Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Views of the World, San Nichola, Cebu, P.I.

Cebu is an island in the Philippines.  I looked up San Nichola, but couldn't find it.  There is a neighborhood called San Nicholas in Cebu City.  If this card is from that neighborhood then it doesn't look like this anymore.  Cebu City isn't the second largest city in the country, but it's sometimes called the second city of the Philippines, and it's densely populated.  I doubt there are any huts and wide dirt roads anymore.

So this is it.  The final card in this series.  If I ever find the few missing images, or if I run across any cards numbered higher than 48, I'll buy them and post them here.  But, I wouldn't hold my breath.  Click on Views of the World in labels at the bottom of the post to see the whole lot.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Views of the World, Old Gateway, Manila, P.I.

File this one under, you learn something everyday.  I knew that before the U.S. took the Philippines, it had been a Spanish colony.  What I didn't know was that the Spaniards launched their invasion of the islands from Mexico.

I'm surprised, considering the United State's long history in the Philippines, that I don't have more photos of the islands in my collection.  This image of the old gateway is one of several entrances into Fort Santiago, the original Spanish military outpost in Manila.  Today, Manila is the most densely populated cities in the world.

Click on Views of the World in labels to see more from the collection.  Only one more to go.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Views of the World, Street Scene, Tokyo, Japan

I promised I'd finish this collection by the end of the year, so, it's time for the last three of the lot.  (Click on Views of the World in labels to see more.)

Needless to say, there's far too much information about Tokyo, on line, to type it all up.  So, don't be lazy, look it up.  In a nutshell, Tokyo started out as a small fishing village known as Edo.  It was first fortified by the Edo clan in the late 12th century.  Edo Castle, now the sight of the Imperial Palace, was built in 1457.  In 1868, Edo became the capital of Japan, and it's name was changed to Tokyo, which means eastern capital.  Today, Tokyo is the largest metropolitan area in the world.

Thursday, December 24, 2015


For all those people in the northeast who are enjoying a 70 degree Christmas Eve, this is what you're missing.  The printers mark dates this one from "Week of June 7 1954."  Obviously, the photo was taken earlier in the year.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Christmas 1959

Dated "December 25, 1959."

Monday, December 21, 2015


As I've noted before, I love travelling by train.  From the early twentieth century.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Big Bear

I bought this one here, in southern California, so I'm going to go out on a limb and state that this photo was taken at Big Bear Lake in the San Bernardino Mountains.

Big Bear Lake and the town of the same name are wholly surrounded by San Bernardino National Forest.  The lake was the first true year round resort in California.  During the summer, it's fishing, swimming, and water skiing, and during the winter, if it snows, certainly something that's no longer guaranteed, skiing.  And of course, it's a base for hiking, backpacking, and mountain biking.

The name Big Bear wasn't some developer's fancy.  It came from the large number of grizzly bears that were once found along the lake shore.  Grizzly bears, the California state animal, and central image of the state flag and seal are no longer found in California, long ago hunted out.  From time to time, the National Park Service floats a plan to reintroduce them in the high Sierra parks, Yosemite, Kings Canyon and Sequoia.  An idea that hasn't been embraced in communities adjacent to the parks.

Big Bear has also been used as a setting for many Hollywood movies and TV shows.  My personal recommendation,  Flesh and the Devil with Greta Garbo.  Yes, I am aware that few people share my love of silent movies, but every so often I hope for a conversion.

Really like the photographers foot in the lower right corner.  It beats the far more common thumb.

Friday, December 18, 2015

The Same Christmas Grannies + 1

I screwed up.  These were supposed to go up with yesterday's post, but I wasn't thinking.  I'd blame it on too much holiday cheer, but I'm kind of a teetotaler.   Speaking of Happy Holidays, I just read a story about a Texas politician who has threatened to slap anyone who wishes him Happy Holidays rather than Merry Christmas.   It's that whole war on Xmas thing.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Christmas Grannies

I'm getting addicted to the color restoration setting on the scanner.  Anyway, another gaggle of grannies.  There's a printers date, "JAN 67" on the print, so Christmas 1966.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Herr Director

