Views from SU’s Bird Library

I was in a workshop on March 27, 2015 on the 6th floor of SU’s Bird Library, and took photos from all of the windows I could find.  Here they are:

A view from the room we were in for class:


A view from the room where we ate lunch:


And a view from the quiet study room with the Plastics exhibition:


Tales From the Crypt. . .

This isn’t really about a crypt, but I like the title, so I’m sticking with it.

OHA had its annual Ghostwalk at Oakwood Cemetery, and this year included a trip into the Oakwood Cemetery Chapel, as a surprise to our guests!  Everyone always asks “can we go inside the chapel?”  And this year they did.  Well, I did, too, before the Ghostwalk started, and without any lights on – in complete darkness in the vault in the back, I snapped flash photos –  not knowing what I was pointing at.  The inside of the chapel wasn’t much better, but at least it had a couple of windows so I didn’t go falling into the holes in the floor.  This chapel was designed by architect J. Lyman Silsbee.

Here is the inside of the chapel, looking from where a priest would stand to the doors leading to the outside:
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Going up the wall toward the ceiling – mind these were taken in darkness, so they are not all lined up beautifully like I like:
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Here’s one side of the chapel:
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And the other side:
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And towards the front of the chapel – don’t mind the nervous actor in the photo:
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And the front of the chapel towards the ceiling. Yo, I need to clean that camera’s lens!
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More details. I love Silsbee. Did you know Frank Lloyd Wright worked for Silsbee?
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This place needs some serious TLC!
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Floor details at the front between the chapel and the vault (keeping in mind I could not see anything while snapping photos!):
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Cool door, I hope there was more of a door than this between the chapel and the vault. Ack!
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Light fixture between chapel and vault:
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And the vault:
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Hallway leading out of the vault – to the light of day!
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And now I know what the inside looks like – and so do you. Here’s a stone on the outside of the building:
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I love Silsbee’s details:
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I’ll leave you with the beautiful garden planted in front of the chapel:
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Ad Art on Buildings

Over the past year, I have been taking photos of what I call Ad Art on buildings. You’ve seen it all over the place, but maybe haven’t thought much about it. Well, we’re going to make a poster of some of the more prominent ad art, old and new.  There are so many cool ones, such as this one from the old Addis store:

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These remnants of painted ladies are beneath the ad, near street level:

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Higher up and at 3rd story window level, you see this:

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There are faded out ones you can’t make out anymore:
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And there are ones that have been repainted (love them!!)
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But the one that has people buzzing these days (can it be preserved? can it be registered so it can be preserved?) is this one I just took a photo of last night:
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Check out the Ad Art on buildings around where you live. You’ll be surprised at how much there is, old and new!

Lights on the Lake

On Wednesday night we went to Lights on the Lake, sponsored by Wegmans.  Mind you, I paid $8 to get in, so I was going to enjoy myself.  I don’t know how many different light displays there are, but it seemed to go on forever.  Even the advertising was cute:

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Some were simple, but I love the backdrop of the trees and the lake:
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It was snowing, so it was hard to capture some of the lights, but I love this school of fish:
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Wanna watch the submarine races? Ha ha! This one is blurry, but I had to show it. Watching submarine races is code for making out by the lake.
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And that’s just what Santa and Mrs. Claus are doing:
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There were different themes: Santa’s Workshop, The Wizard of Oz, etc. There were birds flying around:
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And trees cast in different colors:
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Many of the light displays “moved” so we started taking video, which I won’t bore you with. There was a part dedicated to nature, which I totally enjoyed (bad photo, but I love the blue light):
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and as you can see, there was a sign to call if you needed assistance.
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Well, some poor, miserable creature decided he/she didn’t like it we were enjoying ourselves because he/she had to pass us even though we were pulled over (wah for him/her) and called the number, and we were eventually “escorted” out of the rest of the park by a park ranger, so I missed photographing some fantastic light displays.

But I did capture the end:
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So much for land of the free to enjoy yourselves to the max. But I did enjoy it as much as I could!

House on Top of Penfield Bldg.

See the house on top of the Penfield Bldg in this photo?


It has been the subject of more conversations than I would care to know. Was it built for tax purposes? Was it built to house the elevator? Was it. . .? Well, a patron of OHA came in on Saturday and told me that he met with a grandson of H.A. Moyer, who built the Penfield building to house the H.A. Moyer Carriage factory. H.A. Moyer’s son-in-law, famous Ward Wellington Ward, designed this building for him.

The patron just happened to ask me if I knew why the house was on top of this building. I told him my Dad worked there when it was Porter-Cable and he told me the elevator was housed in it. He proceeded to tell me the top of this building was used as a watch tower for the salt vats. When the weather was about to turn, the watchman would sound an alarm and the salt workers would cover the salt evaporation vats.  He proceeded to tell me there was quite  a bit of wood available to the watchman from the carriage factory, so they built this house.  The house is three stories tall, but hollow on the inside.  I don’t know if any of this is true (I haven’t verified it), but it sounds like a good explanation to me!

Syracuse City Hall Bells

After reading Dick Case’s article that the bells were going to chime in time for Christmas at Syracuse’s City Hall, I’ve been waiting to hear them. Yesterday, I made a point of going out at noon to capture them on video. You may remember my blog post about church bells on Montgomery Street. So what you’ll hear in the background (and the end of the video it shows St. Paul’s Episcopal Church) are these two churches. Syracuse City Hall is north of the churches and the OHA on Montgomery Street.  The snow that we got last week (45.1″) was melting (thankfully) over the weekend!  Enjoy!

