Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Bess Gilbert

I bought a couple of nice framed photos for a buck, got them home, and realized they smelled of cigarette smoke.  If I knew how much they were going to stink up the place, I would have passed.  Anyway, they really are nice pictures, so they get scanned right away so I can get them in a nice storage box.  Written on the back of the frame, "Gina one year old, Dec. 1960."  Written on the back of the print, "Bess Gilbert."  I'm going with Bess.

Monday, September 28, 2015

The Italian Mason

As a rule, I crop out captions, but let's be honest, the caption makes this photo far more interesting.  Written on the back, "Topping off. 6/20/80."  Well, I guess you have to top off when mixing cement.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Meet Me At the Fair

Remember World's Fairs?  When I was a kid I desperately wanted to go to a World's Fair.  Seattle was the one I wanted to visit the most.  I really wanted to go up into the Space Needle and ride the monorail.  Eventually I would do both, though the awe factor was lessened by age.

World's Fairs were basically trade shows writ large.  Big companies  like General Motors and IBM had their own pavilions, while countries would showcase everything from the arts, national customs, and of course, business opportunities.

Written on the back, "Again the "Unisphere."  Notice the beds of flowers.  The landscaping was beautiful.  In the distance on the right is the New York State Pavilion and tower which we went up into and from which the next picture was taken.  New York Worlds Fair May 1965."

The New York World's Fair ran from 1964 through 1965.  The Unisphere is still there.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Northern European Mystery Location

Navigate back a few posts, and you'll find a postcard of Christiania, now Oslo, the capital of Norway.  This photo really reminds me of that card.  This may not be a photo of Oslo, but it does have that northern European vibe.  Take a close look at the street.  A Volkswagen,  probably not a clean diesel, and a car that looks like it's from the thirties.  I'm guessing late forties, early fifties on this one.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Views of the World, Rock Temple at Abu Simbel, Egypt

The  temples at Abu Simbel were carved along the upper Nile, in the province of Nubia, during the rein of Ramses the Great.  It took around 24 years and is thought to have been finished around 1265 B.C.   Eventually, it would disappear, buried by blowing desert sand.  It was rediscovered during an 1813 expedition led by Swiss Orientalist, Jean-Louis Burkhardt.  With the construction of the Asswan High Dam, the temples at Abu Simbel were in danger of being lost under the waters of Lake Nasser.  An international team of engineers disassembled the temples, and reassembled them under  artificial hills.  Work was finished in 1968.

I'll be leaving these cards for the next month or so.  Click on Views of the World in labels to see more cards from the series.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Views of the World, Boats on the Nile, Egypt

Just for the hell of it, I thought I'd scan one of this series in grey scale.

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

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Views of the World, The Casino, Monte Carlo

When I first moved west, I would make occasional runs to Las Vegas.  I stopped going  when I realized a few things.  1. I always lost. 2. I was bored by gambling. 3. Casinos were full of cigarette smoke, and second hand smoke gave me headaches.  I imagine that the Casino in Monte Carlo is kind of like Las Vegas but for rich Euro trash.  Anyway, the Casino was built when the Grimaldis, the ruling family of Monaco, was facing bankruptcy and needed an out from their financial problems.

Click on Views of the World in labels to see more cards from this series.

Friday, September 18, 2015

Views of the World, General View of Monte Carlo

Monte Carlo is a district in Monaco, the second smallest and most densely populated country on Earth.  Fun fact, in 1963 Monaco abolished the death penalty and granted women the right to vote.  I don't know what that says about the place, but hey, for what it's worth.

Click on Views of the World in labels at the bottom of the post to more cards.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Views of the World, Christiania, Showing Royal Palace, Norway

File this one under, you learn something everyday.  Oslo, the capital of Norway was founded in 1050.  It was heavily damaged by fire in 1624, and rebuilt by King Christian IV.  Impressed with himself he renamed the city in his own honor.  And so, Oslo became Christiana.  In 1925, the city was renamed Oslo.  As someone who is not impressed with Kings, Queens, Princes, and Potentates, good for you, Norway.

As usual, click on Views of the World in labels to see other cards in the series.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Views of the World, Street Scene, Copenhagen, Denmark

Well, it's back to this collection for a few days.  Anyone wishing to see others from this lot as well as catching up on the backstory, click on Views of the World in labels at the bottom of the post.  I think something must have been going on in Copenhagen on the day when this photograph was taken.  Look at the bottom of the image.  One woman is holding on to her hat and another is shielding her eyes.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Aunt Jessie Taylor

Aunt Jessie Taylor looks rather severe.  I imagine she wasn't much fun.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015


Not the best photos I own, but they are the only cyanotypes in my collection.  Anyway, maybe a church group or an extended (I hope.) family.  Here's a fun fact.  According to Blogger spell check, the word cyanotype doesn't exist.  I guess, in the digital world, technology preceding 1970 doesn't count.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Labor Day

Remember, it's only class warfare if you fight back.  Happy Labor Day.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Like A Painting

Hand tinted photographs are quite common.  It's hard to go to a flea market or antique store without seeing them by the dozen.  Some of the colorists were quite good, some quite bad, and then there are those who went the imitation painting route.  Kind of like having you're own portrait gallery of distinguished ancestors, but not quite.  

Friday, September 4, 2015

Sun & Sand

Well it's a colorful purse if nothing else.  Dated "MARCH 1961"  So Florida or Hawaii, maybe.  We may not get snow, in L.A., in March, but it's not exactly all summery dress and tropical drinks either.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

A Gentleman

The original on this one is a very tiny image, about an inch on the long side.  It has one of the weirdest ties I've ever seen.  It looks more like a scarf.   The lapel ribbon looks a bit like a butterfly.  And, after I scanned the image and blew it up, it looked like the mustache was a glue on.  I think this might be a theatrical portrait.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Summer's End

Well, we think of September as summer's end because the kids are back in school, even though it's still hot and there's still plenty of beach weather left.