Friday, August 31, 2012

I Wanna Walk

From Dave Brigham:

Every Saturday (with a few exceptions) for the last ten months, I've taken my son to his drum lesson at the School of Rock in Watertown, MA. Usually I'm content to sit and read a magazine amid the tweens and teens who hang out there. I love listening to their nerdy conversations about video games, music and school. They talk as if I'm not there.

On a recent warm Saturday, however, I decided to walk around the neighborhood with my camera.

Outside F.D. Sterritt Lumber.

The remnants of Sawin's Pond, part of what once was a much bigger wetlands in the town. The pond and other nearby bodies of water were paved over, filled in and contaminated over the years by the likes of tire maker B.F. Goodrich, the developers of the Watertown Mall and power company Boston Edison (now NSTAR). At one time, there was a "grand hotel" called the Glen House nearby. For more on this sad little waterway, read this article.

Other than one other photo on Flickr, taken in Brighton, MA, which isn't too far away from Watertown, I haven't found any clues about this.

Ever since stumbling across a F.O.E. hall during college in Keene, NH, I've had an odd attraction to social clubs. Other than during punk rock shows in the early '80s, I've never set foot in such places. I just picture lots of guys with fezzes drinking Pabst, eating pickled eggs and watching "Mannix" reruns.

I love this building. It's home to a sand and gravel business. I'm sure it's got a great history.

Another social club. This building has seen better days, but evidently the club is alive and well.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Garage Needs a Lift

From Pete Zarria:

Litchfield Garage

Litchfield Garage, Rio, Illinois

Monday, August 20, 2012

Beer Tent

From Dave Brigham:

Beer tent #1

When I saw this lean-to along the Charles River near my house, my first thought was, "This could be a homeless camp." I remembered that a few years back some neighbors told me there was somebody living on the river bank.

But after exploring this very basic shelter, I concluded that it was more likely a teen drinking spot.

Empties

In recent weeks, however, I've come back around to my original thinking. There are definitely some homeless guys around who collect cans and bottles out of the neighborhood trash, and who fish in the river.

Obviously they're hard up, but I didn't realize to what degree until I walked past a wooden platform next to the Charles River bike path and saw some couch cushions and trash bags -- what looked very much like an effort to bring the comforts of home into the woods.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Bowling Beauty

From Pete Zarria:

Open Bowling

We were out for a walk and I often head for this bowling alley that's nearby. This night the clouds were perfect, but I had no camera. A quick stride home and by the time we got back, the clouds and light were naff.

Pinhole 0, Pinhead 1.

This sign was neglected and mostly non-working for years. They finally rehabbed it to its former glory and it's much better now. Bowlmor Lanes, Davenport, Iowa.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Nature Takes Back an Island

From Dave Brigham:

Located on North Brother Island, in the East River near the Bronx, Riverside Hospital was for nearly 80 years the place where New York City quarantined its citizens, housed World War II veterans and treated drug addicts.

Long abandoned and off limits to the public, the island is now a bird sanctuary. Recently, Britain's Daily Telegraph ran a photo essay of the island and hospital. Check it out.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Blowin' In the Wind

From Pete Zarria:

Aermotors of Rte. 66

Route 66, Shamrock, Texas

Hard Blow

North of Rio, Illinois on U.S. 150

The self-oiling Aermotor windmills, produced in four different models between 1915 and the present time, are the most common of all windmills seen in the field today. The key to the Aermotor is its wind wheel.

The windmills were developed in the early 1880's by engineer Thomas O. Perry and adopted by LaVerne Noyes, the founder of the Aermotor Company. This wheel consists of curved galvanized steel blades which are riveted to steel wheel clips which in turn are riveted to curved bar steel rims.

Self-oiling Aermotor windmills were made in a full range of sizes including six, eight, 10, 12, 14, and 16 foot sizes. From 1929 until 1966 a large 20' mill, weighing 4,900 pounds and having a five-gallon oil reservoir, was manufactured for deep well pumping or for use in localities where large volumes of water was needed from shallow depths. Most of these were seen in the desert Southwest.

All of the Aermotor mills were made by the Aermotor Company of Chicago until 1958, when the firm began the first of several changes in corporate ownership. Among the firms producing the mills since that time have been: Aermotor Division, Motor Products Corporation, Chicago, Aermotor Inc., Division of Nautec Corporation of Chicago, Aermotor Division, Braden Aermotor Corporation of Broken Arrow, Oklahoma: Braden Industries of Conway, Arkansas: and Aermotor Division, Valley Corporation of Conway, Arkansas. The manufacture of mills was shifted from Chicago to Broken Arrow in 1964, at which time the company began purchasing castings from foundries other than its own.