West Union Covered Bridge, West Union Indiana
In 1876, Joseph J. Daniels built the West Union Covered Bridge to replace his earlier Harrison Bridge, which had washed out in a flood. J. J. Daniels was a prolific bridge-builder from Rockville, the county seat of Parke County. He built nearly sixty covered bridges in Indiana between 1855 and ca. 1900. The bridge spans Sugar Creek, a tributary of the Wabash River, north of the center of West Union, in Reserve Township, Parke County, Indiana. At 315', it is the longest bridge in the county. The county bypassed the wooden bridge in 1964 with a concrete span.More...
American Oak Leather Company, Cincinnati Ohio
The American Oak Leather Company was founded in 1880 by James E. Mooney, a progressive Cincinnati industrialist and community leader. He was a financial backer of the Cincinnati Incline Railways which contributed to the growth and expansion of the City. He was also president of the Cincinnati Coffin Company and had other business interests throughout the Ohio Valley and the Midwest. The American Oak Leather Company produced sole and harness leather, belting leather and patent leather for carriages and furniture manufacturers. The business was the largest of its kind when it opened in 1881, employing as many as 1000 workers. The company survived two major floods and three destructive fires. The A.O.L. Complex included five major buildings by 1900. The largest building was built in 1895. A second smaller building was built across Dalton Street to the east. This building was connected to the principal structure by a second story bridge. The smaller building was demolished sometime in the early 1950s. To the north of the first building were three additional buildings. These were later replaced by an ell-shaped structure around 1910.More...
Mathias Rinckel Mansion, Carson City Nevada
Mathias Rinckel (1833-1879) was born in Altenheim in Germany. He was the youngest of a family of seven children. When he was nine months old, the family immigrated to America and settled in Warsaw, Illinois. In 1849 Matt, then a sixteen year old farmer, joined a group of five young men and proceeded west to the gold fields. He remained in the Feather River district in California for ten years, by which time he had accumulated a degree of wealth in placer mining. Leaving California, Rinckel came to Genoa in what was then Carson County, Utah Territory, and the next year, 1860, went to Virginia City, where he increased his fortune in mining.More...
Fortnum Motor Company, Bridgeboro New Jersey
Lester F. Fortnum, Sr. founded the Fortnum Motor Company in 1913 in Bridgeboro, New Jersey. Until 1911 Mr. Fortnum worked as a shipper in the Henry Taubels Hoisery Mills in Riverside. Beginning his sales career in 1912 at the age of 22, Fortnum sold his first bicycle in a building adjacent to the firehouse on South Bridgeboro Street in Bridgeboro, As business progressed and technology changed, Lester Fortnum shifted from bicycles to motorcycles, and finally in 1913 he sold his first automobile. On May 26, 1914, Lester Fortnum purchased the 2.33 acre parcel of land where the company's building is now located. Fortnum had the showroom and office section of the structure built on the site that year. In the same year Fortnum received his first licensed automobile franchise from the Ford Company.More...
Marcus Garvey School, Newark New Jersey
This school was constructed in 1888 as an eight-room primary school and was called the 13th Avenue Public School. Successive enlargements between 1891 and 1915 accommodated and reflected the growth of Newark's immigrant populations. The first addition was constructed just three years after its opening and increased its capacity to 17 rooms. This addition completed the original design of the school building as planned in 1887-88. A photograph of the 13th Avenue facade taken after the construction of the first addition and before 1903 indicates that the building, as originally designed was a three-story Romanesque Revival Style brick and brownstone school. The 1891 addition is indistinguishable from the original portion in this photograph; the two combined read as one seamless school building. The main entrance fronted 13th Avenue; a second side entrance was at the comer of Richmond Street and Thirteenth Avenue. There were two detached bathrooms immediately behind the school suggesting that the school did not have indoor plumbing at that time.More...
