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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.

© 2019 SHORPY INC.

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Seasonal Greens: 1940

Seasonal Greens: 1940

December 1940. "Christmas trees for sale at the market. Providence, Rhode Island." Medium format negative by Jack Delano. View full size.

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Browns & Sharpe Shops

A global view of the premises from "Modern Machine-Shop Economics" in Engineering Magazine from 1896.

A couple decades later.

My first summer job after I turned 16 was trimming Christmas trees. Hot work out in the sun all day with some not so friendly critters taking exception to being disturbed. Bald faced hornets come to mind.

You Paid What?

Once upon a time the going rate (at least in our neck of the woods) for a tree was a dollar per foot. When my dad came home from work and saw the six-foot tree my mom had spent $6 for he was mortified, but got over it after it was decorated. In retrospect I suppose 6 bucks was a lot of cash for a Christmas tree when the family income was $85 a week, and you still had bicycles and Roy Rogers gun belts to pay for. Oh, and Slinkys and Silly Putty eggs for stocking stuffers.

A bit about Harris Ave

The wholesale produce market on Harris Avenue operated for many, many years. It wasn't until the freeway relocation project that it closed. I'm a former Rhode Islander, and my dad worked just down the street from here, at Boyd Corporation (also now defunct).

Never mind my comment, about your comment

Dear Webmaster,

I'm writing to let you know you have someone who appreciates your quick mind. Seasonal Greens --- I love it!

I look forward to your bon mots and (almost) pun titles as much as the pictures. They almost always give me my daily chuckle.

The R is Silent

I grew up just a few miles north of Brown & Sharpe, and can assert with complete confidence that Sharpe rhymes with hop.

Vehicle IDs

L-R: Chevrolet; Plymouth; GMC truck; Buick (in the background -- a taxi?); Buick.

Brown & Sharpe

Both my maternal grandfather and my stepfather were machinists at Brown & Sharpe, and probably concurrently, altho they didn't know each other. Southern New England was for many years the center of the machine tool industry. For those interested, Wikipedia link for Brown & Sharpe follows.

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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