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Color photographs from the great depression
Old 07-30-2010, 05:16 PM   #1
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Color photographs from the great depression

I happened across these recently. Thought they might be worth sharing. It sure makes me appreciate the life we live.

The signs in the store windows are interesting. I also noticed the photo of the three young girls whose dresses were all made from the same fabric.

Captured: America in Color from 1939-1943 – Plog Photo Blog
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Old 07-30-2010, 05:50 PM   #2
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Great photos...thanks for the link.

I loved the pics of the welders and farmers....true American grit.
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Old 07-30-2010, 07:00 PM   #3
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Thanks, great photos. I am amazed at the details. Looked each photo over for minutes and still feel like I missed way too much.

Loved the "wiper" ladies at lunch and the one lady eating her sandwich with axle grease dripping off her hands.
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Old 07-30-2010, 07:12 PM   #4
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WOW!!! Amazing photos. THANK YOU!
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Old 07-30-2010, 07:12 PM   #5
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Wow. Thank you. Those pictures are fantastic - poverty, or even normal life, was a bit more stringent then. As one of the commenters said, "no fat people". Don't think it was because they were doing the Hollywood diet and hitting the gym for interval training.
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Old 07-30-2010, 07:13 PM   #6
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No fat people, and they weren't worried or paranoid about dirt/germs like we are now.
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Old 07-30-2010, 09:40 PM   #7
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Excellent, excellent, excellent. DH and I enjoyed these photos so much. Thank you.
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Old 07-30-2010, 10:30 PM   #8
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I like the photo of the kids singing at school. Half don't have any shoes and their feet are filthy.

I don't want to nitpick too much, but these are really post-depression WW II era pics.
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Old 07-30-2010, 10:41 PM   #9
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I don't want to nitpick too much, but these are really post-depression WW II era pics.
No problem at all. You're correct. It does say 'effects of the depression' at the lead in. I should have noted that.

Glad you all enjoyed them.
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Old 07-30-2010, 10:43 PM   #10
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Photo #1 and #17 are the same man and woman. Same clothes at dinner. The guy looks like a Jack Kerouac who chose not to hit the road. Probably every bit as interesting.
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Old 07-30-2010, 11:14 PM   #11
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I also noticed that the young girl at far left in #16 has what appears to be strabismus (Exotropia) in her left eye. I believe it's refered to as 'lazy eye' and in todays world is easily corrected. In those days I doubt it would have been given a second thought. Bless her heart.
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Old 07-30-2010, 11:20 PM   #12
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Definitely worth sharing - Thanks!

Such clarity in these old photos, it might have been another link I followed, but I read that the negatives themselves were 4 x 6. That would capture a lot more detail than a 35mm.

I had to look it up the Proviso yards, I didn't know them by that name, but we do see them from the expressway if we are heading south of Chicago.

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Old 07-30-2010, 11:41 PM   #13
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Photo #1 and #17 are the same man and woman. Same clothes at dinner. The guy looks like a Jack Kerouac who chose not to hit the road. Probably every bit as interesting.
Look how dirty the clothes are at dinner. No washing machine, I'd assume, tough to keep clean. And his hand is bandaged, probably from hard work. And I wonder what they all have for dinner. I see biscuits and green beans, and maybe a small pie? A few other dishes I can't make out, looks like some 'canned' (in jars) items, and a can of Karo syrup on the table? Is there any other brand of corn syrup? I can't recall anything but Karo my entire life.

Imagine if you were able to go back in time and gift those two a sitter for the kids for the night, and send them to a 4-star hotel with a shower and a nice change of clothes, and enough money for dinner and a night on the town. They'd be in heaven!

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Old 07-31-2010, 03:00 AM   #14
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Great photos.

I wonder what people will be looking at pictures/video blog entries? of the great recession in 2080?
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Old 07-31-2010, 07:13 AM   #15
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Thanks for posting. Those photos really capture what life was like back then. And to think that people today think they have it rough.
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Old 07-31-2010, 09:22 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by ERD50 View Post
Look how dirty the clothes are at dinner. No washing machine, I'd assume, tough to keep clean. And his hand is bandaged, probably from hard work. And I wonder what they all have for dinner. I see biscuits and green beans, and maybe a small pie? A few other dishes I can't make out, looks like some 'canned' (in jars) items, and a can of Karo syrup on the table? Is there any other brand of corn syrup? I can't recall anything but Karo my entire life.

Imagine if you were able to go back in time and gift those two a sitter for the kids for the night, and send them to a 4-star hotel with a shower and a nice change of clothes, and enough money for dinner and a night on the town. They'd be in heaven!

-ERD50
I enjoyed all the photos too and really took a long look at the one you mentioned. I grew up in a very small town during the '50s. My father had some farms even tho we lived in town. I was very young but remember the farm hands coming in to my mother's house for lunch during their field work. (my father had already died). They all were dirty and all of them smoked...just the norm then. Big meals at noon (as the noon whistle blew ) with pie for dessert (banana, coconut cream, etc. yum)

Anyway, I don't think it was far from normal for the men to come to dinner dirty. Also, baths were not normally taken every day like they are now. Kids played outside and we got dirty and probably germy.

I noticed how hot and sweaty the people were at the dance. No AC... but they were having fun. All those pictures were taken without the comforts of central air...

The colors and patterns of their clothing. I remember having patterned clothing like that in the 50s. I didn't like patterned clothing then but now looking at it thru these pictures it's very nostalgic. I still have one of my mother's home made patterned aprons.

I really enjoyed these pictures.
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Old 07-31-2010, 09:23 AM   #17
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Great photos.

I wonder what people will be looking at pictures/video blog entries? of the great recession in 2080?
OMG

Is that 2080 a prediction

Never mind.....I just remembered that I won't be here
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Old 07-31-2010, 11:11 AM   #18
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Thanks for posting these. Really enjoyed each photo. I always end up wondering what became of these folks and where they might be today. What stories they have to tell.

Reminds me of the Carpe Diem scene in Dead Poets Society.
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Old 07-31-2010, 02:14 PM   #19
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Any place to get photos like these in color already printed out for sale? I really liked these alot.
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Old 07-31-2010, 02:48 PM   #20
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Strangest thing: When my parents described the Great Depression, my mental pictures were all in black and white. I don't know if that is because the pictures I had seen of the era were B&W or whether the natural "bleakness" of B&W better fit my mental images. These pictures are such a revelation. I wouldn't have expected some of the bright colors (barns, rail road cars, dresses, etc.) Somehow the pictures seem less bleak - until you notice the details that many of you have pointed out. Then the reality of it all comes crashing in.

Until later in life, it was difficult for me to believe my parents' descriptions of the era. Even though we were far from wealthy, we never went hungry and we had clothes, shoes, heat, etc. It's as if the GD happened to another country, and yet my parents were citizens of that far off land.

The GD affected my parents (especially my dad) for the rest of their lives. They never wasted anything. They saved, but never "invested" except in their own business. Their fears about deprivation were palpable. Some of that carried over to my older sister and me, but not my younger sister. I'm sure I would have retired earlier if it weren't for my parents experiences. I still wonder if it could all happen again.

Thanks for sharing the site with us.
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