CAMDEN, NJ – BOOMTOWN (1939)

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The year is 1939. Camden is located in South Jersey, near Trenton, and across the Delaware River from Philadelphia. Once upon a time in America – Camden, New Jersey was a booming manufacturing hub. Walt Whitman came from Camden, and for many decades, RCA Victor was located there – turning out their famous Victor Talking Machines – and later manufacturing radios, and televisions. Nearby, Campbell’s turned out its many varieties of soup. The city of 120,000 boasted the largest shipyard in the world (New York Shipbuilding) – and America’s first drive-in movie. Today’s colorized image is of that Camden, New Jersey – a city with a bright future and endless possibilities – 75 years ago.

Camden, NJ (1939) (O)

1939 - Camden, New Jersey

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MARK TWAIN (1907)

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The year is 1907. Here is Samuel Langhorne Clemens in his twilight years. You’ll find this image in color all over the internet. Mark Twain is a colorization of ours from 10 years ago, and has been copied by many fledgling colorizing artists since we first posted it on our website.

A few of these plagiarists have reaped considerable glory for their artistic “genius” – but this is the Original Colorization of Mark Twain. Sometimes being a “pioneer” isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. You create, others steal – But, I digress. Back to Sam Clemens . . .

Using the pen name, Mark Twain, Clemens became one of America’s great authors. His name came from his days on the riverboats – and referred to a measure of water depth in the river.

From “Tom Sawyer” to “Huckleberry Finn” – to “Jumping Frog of Calaveras County”, Clemens left us a vast collection of memorable stories. What makes them so vivid, is that so much of Clemens’ own adventures, and his zest for life are in abundance in the characters and situations of his books.

Mark Twain 1907 (O1)

1907 - Mark Twain

TRAIN KEPT A-ROLLIN’ (1890)

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The year is 1890. According to the Just A Car Guy blog, this photo was taken in Mexico. Perhaps a train enthusiast can confirm this. If it is Mexico, I’m thinking maybe this is Oaxaco, which has similar terrain. That might make this a Mexico Southern locomotive. So far, it’s a mystery, but this is a very thrilling image – and even more so in color. This kind of image is what comes to mind whenever I hear the classic Johnny Burnette song, “the train kept a-rollin’ all night long – with a heave and a ho . . .”

1890 - Locomotive in Mountains (1)

1890 - Train Kept A-Rollin'

KITCHEN WITH DINAH (1949)

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The year is 1949 – and someone’s in the kitchen with Dinah!This photo was taken by noted African-American photographer, Addison Scurlock, of Washington, DC. These gentlemen are the dining car cooks aboard a passenger train – most likely in the Washington area.

In the 1940s, train travel was a magical experience, and gleaming rails criss-crossed the United States from Atlantic to Pacific and from the Gulf of Mexico to the Great Lakes. They’re all but gone now, but we have vintage films and photos to show us what real train travel was like.

And then, there are those wonderful train tunes: “I’ve Been Workin’ On The Railroad”, “Mystery Train”,”Wabash Cannonball, “Chattanooga Choo-Choo”, “Ballad Of Casey Jones”, Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe”, “Choo Choo Ch’Boogie”, “Take The ‘A’ Train”, “King Of The Road” . . . So much history there.

1949 - Dining Car Cooks (1949) (O)

1949 - Dining Car Cooks