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Russell Lee Photos – American Life in Waco, Texas


This is our second post in a series with photos taken during November of 1939, by photographer Russell Lee when he visited Waco, Texas, for the Farm Security Administration. The photographs above and below show Frank Sharp’s Tire shop that operated from his storefront and on both the sidewalk and street. Even late in the 1930s when these photos were taken, the Great Depression was still lingering, and the used tires seen below were in demand.


Gardner’s Cut Rate Package House below sold liquor, wine and gasoline. The store’s gas pump that is visible appears to be either a Gilbarco or a Wayne unit. Compared with today gasoline was more reasonably priced at the time still but not cheap, adjusted for inflation it sold for between $1.80 to $2.74 a gallon. You can look back at our earlier Russell Lee photos here. You also can see well over one hundred more vintage gasoline station photos here. 


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