I'm a great fan of German films from a certain period, basically from the silent era until the Nazis took over a drove out many of the most talented actors, writers, and directors.  Anyway, I bought this card because the gentleman made me think of Fritz Lang, although, I'd say he looks a bit more like a young Billy Wilder.  As far as the writing on the back, I think it's German though I'm not 100% sure.  1937, of course, is unmistakable.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Hillside Bride

Nothing is written on the back of this print, and that's a shame.  I bought this one here, in Los Angeles, and so I'm assuming it's a shot of one of the many hills of L.A.  What's interesting to me is that the hill is so bare.  There aren't a lot of hillsides in soCal that haven't been developed, and properties with views go for a lot of money.  I know something of fashion photography, but not a lot about fashion itself.  Still, the young lady looks pretty stylish to me, and I can see her and her husband up on the ridge line looking down on the city.

Monday, December 14, 2015


Awhile back, I bought an envelope of color snapshots.  Some were clearly related, some maybes, and others...who knows.  These are all dated "Christmas 1968."  The third one is also labeled, "Mary Maloney, Joey 7 yrs."  I'm not sure why there would be two names on a picture of little Joey.  Perhaps Mary was the other child, or maybe the mother and photographer.

I can remember when artificial trees came along.   The early ones were really, really ugly.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Rose & Neddy In Brooklyn

Written on the back, "Rose L age 16, March 26 1922-1115 40th St Bkyn Neddy C. 15"  I can't remember how many times I've found information that specific on the back of a print.  I'd bet, the structure in the background is an elevated train and I'd bet it still there.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Class Photo

I have enough photos in the collection that there's usually some sort of plan for the next 4 or 5 posts.  There are a half dozen or so found photography blogs that I check on a regular basis and more that I visit from time to time.  Anyway, once in awhile, the line-up gets disrupted when one of those blogs publishes something that's so similar that I don't want to seem like a copycat.  This photo, dated "1931" was set to go about a month ago, but was delayed.

Clearly elementary school, but what grade?  Fourth or fifth would be my best guess.  Click on the image for a bigger window, and you'll see some interesting things going on.  The kid in the lower right corner looks like he's in some sort of boy scout uniform and also looks pretty unhappy.  I bought this photo here, in Los Angeles, and the one Asian in the group asks the question; Japanese or Chinese?   If she's Japanese, she almost certainly ended up in a World War 2 internment camp, like Manzanar.  The two girls in the upper left hand corner look like young seductresses.  The boy, five from the left, top row has his hands on the shoulders of the boy just below him.  There's a heavy set boy in the second row from the top who looks really happy, and immediately to his right, a boy with crossed arms and a look of arrogance on his face.  And the standing girl with the flowers, she looks pretty tall.  And, of course, the always looming questions for a class photo dated 1931; how many of these kids ended up in the war?  How many died?  How many war widows?

Sunday, December 6, 2015

The Bleak Midwinter

With respect to Christina Rossetti, I doubt this image is what she pictured in her head.  Still, even here in southern California, it's getting a bit cold, gloomy, and bleak.  At least by our standards.

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Don't Look At Me!

It might be necessary to click on the image for a bigger window, but take a look, our young go-karter has his hand up to block his face from the camera.  Perhaps he had a photo predator for a parent, a mother or father who felt that absolutely everything their kid did had to be recorded for posterity.   Then again, he might have been a future white collar criminal practicing his court house getaway.

Thought I'd try the color restoration setting on the scanner again.  In all honesty, I like the pink one better.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Views of the World, Across the Lake From Island, Peking, China

At the end of The Second Opium War, a joint Anglo-French force, under the leadership of James Bruce the 8th Earl of Elgin, High Commissioner to China, burned and looted the old and new Summer palaces just outside the city walls of Peking.  James Bruce's father was Thomas Bruce, the 7th Earl of Elgin, the man who looted the marble friezes from the Parthenon in Athens, Greece.  I guess vandalism ran in the family.

Peking is now known as Beijing, and means northern capital.

