SHORPY Historic Photo Archive & Fine-Art Prints
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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.

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[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Harvest Time: 1939

Harvest Time: 1939

November 1939. "Farmers looking at their checks outside tobacco warehouse after auction sales. Durham, North Carolina." Medium format negative by Marion Post Wolcott for the Farm Security Administration. View full size.

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The car

The car is a Century I reckon - it has the fatter 7.00 x 15" tyres whereas the similar looking Special was on skinnier 6.50 x 16s.

Buyer's car, perhaps?

The chrome window trim identifies that '39 Buick as a Century Series 60. I would bet the car belongs to one of the tobacco buyers rather than one of the farmer/sellers.

Pinstriped wheels

Notice the triple stripes on the wheels. Done by hand for sure!

[Incorrect. - Dave]

Taint necessarily so

Standing next to a car does not mean that it is yours. A pickup would be more appropriate for the farmers seen here.

Shorpy Vehicle Identification Imperative

1939 Buick 4 door sedan

Explosive proximity

This photo was taken about five blocks from where the fatal gas explosion occurred in Durham yesterday.

Not Exactly the Joads

This is the second instance we've seen in the last couple of days of late-Depression farmers (first potato, then tobacco) running around in new Buicks. Surely John Steinbeck would have been surprised.

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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