Tuesday, December 1

Saturday, June 3

It goes without saying (as the saying goes) that magazine cover art is seasonal. Now that the sap is up, I can imagine someone at Collier's giving illustrator Scott Evans the word that they want some of that sentimental hogwash that the Post has been running on its covers. So, a dream girl in golfing attire, representing the modern woman making her way into male territory. A quick search turns up very little about Evans- a few covers for a few major magazines, some ads. This small sampling doesn't tell me much about him, but the quality of this particular illustration is top-notch. Dreamy. And maybe the cashier modeling her Century of Progress uniform makes it out to the links on the weekends, but I sort of doubt it. She looks plenty happy to have a job, anyway, and she's got the h...

Friday, June 2

SOCAL makes news again. Oil is where you find it, and there was a lot of it in Los Angeles. A fire in the forest of derricks on Signal Hill. Next, just one of hundreds of aerial photos taken in the British Isles in 1933. They are a little scary, considering the uses to which they might be put by a hostile foreign power. And of course, the Fair is an educational experience for many. better late than never, today's page is here.

Thursday, June 1

The Communist Party in the Soviet Union has been busy consolidating its power, announcing the latest purge of unfaithful party members. You better hope that you've been a good little Bolshevik- Papa Stalin sees you when you're sleeping, and he knows when you're awake.In the USA the purges are more subtle. In the USA, it's OK to mock the wealthy (what of them that's left, anyway) because they don't actually care what the public thinks of them, and don't mind being "purged". There's always France.The public doesn't tour the world, instead the world comes to Chicago, and you can get a nifty brass badge to mount on your automobile! tour the year 1933 here, one day at a time

Wednesday, May 31

Fighting between the Republic of China and Japan ends in Northern China with the signing of the Tanggu Truce. The Chinese concede everything north of the Great Wall to the Japanese puppet state of Manchukuo. A neutral zone extends south from the wall, but the Japanese forces are secretly given more freedom to operate there. Notice how near this zone extends to Peiping (aka Beijing, Peking), the Chinese capital, and to Tientsin (aka Tianjin) where foreign powers had established legations. With their far superior air power, the Japanese were in a position to attack these major cities at will. Meanwhile, back in the states... San Francisco may be constructing the Golden Gate Bridge, but in Chicago they already have the Sky Ride! play your cards right here.

Tuesday, May 30

Louis Meyer wins the second of his three Indy 500 races. It was a deadly year at Indianapolis, five were killed. Tourists continue to visit exotic locals. Another view of the Sky Ride in Chicago. today's crop of photos is here.

Monday, May 29

The man on the right is smiling. He looks like he knows that he's just closed the greatest deal of his life. I'm wondering how the Standard Oil Company of California knew about the potential reserves on the Arabian peninsula? Did they just take a wild-assed guess? Was the deal so cheap that they could afford to sign these concessions with every emerging nation, on the off chance of success? Or did they have information, some earlier geological data, that led them to this point? It really doesn't matter much. The American corporation was able to extract a fairly one-sided concession from the young country, which probably was the best sort of deal they could expect. At least they weren't being invaded and colonized, which would have been "Standard" operating procedure in a bunch of ...

Sunday, May 28

Ginger Rogers at the age of 21 is streaking to the top. Talent, hard work, good looks, and some luck was all it would take, but if you didn't know that this photo was the famous star of stage and screen, if you were seeing her for the first time you'd say that this dame was the embodiment of the heartless "Gold Digger". It's not a photo that Rogers fans like to acknowledge, but it's my favorite picture of her. Her and that cigarette, that gold dollar jacket. That look.Ah, but spirit is victorious over flesh, as the New York Times reminds us. You may have forgotten about poor Mr. Gandhi- he's been on a fast for the month of May, seeking recognition and basic human rights for some of the poorest people in the world, the "untouchables" of India. He'll win his point this time, due to hi...

Saturday, May 27

Chasing the Devil around a StumpBy invoking the Federal Government's ability to regulate trade between the states, and by defining "interstate commerce" to include any activity that involved so much as a phone call across state lines, Washington was able to require complete disclosure of the underlying value of stocks. Not only did this generate forests worth of paper that few could understand, it kept legal scholars gainfully employed. A phrase about chasing the devil that popped up in my search this morning seems an appropriate description of the difficulties involved in trying to keep people from making money by deception.What we have here lies at the crux of the American experiment. If the first European land grants in this nation were not essentially based on deception I don't kno...

Friday, May 26

I don't like writing about a day like this. Not because someone died, but because Jimmie was only 35 years old and had just completed a recording session at RCA in New York City. It pretty much killed him. TB. Boomers think dying young was something that was invented in 1970, but they had plenty of it during and after WWI. Bullets and shells, mustard gas, influenza, tuberculosis. Lots of TB. It was considered a romantic way to die- poetic even. Wasting away. But look at this photo, taken a day before he crossed over. Jimmie Rogers was always smilin'. I like to think of how he felt in the sun there, warm at last, feeling like the sun could heal him, might save him. I like to think of an alternative universe where he survived, got into the uptown Manhattan hep scene, eventually ...

Thursday, May 25

Frank with TroutI've been re-watching the David Lynch soap Twin Peaks lately, picking up on things that I missed the first time around. The dream-like qualities sometimes ran afoul of my expectations. Seeing it again I recognize the moment when I lost the storyline. There's an episode portraying events which are supposed to have occurred in a single day, which, though technically possible, is totally implausible. While now I can appreciate it as a great way to tell a story, it lost me at the time. It wasn't following the comfortable dramatic arc I expected. Today's slice of 1933 began with a simple historic fact gleaned from Wikipedia. On this day, the Marpole Midden was recognized as a National Historic Site of Canada. What struck me was that, even though this place had been decl...