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Bill Young

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Everything posted by Bill Young

  1. Hood sent me this photo of the Budd structures from the '39 Fair. We had a discussion about those 4 disk-like objects that were discernable in aerial photos of early construction of the Fair and then disappeared from Flushing Meadows. For the life of me I can't find those posts! Anyway, here is Hood's photo ... I'm assuming you wanted me to post this Hood?
  2. Just wanted to give a heads-up to NY World's Fair Fans... Jim Hill's column at http://www.amusementpark.com tomorrow will feature Angus Wynne, Jr. and his Texas Pavlions and Music Hall at the 1964/1965 New York World's Fair. Mr. Wynne is best known as the father of the "Six Flags" empire that begin outside Arlington, Texas in the early 60s. His fame and expertise in the amusement park business sparked fellow Texans Lyndon Johnson and John Connelly to tap him to create Texas' entry at the 1964/1965 Fair -- an adventure that lead to Mr. Wynne's financial ruin. It is a fascinating and somewhat sad story that will be a good read for anyone interested in the Fair. Read the story by Jim Hill tomorrow (August 10, 2001) http://www.amusementpark.com
  3. I received an email request from Brian Willer of Toronto who is looking for information on Bill Topping. His company produced the Topping models of Unisphere. Here's the text of the email: What do you know about Bill Topping, a model maker from Elyria, Ohio, who specialized in aviation promotional model. I remember meeting him as a kid in Toronto, Canada, in the early 50's. I know he had the official on-site license to produce souvenirs, and lost a fortune, when WORLD'S FAIR goers were able to buy foreign knockoffs of souvenirs, like the Unisphere, off-site at a fraction of the cost. Please drop me a line...many thanks. How much does one have to pay to get a large Topping Unisphere? Brian Willer/ Toronto, Canada. Any posts I will forward to Mr. Willer Bill nywf64.com
  4. Map is gone?

    I just spoke with a reporter from the Queens Tribune who was just at the NY State pavilion and discovered that the map appears to be gone. Sitting inside the structure are 40 to 50 large boxes labeled "rements of Texaco Map". Anyone care to verify this or is this old news?
  5. In the past couple of weeks, there was a question posted about some disk-shaped features that were located in the Transportation Area of the Fair near the Ford Pavilion. They showed up in early construction photos of the Fair, but disappeared after the Ford Pavilion was built. I think Hood was wondering what those were. This week, I was looking through a copy of a book I acquired recently called "Site Preparation for the NY World's Fair" and in that book there are aerial shots that show 4 circular shaped disks packed closely together in the area where the Ford Pavilion might be. They are labeled as "Steel Shelters" in that book.
  6. Space Age City

    I'm not sure how many of you "out there" have as much of a fondness for the architecture of the Fair as I have. I make no secret that one of my favorite websites is Chris Jepsen's GOOGIE ARCHITECTURE ON-LINE. Chris' site features that great "Jetson" style of architecture that is called Googie or Populuxe or any of a number of names that describe The Space Age architecture that appeared at the Fair and went out of fashion in the mid-sixties. The Fair was its last great "hurrah." Well, Chris has been revamping his site. The Googie site is now a part of a larger effort he is creating at <a href="http://www.spaceagecity.com" target="_blank">www.spaceagecity.com</a> -- space age being another of my/our weaknesses???? Check it out! Chris has reworked the Googie section a bit as well. Read through his description of Googie architecture. It is like reading a description of why the Fair is so important in our eyes! That's how well the two topics dovetail. Bill
  7. DuPont Request

    I received a request today from a Mr. George Pasales. He is looking for the lyrics to the DuPont "Wonderful World of Chemistry" song "I Was Made For You". He said the song appeared in the 1965 version of the show. Mr. Pasales said he's contacted the large music publishing firms but they have no record of the lyrics. In my email to him, I mentioned that finding a copy of the complete show has been on the wish list of many of us with no luck yet. Does anyone have the lyrics to this song that they could pass on to Mr. Pasales? His email is: mailto:gapasles@hotmail.com Your help is appreciated if you have these lyrics. Thanks! Bill
  8. The Mighty Fair

    nywf64.com has once again benefited from a contribution by Dave Oats. Back in 1985 he, and Fair collector/historian Peter Warner, presented a 20th Anniversary retrospective on the Fair at the Flushing Gallery. Titled, "The Mighty Fair," this immensly popular exhibition was the first look back at the Fair the show called A Giant that Never Knew its Own Strength. The 32 page exhibition catalogue has always been one of my most favorite written pieces on the Fair. It is chock full of great B&W pictures and contains a great, concise narrative and several essays. It is easy reading and very enjoyable and I'm happy to have this online to share it with everyone. Thanks to Dave Oats and Greg Godfrey for supplying the copy and their efforts to put it online. Enjoy! <a href="http://www.nywf64.com/mightyfair01.shtml" target="_blank">The Mighty Fair</a>
  9. China Pavilion "Art"

