SHORPY Historic Photo Archive & Fine-Art Prints
The Shorpy Archive
9000+ fine-art prints suitable for framing. Desk-size to sofa-size and larger, on archival paper or canvas.
Join and Share

Support Shorpy

Shorpy is funded by you. Help by purchasing a print or contributing. Learn more.

Social Shorpy


Join our mailing list (enter email):

Member Photos

Photos submitted by Shorpy members.

Colorized Photos

Colorized photos submitted by members.

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]

JUMP TO PAGE   100  >  200  >  300  >  400  >  500  >  600

Down and Out in Omaha: 1938

Down and Out in Omaha: 1938

November 1938. Omaha, Nebraska. "Lower Douglas Street, where the unemployed hang out." 35mm negative by John Vachon. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5
To stay online without a paywall or a lot of pop-up ads, Shorpy needs your help. (Our server rental alone is $3,000 a year.) You can contribute by becoming a Patron, or by purchasing a print from the Shorpy Archive. Or both! Read more about our 2019 pledge drive here. Our last word on the subject is: Thanks!


I believe it's a 1933 Plymouth, Model PD, from fairly late in the model year. Hints: Goddess mascot, long-teardrop headlights, front-fender sweep, arched bumper, horn mounted under the headlight, hubcap shape, hood louvers (and the hood covers most of the cowl), deep arc of lower windshield (which is hinged at the top).

Here's mine, fresh out of the barn, in 1987. After sitting since 1959, all it needed was a battery and TLC, and it started right up.

Love the clothes

Did people just get more dressed up back then even to just go to the store?

Pressed for time

They're not unemployed - just waiting for their suits to be pressed.

Jake & Elwood

The New ***stone Hotel, with its "Clean, Modern Rooms" featuring cracked glass windows and "E-Z Tatter Shades" reminds me of the hotel the Blues Brothers lived in until Carrie Fisher blew it up!

While You Wait

Personally I've never done it that way. Those pressing tables can get awfully hot. I would prefer to leave the suit and come back later.


Wouldn't be known for its beach for six years or so. I wonder what little Warren Buffett was doing at this precise moment. Conor Oberst couldn't handle this kind of depression.

The Car blur

Might that be a 1935 Chevrolet passing by? I can't be sure.


The unemployed in 1938 dressed better than most people going to work today.

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.

Syndicate content RSS | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Photo Use | © 2019 Shorpy Inc.