SHORPY Historic Photo Archive & Fine-Art Prints
The Shorpy Archive
9000+ fine-art prints suitable for framing. Desk-size to sofa-size and larger, on archival paper or canvas.
Join and Share

Support Shorpy

Shorpy is funded by you. Help by purchasing a print or contributing. Learn more.

Social Shorpy


Join our mailing list (enter email):

Member Photos

Photos submitted by Shorpy members.

Colorized Photos

Colorized photos submitted by members.

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]

JUMP TO PAGE   100  >  200  >  300  >  400  >  500  >  600

T for Three: 1939

T for Three: 1939

June 1939. "Migrant workers eating dinner by the side of their car (Ford Model T) while they are camped near Prague, Lincoln County, Oklahoma." Medium format negative by Russell Lee for the Farm Security Administration. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5
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!

Hood Ornament?

Is that a flying duck on top of the crumpled front fender - right in front of the headlight?

Ett fika, kanske?

My maternal grandfather invariably drank his coffee the same way: milk and sugar while in the cup, then into the saucer for further cooling and subsequent ingestion. He was the son of Swedish immigrants, and since Grandma didn't take her coffee like that, I figured he'd picked the habit up from his folks and it was therefore a Swedish thing. Never asked him about it, though.

So what about your grandma, Grammy23? Was she, or her folks, from up around these parts?

Saucered and blowed

I saw my father drink his coffee that way from time to time and he said it was “saucered and blowed”. I remember seeing my grandmother (his mom) pour her hot coffee into a saucer and blow across the top to cool it off.

That “crystal candy” dish might be a dime store heirloom. I received one similar to it as wedding gift from one of my husband’s aunts who lived in a tiny country town in rural Mississippi in the late 1960s. The only store where she could have shopped would have been a Ben Franklin or other dime store. It was clear glass with a lid that had a silver painted top on top.

I looked closely to see if I could figure out what they were eating. It appeared to be large lima beans, perhaps cooked with a ham hock. My mother in law cooked them with macaroni, making a rather thick, but very filling dish. Loaf bread, served from the wrapper, was served to round out the meal. Carb city.


Should you find yourself in this part of the country, be advised that "Prague" rhymes with "vague."

There's also a Miami, Oklahoma, which isn't pronounced how you might expect. But that's a comment for another photo.

Laurel & Hardy

Reminds me of the picnic scene at the front yard of the mansion from the movie "It's A Gift"

[In which Laurel & Hardy were played by W.C. Fields. -tterrace]

Shades of prosperity past

They're eating off what I'd assume is the last of the china they used to own, Dad's wearing a good pair of men's shoes, and the lady (Mom? daughter? sister? I can't tell) is wearing her "Sunday go to meeting" dress. The boy on the right has outgrown the clothes they had in the good days, though. I bet it's Sunday and they just went to church.

And that's gotta be tight in that Model T to have all your clothes, cookware, and probably a tent in there. Wow.

They set a nice blanket

That's a nice, er, table setting for itinerant migrant workers. That fine china and that beautiful crystal dish, probably handed down from parents or grandparents, seem incongruent to people today who are used to seeing plastic utensils and paper plates and cups when eating on the road.

Grapes of Wrath

A few weeks ago, I commented on a 1920-something Auburn sedan that looked good as new after more than ten years on the road. This Model T, by contrast, has clearly been put through the wringer.

The Joad Family drove a '26 Hudson, not a Model T, in the movie version of Grapes of Wrath. However, this car reminds me of theirs.

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.

Syndicate content RSS | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Photo Use | © 2019 Shorpy Inc.