    <a href="http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=35791&item=2155494497&rd=1" target="_blank">http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewI...2155494497&rd=1</a> Interesting where things turn up. I was surprised to find this on eBay today. The tile I have is one of the best purchases I ever made. It's like having a little piece of the actual Fair hanging on my office wall and it's not nearly so bizzare as having a piece of actual wreckage. I think I paid around $25 for mine and I was the only bidder. This is only the 2nd one of these I've ever seen come up on eBay so I think they are somewhat more scarce than waxy plastic dinos and Kodak World's Fair flash cameras. It's a neat piece and I hope he finds a buyer.
  10. If you would like to see pictures of the Golden Rondelle as it exists to day in Racine, Wisconsin (courtesy of Bradd Schiffman) please check out the following page at nywf64.com: <a href="http://www.nywf64.com/johwax06.html" target="_blank">http://www.nywf64.com/johwax06.html</a>
  11. The Story of the Models of the Fair

    Direct from the archives of the NY World's Fair Corporation, Craig Bavaro presents a detailed look at how the models of the Fair came to be. Stop by nywf64.com to read the story of the facts and figures of "the big model" as it was known, along with the traveling models, Unisphere models and even the stories of the Arch of the Americas and how the model came to be shown at the American Express Pavilion. It's great, fascinating reading for anyone interested in the Fair's history. You can find the link to the article from the "What's New" page at nywf64.com
  12. Sinclair Dinoland

    Sinclair Dinoland is a new featured presentation at nywf64.com. You can view the nine pages of Dinoland material by selecting the What's New? Tab from the home page of nywf64.com and following the links to the Feature.
  13. Sinclair Dinoland

    More Dinoland Stuff! Mike Kraus sent a CD with some of his items from his Dinoland collection. Check out pages 5, 7 and 9 to see some nice collectibles from Dinoland!
  14. Lots of new stuff at nywf64.com

    There's quite a bit new to see (and hear!) at nywf64.com -- the 1964/1965 New York World's Fair website. I'd like to invite you to stop by soon and check it out! You'll find two new feature presentations ... on the Pavilion of Venezuela and a re-creation of the Fair's Official Art Book titled "Men at Work" featuring the wonderful sketches of the construction of the Fair by Italian artist Luciano Guarnieri. Many of you are aware of the wonderful recordings made of the Fair's attractions by Mr. Ray Dashner. Now, you can enjoy listening to a number of Ray's recordings online at nywf64.com ... GM Futurama, IBM, DuPont, The Bell System and Continental Insurance feature his recordings (you can hear audio on the Tower of Light and AMF Monorail pages too courtesy of Bradd Schiffman!) In addition to the new features, we've been busy freshening up the older presentations on the website with new content and better graphics. Check out the revised features of Johnson Wax, The Vatican, Wisconsin, Continental Insurance, AMF Monorail, NCR, DuPont, The Bell System, Chrysler (with a number of Bill Cotter's great photographs as in the Sinclair Feature!), Festival of Gas, IBM, Eastman Kodak and General Motors. As Robert Moses said, "There's Something For Everyone!" P.S. Thanks to all for the nice comments on Sinclair! ... There's more to come. Mike Kraus has sent me a bundle of stuff on Sinclair, DuPont and Continental Insurance. Also, there's some stuff coming up from Kevin Carsh as well. Stay tuned. P.P.S. Eric ... I'm going to be ready for the BLC soon! Bill
  15. A look at the end of the Fair

    Bill, from the look of the subjects, these pictures were taken later on in 1966 after most of the parties that could afford to demolish their pavilions had already done so. According to what I found when I did the feature on the demolition of the Fair, the bankrupt pavilions were the last to go because the Fair Corp. had to tear them down. The BLB and the Pav of American Interiors were two of them. Really interesting shots. Thanks!
  16. Courtesy of Dave Oats and Greg Godfrey, a PDF format of The Book of Record of the Time Capsule of Cupaloy has been placed on nywf64.com. You can access it from the "What's New?" page. If you've never seen or read the book, you MUST do it! It is a remarkable document and it will astound you to learn of the thought that was put into the creation of this book to ensure that someone, somewhere, will know how to find the capsules and decipher their contents in 5000 years.
  17. The State of the Park Report 2007

