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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]

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The Pontch: 1910

The Pontch: 1910

The Hotel Pontchartrain in Detroit, seen earlier today around 1907 in this post. Now it's circa 1910-1915 and it has a few extra floors trimmed Second Empire style to look like a giant mansard roof. Not too many years later it was torn down to make way for a bank. Detroit Publishing glass negative. View full size.

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You can see the edge of the roof of old City Hall in the right foreground and the still standing (and still beautiful) old Wayne County Courthouse in the background on the left.


Believe it or not, there are a few of us who are still managing to live, work and even recreate after dark in Detroit! The lights in this city aren't exactly out yet.

Soldiers & Sailors

The Soldiers and Sailors Monument was dedicated in 1872 and sat in the same spot until 2002, at which time it was moved south a hundred feet or so for a park layout in the area. A copper box was discovered beneath the monument at that time, but alas, all the papers had been rotted away by seepage. A medallion was also discovered and it is now in the Detroit Historical Museum.

Detroit, Seattle, Pearl Harbor

My father worked at this hotel. Detroit was at one time a beautiful city, a safe place to go downtown after dark. The first-run movies were shown downtown first then out to the neighborhoods. The burlesk shows were to the right of the hotel. Detroit's main street, U.S. 10, started at the Detroit River and ended in Seattle. Have pictures of my son and older daughter at the Seattle end.

67 years ago today I drove up to Bay City, Michigan, from Detroit for a Sunday drive with my future wife. We heard about Pearl Harbor on the drive back.

Horses and cars

Actually the interesting thing about this picture is the street on the right side of the picture has only cars, but the street on left has at least 8 or 9 horse drawn carriages. The horses outnumber the cars on that street.

The difference a few years makes

To me, the main difference between this photo and the one taken in 1907 is the presence of so many more automobiles and a bit fewer pedestrians scattered throughout the scene in the later photo. Assuming a date of 1915 for this photo, this gives an insight to the rapid progress of automotive technology. It's probably not unlike the number of household computers that sprang up between 1996 and 2004.

Goodbye Motor City

It's too bad Detroit went to hell in a handbasket, and now the whole state of Michigan is going down too.

That addition an architectural muffin top.

Monumental Respect

Embedding is beyond me but the monument remains:

The Civil War dead getting a tinch more respect than below!

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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