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What San Jose, California looked like in the Roaring 1920s

The 1920s was a time of booming economic growth in San Jose. Old industries expanded, and new ones were founded. However, the prosperity of the 1920s was not evenly distributed. Too much wealth was derived from profits and not enough from wages. Many workers could not afford to buy the products they produced because their incomes were so low. In other words, businesses had more goods than they could consume. The surplus of unsold goods hurt the economy.

For nearly two centuries, San Jose has been a farming community that produced fruits and vegetables. Prunes, grapes, and apricots are among the crops that were grown here. The Santa Clara Valley was so full of orchards in the 1920s, which released a delicious scent of ripening fruit that nicknamed The Valley of Heart’s Delight. In 1922, brothers Stephano and Andrea D’Arrigo established the first commercial broccoli farm in the United States in San Jose.

#1 Confiscated stills in front of the San Jose courthouse, 1925

Confiscated stills in front of the San Jose courthouse, 1925

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#2 Bank of San Jose Building, 1920

Bank of San Jose Building, 1920

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#3 Tree-planting ceremony on the grounds of San Jose State Teachers College, San Jose, 1925

Tree-planting ceremony on the grounds of San Jose State Teachers College, San Jose, 1925

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#4 Burrell Building, Standard Furniture Company, San Jose, California, 1925

Burrell Building, Standard Furniture Company, San Jose, California, 1925

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#5 The Completed San Jose Hospital, 1923

The Completed San Jose Hospital, 1923

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#6 Hotel Vendome, San Jose, 1922

Hotel Vendome, San Jose, 1922

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#7 San Jose Street scene with electric light tower, 1920

San Jose Street scene with electric light tower, 1920

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#8 San Jose Rubber Works 51 South Third Street, 1920s

San Jose Rubber Works 51 South Third Street, 1920s

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#9 San Jose Nursing Department Members, Superintendents and Staff, 1925

San Jose Nursing Department Members, Superintendents and Staff, 1925

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#10 Columbia Hospital in downtown San Jose at Market Street and Auzerias Avenue, 1920

Columbia Hospital in downtown San Jose at Market Street and Auzerias Avenue, 1920

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#11 San Jose Hospital Nursing School, Class of 1929

San Jose Hospital Nursing School, Class of 1929

San Jose Nursing School became San Jose Medical Center which until recently was located at 675 E. Santa Clara Street in San Jose, CA. (The only identified person is Dorothy Howe Casalegno, 14th from left)

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#12 Freight train on Fourth Street in downtown San Jose, 1920s

Freight train on Fourth Street in downtown San Jose, 1920s

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#13 Porter Building, 1920s

Porter Building, 1920s

Automobiles and pedestrians on street in front of the Porter Building at Santa Clara Street and Second Street, San Jose, demolished in 1947.

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#14 Group portrait of cyclists, San Jose Bicycle Day, May 5 ,1923

Group portrait of cyclists, San Jose Bicycle Day, May 5 ,1923

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#15 San Jose Hospital, 1928

San Jose Hospital, 1928

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#16 Post Office on North First Street, San Jose, 1927

Post Office on North First Street, San Jose, 1927

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#17 Automobile, tractor, and hay-filled cart in a field in Evergreen, near San Jose, California, 1920

Automobile, tractor, and hay-filled cart in a field in Evergreen, near San Jose, California, 1920

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#18 Threshing activity seen from a distance in an expansive field in Evergreen, near San Jose, California, 1920s

Threshing activity seen from a distance in an expansive field in Evergreen, near San Jose, California, 1920s

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#19 Commercial card titled “Winchester Mystery House, Near San Jose, California, 1920s

Commercial card titled "Winchester Mystery House, Near San Jose, California, 1920s

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#20 Porter Building, on the Northeast Corner of Second and Santa Clara Streets, San Jose, 1925

Porter Building, on the Northeast Corner of Second and Santa Clara Streets, San Jose, 1925

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#21 Back of Winchester Mystery House, 1920s

Back of Winchester Mystery House, 1920s

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#22 Radio antenna on top of building, San Jose, 1925

Radio antenna on top of building, San Jose, 1925

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#23 Woman pulling car with teeth, San Jose, California, 1926

Woman pulling car with teeth, San Jose, California, 1926

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#24 Downtown Campbell, California. 1925

Downtown Campbell, California. 1925

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#25 Red Star Laundry, 360 Park Avenue, 1926

Red Star Laundry, 360 Park Avenue, 1926

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#26 R. M. Lipe, Machine Shop, San Jose, 1926

R. M. Lipe, Machine Shop, San Jose, 1926

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#27 Henry M. Bland, Edith Daley, Edwin Markham, 1927

