|Description:||This historic image, provided by the Center for Disease Control's (CDC), National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), depicted a man who was wearing a protective suite, while entering a metal chamber, the function of which could not be determined from this photograph. The suite’s material is unknown, however, it looked as if it was constructed of a type of plastic. One cannot determine if the suite was airtight, due to the overlap of the “shirt” and “pants”, and it appeared that there was no breathing tube, or if the man was carrying a canister of source air.|
This image, and many others like it, was used to document the many aspects of various industrial activities, so as to better understand these workplace environments, and their associated hazards. In gaining a better understanding of workplace hazards, protocol-formulating bodies such as NIOSH, are better able to create a safer workplace through substantiation of appropriate safety regulations.
The NIOSH Historic Photo Collection began as the “picture file” of the Industrial Hygiene Division of the U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS), c. 1930-1960. It is a unique collection of mid-20th Century images of American workers and workplaces and documents occupational safety and health research of that era. The collection consists of approximately 1,000 original photographs and schematic drawings.