Saturday, July 19, 2008

Old Springfield Films

The Springfield Journal-Register ran a piece on July 13 describing early films of Springfield, 1935-50, taken by Mr. Tom Hamilton, Sr.

They show the digging of Lake Springfield, early swimmers there and at the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Pool, the arrival of a steam train bearing President Franklin D. Roosevelt, and many other scenes. Fun to see for the places and costumes.

Mr. Hamilton's son, Tom Hamilton, Jr., had the films transferred to VHS and later to DVD, and now they are available in a YouTube style window, on the SJR site. Here's the link to the story and film.

The picture above is for Suzie Boyd, who laments the absence of the SouthTown theatre from the CinemaTour listing. The marquee is now an official Springfield Historic Site, and the above link gives the theatre's history.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Reunion Reservations 4

50th Reunion Reservations (7/12/08)
  • Adams, Charlie
  • Ankeny, Jo (Lindamood)
  • Arenz, Don and Sydney
  • Bailey, Janet (Kerner)
  • Baldwin, Carolyn (Quinlan)
  • Barnosky, Bob and Jo
  • Beardsley, Janet and David Johnson
  • Blazis, John and Martie
  • Bluhm, Ray and Tena
  • Britz, Ruth and Tom Waymire
  • Bruce, Bill and Diep
  • Bruce, Bonnie (Baker)
  • Brosch, Tom and Beverly
  • Brownback, John and Connie
  • Burge, Lynda and Carrell Moss
  • Carter, Bob and Sarah
  • Casper, Peter and Tavie
  • Crouch, Carole (Ball)
  • de St. Jean, Sandra (Taylor)
  • Dunn, John and Sandy
  • Ebers, Joe and Shery
  • Eickhoff, Don and Marge
  • Ervin, Susan
  • Flamm, Pat and Dave Crowner
  • Fleischli, George
  • Frederick, Janet
  • Green, Shirley and Frank Canavit
  • Gregg, Barb and Jim Slack
  • Gurgens, Diane and Al Urbanckas
  • Haake, Warren and Gwen
  • Harmon, Chuck and Mary Ann
  • Heineke, Leslie and Bob Sandlin
  • Hill, Joe and Carrie
  • Hockenyos, Kris (Tipps)
  • Holman, Andy and Vera
  • Houghton, Mary and Charles Elberson
  • Hyndman, Harry and Kathleen
  • Ice, Bill and Renate
  • Jabusch, Larry and Mary
  • Klekamp, Betty (England)
  • Krueger, Liz (James)
  • Kuntzman, Herman
  • Kwedar, Steve and Becky
  • Lance, Ruth and Sam Gore
  • Lee, Suzanne (Boyd)
  • Leonard, Lee and Vicki Moody
  • Linxwiler, John and Anne
  • Manuele, Joe and Nancy Henrichs
  • Mason, DeeDee and Clay Wood
  • Matlack, Jack and Marilyn
  • McCoy, Judy (Freeman)
  • McGaw, Judy and Tom Lewis
  • Means, Joyce (Pardue)
  • Meyerstein, Arnold and Jeri
  • Morrison, Jack and Caroline
  • Murphy, Sandra (McCool)
  • Owens, Bob and Carolyn
  • Pearson, Mary and Hal Perkins
  • Peterson, Libbie and Charlie Britton
  • Prater, Lynn (Chandler)
  • Seppi, Vic and Joann
  • Shewmaker, Bob and Pam
  • Spengler, Phil and Polly
  • Stapleton, John and Nancy
  • Stein, Pat and Richard McPheters
  • Stephens, Allan
  • Stuckey, John and Linda
  • Taylor, Jim and Carol (Schroeder)
  • Tietz, Sharon and Jack Paine
  • Tinsley, Elizabeth and Steve Alexander
  • Tobin, Ann and Richard Hart
  • Vicars, Judy (Van Hagen)
  • Vespa, Chuck
  • Welch, CE and Joleen
  • Wicks, Bob and Glenda
  • Wike, Scott and Linda
  • Willi, Darlene (Guerin)
  • Wilson, Ron and Rita
  • Yarbrough, John

Wednesday, July 09, 2008


I'll admit, I get nostalgic about 50s movies and the place where I saw many, the Esquire Theatre on South MacArthur. On a gray winter day, I could spend a quarter and get four hours of entertainment, plus popcorn and a jaw-breaker. Who needs a video game?

A devoted movie fan has created CinemaTour, which aims to chart "the locations and histories of cinemas throughout the world." The database has a huge number of sites and photos. Go to Illinois, scroll down a bit, and you find 36 movie houses listed for Springfield. Most are now demolished. Did you know there was once an Empress Airdome (1917-18)?

Friday, July 04, 2008

Independence Day

Photo by 66ers

Baseball, hot dogs, and the Fourth of July.
Happy Independence Day, everyone.
Here's a video that celebrates the anthem
That has given us such a long run!

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Armory to Go?

Photo by Seth Gaines

December, 1957. Cheerleaders in red and black. SHS band blaring away. Shelby Harbison of WTAX, calling play-by-play: "Willis flicks the ball to Proctor, Proctor to Hails in the corner. He sets, shoots....swish!" Pandemonium in the upper-floor seats. Cheerleaders whip the crowd into a roaring chant: S-U-C-C-E-S-S....

I bet we all have fond memories of the Illinois State Armory, on Second between Monroe and Adams. Not just high school basketball, but the Shrine Circus and Chicago Symphony graced the building. It stood next to the state capitol and gave its spectators a high up, birds-eye view of events far below.

Well, hang on to those thoughts, because the SJR has a story today suggesting that the Armory may soon face the wrecking ball. Preservationists want to save the building, but others say it's falling apart and obsolete. If they tear down that lovely Art Moderne edifice, you can bet that an ugly high-rise will soon take its place. Thoughts/memories? Please comment.