Whittier Theatre, Whittier California
The Whittier Theatre was not Whittier's first movie house, but it was its most prominent one. At least three other motion picture theaters preceded the Whittier Theatre: the Family Theatre (124 S. Greenleaf Avenue) and the Optic (111 S. Greenleaf Avenue) were both operated by the G.H. Keipp family sometime after 1900, probably in the 1910s [Whittier Daily News, n.d., c. 1910s] the Scenic Theatre was in business at 211 E. Philadelphia when the Whittier Theatre opened its doors in the summer of 1929. When the Whittier Theatre was being planned, the owners deliberately selected a site on the outskirts of town to escaoe the Whittier blue laws that would have prohibited showing movies on Sunday [Tribune/News December 13, 1987]. The Whittier Theatre was designed as a combination movie palace and stage theater, and it is noteworthy that the premiere gala included not only the screening of Monte Blue's From Headquarters but three special vaudeville numbers. The relative isolation of the theater from the main commercial district of uptown Whittier seems to have had an adverse effect on the complex's businesses for several years. Although the two principal adjacent businesses (the McNees Cafe and the Whittier Pharmacy) were stable, city directories indicate that, up until about 1936, other businesses came and went, and there were several vacancies. The heyday of the Whittier Theatre lasted from the late 1930s until the 1950s, when television began making inroads on movie-going. Excerpts from newspaper articles make it clear that the theater is fondly remembered by many of the area's residents as a popular social focal point and an important part of their younger years.More...
Windsor Castle Ruins (Windsor Plantation), Port Gibson Mississippi
The builder of Windsor, Smith Coffee Daniell, II, was born in Mississippi in 1826, the son of an Indian fighter turned farmer and landowner. His own holdings were so vast (eventually totaling 21,000 acres in Mississippi and Louisiana) that he studied law at the University of Virginia in order to better administer his estates. In 1849 he was married to his cousin Catherine Freeland (1830-1903), by whom he had six children, and in 1859 he began building Windsor. Basic construction was done by slave labor, and the 16-inch bricks for the walls were made at a kiln across the road from the house. Skilled carpenters were brought from New England for the finished woodwork, and the iron stairs, column capitals, and balustrades were manufactured in St. Louis and shipped down the Mississippi River to the port of Bruinsburg, several miles west of Windsor. Daniell died at age 34 on April 28, 1861, only weeks after completing his home at a cost of $175,000.00. During the Civil War, Windsor reputedly was used as an observation post by the Confederates, who sent signals from its cupola across the Mississippi River to Louisiana. It is also said to have served as a Union hospital after the Battle of Port Gibson in May, 1863, its mistress having dissuaded Federal troops from burning it.More...
Chalfonte Hotel, Atlantic City New Jersey
Elisha and Elizabeth Roberts opened The Chalfonte Hotel, or Chalfonte House as it was first called, on June 25, 1868 near the corner of Pacific and North Carolina Avenues in Atlantic City. The Roberts' choice of this corner was no doubt determined by its proximity to the train depot to the north and the ocean to the south. Because the tides were continually increasing the beach area, the Roberts found it possible to move the hotel forward twice, once in 1879 and again in 1889. They also extended their main building and added subsidiary structures to it. The Chalfonte passed through a period of transition in management during the eighteen nineties and came under the control of Henry W. Leeds around 1900. Leeds embarked on a major expansion program and in 1904 constructed Atlantic City's first tall, iron frame hotel. It is this structure that people usually mean today when they recall staying at the Chalfonte. The original structure, however, was not demolished. As a comparison of the 1903 site plan with the 1904 site plan shows, it was simply moved sixty feet to the west, re-clad in brick, and integrated into the larger hotel complex. Atlantic City is the creation of the second half of the nineteenth century. It was the result of steadily increasing urbanization with its inevitable need for some place where the masses could escape from work and city streets to leisure, romance, and sea breezes. Those with time enough and money could go to Cape May, where well-to-do Philadelphians mingled with their counterparts from southern states. Even the well-to-do, however, may have found the long journey an inconvenience, while those whose work week ended on Saturday afternoon and started again on Monday morning simply had no means of escape from their sweltering row houses.More...
Longwood - Nutt's Folly, Natchez Mississippi
Designed by the noted Philadelphia architect, Samuel Sloan, and constructed in 1860-62, Longwood is the largest and most elaborate of the octagon houses built in the United States. The mansion, which was never completed on the interior, was to have 32 rooms each with their own fireplace. Longwood is also one of the finest surviving examples of an Oriental Revival style residence which along with Olana, a Persian villa designed by R. M. Hunt for Frederick Church and built in 1870-72 near Hudson, New York, illustrates the exotic phase of architectural romanticism that flourished in mid-19th century America. Longwood is interesting as an earlier, less academically detailed version of the Moslem Revival which uniquely combines stylistic eclecticism of both Moslem and Italianate, with the octagonal form first fostered by the phrenologist and amateur architectural theorist Orson Squire Fowler. Although never completed on the interior, the fine detailing of the exterior has survived in an amazing state of preservation. When the document of the building itself is combined with the papers of its owner, Haller Nutt, and of its architect, Samuel Sloan, an unusually complete insight is gained into the architectural theory of the period as well as the creative process involved in a unique and beautiful work of art.More...
