Brazil in the 1950s: Striking Historical Photos Show How Different Life Was Before

In the 1950s, Brazil was progressing and developing under the leadership of Vargas and Kubitschek. Apartments have big rooms, high ceiling, and the Rio neighborhoods were affordable for the middle class. The crime rates, drug trafficking, was low. The beaches were clean and uncrowded and full of seashells. Brazilians changed their taste of music and switched to a new rhythm, Bossa nova, jazz and rock music became popular. The inflation rate was low, but the middle class started to gain volume.

These stunning photos offer a glimpse into the everyday life of Brazil in the 1950s. Also check, Brazil in the 1960s.

#1 Workers who lived in a cluster of 2,000 temporary wooden buildings

#2 This coffee plantation stood in the terra rosa (purple earth) territory of the state of Parana

#5 Opera house built in 1896 in Manaus in the Amazon valley, Brazil, 1957

#6 Rio’s peaks, while beautiful, also strangled traffic, 1950s

#10 Woman walking while carrying a large jar on her head, Brazil, 1958

#14 Floating market in house boat village, Manaus on Rio Negro.

#15 Beach near the 17th-century Santa Maria fort, Salvador.

#17 Mixed Brazilian and Indian cattle on the Sa family ranch outside Salvador.

#18 Nelita Pignatari with children from company school Francisco Pignatari’s Rolling Mill in Sao Paulo.

#19 Boats in the harbour near Ver-o-Peso market, Belém, 1954

#20 A street vendor at a religious procession, Salvador, 1956

#21 Gustavo Capanema Palace, head office of the Ministry of Education and Health, Rio de Janeiro, 1955

#22 The Edmundo Cavanellas Residence, now the Gilbert Strunk Residence, Petrópolis, 1957

#23 The National Congress Palace, designed by Oscar Niemeyer, under construction, Brasília, 1959

#24 Esplanade between the ministries under construction, Brasília, 1959

#25 Construction workers build the National Congress Palace, Brazil, 1959

#26 Alvorada Palace, designed by Oscar Niemeyer, Brazil, 1959

#28 Decrepit engines, such as this 1904 wood burner on the Belem-Braganca run, plagued railroads.

#31 The completed National Congress Palace, Brazil, 1960

#33 A boy looks out towards a former beachfront fort, Brazil, 1957

A boy looks out towards a former beachfront fort, Brazil, 1957

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Written by Aung Budhh

Husband + Father + librarian + Poet + Traveler + Proud Buddhist. I love you with the breath, the smiles and the tears of all my life.

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