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Bill Cotter

Some 1939-40 New York World's Fair images

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With thanks to the brains behind Photoshop:

Before

ave-patriots-before.jpg

and happily after:

ave-patriots-after.jpg

The original slide was badly scratched and actually looked like it had been folded once (it was unmounted). I'd like to get some of the blue off the Trylon but it got to the point of diminishing returns so I'll leave it as is for the time being.

I believe this is the Avenue of Patriots in 1940.

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Seeing crowds that size makes my feet hurt. And I'm consistently amazed by how dressed up everybody was back then. The whole notion of wearing a suit, tie, and hat on a humid NY summer day-- and standing in line with 100,000 other folks? Wow.

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Hi Bill,

awesome photo! Love the feel. I might suggest the tip of the Trylon is too sharp (too tall as well?) and would not be visable IMHO - the very top of the Perisphere seems not to show from the bright sky. Was this sky replaced for damage - the edge of Heinz (or is that Fisheries/Sports?) looks too sharp as well? Minor points - great work and wonderful image.

Best wishes,

Eric

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No, no tweaking on the sky. This was another badly exposed slide - very dark in the foreground and overly bright in the distance. I adjusted the brightness levels, worked on the color (hardly any in the original) and cleaned up a lot of dirt, but no major pixel movements.

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Obviously the bridge in the background is the Porpoise Bridge, which still exists today.

Here's a recent photo:

51233315.jpg

And here's an odd note from a blog I found:

Apparently it got its current name because at the 1939 World's Fair there was nearby a statue of a woman with porpoises dancing around her.

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Hi Bill,

that is The Tree of Life, a solid elm with 2 flanking sculptures of a man and woman of eucalytpus or something. This I have many times in B/W in my envelopes and stock, but I have not ever seen it ever in color. The blogger speaks of a sculpture on the other side of the bridge I guess. It was in the Gardens on Parade - I bet you have it in color Bill. I see it in many collections I buy.

Best wishes,

Eric

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Say Bill,

That is an excellent photo of the Bridge I took the group to at the 2007 February Saturday in the Park. Some had not heard of this bridge or its state of preservation. It was brutally cold that day; I was savegd by a tiny dog. Don was there, Wally, many others. This bridge looks nearly the same today minus the flags and railings; the deco trim is all intact! :)

Best.

Eric

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Say Bill,

That is an excellent photo of the Bridge I took the group to at the 2007 February Saturday in the Park. Some had not heard of this bridge or its state of preservation. It was brutally cold that day; I was savegd by a tiny dog. Don was there, Wally, many others. This bridge looks nearly the same today minus the flags and railings; the deco trim is all intact! :)

Best.

Eric

If I recall correctly, it is presently nearly impossible to get a good view of the bridge due to the golf course, and you can't see anything of the decorations from on top of the bridge. If I'm incorrect, please tell me how to get a good look the next time I'm there.

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Hi Wayne,

unless things have changed in a big way, you just look over the side. The metal detailing was there last time I was. While not the easiet thing to phoograph, I don't recall it being incredibly hard. There were photographs here taken that day by...Cecelia? I remember some showed a bike frozen into the water as well as some of the detials seen over the side. The modern photograph Bill posted shows this bridge flat on and some of the Deco flavoring is obscured at this angle.

Best,

Eric

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It's been a while so I thought I'd add another 1939-40 NYWF view. Just scanned and not fully restored.

concessions-1.jpg'

The angle just cuts off the names of each booth in this concession stand, but going from left to right it looks like we have:

1) Coca-Cola. You can make out the round Coke sign inside, and there are cases stacked up outside for folks to place their used bottles

2) Hot dog or sandwich shop. There's a sign on the wall for "Ward's Tip Top", which I gather was a popular bread line back then

3) This one has a sign for Coffee

4) Looks like a lonely cigar salesman. There's also a case on the wall marked "Films" and it looks like there is a display of candy and gum.

5) Telephone booths - two of them, with a set of phone books between them

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