Images & Observations

Posts tagged “history

Halls Of Academia

Nikon D7000 18-200mm @ 18mm ISO 800 3-bkts f/11 Lr4, HEP1, TpzSim; PsCS5

The view looking south through Lebus Court at Pomona, College, Claremont, California.  Lebus Court was designed by Myron Hunt and erected in 1915 at the rear of Mabel Shaw Bridges Hall of Music (“Little Bridges”).  Lebus Court, along with Rembrandt Hall houses the  Department of Art & Art History at the college.  The  building directly south is Harwood Hall, the first residential hall constructed on the campus in 1921.

In relative terms, the buildings and campus of Pomona College offer some of the most mature architecture and landscaping to be found in the Southern California area since they have been standing roughly 100 years.  This test of time is quite an achievement in a locale that has historically been ever evolving, ever changing during the past century and a half.  I really like the feeling I get from the stonework and the building structure and texture in this image, from the lush, fully mature greenery.  Pomona is a great campus for walking and enjoying green things, with many mature and majestic trees.  I have never been comfortable or inspired in schools and classrooms, never fully engaged in classroom learning, but being on the campus of Pomona College I get a great feeling of contentment and permanence.  This rendering makes me feel good.

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Roaring 20’s Excursion

Nikon D7000 10-24mm @ 24mm ISO 1600 3-bkts f/8 Lr3; HEP1

A typical baggage cart loaded with hand luggage and mail bags is on display at the San Bernardino Railroad & History Museum.  The era represented could be the Roaring 20’s, the advertising card is for a rail excursion in 1923 from Venice, California to the 13th National Orange show in San Bernardino.  The excursion was operated by the Pacific Electric Railway Company, which during its heyday had electric trolleys, popularly termed “red cars” criss crossing the greater Los Angeles area.  The excursion from the beach at Venice inland to San Bernardino would have been roughly 100 miles if travelling by automobile, Pacific Electric offered a special excursion fare on Washington’s Birthday, February 18, 1928 for $3.25, round trip, via their electric trolleys

Pacific Electric’s operations began declining after the second world war, and most of the rail lines were eliminated throughout the 1950’s.  The scandale that arose in the 1960’s was that it was widely thought that oil company and automotive manufacturing interests were responsible for the decision to replace the interurban rail transit system with freeways, cars and buses.

Ironically, local government and transportation authorities began championing interurban rail transit again in the 1980’s and the first Metro Blue Line rail transit (subway) line began operations in 1990 and later the Red, Green and Gold Lines were added, as was the Metrolink heavy rail system linking more distant exurbs.  All of this work completed or still under construction in 2012, at considerable more cost to the taxpayers and environmental impact than would have accrued if the Pacific Electric Railway would never have been abandoned.

Please click on the image to view in high resolution.


Telegrapher’s Perch

Nikon D7000 10-24mm @ 24mm ISO 1600 1/10 f/8 =2EV -2EV Lr3, HEP1

This is a period reproduction of a railroad station from 1910 in the San Bernardino Railroad & History Museum.  In so far as it being a historically accurate representation the museum might want to consider re-designating it as a railroad station circa 1920, as the rotary telephone was not invented until 1919.  I do appreciate some of the details, such as the spittoon, the telegraph key (visible in a high resolution view) to the left of the typewriter, and the telegraph receiver above and to the left of the telegraph key.

Please click on the image to view it in high resolution.


Cold War Relic

Nikon D7000 10-24mm @ 24mm ISO 1600 3-bkts f/10, Lr3, PsCS5

If you know what the phrase “Duck and cover” means, and probably practiced it, you know what this object is.  Living in the Los Angeles area during the Cold War era I also know what an air raid siren sounds like.  The Civil Defense authorities would test all of the sirens at 10:00 A.M. on one Friday a month, and if we were in school we were taught to duck under our school desks, crouch down in and curl our bodies in on themselves, and cover our heads with our hands.  We were curled in to almost a fetal position waiting for our doom from the blast and tremendous heat of an exploding atomic bomb over our heads.

We were fortunate that we never had a bomb explode over us, and are fortunate that humanity has moved past the immediate threat of atomic annihilation, but others have not been as fortunate as us, either those who lived through the German V-1 bombing in Great Britain before our generation, or those who have lived through the “Shock And Awe” bombing in  contemporary Bagdad.  The sound the sirens make is all too real for these people, as is the impact of the devastation created by warring nations.

