While Peoria was still largely segregated in the 1940s, The Famous Door was not: white and black Peorians fraternized on equal terms at the Pryor family bar.

This photograph, which comes from a cache of photographs held by the Pryor family, might be interpreted in a number of ways. On the far-left, Harold Parker (a Pryor family neighbor on North Washington Street in the 1940s) seems to be enjoying a night out in the company of a woman who appears to be white. His posture suggests ease and comfort; he appears undefended.

But on the far-right, a black patron confronts the camera with a wary stare. Was this look a fluke — a momentary expression of surprise and nothing more — or was he guarded about having his photograph taken for a reason?