Dreamland: America at the Dawn of the Twentieth Century
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Dreamland: America at the Dawn of the Twentieth Century
By Michael Lesy

Being a postcard collector myself, I was envious when I read that Michael Lesy spent a dozen years combing through the archives of the Detroit Publishing Company's postcard images. At the beginning of the 20th century, the company hired crews of photographers to travel across America and take pictures as they went. The result is a multitude of "scenic views," including California orange groves, ore transfer stations (below), New York's Pennsylvania Station, Indian chiefs, Colorado miners, and the cover image of a pleasure palace called Cliff House, among other wonders and contradictions of the early 1900s.

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