I've got three more cards in this series, but I'm going to hold off on posting them for another month or so.  Click on Views of the World in labels to see other cards in the series.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Views of the World, General View of Canton, China

We'll be staying in China for a bit.  Canton is actually the city of Guangzhou.  Canton was a name used by European traders and likely comes from the Portuguese.  The Canton System was an attempt by the Chinese government to limit contact with the European colonial powers that funneled all trade through the city.  There were thirteen factories, not places of manufacture, but foreign quarters built outside the city walls for the use of the various western trading interests.  The Canton System ended in 1842 with the Treaty of Nanking, now Nanjing, which ended The First Opium War.  In addition to opening up a number of other Chinese ports for trade, it also  required the Chinese government to pay all the costs of being invaded.

As always, click on Views of the World in labels at the bottom of the post to see other cards int he collection.

Monday, November 30, 2015

Views of the World, Nankin Road, Shanghai, China

It's time to return to The First Opium War.  In addition to their acquisition of Hong Kong, the British also secured a number of concessions, essentially giving them control over a number of port cities, including Shanghai.  Eventually, a number of other countries, including France, the United States, Japan, Germany,  Russia, Norway, and even The Congo Free State got their fingers in the pie, getting  concessions of their own.  Shanghai itself would have three main foreign enclaves controlled by Britain, France, and the U.S.  What's really amazing, the foreign concessions all had extraterritorial status. Essentially, they were all exempt from Chinese law.

Today, Shanghai is, by population, the largest city in the world.

Click on Views of the World in labels to see other cards in the series.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Views of the World, Harbor of Hong Kong, China

For those of you who were waiting for a continuation of this series, you are in luck.  Views of the World (Click in labels for the others.) is back!

Anyway, I'm not going to go into too much detail about the history of Hong Kong.  There's plenty of info available on line, and quite frankly, it would take way too long to type it all up.  In a nutshell, Hong Kong Island wasn't much until the First Opium War.  The freebooters of The British East India Company were making lots of cash addicting the people of China to opium.  When the Chinese Emperor objected to seeing his people all zoned out, and decided to end the opium trade, the British invaded, won, and forced China to cede the island to them in perpetuity.  After the Second Opium War, the Brits added the Kowloon Peninsula to their colonial empire.  In the end, China wanted it's territory back, England wasn't in a position to stop a takeover by force, so, after all the diplomatic niceties were observed, China got it's land back.  Technically, the Chinese dictatorship is supposed to recognize the democratic rights of Hong Kong's citizens, but that's an iffy thing.

Friday, November 27, 2015


I'm going shopping today.  I'm going to the 99 Cents Only Store and buying toilet paper.  I blame myself for this.  I wasn't paying attention and now I'm forced to visit a store on black Friday.

Okay, I keep hearing about how the so called great recession (I think it actually qualified as a depression.) has made people skittish about spending money.  I think an equally viable explanation is that people realized they didn't rally need a 60 inch flat screen, a giant SUV, or a $1500 dollar designer purse to be happy.  Perhaps people aren't afraid to spend,  perhaps they just don't see the need to spend.  I'm just saying.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Farm Family

I have to point this out.  The two ladies on the right look fairly masculine.

Saturday, November 21, 2015


Written on the back, "Urbino Rodriquez"  

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Car Picnic

I have a few photos like this in the collection, people who have driven their autos out into the countryside.  I always get the impression that they're first generation city dwellers, gone back to their rural roots.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Antenna Head

Yes, I know.  Those aren't antennas.  She's wearing some sort of turban held in place by really big hairpins.  Click on the image and bring it up in a bigger window, and you'll also she she's holding a Look magazine and maybe a very small can of beer.  Ah the good old days.  Well, if nothing else, I miss picture magazines like Life and Look, and now that Rupert Murdoch has taken over The National Geographic...I'm not hopeful.

Stamped on the back, "R. HERVEY ANGIER JUL 27 1941."  As a rule, if a photo has any sort of mark that can ID a photographer, studio, or processing lab, I do a quick search for any info I can dig up.  I wasn't hopeful on this one, more a snapshot than a professional portrait.  I figured I was looking for an amateur with a rubber stamp rather than a professional.