Ahnapee Brewery - Von Stiehl Winery, Algoma Wisconsin
The Ahnapee Brewery was built in 1869 for Wojta (aka Vojta) Stransky, a businessman from the nearby city of Kewaunee, and Herman Seideman, a brewer who had come to Algoma from Sturgeon Bay. Their brewery was constructed to fill the local need for a brewery in the city of Ahnapee, a community that was by then heavily settled with persons of Bohemian and German extraction. The new brewery was built at a cost of $12,000 and was the most impressive building in the community for several years thereafter. Apparently the brewery was a commercial success and it continued in operation under a number of different owners until 1894. In 1909, the building was converted into a fly net manufacturing plant by local businessman George Kelsey. In 1926, the by then vacant building was taken over by another company that manufactured washing machines in the building for a number of years. Afterwards, the building was used primarily for feed storage until 1967, when a local doctor, Dr. Charles W. Stiehl, restored it to house the well-known wine-making business. The first settlers arrived at the mouth of the Ahnapee River (then known as the Wolf River) in 1851. These men were John Hughes and Orrin Warner, both of whom made their first journey to the site in March of 1851 from the city of Manitowoc.More...
Paramount Theatre, Oakland California
Construction of the Paramount Theater was initiated in 1930 by Publix Theatres, the exhibiting organization of Paramount Pictures. Financial difficulties forced the sale of the uncompleted building to Fox-West Coast Theatres, the firm that completed the theatre and operated it until it closed on September 15, 1970, although the name Paramount was ultimately retained. In 1972 the building was purchased by the Board of Directors of the Oakland Symphony Orchestra Association. During 1973 the building was restored, and in 1975 the City of Oakland, the present owner, assumed ownership from the Oakland Symphony Orchestra Association. The Paramount Theatre in Oakland was one of only three theatres built by the Publix chain on the West Coast and was the last one started in a construction program which began in 1925. It was not only the last Publix house but was also the last very large moving picture theatre built on the West Coast and is now the largest of the type still extant there. The groundbreaking ceremony was performed with a golden spade by E. B. Field, President of the Oakland Chamber of Commerce, on December 11, 1930. Speeches by Paramount and municipal officials, including Commissioner George H. Wilhelm representing Mayor John L. Davie, who was ill, and music by the ROTC Band and the Oakland Firemen's Band marked the occasion.More...
Chelan Butte Lookout - Fire Watchtower, Chelan Washington
Euro-American settlement of the lower Lake Chelan country gained momentum in the 1890s as transportation and access to the remote area improved. Homesteaders who settled in the vicinity of Chelan Butte turned to raising livestock, grazing their animals on the grasses of the sparsely forested butte. The summit of the butte, 3835' above sea level, provided a dramatic vantage point overlooking Lake Chelan and the forests and mountains of Okanogan and Chelan Counties. It is possible that Chelan Butte was used for fire surveillance purposes prior to any recorded Forest Service use of the site. The earliest documented use of the butte for fire surveillance is the notation on a 1922 Forest Service map of a triangulation station at the summit accessible by trail. At that time, the geographic location of Chelan Butte was outside the Wenatchee National Forest and within the jurisdiction of the Chelan Ranger District on the old Chelan National Forest. Forest Service employee Simeon (Sim) Beeson, a forty-year veteran of the Chelan Ranger District, confirmed that in the 1920s and early 1930s a tent camp was located at the summit. Another long-time Forest Service employee, Marion McFadden, recalled the existence of a rudimentary gabled lookout cabin in the summer of 1938, his first season on the butte. In his personal possession is a 1938 photograph of himself as a young lookout man standing in front of the grade-level cabin.More...
James Russell Lowell Elementary School, Louisville Kentucky
During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the suburbanization of Louisville focused on the southern section of the city, radiating from the principal new transportation belt, the Southern Parkway. As town expanded southward, suburban neighborhoods such as South Louisville and Oakdale, where historic Churchill Downs Racetrack is located, were incorporated into the city limits. The town of Highland Park began to develop about the turn-of-the-century, a predominantly working class neighborhood with small-scaled, frame, vernacular residences for working class families. The first school in Highland Park School was District School 45. It was built about 1898 at the intersection of Louisville Avenue and Almond Avenue. The three-story, brick masonry school, with cut limestone basement, contained six classrooms and two cloakrooms on the first and second floors and two rooms used as an auditorium on the third floor.More...
