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Charming Paper Moon Portraits Take Us Back in Time

These whimsical images capture such an interesting time. Gag photos were just becoming a fad with the mass production of photography equipment and the decreased cost of photographs. We can imagine many of these folks saving up their money and getting a paper moon photo at the fair!

The classic song, “It’s Only a Paper Moon” was written in 1933 and was later made a perennial favorite when Ella Fitzgerald sang it to perfection. But, the history of the photo phenomenon is not well-documented.


1940s. Via/ Flickr


Unknown date. Via/ Flickr

Wiki Commons

1910. Via/ Wiki Commons


World War I era. Via/ Wiki Commons


World War I era. Via/ Flickr


1927. Via/ Flickr

Here’s a bonus photograph from the late 1960s showing 3 ladies not in a moon, but a rocket. What a fun take on this theme during the space age!


1968. Via/ Fortepan

Click “Next Page” for a look at San Francisco in 1940 in stunning color!

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