Downtown 1958

Downtown 1958

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Gandy Dancers

August 26, 1971, Appleton Post-Crescent

Interesting article on the unsung heroes of the railroad, keeping up the lines, more or less behind the scenes.  As a not-so-glamorous job, these fellows lived a nomadic life, not unlike carnival workers and circus folk.  Most likely, though, they had a better reputation in the towns they visited due to the railroad being an established, trustworthy institution. 

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Cleaning Pool


                                                                August 28, 1971, Appleton Post-Crescent
With the Back-to-School season quickly approaching (or already here as it is here in South Carolina), the joys of summer are once again put away to the bane of most kids' existence, the return to the day-to-day regimen of school.  The joys of the daily visits to the pool are but a memory.  And all the newest and brightest school supplies and new clothes are not enough to offset the dread feelings for new teachers, new surroundings and seemingly insurmountable challenges.  Can summer ever return fast enough?   

Monday, August 22, 2016

Afternoon Festivities

August 14, 1967, N-M Daily Northwestern

Somehow this festivity escaped my radar as a young man, but then it appears it was for younger children anyway.  I'm sure a mature young man of 10 would have seen it as infantile.  Of course, free food and games would have been a sure enticement.  But still, way to go Menasha, for putting on something like this for the city's kids. 

Friday, August 12, 2016

Drugs and Youth

August 12, 1967, Appleton Post-Crescent
In the "summer of love," or as 1967 has become generally known, police departments nationwide were quickly getting themselves up to date with the threat of hallucinatory drugs which had gained increased popularity in the swingin' sixties.  Contrast that news story with the "feel good" blood drive photo next to it featuring Menasha's life guards.  One wonders if the news editor did that intentionally or if it was just a lucky coincidence.  That's not to say that our fair city didn't have a drug problem, but a juxtaposition like this can only further reinforce our already pleasant memories of small town life being wholesome and good. 

I'm taking a hiatus from the blog next week, so look for me to return on August 22. 

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Pay What You Weigh

August 14, 1930, Appleton Post-Crescent
Back when the airplane was still a novelty and barnstorming was a thing, folks would pay to experience flight.  And now, thanks to this ad, the dear residents of Menasha could have the same thrill. 

We've covered the old Whiting Airport extensively here in the blog in past years: , , and  The airport didn't last due to the economy surrounding the Depression years, but we all know it gave its name to Airport Road. 

This is an example of the airplane mentioned in the ad.  It could hold six passengers.
Photo courtesy of San Diego Air & Space Museum Archives -, No restrictions, 

Wednesday, August 10, 2016


January 12, 1921, American Architect

We first encountered the First National Bank (second iteration) as featured in this architectural journal back in 2014:  In the last few years, during its removal for the new office tower, much was made of its stately appearance, with its iconic columns, and the lament as to their disposition.  But little, if anything, was said about its magnificent interior.  If the unspoken message of a bank was represented by its appearance, then this bank had it in the greatest degree.  Solid, unyielding, almost fortress-like, it was a cathedral of finance.  Even the ornate skylights mimicked being in church.  I remember being in this bank as a small boy and simply being in awe at the hard marble writing desk which I couldn't even reach.  I regret that these photographs aren't in color. 

Tuesday, August 9, 2016


August 7, 1963, Appleton Post-Crescent
It's late summer and it can mean only one thing...the carnival at Valley Fair.  If memory serves me, there were rides at Valley Fair several times during the year (and at Fox Point, in Neenah as well), but summer was the biggest event. This time, they trade upon the recent Seattle World's Fair to entice the audience with new attractions and rides.