on 5 December 1941.

Now a shot of acres of cars in long-term storage or urban streets and commuter highways nearly devoid of traffic would merit such a caption. Still, it's a great shot of some nice old rides, and amply illustrates what a drag it must have been to work there: "Mine's the Airflow behind the Chevy, up against the wall, and I'm really in a hurry!"

[The caption comes from the Library of Congress catalog card for a collection of negatives depicting cars parked in a variety of situations in Washington, D.C. -tterrace]

Sidelined?

I'm curious about your title Dave; looks like a normal downtown work day parking lot. Probably pretty empty after the work crowd and evening theater attendees all go home.

[The title goes with the caption: "Effect of gasoline shortage in Washington, D.C." One of 17 photos taken by Albert Freeman for the Office of War Information. After the daily business began to dry up along with gas supplies, parking-lot operators began moving their business to monthly storage contracts for the duration of the war. - Dave]

Deja vu all over again

Same location as the one we saw earlier, but from a higher POV and on a different day.

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