Dave Hall materializes his passion for World War II history by coloring and bringing back to life old photos from that period. Dave selects the images from the Libraby of Congress and then uses Photoshop to colorize them. Originally most of the pictures were taken by Alfred T. Palmer for the Office of War Information, which at the time was responsible for releasing war news, recruiting women to work and promoting patriotism.
Dave is the founder and co-owner of Shorpy.com, vintage photography blog that features thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1950s that he has retouched. Thanks to his efforts, the shots look as if they were taken today, and makes history speak to us in a whole new way.
Plane Jane: 1942
October 1942. Long Beach, California. “Women are trained to do precise and vital engine installation detail in Douglas Aircraft Co. plants.”
Kodachrome Goes to War: 1942
October 1942. “Women are trained as engine mechanics in thorough Douglas training methods. Douglas Aircraft Company, Long Beach, California.”
Agnes of Milwaukee: 1943
February 1943. Heil & Co., Milwaukee. “Agnes Cliemka, age 23, husband may be going into the service any day. Agnes used to work in a department store. Checking fuel hose on gasoline trailer before it is turned over to the Air Force.”
Doing Her Part: 1942
October 1942. Inglewood, California. “Young woman employee of North American Aviation working over the landing gear mechanism of a P-51 fighter plane.”
The Red Socks: 1942
October 1942. Yet another still from the Technicolor pajama party that was the American aircraft industry in World War II: “Women at work on bomber, Douglas Aircraft Company, Long Beach, California.”
Just You Wait, Mr. Hitler: 1942
October 1942. Long Beach, California. “Girl riveting machine operator at the Douglas Aircraft Company plant joins sections of wing ribs to reinforce the inner wing assemblies of B-17F heavy bombers.”
Marcella and Elibia: 1943
Women employed as roundhouse wipers having lunch, Chicago & North Western Railroad, Clinton, Iowa. Marcella Hart is at left, Mrs. Elibia Siematter at right. April 1943
The Avenger: 1943
Working on a “Vengeance” dive-bomber at Vultee-Nashville. February 1943.
Rosie at Work: 1942
June 1942. Engine inspector for North American Aviation at Long Beach, California.
A Nice Hot Cup of Delicious Air
October 1942. Girl worker at lunch also absorbing California sunshine, Douglas Aircraft Company, Long Beach.
War Machine: 1942
October 1942. Engine installers at Douglas Aircraft in Long Beach, California.
Angel of History: 1942
B-25 bomber cowl assembly, North American Aviation, Kansas City, Kansas. October 1942.
Fort Worth: 1942
October 1942. Lathe operator machining parts for transport planes at the Consolidated Aircraft plant in Fort Worth, Texas.
Paging Rosie: 1942
October 1942. “Douglas Aircraft plant at Long Beach, California. An A-20 bomber being riveted by a woman worker.” (With, yes, a power drill.)