Henry M. Bland, Edith Daley, Edwin Markham, 1927

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#28 Men working canning machines at Hunt Brothers Packing Company. Cannery was located at 361 North Fourth Street, San Jose, 1925

Men working canning machines at Hunt Brothers Packing Company. Cannery was located at 361 North Fourth Street, San Jose, 1925

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#29 LAPL Central Library construction site, 1924

LAPL Central Library construction site, 1924

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#30 Walsh-Col Co., Wholesale Grocers, 1925

Walsh-Col Co., Wholesale Grocers, 1925

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#31 Boy Scout Parade, South First Street, 1924

Boy Scout Parade, South First Street, 1924

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#32 Butcher Electric modernized the electrtical fixtures in the Red Star Laundry, 1928

Butcher Electric modernized the electrtical fixtures in the Red Star Laundry, 1928

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#33 Knights of Columbus Building, 40 North First Street; built in 1926 Had swimming pool on fourth floor, 1926

Knights of Columbus Building, 40 North First Street; built in 1926 Had swimming pool on fourth floor, 1926

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#34 Compton City Hall, 1926

Compton City Hall, 1926

Compton was originally part of the territory known as Rancho San Pedro, which had been granted to Juan Jose Dominguez by the Spanish Crown. The territory was settled in 1867 by a band of 30 pioneering families that were led to the area by Griffith Dickenson Compton, and it was soon developed into a farming village.

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#35 Olmstead Band playing at San Jose, 1929

Olmstead Band playing at San Jose, 1929

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#36 Bernard Panella Hauling Co. truck and trailer loaded with fruit boxes. In the background is the Artana building located at 349 West Santa Clara Street, 1922

Bernard Panella Hauling Co. truck and trailer loaded with fruit boxes. In the background is the Artana building located at 349 West Santa Clara Street, 1922

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#37 Exterior of the Biceglia Building, also showing exterior of Frisco Furniture Store, 1928

Exterior of the Biceglia Building, also showing exterior of Frisco Furniture Store, 1928

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#38 Downtown San Jose from Wyckoff’s offices, including St. James, the old Post Office (later library and San Jose Museum of Art), as well as the City Hall, 1920s

Downtown San Jose from Wyckoff's offices, including St. James, the old Post Office (later library and San Jose Museum of Art), as well as the City Hall, 1920s

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#39 Exterior view of the Casa de Pedrorena, the first frame house built in Old Town, 1920

Exterior view of the Casa de Pedrorena, the first frame house built in Old Town, 1920

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#40 Charles Herrold in radio lab booth, 1925

Charles Herrold in radio lab booth, 1925

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#41 Man posing with two confiscated stills, 1925

Man posing with two confiscated stills, 1925

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#42 Eagle Brewery with gas station, 1920

Eagle Brewery with gas station, 1920

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#43 The Shaw Warehouse & Forwarding Company and E. H. Renzel Wholesale Grocers, 1920s

The Shaw Warehouse & Forwarding Company and E. H. Renzel Wholesale Grocers, 1920s

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#44 Two railroad cars, 1920s

Two railroad cars, 1920s

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#45 Peach Pitter, 1926

Peach Pitter, 1926

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#46 Pathfinders sitting on hillside overlooking valley, 1920s

Pathfinders sitting on hillside overlooking valley, 1920s

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#47 Naptime for the Pathfinders after their hike at Inverness, 1920s

Naptime for the Pathfinders after their hike at Inverness, 1920s

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#48 Dirt drive, lined with rocks, leading to Schuhardt’s at La Honda, 1920s

Dirt drive, lined with rocks, leading to Schuhardt's at La Honda, 1920s

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#49 Riverlure, overlooking the Hudson, 1924

Riverlure, overlooking the Hudson, 1924

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#50 Bicycle Race in Paris, France, 1926

Bicycle Race in Paris, France, 1926

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#51 Muirson Label Company employees standing in front of the Muirson building located at 435 Stockton Avenue, 1923

Muirson Label Company employees standing in front of the Muirson building located at 435 Stockton Avenue, 1923

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#52 Holy City, 1928

Holy City, 1928

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#53 Mare Island Naval Shipyard equipment, 1920s

Mare Island Naval Shipyard equipment, 1920s

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#54 Parade in San Jose, 1920s

Parade in San Jose, 1920s

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#55 Benson & Weaver, Studebaker Trucks, 1923

Benson & Weaver, Studebaker Trucks, 1923

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#56 FMC Equipment Cooker, 1927

FMC Equipment Cooker, 1927

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#57 Building under construction, 1926

Building under construction, 1926

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#58 Brace Avenue, Willow Glen, 1922

Brace Avenue, Willow Glen, 1922

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#59 Muirson Label Company Pressroom, 1926

