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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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Crosstown Auto Supply: 1927

Crosstown Auto Supply: 1927

Washington, D.C., circa 1927. "Crosstown Auto Supply Co." 1801 14th Street at S Street N.W. National Photo Company Collection glass negative. View full size.

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Wall Writing

I think I see Uneeda Biscuit and a very very faint National Biscuit. One was painted over the other, including the antique furniture lettering.

Rotor Gas

I'm going to guess (can't find it on the internets) that Rotor was somehow taken over by Conoco. The inverted pyramid spent a number of years as the logo of the Continental Oil Company.

[Rotor Gas was a brand of the Columbia Oil Co. from 1924 to 1926. - Dave]

The writing on the wall

The boldest letters at the top are from another (later?) application of ANTIQUE, but the widest span of letters... I dunno.

[I see ANTIQUE, as well as a smaller ANTIQUE FURNITURE, and EDA B, which might be part of a famous slogan/product name that was painted in giant letters on thousands of buildings circa 1900-1910. - Dave]

Low Traffic Area

Must have been a slow day for fuel and auto parts. I'm guessing that the clerk on duty rode his bike to work.

Ghostly ad on wall

I can barely make out the words Antique Furniture on the wall above the garage. Anyone want to try and guess what else was on that wall?


I'm very happy to see that this building still has life, but it looks like the larger (and perhaps more beautiful) building behind it has been thoroughly molested over time and turned into a faceless brick box - albeit with Scottish Bond brickwork! I like that on the smaller building, even the castellations - those castle-like shapes along the roofline - have survived the heartless ravages of time.

Antique Shop next door

Can you imagine what amazing things were in a c. 1921 antique store?

Fourteenth and S

That's just one block from me! Yes it's a garden supply store now.

Schacht and CarterCar autos

Prior to use as Crosstown Auto, this site saw service as retail sales of automobiles I have never heard of, including:

  • 1911: Hinds Auto Co., dealers for the Lion "40" Schacht
  • 1914: CarterCar Gearless Drive automobiles

The Crosstown Auto Supply Co. was in existence by 1920 and survived at least till 1930.

[Crosstown Auto's presence in the pages of the Washington Post runs from 1919 to 1957, with a mysterious gap from 1930 to 1954. - Dave]

Ha! Still there!

It looks like it's a garden-supply place now!

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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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