Needs Focus…

TimeClock-colorizedThis is a picture of a worker clocking in at a Youngstown steel mill about one hundred years ago. Of course the original is black and white. I know that I am supposed to appreciate b/w photography but somehow it just lacks depth to me. This pic need some focus so I gave the worker an orange coat and a slight halo. He is now without a doubt the focus of the shot.

A Particular Face…

2013_14735

This shot was taken in the Youngstown Historical Center a while back.  Whenever I look at it I seem to zero in on the face I circled for this post. I don’t know why but I would like to see more about him….

American Ingenuity..

Youngstown, OH – Creativity

Lets look at another pic from my Youngstown Historical Center visit. It isn’t immediately obvious what you are looking at so I will explain it. Working in the steel mills is dirty business so when the workers started their shifts they changed out of the street clothes into their work clothes. The mill owners didn’t want to spend the money for lockers so the above system was implemented. A chain with a basket attached was used to store the clothes and then raised to the ceiling and locked into place. Another sign of American ingenuity.

Youngstown History…

Youngstown, OH – The Mill

Steel mills were an important part of the Industrial Age of a century ago and Youngstown was very much a part of the legacy. If you are ever in the area I would highly encourage you to spend some time touring this facility. It tells a story of a very important part of the heart of America…

Steel Mills..

Youngstown, OH – Steel Town

Let’s spend this week on ISOA looking at one historical center. This is a picture of a picture found in the Youngstown Historical Center of the conditions in the shantytowns that were close to almost any steel mill of a century ago. I can’t imagine having to live in such filthy conditions.

Youngstown Re-visited – One Last Time…

Youngstown, OH – All the faces…

I am visiting Youngstown one final time to give you this picture of some of the workers there from a century ago. One of my hobbies is taking snapshot of these type pictures and trying to imagine what was in the minds of each individual shown.  These guys formed a big part of what we know as America today…

Youngstown – Re-visited

Youngstown, OH – The time clock

Most workers in the Youngstown mills likely worked six days a week and lived in company provided housing. I don’t think anyone of today in American would begin to put up with the conditions these guys faced.

Steel…

Youngstown, OH – Steel

Anybody with much study of America knows that Youngstown was one of the premiere cities for steel production back a century ago.  The “Ohio Historical Society Youngstown Center of Industry and Labor” does and excellent job of giving you an idea of what those times were like.  Since I am going to be away from my desk for a few days I thought I would pre-load some more images from this museum for your view pleasure while I am gone.

Warning…..

Steel workers safety

 

April 2013 – I took this photo at the Youngstown Historical Society museum a few weeks ago. It was commonly known that steelworkers had some of the most dangerous conditions to work in.  Especially before the advent of unions.

On The Road Cleveland – Day 2 Youngstown

Youngstown3As noted in yesterday’s post we spent the day at Youngstown. It was everything I expected it to be. The Youngstown Historical Center was of course all about steel. I took about forty pictures of the exhibits and will give you a few of them here.  I didn’t realize that there were actually seven mills running here during their heydays in the 1960’s. They started shutting down after the Japanese started flooding the market with sub-cost steels in the early 1980s and Ronald Reagan didn’t do anything to stop them. As a result they disappeared very quickly along with thousands of good paying middle class jobs.

There is little there now of any of the big buildings. About all that is left is the soot they produced. Youngstown is a dirty town similar to Pittsburgh but there are signs of life with new business. But never enough to keep the blighted neighborhoods in the background.

Youngstown1When we are in areas like this we try to visit the local food establishments. I got on Yelp and found a few good ones but of the three I had chosen all were closed. One appeared to be open on weekends only. We finally did find a really nice italian delicatessen.  The help there was very patient we my wife and her picky diet.

There is another thing that surprised me about the Cleveland area and that is just how diversified it is. There are many different ethnic restaurants and such around. But when I got to studying the exhibits in the historical center I remembered that many people throughout Europe and Russia immigrated to work in the mills.

