Monthly Archives: February 2012

The Cartoon Nearly Nobody Got

Newsstand – Northwest Corner of Broad and Snyder Streets. Photograph by Wenzel J. Hess, November 29, 1949. In the middle of the 20th century, The Bulletin seemed to be everywhere. Blue newsstands with gold lettering had grown familiar at intersections throughout the city: in South Philadelphia (illustrated), North Philadelphia, East Falls, West Oak Lane, Wynnefield […]
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The Apotheosis and Caffeination of George Washington

Creamware Jug with the Apotheosis of George Washington, photographed May 17, 1918. Death, not birth, was the source of George Washington’s lasting fame. Whatever Washington had done right or wrong during his time on earth, when the Father of His Country passed on at Mount Vernon in December 1799 he also ascended to a special […]
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“This Scale Will Give Your Accurate Weight — Free!”

Why does this woman look so happy to be weighing herself in public? Those of us accustomed to taking our weight within the privacy of our own homes would probably avoid a public weighing scale like this one, sponsored by the Philadelphia’s City Commissioners Office during the 1959 Municipal Services Fair. But, as historian David […]
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Looking for Love at the Centennial

Americans just weren’t feeling it. Emotions ran high at the 100th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence in 1876, but these were more along the lines of patriotism, pride and progress than anything like love. Ten million enthusiastic visitors toured buildings packed with the latest machinery and encountered little in the way of old-fashioned romance. […]
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Charles Klauder’s Boy Scout Palazzo on the Parkway

Boy Scout Building – 22nd and Benjamin Franklin Parkway. William A. Gee, Photographer, February 13, 1931. What exactly is this little building that’s being treated like a child in a long and contentious custody battle? While would-be parents (the City of Philadelphia and the Boy Scouts of America) quibble over the question of child support, […]
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