Photo Essays, Spot News and Stock Photography
Mont-Saint-Michel, France (1933)

MONT-SAINT-MICHEL

Many creative images of Mont-Saint-Michel in France are available in beautiful colors, but not from DPI. Our style is more concerned with the photojournalism/documentary aspect than in the creative. Having said that we present our take on Mont-Saint-Michel from 1933. A unique viewpoint on the abbey in our opinion.

Small Town, U. S. A. c.1949

SMALL TOWN, U. S. A. c.1949

It happened over 50 years ago yet the images remain clear in my mind’s eye. It was during my military service. I had just completed basic training at Ft. Gordon in Atlanta, Georgia and was on my way by train to my next duty station in Baltimore, Maryland. The trip took about two days as I remember. A very slow moving train through mostly the backyards of the people living in South Carolina, North Carolina and Virginia. If you truly want to understand rural America take a train ride. Do not go by automobile as you will only see what the towns want you to see. I think that the song “City of New Orleans” by Arlo Guthrie comes closest to the mark. Pay attention to the lyrics. “…graveyards of the rusted automobiles”. “Freight yards full of old, black men.” Throw in the assorted junk in backyards and the clotheslines and you have a pretty good idea of what I witnessed. Poverty, plain and simple. I must have left Augusta on April 2, 1968 if the trip took two days, as I arrived in Baltimore on the same day of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Tough day. The toughest. “Small Town, U. S. A. c.1949” was the typical sight as my train rolled through one town after another. Note the building signs: Furnished Rooms, Dr. Pepper and Plaza Grill. You can’t see this from driving through on Main Street.

La Palma, Canary Islands c.1900

LA PALMA, CANARY ISLANDS

And so it has come to pass, the eruption of the volcano, Cumbre Vieja, on La Palma. Lava continues to flow and there are earthquakes. Follow here for latest updates. The question on everyone’s mind is will the long feared tsunami actually occur? Not much we can do about it except give some warning time if the worst happens. This photo shows a peaceful La Palma c.1900. Cumbre Vieja is seen in the distance to the right.

EGYPTIAN COTTON WORKERS

A look at the struggle of Egyptian cotton workers during the Great Depression. The sack of cotton weighed 120 lbs. Workers were paid the equivalent of 10 cents/day. In today’s economy it does not sound like a living wage, but during the Great Depression salaries in the U.S. were only a few dollars/day. In that sense it was probably just a living wage for these cotton workers.

Marseille, France (1956)

CHÂTEAU d’IF

Perhaps the ultimate in prisons except for Devil’s Island in what used to be French Guiana was “Château d’If” off the coast of Marseille, France. Prisoners were arranged by class with the poorest sent to the dungeons. Immortalized by Alexandre Dumas in his novel The Count of Monte Cristo concerning the imprisonment of Edmond Dantès. The prison, now a museum, is seen here in 1956. Clearly, Alcatraz was patterned after Château d’If.

Mauthausen Memorial

MAUTHAUSEN

The memorial at “Mauthausen“; Mauthausen, Austria c.1949. Nazi slave labor concentration camp. Photos came to us by way of Serbia. Our collection of Nazi concentration camp photos including Auschwitz-Birkenau, Dachau and Brandenburg can be found here.

Memorial at the Nazi slave labor concentration camp. Bottom left reminds us never to forget. Photo came to us by way of Serbia.

Memorial at the Nazi slave labor concentration camp. Bottom left reminds us never to forget. Photo came to us by way of Serbia.

Ohio c.1928 At least they were sledgehammer men, but that's where the similarity ends.

JOHN HENRY REDUX

It was the sledgehammer that grabbed our attention. “John Henry Redux“; Ohio c.1928. The folk hero and the song, “John Henry was a Steel Driving Man” are a part of Americana. Our John Henry worked with a sledgehammer as did the folk hero but in a different occupation. He was not competing against a steam driven drill. What is a bit confusing in the photo is the angle at which he is swinging the sledgehammer. It seems to be at the wrong angle to drive in spikes, and if used to move a rail tie surely it would destroy the tie. The rails can shift over time, and today they would not be straightened using a sledgehammer there are machines made for that purpose. In this railroad worker’s time the sledgehammer was the tool of choice.

President Coolidge with his wife Grace riding in an open limousine. c.1925

CALVIN COOLIDGE

Calvin who? No, not John Calvin. Calvin Coolidge, 30th President of the United States of America. “Silent Cal”. President Coolidge is seen here riding with his wife Grace in the presidential open limousine. Shown in the original sepia. Presidents riding in open limousines ended with the assassination of JFK. What is especially interesting is that this amateur photo was taken at such close range to a sitting President.

 

Calvin Coolidge” c. 1925.

Cuernavaca, Mexico c.1917

LOS ZAPATISTAS

A very special, newly acquired photograph. Our first title was supposed to be “Los Vaqueros” (The Cowboys) even though we had hoped that upon investigation we had stumbled upon something more valuable. Notice the removed wall plaques which would be consistent with actions taken toward l’ancien regime during a revolution. What we have here, in fact, is a scene taken during the Mexican Revolution c.1917. Signature on the new plaques on the wall bears that of Emilio Zapata. So our new title is “Los Zapatistas” as these vaqueros are most likely supporters of Zapata. That being the case the best guess as to the location of this scene seems to be in Cuernava in the state of Morales. Viva Zapata!