Our family lived in an apartment over a grocery store in 1949 and the only TV in the entire town was in the store. Naturally, it was an attraction for locals who gathered in the evenings to watch "Milton Burle" or maybe one of the early Western series. Today it would be hard to find a group of people as mesmerized by a TV show as this group. Taken by my father with a Rollei, 1949.
That's a fantastic photo! The old gentleman in the foreground is priceless. Then I was a kid in the early 1950s there was only one TV in an entire square-mile rural area where we lived--at the Butler family house. All the neighborhood kids got off the bus everynight at Butlers and watched TV there until they had to go home for supper. I'll bet Mrs. Butler was thrilled when some othe families got TVs.
Post by Michael Fraley on Jan 12, 2008 22:08:59 GMT -5
That's great, Walker! They look like they want to get back to the show We had TV when I was young, but color TV was the new thing. I used to go to my friend's house to watch Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color. Also I remember going with my father to check the TV tubes at the drugstore. Finding the right socket on the board to plug it in, and twirling the knobs to test it. That was big fun..
Thanks to everyone who has commented. I was there when that was taken by my father (I'm in a second shot taken at a different angle) but don't really recall it. I can still "see" the interior of the store as it was then and the location of the display cases etc. The family who ran the store closed it down in the early 1950's, probably run off by a new owner who also made us leave our apartment in 1952.
Wayne, the old gentleman in the foreground was "Ham" Proctor..... a fixture around town and often seen sitting on the store porch. The other man was Howard Davis who worked for my grandfather and father for some years at the mill. Two of the boys - one next to Ham and the last boy in that row - were Preacher's sons, while Eddie Willard, the other boy in that row, lived directly across the street. I can't put a name to the last boy on the left in the back.
Dan, our first TV was secondhand, given to us by an aunt & uncle who bought a new TV with a larger screen. Ours had either a 9 or 12 inch screen..... a Philco console model that was a beautiful piece of furniture.
Michael, I didn't own a color TV until the late 1970's. It was partly because we were overseas a lot and partly because I wasn't convinced they were as reliable as the B&W models. I did use the tube testers in various drug stores and places like Sears that also had them.
kid in back with the cap, and the one right in front of him...their expressions are priceless! What a neat capture of Americana...certainly brings back memories and makes me smile.
I remember Dad bringing home our first TV...or, more precisely, having it delivered. I was pretty small, so it must have been very early 50s. It was a Muntz....huge cabinet, a piece of furniture, really...and a tiny little B&W screen.
Didn't get a color TV until after I was married in 1970.
This is a wonderful picture. A moment in social history captured for ever. Your Dad was a photographer after my own heart. Pictures like this will live and bring back the way we used to live for us and future generations long after all the wonderful landscapes, great though those are as pictures, are forgotten.
I've often advocated that we should take more pictures of the familiar things and people around us, ordinary people at work or relaxing, our familiar town, the shops and and the people in the street, the transport they use and so on. Not posed pictures, just pictures of people in everyday scenes as they are now, as they happen.
I say we should, but of course we don't, and I'm as guilty as anyone. Why don't we take these pictures? Because they're not 'art'. We don't see them, they're not dramatic, they're too familiar, too ordinary, too commonplace. We can always take them tomorrow if we want to, or the next day, or the day after ...
But of course we can't. Pictures like this are gone for ever the instant after they happen.
"The moving finger writes and, having writ, moves on. Nor all thy piety nor wit can call it back to cancel half a line".
Only too true, but one photograph can bring back a fleeting instant in a way that a thousand lines of words by historians can never do. An ephemeral moment of time, captured and rendered timeless.
You have a priceless heritage in your Dad's pictures. We all owe him a debt of gratitude for capturing the past like this. Thanks for letting us share some of them.
Walker, this shot is so evocative of the late 40's / early 50's it's like stepping back in time. Those little grocery/general stores are pretty much gone for good. They were wonderful. The shot itself could easily have been used in LIFE magazine. Bless your dad for taking this one!
In the beginning, there was nothing, which exploded -- Terry Pratchett genewilburn.com
I can't add to what everyone else has said, particularly PeterW, only thanks for sharing some of your treasure trove of photos your dad took. You must be very proud of his eye for a photo and so you should be.