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About Jim

  • Rank
    Life Member
  • Birthday 12/27/1951

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  • Location
    I live near Syracuse.
  1. Hungry? Want to enjoy the Schaefer buffet?

    Having rather clear memories of how adults around me enjoyed their free time in the early 1960s, you are correct. Beer was pretty much adult soda from what I could tell. And getting smashed sure didn't carry the stigma that it does today nor were the problems associated with such behavior really fully considered much less openly discussed.
  2. Amazing. I had never heard of Jonas studio or Churchtown for that matter. Actually, Churchtown is just a hamlet in the town of Claverack, NY. Had no idea this place existed. Interestingly, Claverack is here the first mastodon tooth was discovered in 1705. Those Sinclair beasts must have made quite a sight in am isolated Columbia County hamlet.
  3. Hungry? Want to enjoy the Schaefer buffet?

    I was in there in early September of 1965. But I do not recall it as a buffet as the line of folks in the background suggests. Was there more than one dining area? I clearly remember a waitress bringing food to us. I still have a wrapped sugar cube from the Schaefer Center.
  4. Up at Nights

    It's rather haunting.
  5. The 1940 bombing

    That's a remarkable discovery. How did you happen to come across this? And welcome to this site!!
  6. Italia '61

    That's a very interesting site. One does not need to read Italian to appreciate the photographs of this event. There are some interesting links to related sites including six or more to monorail sites.
  7. How do we know that it is morning? The pavilions opened at ten AM generally speaking. I have no idea why it's so empty. I'm speculating, of course. Regardless, the place is empty and therein lay the Fair's main problem.
  8. I'm not so sure the possibility that this photograph was snapped on a weekday explains the lack of people. Each season averaged 25 million visitors. That's 180 days and averages to about 138,000 per day. Of course, that number didn't appear every day, but 50 to 60,000 was a fairly typical day with larger numbers on weekends, probably, and holidays. The Fair sold itself as a vacation destination, a once-in-a-lifetime event. Hundreds of thousands must have filled NYC hotel rooms, including weekdays, to visit the place. I'd like a nickel for the number of people who have posted here who said that they cut school to see the Fair, or visited with school groups. Either way, they got there no matter what and regardless of the day of the week. We all know that the Fair just didn't live up to its own hype. Expecting 70 million, just over 50 million visited with about three million finally deciding to show up in the final two weeks. That's still a lot of visitors. But compare a photo like this to a typical any day of the week Expo 67 photo. No clue why this looks like a pre-opening post card shot. You could fit the number of visible souls in this photo into a telephone booth. It helps to explain why attendance fell so short of predictions but it doesn't explain why more people didn't check out the place for themselves. It's a very inviting scene. What's not to like about the Fair? Where were all this expected visitors? We'll never know. I know I would have been there more often than two days if it had been possible for me to do so. But I was 13 and lived 250 miles away.
  9. Italia '61

    I first found reference to Italia 61 in a text book I use in my European History course. It quite surprised me. It was an actual event and rather successful. It's also noteworthy that this fair produced the beautiful facility which was later used for figure skating and short track at the 2006 Torino Olympic Winter Games (The Palavela). The wiki link also provides a link to another website that contains photographs of the still existing monorail tracks and stops which linked the grounds in 1961. The BIE website does contain photos and information about Expo 61. Nineteen nations, including the USA, participated. There were five million visitors. Disney even presented a 1000 seat Fiat Circarama which showed a film highlighting sights and landmarks throughout Italy. This must be the first time this technology was presented--or very close to the first time.
  10. I took another look at this and the photo really highlights how the Van Wyck (I 678) cut through the fairgrounds leaving the 1939 Court of Peace etc. as an orphaned piece of land. It also appears that this particular section of the 1939 Fair where FDR had stood to deliver his dedication address was basically just empty land after the 1940 fair closed. I'd love to take a metal detector and walk that area today. I'll bet a few 1939 memories could be uncovered.
  11. Dancing Waters post-fair

    What was The Dancing Waters? I mean where was this located? I think there was a dancing waters thing at Expo as well. But just what was it? That Merchants National Bank thing struck me. That was a fairly large Upstate New York bank in the 1960s. Turns out, there were a number of banks, in different states, with that name. This could happened because, fifty years ago, banks could not operate across state lines according the the Glass-Steagall Act which was a New Deal reform designed to prevent another 1929 series of giant bank failures.
  12. Ralph, your posts make you seem thirty years younger!
  13. Say Pepsi Please!

    It's almost as if they chose to visit the Fair on The Day The Earth Stood Still. They had the whole place to themselves.
  14. A beautiful day in May 1964

    Hey Bill, what's the tall orange colored tower in the upper left? Is that a construction crane for the Hall of Science? Was that building really that far behind schedule?
  15. Say Pepsi Please!

    Bill, can you really determine the time of day the photo was taken?