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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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Sunday Swimmers: 1942

Sunday Swimmers: 1942

July 1942. "Washington, D.C. Sunday swimmers at the municipal swimming pool." Photo by Marjory Collins for the Office of War Information. View full size.

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Lack of overweight people is more likely the fact that people were thinner then. And many, if not most, of the men around the pool were in the army, which might also contribute to their trim physiques.

From this angle, the guy diving in might be the heaviest of the group. Maybe he's embarrassed?

Not everything requires a social justice rationale.

["The guy" is a doll. - Dave]

"Slim Jims"?

By that logic, this photo would be "evidence that people of color in Washington is a modern affliction."

More likely, social factors, including comments like GeeBax's, keep heavy people out of swimming pools. Legal and social factors kept people of color out of swimming pools in Washington in 1942.


How times have changed, both from before, and from now. I don't think that I see any male with a covered chest or thighs.

No blur

I think of all the early city scenes I have seen on Shorpy over the years with the moving ghosts. How the the technology changed to allow a person, just left of the lifeguard tower, to dive with no blur.

Standing room only

This is so crowded it's making me claustrophobic. Can anybody explain why they're all standing around? The ones in the back look like they're queuing up, but for what? My only guess is there are limits on how many people can be in the water at the same time.

Slim Jims

Interesting to note that there is not a single person in sight that would fit the description of "fat." Evidence that obesity is a modern affliction.

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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