After the historic center we had enough time to also visit the Butler Institute of American Art. It was a first-class place and totally dedicated to American artists. Homer Winslow was one of the most celebrated ones there.  Of course no photos in the museum so no pictures to show of that.

Youngstown2The temperatures continue to be in the 30s today but they say it will be in the 50s tomorrow. I certainly hope so as we plan to visit the Cleveland Zoo and particularly the rainforest area. It is supposed to be world-class.  More on that tomorrow.

Youngstown

Youngstown3As noted in yesterday’s post we spent the day at Youngstown. It was everything I expected it to be. The Youngstown Historical Center was of course all about steel. I took about forty pictures of the exhibits and will give you a few of them here.  I didn’t realize that there were actually seven mills running here during their heydays in the 1960’s. They started shutting down after the Japanese started flooding the market with sub-cost steels in the early 1980s and Ronald Reagan didn’t do anything to stop them. As a result they disappeared very quickly along with thousands of good paying middle class jobs.

There is little there now of any of the big buildings. About all that is left is the soot they produced. Youngstown is a dirty town similar to Pittsburgh but there are signs of life with new business. But never enough to keep the blighted neighborhoods in the background.

Youngstown1When we are in areas like this we try to visit the local food establishments. I got on Yelp and found a few good ones but of the three I had chosen all were closed. One appeared to be open on weekends only. We finally did find a really nice italian delicatessen.  The help there was very patient we my wife and her picky diet.

There is another thing that surprised me about the Cleveland area and that is just how diversified it is. There are many different ethnic restaurants and such around. But when I got to studying the exhibits in the historical center I remembered that many people throughout Europe and Russia immigrated to work in the mills.

After the historic center we had enough time to also visit the Butler Institute of American Art. It was a first-class place and totally dedicated to American artists. Homer Winslow was one of the most celebrated ones there.  Of course no photos in the museum so no pictures to show of that.

Youngstown2The temperatures continue to be in the 30s today but they say it will be in the 50s tomorrow. I certainly hope so as we plan to visit the Cleveland Zoo and particularly the rainforest area. It is supposed to be world-class.  More on that tomorrow.

On The Road, Cleveland — Day 1

Yes, we decided to visit the Cleveland Ohio area for our April vacation this year.  As expected we spent most of the day in the car. I don’t know why even after 27 years this Friday of being married I haven’t learned to lie about the time I want to leave.  I told Yvonne we need to be on the road at 9:00am so of course as usually it was about 9:30am before we left.  Why didn’t I say 8:30?

We took almost all interstate roads to get here to Macedonia Ohio. After seven hours on the road the most significant thing I can say  about our trip is that almost all the roads we took were in serious need of repair; there were bumps and potholes everywhere. I heard we are about number 18 in the world and rapidly dropping in maintaining our infrastructure and I can believe that after today. If we don’t spend some taxes on them soon they will be gravel roads again like they were 100+ years ago.

Tomorrow we will be visiting a historical center in Youngstown Ohio.  For those kids out there Youngstown was famous for its steel mills in the 1960s. About the only thing still there are the skeletons and history places.  I have never visited this area of Ohio before so I didn’t see it in its glory but I do remember hearing about the Cuyhoga River catching on fire in the last 60s.  That proved to be the turning point for our finally seriously attacking air and water pollution in this country. We will be going over that river tomorrow. I’m sure it will looking nothing like what it did back then.  I wonder what similar event will finally trigger our seriousness toward global warming?

I can’t believe the difference between today and a year ago when we were on the road. Last year it was in the 70s and 80s and farmers were out in groves plowing and disking.  Today in never got out of the 30s.

We will spend a couple of days around the outskirts of the city and then move into our fancy hotel in the downtown area for our anniversary weekend. I hear the Cleveland Zoo has a rather elaborate rainforest area. We are hoping to see that maybe on Thursday.   More on that in tomorrow’s post.