Syracuse City Hall’s bells

Boy’s Club in Syracuse

While busy taking some photos of something else a couple of weeks ago, I stopped the car quick as I saw this old building encased on the side and top with newer construction:



Hmm, the S&W Building, never heard of it.  So of course, I had to look it up.  It ended up being the old Boy’s Club in Syracuse from 1923 to 1983, when it became an office building. Stearns & Wheeler bought and renamed the building to the S&W Building in 2001.

Here’s a photo of the building under construction in 1923:
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Photo courtesy of the Onondaga Historical Association

Another old photo:
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Photo courtesy of the Onondaga Historical Association

This makes me wonder what happened to the Boy’s Club.  I mean, if it was meant to keep boys off the streets and busy back then, I would think it would be a very good thing to have now.  Probably a money thing.

Wooden Brine Pipes

A couple of weeks ago, while watching trains we discovered this mound was a brine reservoir at Solvay.

Over the weekend we discovered a couple of old wooden pipes along the side of the road. After doing a quick old map search, we found that a brine pipeline ran from Tully to the brine reservoir in Solvay along the road where we discovered these. Could these have been part of the brine pipeline?





The salt brine pipes we saw at the Camillus Erie Canal Park were made out of black tupelo.


Whatever the pipes we found were used for, they certainly are in great shape!

New York State Fair

We went to the New York State Fair on Sep 5th, and had a great time, for the most part!  The first thing I had to do was to see the sand sculpture in the Center of Progress Building:


The Beatles! This was amazing!




Next, we had to go to the Women’s Building to see the organ from Syracuse’s Keith’s Theatre, which was torn down and the organ was saved. Somebody was playing it, so we sat for a while and listened to him!


All of the pipes are hidden, unfortunately! I would love to see them!

Then we went to the Horticulture Building, which was a HUGE disappointment. I haven’t been to the fair in years, and the Hort building used to be all about veggies, fruits, flowers, honey and maple syrup. Now there is way too much commercialism.

Then we went to the Railroad museum where we saw several old cars, engines and a caboose:



Old Amtrak engine with a panograph! Cool!


James Strate left this car here in Syracuse!






We then went to the Dairy Building to see the butter sculpture:


Then we walked all of the way to the other end of the fairgrounds to see the tractor pull:

Lotsa smoke, cough cough!

And then to see the James Strate train used today – I like the older car better!


Side of the semi truck cab:

Then we went to the midway:

Got something to eat at P-Z-O’s:
P-Z-O's - now only available at the State Fair!

Saw a horse show in the Colliseum which was boring – it was just a bunch of people posting. Then we saw some baby pigs – don’t you love their little black rumps?

Saw many other things but didn’t take pics of everything. There’s so much to see. I can’t wait ’til next year – where I may have to go twice!

First Week in August

I’ve never really been a big fan of August.  Too many family members have died in August. And the minute it hits, my eyes start itching, the air feels yucky, and the worst part is, I didn’t know how cold it was to swim in the evening in August.   I thought September would be the month I wouldn’t be able to swim anymore, who knew August was it?  Unless it really warms up.  So now I have to find another form of exercise.  But I love swimming so much – wah!  And swimming in the pool at the Y is just *not* going to be the same.  Which reminds me, I need to go to Dicks and get a swim cap and goggles so the chlorine doesn’t kill my eyes and hair.

Anyway, we went up to Sylvan Beach for the car show again, and it is getting boring because we’re seeing the same cars every week, so we’ll give it a rest this week, unless Oneida Lake is still very warm and I need to go swimming there.

This is a sweet Ford Fairlane that we haven’t seen before.

Don’t you love the simplicity and largeness of the interior, and that bench seat, good for smooching at the drive-in.


Love the T-Bird insignia on the sweet, light blue T-Bird I showed you last week.

Afterwards, we went looking for the old bathhouse that was converted into something that we had to figure out, and we finally found it!

The bathhouse was cut in two and made into the Laff House. So of course we had to take the ride, and laughed our butts off because it was so hokey. But as a kid, I’m sure it’s scary as all get out. Or not.

I don’t care, I love the amusement park:
It reminds me of Suburban Park in Manlius, where my Mom used to take us every summer until it was closed.

We saw the tugboat Urger which I guess is an educational tugboat.


I wonder what those horns sound like. Nobody was around to “educate” us! But I guess it used to be a steam-powered tug in it’s day.

The tug was sitting in the canal:

Saw a big, puffy cloud:

And blazing, hot, sunset:

Saturday evening we tried to go swimming and froze our buns off – well not froze, but I was shivering even though I was moving. So Sunday we went to the Polish Festival, got sauerkraut and potato pierogies (yummy!), and ate them at the Inner Harbor,


where we saw a dredge:

And behind where we sat to eat are these things in the cement:
An apple,  LaFayette, where I grew up, is known as apple country

The Weighlock Building in downtown Syracuse.

Canal Boat

Salt Evaporation Vats; Syracuse was known as “The Salt City.”

One of the few buildings for boat repair still stands here:

I took a much needed nap on my new sleeping bag (nice and comfy) and when I woke up, the sky looked like this:

And this week, I have to get the camera batteries all charged up, cuz we’re going someplace I’ve never been to before!! I’m so excited!

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