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October 24, 2021

50 Amazing Portraits of Swedish People Taken by John Alinder From the 1910s to the Early 1930s

The people depicted in John Alinder’s portraits are often looking straight into the camera. As if they can see us. As if their gaze can travel the hundred years or so that lie between their time and ours. As if they were saying, “You are alive now, but we were once alive.”


John Alinder, son of a farmer, was born in 1878 in the village of Sävasta, Altuna parish, in Uppland, a province in eastern central Sweden. Alinder remained in the village all his life. He chose not to take over his parents’ farm and instead became a self-taught photographer and jack of all trades. He was a music lover, holder of the Swedish agency for the British record label and gramophone brand His Master’s Voice. For a time he ran a country shop from his home, and he even operated an illicit bar for a while.

From the 1910s to the 1930s he portrayed the local people, the landscape around them and their way of life. He often photographed them in their homes and gardens, using the technology of the time, glass plates. These he developed in a small darkroom he had built and then made the prints in the sunlight.

The Alinder collection was “discovered” in the 1980s when a curator found over 8,000 glass plates stacked away in a library basement. Children placed on chairs, people perched in trees, laborers, confirmation candidates and old ladies; often depicted against a background of foliage and sprawling greenery penetrated by sunlight. Alinder’s portraiture allows for the magic of chance, both liberating and defining the subjects.










Photos of Malacca, Malaysia in 1971

Malacca is a state in Malaysia located in the southern region of the Malay Peninsula, next to the Strait of Malacca. The state is bordered by Negeri Sembilan to the north and west and Johor to the south. The exclave of Tanjung Tuan also borders Negeri Sembilan to the north. Its capital is Malacca City, which is 148 kilometres (92 miles) southeast of Malaysia's capital city Kuala Lumpur, 235 kilometres (146 miles) northwest of Johor’s largest city Johor Bahru and 95 km (59 miles) northwest of Johor’s second largest city, Batu Pahat. This historical city centre has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 7 July 2008.


Malacca is famous for its unique history and is one of the major tourist destinations in Malaysia. With a highly strategic state position for international trade routes, Malacca was once a well-known international trade centre in the East. Many traders anchored in Malacca, especially traders from Arabia, China and India, traded at the port of Malacca and from there were born many of the descendants and tribes that exist in Malacca to this day.

A great diversity of races and ethnicities have long existed among the local community. Malays, Chinese, Indians, Baba Nyonya, Kristang, Chitty and Eurasians are major ethnic groups living in the State of Malacca up to the present day.

These vintage photos were captured by wilford peloquin that show street scenes of Malacca in 1971.










Vintage Photos of Halloween Parties in the Late 1960s

Halloween activities include trick-or-treating (or the related guising and souling), attending Halloween costume parties, carving pumpkins into jack-o’-lanterns, lighting bonfires, apple bobbing, divination games, playing pranks, visiting haunted attractions, telling scary stories, as well as watching horror films.

For some people, the Christian religious observances of All Hallows’ Eve, including attending church services and lighting candles on the graves of the dead, remain popular, although for others it is a secular celebration. Some Christians historically abstained from meat on All Hallows’ Eve, a tradition reflected in the eating of certain vegetarian foods on this vigil day, including apples, potato pancakes, and soul cakes.

These vintage photos were found by Mark Susina that show what Halloween parties looked like in the late 1960s.










Wonderful Knapp-Felt Hat Ads From the 1920s

No item of men’s apparel can give more pleasure, or cause more grief, than his hat. It should have quality, it should have style, it should be appropriate to the occasion, and it should be becoming. A well selected Knapp-Felt fills the bill in every particular.


So how does a company go from one man working out of a cow shed to the second largest hat company in America? (They did eventually become the largest, but that wasn’t until after 1970 and the closure of the Stetson factory in Philadelphia.)

The short, and perhaps overly obvious, answer is through a lot of hard work and dedication. Success becomes much more likely to happen when you throw innovation into the mix, and this is the case with Crofut & Knapp. Add in the talent of promoting your employees into positions where they can do the most for the company, and you have a recipe for success. Two key components went hand in hand with their success. First, they offered a high-quality product at premium prices. While the premium price created a hurdle to overcome with consumers, the second component dealt very well with that hurdle: marketing and advertising. In this, Crofut & Knapp were innovators, setting a standard of excellence that left the other hat companies playing catch-up.

The hatting industry underwent a monumental change in the first half of the nineteenth century due to the transportation revolution and the industrial revolution, just as most American industries did. The hat factory evolved from a small, locally-owned shop into a much larger facility employing ever greater numbers of people.

Prior to the industrial revolution, hat manufacturers worked out of small shops and sold their hats locally. The shop was run by a single craftsman, or master, who might employ up to perhaps as many as four apprentices. Each craftsman performed all of the required steps to make a hat from a handful of fur to a finished, wearable product. Each small shop served a town, or perhaps a county, but their market did not reach much beyond that.

With the advent of the industrial and transportation revolutions, machinery aided in the manufacturing process and the concept of division of labor meant that workers began specializing in different parts of the production process. Some factories only performed one part of the process, such as the forming of felt bodies, and left the finishing to other companies. Distribution of the hats was left up to jobbers in the cities. Some companies did keep everything in house. In any case, hat production was increased, hat prices became more affordable, and more people could afford to buy better quality hats.

