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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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Cuyahoga: 1910

Cuyahoga: 1910

Cleveland, Ohio, circa 1910. "Lift bridge and Superior Street viaduct, Cuyahoga River." 8x10 inch dry plate glass negative, Detroit Publishing Co. View full size.

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Isn't modern life grand?

Phoenix Ice is selling ammonia, used in early refrigeration units, to freeze or chill produce in a way that was never possible before. Welcome to Swanson's TV dinners!

I hope they fled the bridge base while they were at it

A look at the large photo shows that the base of the Viaduct bridge seems out of plane with the bulkhead. Could be an optical illusion due to the angle of the photo, but ...

[Confused? This is a photo of two different bridges. - Dave]

Take a picture here, take a souvenir

I have nothing important to say. There just had to be a reference to the R.E.M. song of the same name.

Re: Rotated Swing Span

Thanks so much to the Anonymous Tipster for informing us that the photo captures the Superior Street Viaduct in the open position. I was having great difficulty reconciling the perspective of the photo with maps of street plan in the Cleveland Flats.

Superior Viaduct

Note that the Superior Viaduct (on the left) is also open. The swing-bridge span rotated the roadbed 90 degrees to let river traffic pass.

Re: Monson Fish

The "whirligig things" are racks for drying fish nets.


Those are wooden frames that they wind fishing net on to inspect, repair and dry. I love how industrially busy this photo is!

Any Cleveland Skyline Photos?

Dave, I don't think you take requests, but I would love some high-quality prints of the Cleveland skyline from the turn of the last century. Your photos on here are so much cleaner and crisper than anything I've found online, and would look great framed and hanging on the wall. I would be forever grateful if you found one and did your magic. I'd buy it in a heartbeat!

Phoenix Ice

Ice and Refrigeration, Volume 39, 1910

The Phoenix Ice Machine Co.

Manufacturers of Ice and Refrigerating Machinery. Constructors for Complete Plants, Pipe Work and Machine Repairs. Ammonia Valves and Fittings. General Supplies for Ice and Refrigerating Plants.

Office and Works, 1566-1568 Merwin Avenue, Cleveland Ohio.

Other businesses in photo:

  • The General Cartage and Storage Co.
  • The Ohio Sash & Door Co.
  • The Cleveland Machine Knife Co.
  • Monson Fish Co. (I too am puzzled by the whirligigs in front of the fish house)

Open Up

My mother must have poured gallons of Fletchers down my gullet during the 50's. I think she bought it by the 55 gallon drum.

Perfectly Normal

This happened every time the SS Mae Murry showed up.

Monson Fish

What's going on in front of the Monson Fish Co. on those whirligig things? Drying Fish? Sail making? An early Christo installation?

The lift bridge

The lift bridge was used by the B & O Railroad. Erected in 1907, replaced in 1956 by a similar bridge that's still there.

That's Funny

The river doesn't appear to be on fire.

Fletcher's Castoria

Funny, I've never heard of the stuff, but apparently, you can still buy it.

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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