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Mike Evans: 1943

Mike Evans: 1943

Chicago, April 1943. "Mike Evans, a welder, at the rip tracks of the Proviso Yard, Chicago & North Western R.R." 4x5 Kodachrome transparency by Jack Delano for the Office of War Information. View full size.


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Rip also = Repair, Inspect and Paint.

John Henry was a steel-drivin' man...

This photo reminds me of the song noted, due to the rough and ready character personified. The legend (although some believe it was based on fact) was that John Henry was a tall, strong, iron-willed, hard-working man who gave his "all" to building the railroads and boring through mountains to build the rail tunnels in West Virginia. When steam powered drills started being used, he challenged the steam drill to a race in building tunnels through rock. He DID win the race but died soon after from sheer exhaustion, prematurely ending his life by his superhuman effort. Good luck in trying to get this song out of your head, I've been hearing it since yesterday. I find Shorpys to be like Christmas, with new, happy surprises every day...thank you Shorpy.

The tank is looking shabby

No paint left on the tank. You don't see that anymore. But we still use helium cylinders that were made in 1943 in my radio astronomy work.

It's Willem Dafoe!

...or his grandfather.

Love this guy!

Shorpy has provided us with such great pictorial evidence to chronicle the romanticism (real or imagined) of the rails. Photos like this are what make me almost enjoy waking up and heading out to my railroad job each day!


Rip = Repair In Place -- A yard track where light repairs could be made. Classic Delano at his best!

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