Into this new era of mechanization came James H. Knapp, who started out exactly as hatters had for centuries, as a one-man operation. With the partnership of Andrew J. Crofut, they launched the Derby as their chief product, and began the long road to success. Much of the first fifty years of Crofut & Knapp is shrouded in the mists of time. Advertising was typically done in local papers by the retailers, usually consisting of text and very few, if any, images of the product. The text would extol the virtues of the product, addressing the needs of the individual being targeted in the ad.

It was not until well into the twentieth century that companies would change the nature of advertising, focusing not on customers’ needs, as had previously been the case, but on their wants and desires instead. Advertising would move away from the traditional textual analysis of the properties of the product into a much more ambiguous and visual form, designed to entice consumers to purchase the product merely because they desired it. Croft & Knapp led the way among hat manufacturers in this advertising makeover and perhaps among most industries as a whole.










October 23, 2021

The Old Clothes of St. Giles in Seven Dials, London, ca. 1877

This vintage photograph represents a second-hand clothes shop in a narrow thoroughfare of St. Giles, appropriately called Lumber Court, where several similar tradesmen are grouped together, all dealing in old clothes and furniture of a most varied and dilapidated description. It is here that the poorest inhabitants of a district, renowned for its poverty, both buy and sell their clothes.


Photographer John Thomson (1837–1921) used the ‘Woodburytype’ process patented in 1864 for the images in Street Life in London, including this photograph. This was a type of photomechanical reproduction using pigmented gelatin, usually of a rich purple-brown color. The process was complicated but remained popular until about 1900 because of the high quality and permanence of the finished images.

The people in the pictures were arranged or posed by Thomson to form interesting compositions. However, the results were often naturalistic because the subjects and surroundings were always authentic.

St Giles is an area in the West End of London. It gets its name from the parish church of St Giles in the Fields. The combined parishes of St Giles in the Fields and St George Bloomsbury (which was carved out of the former) were administered jointly for many centuries; leading to the conflation of the two, with much or all of St Giles usually taken to be a part of Bloomsbury. Points of interest include the church of St Giles in the Fields, Seven Dials, the Phoenix Garden and St Giles Circus. The area falls within the London Borough of Camden local authority area.




Beautiful Vintage Photos and Posters of French Entertainer Mistinguett

Mistinguett (born Jeanne Florentine Bourgeois) was a French actress and singer. Bourgeois aspired to be an entertainer at a very young age. She began as a flower seller in a restaurant in her hometown, singing popular ballads while selling blossoms. After taking classes in theatre and singing, she began her career as an entertainer in 1885. One day on the train to Paris for a violin lesson, she met Saint-Marcel, who directed the revue at the Casino de Paris. He engaged her first as a stage-hand, and here she began to pursue her goal to become an entertainer.


Bourgeois made her debut as Mistinguett at the Casino de Paris in 1895 and went on to appear in venues such as the Folies Bergère, Moulin Rouge and Eldorado. Her risqué routines captivated Paris, and she went on to become the most popular French entertainer of her time and the highest-paid female entertainer in the world, even having her legs insured for 500,000 francs in 1919. During a tour of the United States, Mistinguett was asked by Time magazine to explain her popularity. “It is a kind of magnetism.” She replied. “I say 'Come closer' and draw them to me.”

Mistinguett died at the age of 8    2 in Bougival, France. Upon her death, writer Jean Cocteau observed in an obituary: “Her voice, slightly off-key, was that of the Parisian street hawkers—the husky, trailing voice of the Paris people. She was of the animal race that owes nothing to intellectualism. She incarnated herself. She flattered a French patriotism that was not shameful. It is normal now that she should crumble, like the other caryatids of that great and marvelous epoch that was ours.”

Take a look at the great French entertainer through these 21 captivating vintage photographs and posters:

Mistinguett and Max Dearly by Adrien Barrere, ca. 1909

Mistinguett by G.K. Benda, 1913

Mistinguett, 1920

Mistinguett by Leonetto Cappiello, 1920




40 Glamorous Photos of Classic Beauties Taken by A L “Whitey” Schafer in the 1930s and ’40s

Born 1902 in Salt Lake City, Utah, American photographer A L “Whitey” Schafer moved with his family to Hollywood around 1917. He joined Famous Players-Lasky to work in the stills laboratory, processing prints in 1921.

Classic beauties taken by A L “Whitey” Schafer in the 1930s and ’40s

In 1923, Schafer joined the Thomas Ince Studio, where he shoots stills and occasionally appears in movies. In a 1948 Popular Photography article he recalls, “That was in the days when everybody on the lot was called on to act at times. When we weren’t shooting pictures, we were doing ‘walk-ons’.”

In 1932, Schafer moved to Columbia. In 1935, he succeeded William Fraker (father of “Bud” Fraker) as head of Columbia’s stills photography department, and replaced Eugene Robert Richee as head of Paramount’s stills photography department in 1941.

A L “Whitey” Schafer is considered a leading stills photographer in Hollywood during the 1930s and ’40s. He died in 1951 at the age of 49 when a stove aboard a yacht explodes as he tried to help the owner light it.

These glamorous photos are part of his work that Schafer took portraits of classic beauties in the 1930s and 1940s.

Ann Sothern, circa 1930s

Constance Bennett, circa 1930s

Jean Parker, circa 1930s

Paulette Goddard, 1930

Loretta Young, 1931







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