Spend a little time at the MAJESTIC THEATRE

No idea where or when this shot was taken. I can take a guess that it was after 1913 because of the movie that is listed on the signboard.

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Step back in time and imagine what these ladies might be going to see.

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You can see Pathe Review on the signboard with "The Chameleon" listed as a film that was showing. This film came out in January of 1913. If you click on the title link above you'll find the following at IMDB: Released in the US as a split reel along with the documentary The Making of Hats

And perhaps after the show they dropped into the druggist next door to look at the fine Kodak products after having something wonderful to eat at the soda fountain. One can only imagine their conversation after viewing such titillating features.


THE COUPLE, the fireplace, and the shadows

Don't you wonder if this couple did this as a hobby? Took photos of each other posing in the light of their venetian blinds? Nothing is written on the back so it wasn't taken to show off their room to a relative far away who didn't travel. They probably didn't share much with anyone outside their walls. They were in love in and out of the shadows and that's all anyone needs to know.



If you've seen the recent selfie-photo of "journalist" Geraldo Rivera you're probably trying to find a way to scrub that corner of your memory.

Image be gone! Be gone I tell you! 

The photo should have come with a warning, like what you're told when there is an eclipse. "Don't directly look at the image, you'll cause brain damage." But if you did look and are now suffering along with so many other people around the world I give you perhaps some relief. This is an image I posted for the first time in 2008; Geraldo as a time-traveling celebrity. Still a preening strutting wingless bird, but perhaps a bit more palatable. I'm wondering if in the current shot he was also wearing the black socks and shoes.

SOME MARRIAGES start out slow

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THE LAST from Wyoming

As we leave our intrepid travelers in Wyoming in 1926 we have this last thought as we view one of the bear fondlers in all her glory. Had Mt. Rushmore in South Dakota not been started in 1927 we might have ended up with this as a famous rock sculpture in Wyoming.

Then again...

the rocks behind her look quite a bit like the rock monster from Galaxy Quest so maybe in the long run this woman was doomed from the start. Either the bear or the rocks got her.



be sure to take along two huge makeup bags. If you're going to pet a bear's butt you want to make sure you're attractive when the coroner shows up.

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Taken before or after the bear butt petting?

To see the bear petting photo click here.


A picnic with some of the WYOMING TRAVELERS

Time for a picnic. Was this before or after petting the bear? The bear petter is second from the left. I don't see any hands. Could there be nothing but bloody stumps behind the thermos?

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What NOT TO DO when you visit Wyoming

Sometimes city folks are just plumb stupid. So I'll provide a couple of hints to those thinking of heading to the great outdoors for their summer vacation.

I mentioned in my last post that the tourists in 1926 who visited Cheyenne, Wyoming, had questionable judgement. I now provide my examples and some words to etch into your brain.

DON'T CASUALLY SURROUND A BEAR! You are nothing more than food standing next to a toothpick.

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And for cryin' out loud...DON'T SNEAK UP BEHIND A BEAR TO PET ITS BUTT! One would think this would not be something any sane person would need to be told.

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Seriously, I'm sure there are people today, this very day, somewhere in this country who did this. It's between those of us born with common sense and all the rest of the nut cases.


The tourists WITH THE BABY at the Round-Up

These two women tourists are part of the group that attended the Cheyenne Round-Up in 1926. There are more of them to come in which we will all question their judgement. Here they're just looking at a baby on a cradle board.

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MORNING at the Round-Up

The glory of this country are the many cultures we get to experience right outside our doors. We're a mix and if you keep your mind and eyes open there's always something new to experience. That said, I don't know how happy I'd be if I were to open my door some morning and find a "tourist" standing outside my house having their picture taken.

This is another image from the Cheyenne Round-Up in 1926.

Click on image to see it larger.



This was actually going to be a very short post. I figured I’d take this week’s Sepia Saturday (rain and umbrellas) in a different direction by providing you with some recent purchases taken in July, 1926 at the Cheyenne, Wyoming Round-up. My thinking, slow witted as I might be, was that I’d take you in the direction of a Native American rain dance. Then, as often happens, the little scraps of paper sent me on a journey. Plus, and this is a biggie, I figured out a way to take the black album stock off of photos that were torn from old albums. That tip to come, and not for the delicate minded.