    Dave Oats' "Flushing Meadow Corona Park Association" has issued a report entitled "The State of the Park 2007" A link is available for you under the "What's New?" section of nywf64.com if you would like to read the report.
  18. Unisphere Models

    Hello all, I thought I'd start a new topic for this to follow up on the email correspondence I've been having with Emeral City Modelworks of Seattle regarding a "mass" production of high quality Unisphere models by a proffessional modelmaker. I got this email today from David and Brian of ECModelworks and wanted to share it: I have been compiling a list of ideas and issues we soon want to pass by you (and your friends, if any might be interested). But there are a few I would like to mention now. For example: the primary issue is scale. We have limits relating to our equipment and production processes, but a 1/16th scale model (a common architectural scale) seems feasible at first look. That scale would produce a diameter of the model at about 7.5 inches, with the orbital rings extending somewhat beyond that. The height of the model (on an appropriate base) would be about 11.5 to 12 inches. Is this a scale that you (and your friends) would like to see? This scale lets us easily place human figures on the base, if that would appeal to anyone. Smaller scales down to the size of perhaps a grapefruit would also seem workable, but if you think people really want something more like the size of a softball, that would actually be more difficult than 1/16th scale. Smaller is not necessarily easier or cheaper. In addition, we may wish to consider basing the scale on appropriate display cases that are reasonably commercially available, if you think display cases would enhance the value of the model. For our high-end Space Needle models, glass-domed display cases are essential to protect them from dust, smoke damage, etc. But we have also designed lower-end Space Needle models which don’t require such protection. As you can see, there are many considerations which go into designing a model, including materials (cast resin parts as opposed to photo-etched metals, for example) and efficient or cost-effective production methods. We hope you have the patience for an ongoing dialog on many of these issues–an interested potential customer base would be immensely helpful in the development process. There is another issue (besides scale) that we planned to ask you about that you have already answered in your latest email: you mentioned that some of your friends have blueprints. We have created things from photos alone before, but much time (along with trial and error) can be saved if we have blueprints. If you can arrange for us to get a set of blueprints, that would be invaluable. We will be sending you a more extended email tomorrow (although this one has gotten rather extended), but in the meantime, if you can think about and advise us concerning what range of scales (sizes in the display cabinet) you would like to see for the model, that is really the first consideration in all of this. Obviously, estimation of pricing (which depends primarily on production and even packaging costs) is a way off yet, but as of now, we see no reason that ultimate pricing (depending upon design choices) could not at least compare to our various editions of Space Needle models. Bottom line is that we are willing, after preliminary research, to commit development time (which we realize probably won’t be recouped) to a line of models which could lead to reasonably profitable sales over time. We hope that everyone would understand that development takes a LOT of time–not just a few weeks or even a few months before a quality product might be available. If anyone is interested, PLEASE send a note of encouragment to these fellows and let them know if you would be interested in purchasing one of these if they developed one. The cost of the Space Needle models runs $200 to $250 depending on version. Their email address is mailto:sales@ecmodelworks.com The more people they know are interested, the better idea they will have on how to ultimately price these models. I'm excited! Bill
  19. Space Needle Models

    Perhaps this has been mentioned before. If so, I apologize for bringing it up again and you can just skip over this... The other night I was trolling through eBay and I came across a seller who was offering a very high-end model of the Space Needle. I was amazed at the detail and, being the model nut that I am, I bought one. They offer different versions as it has changed throughought the years. This is the version I purchased. It is the 1962 World's Fair version Here are some of the other verisons they have: Their website is Emeral City Model Works Their eBay store is Emeral City Modelworks No, I'm not getting a kick-back They sell these models in the Gift Shop at the Space Needle, on eBay and on their website. The fellow I've been in contact with is David. The modelmaker is Brian. I wrote tonight to see if they would consider doing a high-end model of Unisphere. Told them that I think there might be a market for a very high quality model complete with the continents and light buckets, spokes to support the orbitals, etc. I think they might even find a market to sell them at the Queens Museum gift shop as well. I paid $199 for the World's Fair model. The later styles of the needle go for around $250 per model. You can read all of the details on their website as far as scale, etc. I believe it is about 10" high, comes on a wooden base and with a glass protective dome.
  20. Space Needle Models

