Thursday, January 10, 2008

Brother Was His Face Red
or Crumbling Right off the Press circa June 22, 1935

I've been meaning to post this Chicago American newspaper for some time. I believe I found it at an estate sale lining the drawer of an old cabinet. It is impossible hold as it is turning to dust, so I wanted to scan what's left before it disappeared forever.

I've heard stories of people being robbed and stripped of their clothes, but it looks like in 1935 it was an epidemic. Here (above) the headline shows George Barnes as he recreated his ordeal of being in his underwear and trying to get the attention of someone in his house. I'm sure his mother was very proud of this and showed it to all the neighbors. I'm a huge old radio fan, so I always love to look at the radio listings sections in these newspapers. So many of these regular broadcasts were never saved. I was going to include the Jack Benny Show from this date, but my collection is only semi-complete. I've only a few shows from 1935 and this date's show isn't one of them. My guess is that it didn't survive.

Look how pretty Ethel Merman was then.
The next thing I always go for in an old newspaper are the movie listings. It's amazing that there were so many movie theatres in Chicago. Practically one every couple of blocks in heavily populated neighborhoods. The majority of these no longer exist except for The Admiral (now a high priced strip club), The Logan still shows second run features, The 400, The Vic (still a movie theatre when bands aren't playing there), The Davis (still going strong although they've cut it up into six theatres), the Apollo just had some sort of restoration, but they just do live shows now, and the Colony is still standing, but has been empty for years. The Uptown is a huge theatre taking up almost a full city block. There has been a movement to restore it for years, but they never seem to get very far before a new crisis happens causing a halt in the restoration. I've lived nearby it for twenty years and I've never seen inside. The Music Box is probably the last of the working movie theatres that is still thriving. They still have the original organ and for the most part it's still looks the same. The Portage recently re-opened and they are currently the home of the silent movie festival. But I think that's it for the standing working movie houses. Have I missed any?
I'm sure you can still sell your gold for cash, but I can't imagine that I would just put my old 'useless' gold in a box and mail it to some pawn shop on south Wabash street.

Last year on Irving Park Road, a building was torn down to put up a new awful condo in the Bushian style. For the while that the old building was down a near perfect ghost ad appeared on the building next to the vacant lot for Gold Dust Washing Powder. I kick myself for not taking a photo of it. It was funny for a couple months to drive down busy Irving Park road and see larger than life and clear as can be this logo with the two Pickaninny children. Now, I've got to blow my nose, this paper dust is making me sneeze!


Aaron said...

George Barnes had nice thighs, didn't he...?

I still see old ads on some of the buildings in my neighborhood. I love them, even though some of them have clearly been up for years...

Mike Lynch said...

Two giant Pickaninny kids on a bog billboard for months and no one got angry?! There must've been an op ed letter somewhere.

Thanks for these. Always fun to see the papers from bygone days.

BC said...

I saw that old ad...amazingly well preserved. I didn't take a pic, either, but meant to! If you walk by, you can still see a lot of it...there's a narrow alley way there.