Cheyenne is the capital of Wyoming, located in Laramie County. The Cheyenne Frontier Days, which I’m guessing includes the Round-up, has been held each year since 1897. These photos, from 1926, are part of a group of shots showing a family vacation in the wilds of the West. There are several more photos from the series which I will feature over the next week. Today’s are specifically from the Round-up. All of the photos were developed and printed at the Elite Studio in Omaha, Nebraska.

Click on images to see them larger.

I do not know which tribe is being represented in this parade, but their clothing convinces me they were from the Plains. Indeed, they might actually be Cheyenne.

Here is an article from the August 11, 1923 Cape Girardeau Southeast Missourian newspaper detailing what you might have seen at one of these events.

Click on article to see it larger or click on link above.

In this vintage snapshot you can see the grandstand the writer mentions in the article.

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On the back of this shot it says, “Pete Morrison and Buck Jones movie stars and other cowboys Cheyenne Round up 1926.” I cannot tell you which one is which in this shot.

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George D. Morrison, nicknamed Pete, was an American silent western film actor born August 8, 1890 in Westminster, Colorado. During his childhood he lived at Morrison, Colorado (named for his grandfather George Morrison) and Idaho Springs, and got his early tastes of horsemanship riding with his father Thomas during the summer. They drove cattle and sheep from the summer ranges in Middle Park and Fall River in Colorado to supply beef and mutton to the mining camps of Georgetown, Idaho Springs, Nevadaville, Black Hawk and Central City. During his mid-teens Pete worked in the mining industry, with his older brothers driving in sections of the Argo Tunnel where Pete was a motorman, hoist operator, topside helper, teamster hauler, assisting several of the larger miners in the Idaho Springs area. In the summer of 1910 Pete Morrison was an engine fireman for the Colorado Southern Railroad when he was lured away by the early western movies. Pete began working as a stunt man for the Essanay Studios of Broncho Billy films, soon discovering he could make more money working in movies in 2 weeks than he could make working for a month on the railroad. Pete followed his older brother Chick Morrison to California, where he also became a star in early western pictures. Through his career, Morrison transcended from very early film in 1909 to sound in 1935 starring in some 132 pictures. (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
Buck Jones (December 12, 1891 – November 30, 1942) was an American motion picture star of the 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s, best known for his work starring in many popular western movies. In his early film appearances, he was billed as Charles Jones.
Charles Frederick Gebhart was born on the outskirts of Vincennes, Indiana on December 12, 1891. (Some sources erroneously indicate December 4, 1889, but Jones's marriage license and his military records confirm the 1891 date.)[2] In 1907, Jones joined the US Army a month after his sixteenth birthday: his mother had signed a consent form that gave his age as eighteen. He was assigned to Troop G, 6th Cavalry Regiment, and was deployed to the Philippine islands in October, 1907, where he served in combat and was wounded during the Moro Rebellion. Upon his return to the U.S. in December, 1909, he was honorably discharged at Fort McDowell, California.

Following his military service, he began working as a cowboy on the 101 Ranch near Bliss, Oklahoma. While attending equestrian shows he met Odille "Dell" Osborne, who rode horses professionally. The two became involved, and married in 1915. Both had very little money, so the producers of a Wild West Show they were working on at the time offered to allow them to marry in an actual show performance, in public, which they accepted.

While in Los Angeles, and with his wife pregnant, Jones decided to leave the cowboy life behind and get a job in the film industry. He was hired by Universal Pictures for $5 per day as a bit player and stuntman. He later worked for Canyon Pictures, then Fox Film Corporation, eventually earning $40 per week as a stuntman. With Fox his salary increased to $150 per week, and company executive William Fox decided to use him as a backup to Tom Mix. This led to his first starring role, The Last Straw, released in 1920. (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
Here we have an old Buck Jones movie from 1931 which also includes a young John Wayne.