Muirson Label Company Pressroom, 1926

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#60 Bean Tire & Rubber Works, 1925

Bean Tire & Rubber Works, 1925

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#61 Associated Oil Company Service Station, 1922

Associated Oil Company Service Station, 1922

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#62 FMC Equipment Preheater, Sterilizer, and Cooler, 1927

FMC Equipment Preheater, Sterilizer, and Cooler, 1927

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#63 Pathfinders at the Beach, 1928

Pathfinders at the Beach, 1928

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#64 A family standing in front of a building, 1921

A family standing in front of a building, 1921

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#65 Race of the Cyclists, 1925

Race of the Cyclists, 1925

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#66 Irvington Grammar School, 1928

Irvington Grammar School, 1928

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#67 Kolster Radio Compass and Position Finder, 1921

Kolster Radio Compass and Position Finder, 1921

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#68 Golden Gate Packing company, 1920

Golden Gate Packing company, 1920

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#69 United States Products Corporation exterior, 1926

United States Products Corporation exterior, 1926

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#70 O’Brien’s Ice Cream Store and Candy Factory, 1928

O'Brien's Ice Cream Store and Candy Factory, 1928

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#71 Eddie Rickenbacker with biplane and automobile, 1925

Eddie Rickenbacker with biplane and automobile, 1925

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#72 FMC Equipment – Conveyor, 1922

FMC Equipment – Conveyor, 1922

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#73 Race in Veledome, 1925

Race in Veledome, 1925

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#74 Coyote Creek Bridge on Berryessa Road, 1920

Coyote Creek Bridge on Berryessa Road, 1920

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#75 Truax & Drew’s Garage on North side of Franklin Street between Main and Franklin, Santa Clara, 1920

Truax & Drew's Garage on North side of Franklin Street between Main and Franklin, Santa Clara, 1920

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#76 Northern California Members 1929 California Legislature, 1929

Northern California Members 1929 California Legislature, 1929

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#77 City Truck and Transfer Company about 1925

City Truck and Transfer Company about 1925

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#78 A large piece of equipment is being manoeuvred out of building onto railway car below, 1924

A large piece of equipment is being manoeuvred out of building onto railway car below, 1924

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#79 Peninsular Railway Car No. 108 speed eastbound along Stevens Creek Road, 1920s

Peninsular Railway Car No. 108 speed eastbound along Stevens Creek Road, 1920s

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#80 Post Office on N. First Street, 1920s

Post Office on N. First Street, 1920s

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#81 College of the Pacific building, women strolling in front of building, 1925

College of the Pacific building, women strolling in front of building, 1925

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#82 The wooden frame building on the right is the old Renzel house, 1920s

The wooden frame building on the right is the old Renzel house, 1920s

The wooden frame building on the right is the old Renzel house, located on South First Street.

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#83 Looking down hill, from print shop to restaurant, 1928

Looking down hill, from print shop to restaurant, 1928

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#84 Meadow and Trees, Big Basin, California, 1920s

Meadow and Trees, Big Basin, California, 1920s

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#85 Sunnyvale Garage, William Cockrell & N. Nielsen, 1922

Sunnyvale Garage, William Cockrell & N. Nielsen, 1922

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#86 FMC Equipment Preheater, Sterilizer and Cooler, 1927

FMC Equipment Preheater, Sterilizer and Cooler, 1927

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#87 Parachutist landing, 1920s

Parachutist landing, 1920s

A parachutist lands at an air field. Stunt flyers were attracted to Phelan Field, a large tract of open land extending from First Street to the Southern Pacific Railroad's Fourth Street tracks. To make the event even more spectacular, parachutists such as the one in this picture were added.

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#88 Exterior of multi-story factory, 1924.

Exterior of multi-story factory, 1924.

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#89 FMC Equipment, 1924

FMC Equipment, 1924

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#90 Canello Hayes Canello Ford Lincoln Dealership, 1923

Canello Hayes Canello Ford Lincoln Dealership, 1923

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#91 FMC Equipment Pressure Cooker, 1927

FMC Equipment Pressure Cooker, 1927

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#92 Pajaro District School, 1925

Pajaro District School, 1925

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#93 California Cured Fruit Association, 1920s

California Cured Fruit Association, 1920s

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#94 Booker School, 1920s

Booker School, 1920s

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#95 Lick eclipse expedition camp near Ensenada, Mexico, 1923

Lick eclipse expedition camp near Ensenada, Mexico, 1923

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#96 Small house nestled up against wooded hillside. Two cars are parked alongside the dirt roads, 1920s

Small house nestled up against wooded hillside. Two cars are parked alongside the dirt roads, 1920s

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#97 Pathfinders at Vill-del -Leau – beach area with rock outcropping in background, 1926