My search for R. Hervey Angier photographer wasn't too successful but remove photog and I came up with a couple of maybes.  From the April 1956 issue of Railroad Magazine "R. Hervey Angier, Los Angeles, Southern Pacific hogger is a timetable collector with a collection of over 1000."  From the October 56 issue of the same magazine, "R. Hervey Angier, SP engineer has an unusual hobby, he collects conductors' punch designs."

Then things got kind of creepy.  From 1941, the date of the stamp, a Hervey Angier, without the R was appealing his conviction for unlawful sex with a minor, actually two minors, girls aged five and seven, based on the legal definition of copulation.  His lawyer argued that in California the law defined copulation as intercourse and since Hervey had performed oral sex on his victims, without penetration, he hadn't committed a crime.  I couldn't find any information on the outcome of his appeal.

Of course, R. Hervey Angier the photographer, might not be the same Angier as the sex offender, who might not be the same Angier as the railroader.  But it is an unusual name so one has to wonder.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Big Pines

Written on the back "January-1941 Big Pines"  I'm always fascinated when I find a photo dated a year or so before America's entry into World War 2.  It's natural to be curious about the lives of people in photographs, and when the image is of people who are about to be thrust into the most destructive war in world history, the most obvious thing to wonder is this; Did this person die in the war?  These two guys look to be in the sweet spot for military service and it's quite certain that at least one of them was in the military, probably both.  But did they survive?  And if they did, did they come back unscathed?

Big Pines is a small community in The Angeles National Forest.  It abuts Wrightwood.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015


A nice thing about eBay is that I can purchase old photos from anywhere in the world.   (That is when I can afford 'em, which isn't often.)   Anyway, I found this nice photo of young baseball players from a seller in Japan.  At first I was a bit confused.  Why were  these Japanese baseball players wearing jerseys with English lettering?  Was it possible that this picture was taken in someplace like Fresno, and mailed back to family in someplace like Tokyo?   Then I did some research and discovered that the logos for all the teams in the Japanese major leagues are in English.  The only explanation I could think of was that baseball originated in the United States and Japanese baseball fans crave authenticity, so English it is.

But what does that word mean?  The first thing I had to do was determine the first letter.  Is that an F, so Fachi, or maybe Jachi, or Tachi?  The only other letter I thought it could be was G,  so I typed Gachi into the search engine and found a match on a site dedicated to Japanese slang.  Gachi, a game played earnestly, from sumo wrestling, short for Gachinko.  It might not be right, but it fits.

Monday, November 9, 2015

Melvine's Album Page, The Other Side

I looked it up, and couldn't find a Roxbury Heights in Buffalo, Wyoming.  I did, however, find one in Seattle, Washington.  The last post found a first and third grade Melvine in Wyoming. in 1940 and 1942, the year before and the year after America's entry into Word War 2.  On this side of the album page, Mel is twelve years old, so probably around 1946 or 47.  I suspect the war moved Melvine and her family from rural Wyoming to war work at one of the aircraft factories or shipyards around Puget Sound.  The war is over and there's no reason to return to small town life.

My father, a World War 2 veteran thought the war was good for a lot of Americans.  His reasoning was that both the war and the great depression forced people, content to live small town, isolated lives, into the greater world around them.  Of course, he survived.

For those having trouble reading the captions, in order, "Mel & Penny," "Bev Ron Marie & Judy,"  "Mel-12 yr old," "Birthday party 12 yr old Roxbury Hgts,"  "Mel,"  "Mel & Baby Ann Peirson," "Mel," and "Mel at Ann Butlers."

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Melvine's Album Page

I often complain that too many photos albums lack labels.  Not this time, though I'm not sure I'm all that better off.    For those who are having a problem reading the captions, the top strip of images, all separate photos by the way, not multiple images printed on the same piece of paper, "Nell At Hunting Camp 1939"  And then, "Melvine 1st Grade Class" and then "Melvine 3rd Grade Class."  The next post will have pictures of Melvine, aged 12.   I'm not certain, but I think first grade Melvine is top row, far left.  Third grade Melvine, second row, five in from the left.

Buffalo Wyoming is a fairly small town.  The 1940 census listed 2302 residents though like most rural town schools, locals living beyond the town border would have also attended the local school.