Then we get to the last shot which I find the most fascinating. On the back it says, “Bonnie Gray and famous horse Cheyenne 1926.” I did a bit of research online and in a book I have about cowgirls.

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Bonnie Gray Harris (1891-1988)

Tall and athletic, Bonnie is best remembered for her amazing stunts and trick riding. Allegedly the first woman to perform the “under the belly crawl” on a horse, she also jumped her horse over an open car with passengers and was one of the first women to ride bulls in Mexican bullfights. As the movie industry flourished in California, so did Bonnie’s career as a stunt rider. (SOURCE: National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame)

The following are all from Cowgirls: Women of the Wild West by Elizabeth Clair Flood.
“If one loves a thing and does it well, why shouldn’t se do it?” said Bonnie Gray to her disapproving family. Her parents had high hopes for their daughter, who had a college degree in music and was a fine pianist. But Gray’s love for competitive sports lured her into the rodeo world of the Cheyenne Frontier Days, Oregon’s Pendelton Round-up, the Calgary Stampede, and New York’s Madison Square Garden.

Bonnie Gray earned money jumping her horse King Tut over an automobile filled with passengers.
Despite the broken bones and the long hours on the road, many of the early cowgirls admitted that rodeo in the ‘teens and 1920s was glamourous. When asked what motivated her to live such hard life, Bonnie Gray answered: “Oh honey, I loved it. I was tops in the and tops in the that. I just loved being tops!”
Some cowgirls did make reasonable amounts of money. Bonnie Gray, who often substituted for cowboys Bing Crosby, Hoot Gibson, and Buck Jones, earned $10,000 for jumping a horse over a pile of brush and down a ten-foot cliff. The horse landed such that the stirrup straps broke and Gray sustained a backward fall. She commented that she would never do the stunt again, but few who knew her were convinced. “I used to ride to Beverly Hills and practice my stunts on Will’s (Will Rogers’s) front lawn," Gray said.
If I hadn’t figured out how to get the old black album paper off the back of this shot I’d have never known that this was one fascinating woman sitting astride that fabulous horse. To read a bit more about Bonnie Gray click here. And I have listed two wonderful books about cowgirls in the Amazon column to the left. They're full of photos and ephemera making you wish you'd never thrown your old six-shooter and boots away...providing you remember those days as a kid.

Now, how did I get the paper off? Spit. Not kidding. Spit. I still remember a teacher at art college who told the class about the magic of spit and its various uses for artists. It has to do with the acidity in spit. So taking a chance I dabbed a small amount of spit on the back of the photo ever so lightly, let it sit for a few moments, then took an x-acto knife and gently scrapped off the paper. Remember, you heard it here. Spit. Will never be marketed by a corporation. We own it. And if you do this and it ruins your photo I take no responsibility. My spit might be different than yours.

And now, back to what started this post, the rain dance.


OVER the fence

It's that time of year when you have too many squash, too many tomatoes, too many things growing in the garden for one family to enjoy. So instead of sharing gossip over the fence share vegis...or whatever this woman is tasting. My neighbor is a winery so...I'm just sayin'.

Click on image to see it larger, though I don't know why you would.


Looking for A CURE

We've all seen it in old movies and comics where someone with a toothache ties a kerchief onto their head wrapping their jaw. Not something you see these days. Has medicine progressed or have our egos stopped us from walking around like this? I'm going with improvements to dentistry.  

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I haven't found anything definitive online explaining this procedure, but I'm guessing that it was done to perhaps hold ice in place over the painful tooth. Or maybe there was some sort of herbal home remedy that could help with the pain in the interim before getting to a dentist.

All of this does little to explain these two young ladies. Friends with toothaches at the same time? Is the guy a dentist they're flirting with? Is this an old vaudeville comedy routine? Sadly the back of the photo provides little more than mysterious text. The words most likely to solve this mystery are obliterated by the old album paper stock still stuck to the photo. A mystery wrapped in a kerchief.

Click on image to see it larger.

