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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Small-Mart: 1938

Small-Mart: 1938

May 1938. "Store, La Forge, Missouri." Your source for Benz Baby Bowel Corrective. 35mm negative by the peripatetic Russell Lee. 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!

Home to a sharecropper housing project

Original, 11 June 2015: Some of this store's customers might have come from Southeast Missouri Farms, a Farm Security Administration project that provided housing and land for 100 sharecropper families. The houses looked like this when they were built in 1937.

At one time there were apparently photographs from 2005-2006 of what remains of this project in La Forge, but Southern Illinois University doesn't know how to website. (Blocking even is a nice touch, guys.)

Edit, 17 June 2018: My complaint above about SIU is partly rescinded; either SIU or has changed enough that has parts of the orignal SIU pages available. Googling those SIU URLs led me to the mirror linked below.

Jane Adams, a professor at SIU, and her husband D. Gorton, took photos of some of the remaining houses in 2005-2006. I found a mirror of Adams' original pages at SIU, including the pictures of a few houses and the cotton gin at Southeast Missouri Farms.

See also the interior of one of these houses in a newer Shorpy post, Lard of the Flies.

Talk about perception

Because of what I see every day now, it took me a few seconds to dismiss the idea that the boy in the overalls was checking his text messages.

The gas pump rules

Today that glass top gas pump would be worth all the goodies in the store (probably including the building as well).


For a moment my initial thought about what the man was doing was that he was checking for text messages!!!

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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