    Magikbilly, I think they know that and make no claims otherwise. This is from their description of the model... Stateroom A-36 was an addition to the original design of the Olympic-class series of ships, and was located in the aft first-class entry foyer on the promenade deck. Stateroom A-36, as it was added to the Titanic, replaced its original window to the promenade deck with a solid wall and fold-down berth. In addition, evidence suggests that the woodwork might have been finished in white. Passenger Francis M. "Father" Browne, who disembarked with his camera at Queenstown, had occupied Stateroom A-37 on the symmetrically opposite side of the ship. Father Browne took many photographs of the ship before he disembarked, including the famous photo of a boy spinning a top at the aft-starboard end of the promenade deck (photographed from mid-ship). That photo was taken just a short stroll from Mr. Andrews’ stateroom through the First Class Smoking Room and the Palm Court to the aft, and then a few steps toward starboard. Father Browne also shot photos of his own stateroom (A-37), showing woodwork finished in white. For our display, we have chosen to retain the original window and have added the fireplace. Electric fireplaces were featured in some first class staterooms on the ship. We have also chosen to follow James Cameron’s conception of the Thomas Andrews stateroom by representing the warm walnut-toned woodworking depicted in a short scene in his film. While not historically accurate, our display box we believe displays our miniature Titanic in an aesthetically pleasing setting, which imaginatively gathers together many elements which made the Titanic such a beautiful ship. From what they said, it looks like they wanted to give the miniature Titanic and good setting. Their main model is the Titanic itself which is pretty amazing considering the funnels are the size of a grain of rice. Best,
  21. Space Needle Models

    My thoughts exactly, Glen. I wrote to David last night and asked if they'd consider doing a model of the Unisphere. I mentioned the gift shop at the Queens Museum and told him that I thought they might be interested in stocking a high-end model like that in the gift shop and asked them to consider persuing a licensing agreement with them like they have done with the Space Needle gift shop. I mentioned PTU and told him that I could think of at least 10 people that would probably be interested in purchasing a high-end model of the Unisphere. If you, or anyone else out there, is interested like I am, please consider dropping them an email and mention that you are interested in such a model. Maybe if there are enough of us that express an interest, they'll consider doing something like that. The email address that I have been corresponding to is <a href="mailto:sales@ecmodelworks.com">ECMODELWORKS</a> and the fellow I corresponded with is David. They have an architectural model of the Space Needle as well that has trees, grass, shrubs, etc. I thought it would be neat to see a model of the Unisphere with the surrounding area including the light towers. I would be happy with any model though and would at least like to see them do one with the tension wires that attach the orbitals and small lights where the capitals are just like the original Unisphere at the fair.
  22. Space Needle Models

    Randy, if you think the Space Needle is detailed, you MUST go to the website and check out the miniature model of Architect Andrew's stateroom on the Titanic. They are selling this for $25 GRAND! It is unbelievable in detail. The Titanic model that sits on the desk is about 3" long. The stateroom is complete down to books on the desk with stamped envelopes stuffed inside, pencils, telephone, desk lamp. Blueprints of the titanic are scattered around the room. The whole thing is about 10" long. It is simply incredible.
  23. NYS Pavilion Tower Light

    Appearing in the New York Daily News today (Dec. 6th)... Foe: Parks in dark on tower light BY NICHOLAS HIRSHON DAILY NEWS WRITER Once again, it's lights out at Flushing Meadows-Corona Park. The red light atop the tallest New York State Pavilion tower broke on Friday, just a month after engineers repaired it so that pilots flying into LaGuardia could see the structure at night, a Queens civic leader said. David Oats, president of the Flushing Meadows-Corona Park World's Fair Association, said he notified Federal Aviation Administration officials at 11 p.m. Friday that the light on the 226-foot structure had gone out. Oats said the fact that the light broke so soon after it was fixed backs up his argument that control over the pavilion should be transferred from the city Parks Department to the state. When the light broke in July, the Parks Department did not fix it until Oct. 25. Oats said the department also has allowed the tower's elevators and staircases to fall into disrepair. But Parks Department spokesman Warner Johnston said that high winds - not city negligence - broke the light last Friday, and added that a crew will be sent to fix it this week. "We are committed to making this light operable, which is why we immediately contacted the FAA" when it went out, he said. Johnston said the city may use a LED light on the tower in the future because it has a much longer lifespan and is more durable than other bulbs. Meanwhile, Oats said the "excuse" that high winds caused the safety light to fail is like saying a fire alarm broke because there was a fire. "There's no one awake at the switch with the Parks Department," Oats said. "I have had it with their excuses, their lies and their PR coverups. And that's all this is." The New York State Pavilion, built for the 1964-65 World's Fair, included three towers, a rotunda and a theater. The tallest tower served as an observation deck during the fair, while the others held a restaurant and an area for the governor to greet dignitaries, Oats said. Originally published on December 6, 2006 His momma always told Warner there'd be days like this. Wow, at this rate, Unisphere Inc. is gonna go broke hiring rope climbers. So much for all that moola raised at Estelle's galas! She won't even be able to afford a couple of gallons of paint from the proceeds if this keeps up. And, if the Parks Dept. had only forseen all this trouble, the $55,000 dollars in grant money they accepted to preserve the map could have been saved to pay for up to 4 or 5 rope climbs to the top of the tower. I'm sure that if you asked Warner Johnston about the expense though, he'd be more than happy to tell you that $24,000 to hire rope climbers pro-rated against the 40+ year life of the building really isn't all that much to have to spend for maintenance. Sometimes, wouldn't you just like to scream?
  24. In My Opinion