But lest you think I am straying too far from this weeks Sepia Saturday challenge about Louis Pasteur I give you the patron saint of dentistry, Pierre Fauchard. Another fascinating Frenchman to the rescue!
It is said that the 17th century French physician Pierre Fauchard started dentistry science as it is known today, and he has been named "the father of modern dentistry". Among many of his developments were the extensive use of dental prosthesis, the introduction of dental fillings as a treatment for dental caries and the statement that sugar derivative acids such as tartaric acid are responsible for dental decay. (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
You just never know where Sepia Saturday and an old piece of paper might lead you.


48 STARS hanging over...who knows where

It's the 4th of July and I've got an old 48 star flag hanging over...damned if I know.

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Just remember to "board car on other side." Now don't you wish you knew where the car went?

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UPDATE: I believe WJY has nailed it. This looks like it is the old Mt. Lowe Alpine Tavern and trolley in Southern California.

(SOURCE: Mount Lowe Preservation Society)

You can read about Mt. Lowe and see a lot of vintage images by going to http://www.mountlowe.org. You can see interior images of the tavern here.

Just to add a little twist, Fred Harvey also had an affiliation with this place as can be seen here. Interesting after the past few posts I did about Fred Harvey locations.


Where in the world is this FRED HARVEY?

Unless you're of a (cough) certain age, you won't know anything about Fred Harvey. A bold statement I'm sure, but I just don't think this sort of information sticks anymore. Of course you might know of the Judy Garland movie The Harvey Girls.

I've written a few brief posts at my other blog, Tattered and Lost Ephemera, about some vintage Fred Harvey items I own. You can see them here and here.

This time I've got a photo of a Fred Harvey Indian Shop. I've not been able to locate an image online to help me figure out where this might have been. Anybody think it looks familiar?

Click on image to see it larger.

UPDATE: Intense Guy has done it again and correctly identified this building. This is the Alvarado Hotel and Indian Museum in Albuquerque, New Mexico. To read about the fascinating woman who designed and decorated many of Fred Harvey's businesses click here to see my previous post.


And here's an old brochure of the hotel that sold online a few years ago.

(SOURCE: Bid Start)  Click on images to see them larger.


Grand Canyon?

On the back of the image it says "Grand Canyon." That's it. Nothing else. Perhaps someone can expound on the building this fellow is standing in front of. Ruins or building still in use? I have not been able to find it online or any of my books. Considering there is glass in some windows I'm leaning towards "still in use."

Click on image to see it larger.

Reader Intense Guy has nailed it. It's the Hopi House gift shop.

I've found a bit more information about this building. It was designed by Mary Jane Colter who worked for Fred Harvey for 40 years. She began her work with the company in 1902 when she was hired to decorate the Alvarado Hotel and Indian Museum in Albuquerque, New Mexico. (Check the post that follows this one to see the building.) The following is specifically about the building above, the Hopi House.
One of her first projects was Hopi House, a hotel at the Grand Canyon, where she based her design on a pueblo structure.

She tried to make her building authentic by hiring Hopi Indians and learning about Hopi culture. (SOURCE: The Wild West)
You can read about her life here. She sounds like a fascinating woman who should be remembered. A biography was released in 2002 by the Princeton Architectural Press. Here is the blurb from the Library Journal.
Fame is coming belatedly to American architect and designer Mary Colter (1869-1958), and this illustrated volume is the most detailed study of her career to date. If her name is not well known, her work certainly is. Colter was an employee of the Harvey Company from 1910 to 1948, and her main task was the design and decoration of Harvey hotels and restaurants along the Santa Fe Railway. A versatile designer who integrated authentic regional elements into strong themes, Colter was responsible for famous hotels such as El Navajo in Gallup, NM; La Posada in Winslow, AZ; and Painted Desert Inn in Painted Desert, AZ. Her rustic-styled buildings at the Grand Canyon, including the Hopi House, Bright Angel Lodge, and others, influenced National Park Service development, and the style became known as National Park Service Rustic. This sympathetic and well-documented book by Berke, an editor at Preservation magazine who also writes on historic architecture, includes new photographs. The final chapter describes the fates of many Colter buildings, including the restoration of some survivors. Recommended for regional public and academic libraries. —David R. Conn, Surrey P.L., BC