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Human Powered Traffic Signal

This handsome Haynes Roadster is stopped at a traffic signal on the corner of 14th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue, in Washington D.C.  And because this is 1913 the traffic signal is but is “powered” by a traffic policeman who turns a sign depending on whether it is your turn to stop or go. Definitely cutting edge 1913 technology!

Below is another view of the same view:

Another View

Note the umbrella for the traffic cop’s comfort as well as the little platform made from scraps of wood, which I suppose was meant to keep him from being run over by traffic. Standing there in the middle of the street doesn’t look that safe. But luckily there are not that many cars on the road.

I find it interesting that there are no horse drawn carriages to be seen anywhere, just lots of other automobiles in the background. It’s amazing how fast the automobile replaced the horse. The streets are wide and in good condition, with no litter or potholes.

Here is a close up view of the beautiful shiny car and its driver and passenger. Both men seem relaxed and happy as they speak to the policeman. I don’t know who they are but they look wealthy and important, so they were probably untouchable by a local foot cop, and they knew it.

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Victor Doppelt

Victor Doppelt

Victor Doppelt explores the world of yesterday through vintage photographs and informative articles.