I hope you are having a good summer! It’s hard to believe the Fourth of July is already upon us. A reader has requested one of my vintage picture posts so thanks to Shorpy I was able to fulfill that. Shorpy for me is a total rabbit hole…once I’m in I keep going down, down, down….like book stores, architectural tours and museums, I can lose track of time pretty quickly while looking at vintage photos.
They tell a story. That’s why I love them. I like to imagine what the people were thinking, what they were all about and what happened to them after the picture was taken. Unlike today where we take hundreds, if not thousands of pictures a year, snapshots were not common. But snapshots tell the story. And I would guess that one of these will tell a little bit of yours.
Summer of 1942- Washington DC- Lovely, romantic.
Burt Lake, Michigan- 1951 What a cute little guy with his summer outfit! And I dig the car/camper color coordination. Really perfect. Too bad the rearview mirror is totally obscuring Mom’s face.
Trembleau Hall, Port Kent, NY- c. 1910- Folks rocking on the front porch in July.- Do you think it was hot?? How did people do it? Super long dresses, full suits with vests. I can pass out just thinking about it. My Pops told me when he was a kid they wore “short pants” but that he had to ride on horsehair seats in the car. Windows open and cars didn’t go 70 mph back in the day. Hot wind blowing and sitting on a scratchy back seat. My Mom said they slept on fire escapes in the city (Chicago) or everyone went down to the lake and slept out there when it was too hot in the apartment. Gratitude people. Gratitude.
Howard Johnson’s Motor Lodge- Austin Texas, 1967. First of all, for the love of all things fantastic-PLEASE bring back those twisty slides and springy diving boards! Why this girl is even bothering with her backflip off the side of the pool when there is a perfectly good diving board is beyond me. Every HOJO’s looked exactly the same.
Campers in Yosemite-c. 1930’s. Well, there was no disposable dish ware or utensils so all that stuff had to be washed by hand–somewhere. My guess is a common bathing facility. Check out the lady drinking coffee. It’s probably a million degrees out and she’s drinking hot coffee. It seems like people drank coffee with everything in the 1930’s. Even hotdogs. My biggest question is how did they keep the milk cold? I am glad that Mom remembered to pack her apron- even to go camping.
1951- Lana Turner with her daughter lunching by the pool in Santa Barbara at the Coral Casino. I’m more than a little obsessed with Cheryl’s Hat! What is going on? Pink balls and green spikes for starters. I’m hoping that three glasses of milk will be enough for Cheryl. Lana’s straw purse thing (which I’m sure held only cigarettes and red lipstick) is marvelous.
1906- Ormond Beach, Florida- Chaco Chulee. While it looks very quaint I can tell you this….no screens, windows open, summer in Florida= mosquitos as big as your head, creatures of the night coming to your bedside and overall jumpiness as to what might be lurking in dark corners. You can add snakes, scorpions and wild pigs to that as well– I’m itchy now. I’m also guessing there was no indoor flushing commode which meant an outhouse or “honey pot” that had to be emptied.
Hollywood Hills- Summer of 1967. I love this picture so hard. First of all the tv is plugged into about 4 extension cords and the Mom probably told the Dad, “get ‘em outside, I need some peace.” Secondly, the party lights and woven shade add to the general ambience. It’s so disorganized and a bit ramshackle with all the random stuff! And lastly, the kids. Who didn’t behave like this for at least every other photo taken until the age of twelve?
1961: There is no question that I would have been friends with this resourceful gal. She wasn’t getting in this pool unless she could smoke, play cards and have a couple of drinks. SPF? Forget about it.
South Carolina 1956. I’m thinking back porch. There are wires above the doors–likely a doorbell or telephone. And the refrigerator means it’s probably close to kitchen. Apparently there were no forks. Only knives. Which is weird. I remember my Mom giving us watermelon to eat on the front step of the house growing up in Glenview, Il. We used to spit seeds at each other. I can’t remember the last time I ate watermelon with seeds. Maybe I should get one and Mr. V and I can sit on the front porch and well, you know, spit seeds at each other.
Dairy Queen- somewhere USA. I love Dairy Queen to this day. My favorite is a Butterscotch Dip Cone. I had one several weeks ago and it is still awesome. And the dip still makes the ice cream melt too fast which causes you to eat it super fast and get a brain freeze and I still love it.
Fort Meade, Maryland- August 1922. This was most likely a training exercise to practice abandoning ship. But I’d like to think that these 10 soldiers were simply cooling off in the river. They were in awesome physical form!
Returning from Vacation- Great Falls Montana 1964. So much to love about this picture. The mint green house next door (with the window open), the curtains in the back seat of the station wagon, the dandelions on the lawn….I’m glad to know that even fifty years ago we were overloading our cars for road trips.
Miami Beach, 1941. I love everything about this place. The flags, the round bar, the porthole windows, the fabulous Bistro chairs. I wish we could see what the pool looked like!
Oh yeah. The Happiest Place on Earth- Disneyland 1968. Except the young fellow in the blue looks miserable.
Russian River 1950. Boys building their sand castle next to the river’s edge. I can’t help but think a submarine is about to surface beyond them…(that pipe sticking up).
Florida 1904. The Royal Poinciana- Palm Beach. You might not be able to read the small sign in the lower right hand corner but basically it says that if you aren’t a member or a guest here, get off the lawn. Fashionable folks lounging about, listening to the afternoon concert. Awesome hats on the women and white shoes on the men. Wonder if any of them boarded the Titanic eight years later?
Cypress Gardens, Florida in 1957. Totally fantastic.
Ta ta for now! If you have enjoyed this post and want to read more with vintage photos, go here.
Hope your summer is grand.
all photos courtesy of Shorpy
Thanks for reading,
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