1940s

Vintage: Lisbon in the 1940s

Vintage: Lisbon in the 1940s

During the Estado Novo regime (1926–1974), Lisbon was expanded at the cost of other districts within the country, resulting in nationalist and monumental projects. New residential and public developments were constructed; the zone of Belém was modified for the 1940 Portuguese Exhibition, while along the periphery new districts appeared to house the growing population. The inauguration of the bridge over…
Vintage: Everyday Life of Soviet People during World War II

Vintage: Everyday Life of Soviet People during World War II

The Soviet Union suffered greatly in the war, losing around 27 million people. Approximately 2.8 million Soviet POWs died of starvation, mistreatment, or executions in just eight months of 1941–42. During the war, the Soviet Union together with the United States, the United Kingdom and China were considered as the Big Four of Allied powers in World War II and…
Historic photos of China by Jack Birns (1947-1949)

Historic photos of China by Jack Birns (1947-1949)

Shipping out to China in December 1947 with three ten-year-old German cameras and a plum assignment from Life magazine, Jack Birns was fulfilling a boyhood dream. The reality was something else: refugees and prostitutes, soldiers and beggars, street executions and urban protests photographed in difficult and often dangerous circumstances amidst the poverty, corruption, and chaos of an expanding civil war.…
Vintage: Refugee Crisis Caused by World War II

Vintage: Refugee Crisis Caused by World War II

During World War II, the Nazis deported between seven and nine million Europeans, mostly to Germany. Within months of Germany’s surrender in May 1945, the Allies repatriated to their home countries more than six million displaced persons (DPs; wartime refugees). Between 1.5 million and two million DPs refused repatriation. Most Jewish survivors, who had survived concentration camps or had been…
Vintage: Portraits of Myrna Loy (1930s and 1940s)

Vintage: Portraits of Myrna Loy (1930s and 1940s)

Portrait photographer Henry Waxman had taken several pictures of Loy, and they were noticed by Rudolph Valentino when the actor went to Waxman’s studio for a sitting. He was looking for a leading lady for Cobra, the first independent project his wife Natacha Rambova and he were producing. Loy tested for the role, which went to Gertrude Olmstead, instead, but…
Vintage: Daily Life of Albert Einstein (1940s and 1950s)

Vintage: Daily Life of Albert Einstein (1940s and 1950s)

Einstein developed an appreciation for music at an early age, and later wrote: “If I were not a physicist, I would probably be a musician. I often think in music. I live my daydreams in music. I see my life in terms of music… I get most joy in life out of music.” His mother played the piano reasonably well…
Vintage: Young Tasha Tudor and Her Children (1940s)

Vintage: Young Tasha Tudor and Her Children (1940s)

Tasha Tudor (1915–2008) is one of America’s best-known and beloved illustrators. Her first little story, Pumpkin Moonshine, was published in 1938. She illustrated nearly one hundred books, the last being the 2003 release, The Corgiville Christmas. She received many awards and honors, including Caldecott Honors for Mother Goose and 1 is One. Many of her books are printed in foreign languages…
The Liberation of Bergen-Belsen Concentration Camp by George Rodger

The Liberation of Bergen-Belsen Concentration Camp by George Rodger

With the outbreak of the Second World War, Rodger had a strong urge to chronicle the war. His photographs of the Blitz gained him a job as a war correspondent for Life magazine, based in the United States. Rodger covered the war in West Africa extensively and, towards the end of the war, followed the Allies’ liberation of France, Belgium…
Vintage: Everyday Life in The Netherlands by Emmy Andriesse (1940s)

Vintage: Everyday Life in The Netherlands by Emmy Andriesse (1940s)

Emmy Eugenie Andriesse (1914 – 1953) was a Dutch photographer best known for her work with the Underground Camera group during World War II. Andriesse was the only child of liberal Jews Abraham Andriesse, textile company representative, and Else Fuld. At age fifteen, she lost her mother, and since her father traveled internationally for work, she was raised by several…
Vintage: Historic photos of China by Jack Birns (1947-1949)

Vintage: Historic photos of China by Jack Birns (1947-1949)

Shipping out to China in December 1947 with three ten-year-old German cameras and a plum assignment from Life magazine, Jack Birns was fulfilling a boyhood dream. The reality was something else: refugees and prostitutes, soldiers and beggars, street executions and urban protests photographed in difficult and often dangerous circumstances amidst the poverty, corruption, and chaos of an expanding civil war.…
Vintage: Railway in Chicago (1940s)

Vintage: Railway in Chicago (1940s)

Chicago is the most important railroad center in North America. More lines of track radiate in more directions from Chicago than from any other city. Chicago has long been the most important interchange point for freight traffic between the nation’s major railroads and it is the hub of Amtrak, the intercity rail passenger system. Chicago ranks second (behind New York…
Vintage: Women Dressed in Turkey Feathers (1948)

Vintage: Women Dressed in Turkey Feathers (1948)

In 1948, a LIFE magazine writer was tasked with covering the wedding of “turkey enthusiast” Barbara Orr Ehrhart – a woman who made her wedding dress out of turkey feathers. After obtaining permission to get married at the Far West Turkey Show in California, the bride gathered 37,500 plumes for her dress, which was constructed over the course of several…
Vintage: Fashion Photography by Genevieve Naylor (1940s and 1950s)

Vintage: Fashion Photography by Genevieve Naylor (1940s and 1950s)

Genevieve Naylor (1915 – 1989) was an American photographer and photojournalist, best known for her photographs of Brazil and as Eleanor Roosevelt’s personal photographer. She worked for the Associated press and was one of the first women photojournalists to be hired by any American news wire services. In 1940, Genevieve Naylor was assigned by the U.S. State department as part…
Vintage: Betty Grable and her legs (1943)

Vintage: Betty Grable and her legs (1943)

Elizabeth “Betty” Grable (1916 – 1973) was an American actress, pin-up girl, dancer, and singer. Grable was voted the number-one box-office draw by American movie exhibitors in 1943; she outranked Bob Hope, Gary Cooper, Greer Garson, Humphrey Bogart, and Clark Gable in popularity. Grable’s next movie, Coney Island, released in June 1943, was a Technicolor “gay nineties” period musical and…
Vintage: Christmas during the World War II (1940s)

Vintage: Christmas during the World War II (1940s)

The public were discouraged from giving presents and encouraged to give as much as they could to the war effort. Almost £10 million in war bonds was sold in the week before Christmas. Consumer goods were becoming scarcer as the war wore on but a theme of air-raid-shelter-friendly presents emerged. Flasks and sleeping bags were in demand and even ‘gas…
Vintage: Celebrities and Fashion (1940s)

Vintage: Celebrities and Fashion (1940s)

With the start of the war and a strict rationing on fabric, dresses in the 1940s became shorter. Whereas the 1930s featured dresses down to mid calf, the 1940s brought them up to knee length. The war also affected the top of the dress. 1940s Style Women’s Dress and Accesssories | 1940s Fashion for Women Women’s clothes took on a…