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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • THE NEW EMPIRE STATE EXPRESS: 1941

Detroit: 1916

Detroit: 1916

Detroit, Michigan, circa 1916. "Hotel Pontchartrain and Campus Martius." Frequent photographic subjects of the Detroit Publishing Co. View full size.

 

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Migrating Wildlife

The "stag and deer" statue is actually of elk. It's one of several temporary monuments that were erected in Detroit for the 1910 national convention of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks (BPOE), which was hosted by the Pontchartrain Hotel.

Misfits explained

Believe it or not, people would have their pictures taken and not show up for the prints. Photogs would sell the orphan or - Misfits - pictures to recoup their losses.

The main market for these Misfts, were immigrant bachelors who wanted to send pictures of their sweeties back home, but they either didn't have sweeties, or they didn't have enough to have their pictures taken.

Hence, an immigrant bachelor who wanted to impress the family back in County Cork, or Berlin, would finger through the Misfit bins and pick out athe girl of their dreams.

[That's a colorful explanation but, as noted below, these are clothing stores. This particular Misfit was the haberdashery owned by Sol Berman (you can see BERMAN on the awning) at 120 Woodward Avenue in Detroit. Below, another Misfit Clothing Parlor in New York. - Dave]

Wildlife

I love the stag and deer statues. Those things are huge!

Who's Selling What??

Love to know what "Misfit" is advertising.

["Misfit" seems to have been the retail category for what we would today call clothing seconds, or maybe something more like Big & Tall. There's another Misfit sign shown here, in New York, and here, in St. Louis. - Dave]

Times They Are A-Changing

If you were to have taken this picture 5 years before the horses would outnumber the cars.

Big Brother

It must have been a challenge trying to operate the tiny Hotel Metropole in the shadow of the giant Pontchartrain.

And what a testament to the brand power of Coca-Cola. Ninety-five years later, that logo is so modern that it sticks out like a photobomb.

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