Wilton Mansion, Richmond Virginia
The land on which the house stood before it was moved to Richmond, was granted to Richard Perrin in 1672. Some of this land had been formerly granted to Captain Matthew Edloe on October 2, 1656, and by him assigned to Richard Perrin. The brick mansion at Wilton was built by William Randolph III (died 1761), a younger son of William Randolph II (1681-1742), of Turkey Island. Upon his death it was inherited by his son, Peyton Randolph, who married Lucy Harrison, daughter of Benjamin Harrison, Signer of the Declaration of Independence. The Randolphs owned it until about 1860, when the heiress of the family, Kate Randolph, great granddaughter of William Randolph III, married Edward G. Mayo. Since then the estate frequently changed hands.More...
Waverley (Waverly), West Point Mississippi
Unique in design and rich in detail, Waverley represents the personal wealth and tastes of its builder. Colonel George H. Young. The octagonal rotunda which projects through the roof as a cupola is both a grand entertainment space and an effective means of natural ventilation. Begun in the 1840s and completed in 1852, Waverley combines ornament and technology in the tradition of Jefferson. The varied decorative treatment of each room is artistic and the lighting system, using gas manufactured on the site, was scientific. Waverley is distinguished by the immense octagonal space, the central element in an H plan, which rises four stories and projects through the hip roof as an oversize cupola with 16 windows. The porticoes, front and rear, are Ionic, distyle in antis, two stories in height with iron railed galleries at the second story. An interesting feature of the front portico is the pattern of bevelled siding which alternates square edged boards with triangular-faced boards. The entire exterior is of white-painted wood siding with pilastered treatment of the corners, broad moldings around the windows and a dentil molding at the cornice, octagonal chimneys repeat the form of the cupola at much-reduced scale.More...
Springfield Plantation, Fayette Mississippi
Thomas Marston Green, Jr. (1758-1813), builder of
Springfield, was a member of the first general assembly of the
Territory of Mississippi and the second man to represent the
territory in the U. S. Congress. He was a son of Colonel
Thomas M. Green (1723-1805), who was instrumental in the establishment
of the short-lived Bourbon County (which included the
Natchez district) by Georgia in 1785. Thomas M. Green, Jr.,
was a brother of Abner Green, territorial treasurer of Mississippi,
and brother-in-law of Cato West, acting governor of the
territory, 1803-1805, and a Jefferson County delegate to the
state constitutional convention of 1817. Colonel Thomas Hinds,
who distinguished himself in the Pensacola and New Orleans
campaigns with Jackson and was also active in the territorial
period and early statehood of Mississippi, was a son-in-law of
Thomas M. Green, Jr. The Springfield estate was retained by
members of the Green family until 1850, and in 1914 the house
and 533 acres were acquired by James H. Williams.
Local tradition maintains that Andrew Jackson and
Rachel Donelson Robards were married at Springfield in the
summer of 1791. One of the earliest known references to the
event is in The Memories of Fifty Years (1870) by W. H. Sparks,
whose own wife was a daughter of Abner Green: Jackson came
and married her [Rachel], in the house of Thomas M. Green.
Sparks' relationship to the Green family would seemingly add
credence to his account, but he diminishes his own reliability
by such devices as attributing entire paragraphs of verbatim
conversation to Jackson. In A History of Mississippi by
Robert Lowry and William H. McCardle (1891), the tradition of
the Springfield marriage was restated, as well as elaborated:
General Andrew Jackson was married at the home of the Hon. Thomas Marstori Green, on the northern bank of Coles Creek, in what is now Jefferson County, in the summer of 1791, to Mrs. Rachel Robards.... the ceremony was performed by Colonel Thomas Green, who acted in his capacity of magistrate in and for Bourbon County.
No documentation for the above is given; in actuality, however, Bourbon County was officially abolished in 1788.
Southern Pacific Railroad Train Depot, Lodi California
The Lodi Southern Pacific Passenger Depot (SP), completed in 1907, was an asset to its city and the city's Railroad Reservation throughout the early half of the twentieth century. Lodi originated as a railroad proprietary town, and the Railroad Reservation was Lodi' s center from its inception in 1869 until the early 1950s, when the city's focal point became the new civic center located west of the reservation . Constant on the reservation property through its prosperous years were passenger and freight depots, sheds (for lumber and/or fruit), and park areas. By 1906, Lodi started efforts to revamp Lodi's government, its infrastructure, and its physical appearance. One facet of these efforts was to build a new passenger depot to replace the 1869 SP passenger depot, which was considered to be too squatty and a bad impression to strangers that would come into the growing, successful town (The Lodi Sentinel June 21, 1906). [According to S. B. Axtell, the owner/publisher of the town's newspaper, The Lodi Sentinel, efforts to get SP to replace the old passenger depot began as early as 1879 (The Lodi Sentinel July 14, 1906).] With approximately one year's worth of press and construction, the 1907 Lodi Southern Pacific Passenger Depot became an outstanding representation of Lodi's desire to incorporate into a city.More...