Pathfinders at Vill-del -Leau - beach area with rock outcropping in background, 1926

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#98 Sargent’s Frozen Foods/Ice Sickle Zero Storage, 1920s

Sargent's Frozen Foods/Ice Sickle Zero Storage, 1920s

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#99 47th California Legislature, 1927

47th California Legislature, 1927

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#100 Front of large estate with gate, possibly one of Sarah Winchester homes, 1922

Front of large estate with gate, possibly one of Sarah Winchester homes, 1922

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#101 Joe and Frank Madeiros, 1925

Joe and Frank Madeiros, 1925

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#102 Benson & Weaver Automobile Business, 1920

Benson & Weaver Automobile Business, 1920

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#103 Henrietta Escobar (Bernal) playing the Guitar in New Almaden Parade, 1920s

Henrietta Escobar (Bernal) playing the Guitar in New Almaden Parade, 1920s

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#104 Peninsular Railway Car Co., 1920s

Peninsular Railway Car Co., 1920s

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#105 FMC Equipment, 1924

FMC Equipment, 1924

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#106 Penitencia Creek Bridge on King or Capitol, 1920

Penitencia Creek Bridge on King or Capitol, 1920

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#107 FMC Equipment Dryer, 1927

FMC Equipment Dryer, 1927

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#108 Markham House Cottage, 1926

Markham House Cottage, 1926

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#109 Calkins Ranch (line of automobiles and people in field), 1925

Calkins Ranch (line of automobiles and people in field), 1925

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#110 Transporting fruit for canning by open truck, 1925

Transporting fruit for canning by open truck, 1925

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#111 San Jose, Market Street and West Santa Clara Street, 1925

San Jose, Market Street and West Santa Clara Street, 1925

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#112 Car in front of the Market Street Post Office, 1921

Car in front of the Market Street Post Office, 1921

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#113 Main Office of Richmond Chase Company, Plant Number 7, San Jose, 1920s

Main Office of Richmond Chase Company, Plant Number 7, San Jose, 1920s

Main Office of Richmond Chase Company, San Jose, California. The building is stucco with a tile roof on a corner lot, with railroad tracks running in front of the building.

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#114 Hotel Sainte Claire viewed from the grounds of the Municipal Auditorium, 1920s

Hotel Sainte Claire viewed from the grounds of the Municipal Auditorium, 1920s

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#115 Mission San Jose, 1920

Mission San Jose, 1920

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#116 Flower Lover’s Club group portrait, 1923

Flower Lover's Club group portrait, 1923

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#117 Western Well Works Company, 1925

Western Well Works Company, 1925

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#118 Hunt Brothers Packing Company, 1920

Hunt Brothers Packing Company, 1920

Hunt Bros. San Jose" written on back of photograph. The Hunt Bros. cannery was located at 361 North Fourth Street, San Jose. This shows the back of a factory, with railroad tracks and a paved road. An automobile is parked on the road.

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#119 San Jose High School, 1920

San Jose High School, 1920

View of San Jose High school looking south from San Fernando Street. A path lined with flowers and lawns lead to the main entrance. A man stands on the left by the front gate. A large flag flies from the flagpole in front of the school. The entrance in the center leads to administrative offices and an auditorium. The school is built in the Mission Revival style with flanking bell towers. The wings on either side hold classrooms. This school was built on the site of the old high school destroyed in the 1906 earthquake. The school was moved in 1952 when adjacent San Jose State College needed space to expand.

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#120 High frequency transmitter, built by Heintz and Kaufman, 1923

High frequency transmitter, built by Heintz and Kaufman, 1923

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#121 Elks Building, 1921

Elks Building, 1921

View of San Jose High school looking south from San Fernando Street. A path lined with flowers and lawns lead to the main entrance. A man stands on the left by the front gate. A large flag flies from the flagpole in front of the school. The entrance in the center leads to administrative offices and an auditorium. The school is built in the Mission Revival style with flanking bell towers. The wings on either side hold classrooms. This school was built on the site of the old high school destroyed in the 1906 earthquake. The school was moved in 1952 when adjacent San Jose State College needed space to expand.

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#122 Peter Andreucetti in front of the Purity Baking Company building, 1925

Peter Andreucetti in front of the Purity Baking Company building, 1925

Peter Andreucetti in front of the Purity Baking Company building located at 288 South Market Street about 1929. The Andreucetti family was very prominent in San Jose.

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#123 Linda Vista Country Club, 1925

Linda Vista Country Club, 1925

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#124 Mission San Jose, 1920

Mission San Jose, 1920

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#125 Businesses on the East side of South First Street, 1925

Businesses on the East side of South First Street, 1925

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#126 Saint Joseph’s Church, 1925

Saint Joseph's Church, 1925

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