    Unbelievable To The Editor: After reading Queens Borough Commissioner Dorothy Lewandowski’s comments regarding the Parks Department’s decades-old neglect of the New York State Pavilion, I must make a few comments. It is fact that the Parks Department commissioned two engineering studies of the structural stability of the NY State Pavilion in 1992 and again in 1996. It is fact that these studies document the dire condition of the structure. It is fact that they have been ignored for over a decade by the NY City Parks Department. Reading Ms. Lewandowski’s statement that “we disagree with those findings” is like listening to a patient given a diagnosis of terminal cancer by a team of specialists while they continue to insist that they have the common cold! Those engineering studies were reviewed by Meyer Consulting Engineers of Rockville, Md. in 2002 when that firm worked on the Air & Space Museum proposal for the pavilion. This third professional engineering firm concurred with the previous studies. That Ms. Lewandowski, a politician, can make such assurances to the public about the condition of the pavilion when professional engineering studies say otherwise is astounding. And now we are to understand that Parks is going to commission yet ANOTHER study? Surely your readers must be questioning the competence of these people! Should something catastrophic happen while the Parks Department and the Borough of Queens continue to stall on making repairs to the pavilion, the Queens Tribune’s public record of these long-ignored studies should prove useful in the investigations of public negligence that are sure to follow! I also take exception to Ms. Lewandowski’s comments on the 2004 Request for Expressions of Interest in the reuse of the pavilion issued by the Park Department. The RFEI was barely publicized and was not publicized outside of the New York area. One has to question the sincerity of the effort. At the time, there was an open proposal for stabilization and reuse to transform the pavilion into an Air & Space museum. The backers of this proposal submitted a complete response to the RFEI which included funding options and reuse options OUTSIDE of an Air & Space Museum reuse. They put together a renowned team of backers and had partnered with the famed architect of the pavilion, Philip Johnson and his associate, Allan Ritchie. They had shown the Borough and the Parks Department how the pavilion could be stabilized for $2.5 million less than any previous proposal. Three years were spent developing this proposal, with much of the time spent waiting while the Parks Department moved along at a snail’s pace. All of this was rejected outright in the autumn of 2004 without comment by the Parks Department. I am hoping that the Queens Tribune will take a closer look at this proposal and will publicize what was offered to the City, the Borough and the Parks Department. The comments of Ms. Lewandowski and the Parks Department that “no one came forward with a viable plan” are simply wrong. Bill Young, Wisconsin http://www.nywf64.com
  25. New York Restoration Project

    This is a super idea and I am all for it as well. I feel like someone has finally started asking questions and demanding some answers and that "spotlight" that we'd all hoped might be turned on the Parks Dept. someday to do SOMETHING might have been turned on. If Bette Middler could help to keep it turned on to get some committments from the Parks Dept. to put their money where Commissioner Dorothy Lewandowski's mouth is, then maybe they will actually pay attention to their next commissioned study and develop that phased plan for stabilization and restoration that she spoke of. Even if Bette Middler could just start publicizing the plight of the pavilion, it would help a lot. If she wants to put her volunteers time somewhere, I'd suggest pulling weeds at the NY State pavilion as a start. And, where are the Landmarks advocates in New York? Now that there's been some publicity about the pavilion and how rotted it is, why haven't they come forward to press for Landmark status? Seems like this is as good as a time as ever. cwb, I believe, according to public records uncovered by the Queens Tribune, they raised about $180,000 to put toward stabilization. I don't know if this was just from the 2004 "gala" or if that is in total. I would guess that the money Lewandowski spoke of that Unipshere, Inc. is putting toward the study of how to restore the stairwell in the highest tower so that the aircraft warning light can be replaced when it burns out is coming out of that fund. It seems likely, anyway. Since no one blinks an eye at spending $12,000 to hire rope climbers to change a light bulb, I would think that a good chunk of that $180,000 will go toward the study and the balance of what's left to install the stairs. I'm sure there'll be another benefit held by Estelle Cooper for the stairs proper. Excuse me for being cynical, but perhaps she could call it "Reaching for the Stars???"
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