Please click on the image to view in high resolution.


Ready To Peal Again

Nikon D7000 10-24mm @ 24mm ISO 1600 3-bkts f/8 Lr3, HEP1; PsCS5

Among the artifacts on display at the San Bernardino Railroad & History Museum is this old locomotive bell.  A nice jog of the memory of times past actually lived (by some of us) or as reproduced on the motion picture or television screen.  I can hear that distinct sound of a locomotive bell  pealing as it is rocked back and forth on its cradle in my mind.


Hose #1; An Exercise In Post Processing

Nikon D7000 10-24mm @ 12mm ISO 1600 1/20 +2EV -2EV f/8 Lr3, HEP1, CEP3; PsCS5

We are still at the San Bernardino Railroad & History Museum this week, and as we started last week off with a vintage piece of fire fighting apparatus, this week starts with a view of SAN B’DINO HOSE No. 1, a horse drawn truck for transporting the fire hose to the fire.

As with the majority of my images, the three frames that make up this image were shot hand-held.  The camera raw images were converted to DNG in Lightroom and then processed with Nik Software’s HDR Efrex Pro using a custom preset that I had previously devised.  This composited the three images together and tone mapped the result.  I used a custom preset in HDR Exfex Pro that I had previously devised, and the composite image only required very minimal “tweaking”.  The image was then moved in to Photo Shop and a duplicate background layer was created which then had a Gaussian blur applied.  I then masked out the fire truck, removing the blur from the truck.  A duplicate layer was created and then processed in Nik’s Color Efex Pro 3, the entire image, except the masked out truck, was modified by applying Color Efex Pro’s Midnight-Bright Sepia filter.  There was minor fine tuning along the way, and I spent some time magnifying the image and cleaning up edges of masking that overlapped, or underlapped.

I thoroughly enjoyed post processing this image and I think it has a nice, vintage feel to it, yet retains great clarity and detail on the truck.

Please click on the image to view it in high resolution.


Ultra Economy Class

Nikon D7000 10-24mm @ 18mm ISO 1600 1/15 -2EV +2EV f/13 Lr3, HEP1, CEP3; PsCS5

While those One Percenter’s are getting their shoes shined on the tarmac in front of their private jet they never forget the rest of us, and kindly arrange for alternative transportation for the wage earners.

This is a Hudson Bay Railroad hand car on display at the San Bernardino Railroad & History Museum.


The Original Hook & Ladder Truck

Nikon D7000 10-24mm @ 14mm ISO 1600 3-bkts f/16 Lr3; HEP1

One of the artifacts on display at the San Bernardino Railroad & History Museum, San Bernardino, California is this hook and ladder “truck” that dates back to the 1900’s.  If you look closely you can see the hook protruding from the red ring hanger that is attached to the rear of the truck chasis.

The Los Angeles County Fire Museum also displays an early hook and ladder and had this to say about it on their web site:

The fact that it is hand drawn, and not horse drawn, does not mean that it is older than horse drawn equipment. Small towns that did not require large firefighting equipment did not invest in the expense of having horses. So this vehicle may have served a small town or village, and they elected to stay with hand drawn equipment because they did not need the more capable, more expensive steam fire engines or horse drawn equipment…

It carried ground ladders and a roof ladder. A roof ladder is a ladder that has hooks that are spring loaded on the tip of the ladder that could turn perpendicular to the ladder so that the ladder could lay flat on the peak of the roof. The hooks would grab the ridge and hold the ladder in place so that the firefighters could work off the ladders. This is particularly helpful when there is a steep pitched roof. Especially when it is wet, it can be very hard for a firefighter to keep his footing. So, the roof ladder is used to provide better footing and safety.

It also carried axes and picks, and also the famed “hook”, giving it the name “Hook and Ladder”. The hook was used to pull down damaged buildings or chimneys to stop the spread of fire by creating a fire break. Sometimes, in early chimneys, the fire would get going in them and they could not put it out. So, they would just pull the chimneys down with the hook. The hook and a chain and a rope, and they used a long stick to get the hook up to the height to whatever they needed to grab, whatever piece of the building they needed to grab onto. They would use the chain and the rope hooked to the building, and a bunch of men would grab that to pull the wall down, or pull the chimney down.

Please click on either image to view in full resolution.

Nikon D7000 10-24mm @ 24mm ISO 1600 3-bkts f/13 Lr3; HEP1