Oriental Theatre, Portland Oregon
Ground was broken for the Crystal Ice & Storage Co. Office & Theatre Building on March 21, 1927. By July, the reinforced concrete frame was in forms up through the third floor. Thereafter progress on the theatre was faster-paced, although minor obstacles, such as delays in the shipment of balcony steel from Poole & McGarry's plant, occurred. Cross-bracing trusses were found to be a foot too long, notwithstanding delays, the theatre received its brick and terra cotta facing in September and was completely ready in time for its gala New Year's Eve grand opening. George Warren Weatherly, for whom the theatre was built, was born near Portland in 1868. Following a Portland public school education, he worked in the building trades. By 1892, he owned a confectionary from which he developed the Weatherly Creamery Company, an ice cream business. He is locally credited with inventing the ice cream cone (already in use in St. Louis in 1904) in 1905. In 1907 he merged his company with the Crystal Ice and Storage Company, of which he was President for 18 years. In 1925 he became Chairman of the Board of the Western Dairy Products Company, and in 1926 his interest turned to the erection of a first skyscraper for East Portland, the 12-story Weatherly Building. G. W. Weatherly later served on the Oregon State Tax Commission; as Vice President of the East Side Commercial Club; on the Portland Chamber of Commerce; as Vice President of the Citizens National Bank; as a Director of the Oregon State Bank; as Vice President of the Grand Central Public Market; and as President of the Weatherly Farms Corporation. He died in 1948.More...
Bend Railroad Depot - Oregon Trunk Railway Passenger Station, Bend Oregon
At the turn of the century, when local railroad service had become an established part of the economics and culture of most rural communities in the United States, Central Oregon was perhaps the largest geographical area left without railroads. In 1905, one source remarked that Lakeview, Oregon, enjoyed the distinction of being the farthest from a railroad of any county seat in the United States (Shaver, et al., 1905). For George Palmer Putnam, scion of the New York publishing family and owner of Bend's first newspaper, Central Oregon in the first decade of the 20th century was a railless land ... the largest territory in the United States without transportation. Oregon's interior counties, including Deschutes, Jefferson, Klamath, Lake, Harney, Grant, Wheeler, and Crook, encompassed an area of nearly 36,000 square miles, equivalent to the state of Indiana. To the west, across the Cascade Mountains, the Southern Pacific Railroad ran through the Willamette Valley. To the north, the Union Pacific Railroad and the Northern Pacific Railroad served the Columbia Gorge. East of the Blue Mountains, the Union Pacific ran through the Grande Ronde valley and the Snake River drainage. In Central Oregon, however, the daunting topography, slender resources, and a sparse population did little to encourage rail construction.More...
Indiana Theatre, Indianapolis Indiana
The Indianapolis papers of Saturday, June 18, 1927 carried three major items on their front pages: city politics; the low, circling salute by Charles Augustus Lindbergh in the Spirit of St. Louis, en route to his triumphal reception in his home city; and an announcement of the inauguration of the Indiana Theatre, to take place that night. At 7:00 p.m. the doors were opened to more than 3,000 patrons arriving early to view the new showplace. By 7:45 most had taken their seats, the radio microphones had been switched on, and at precisely 8:00 p.m. a trumpet fanfare sounded from behind the elaborately decorated asbestos curtain. The trumpet call was answered from the rear of the balcony as the asbestos curtain rose to reveal the green and silver house curtain.More...
Union Train Station, Jackson Tennessee
The Union Station, built in the 1870s, is a typical example of the small town railroad station which is rapidly disappearing from the American scene. It literally emphasized the union of the two railroads by being located between the two merging lines. Its dual waiting rooms served their respective railroads. The earliest located reference to this structure is in the Jackson Sun, August 24, 1877; it refers to a ticket agent at the Union Depot. The two lines did not cross until 1873, and a lengthy article in the same newspaper for June 10, 1876 makes no mention of the Union Depot in summarizing the history of rail transportation in the city. The 1878 deeds (in which the two companies exchange ends of the depot with one another) carry an accurately measured location for the depot; this was checked against the Gulf, Mobile and Ohio track map for Mile 386 (north of Mobile) and it coincides with the location and size of the present structure.More...