Children in front a cherry red Chevy Bel-Air after an Easter egg hunt in Naperville, Illinois, 1961.
Sometimes I know that a post I'm putting together is destined to get 20 views if I'm lucky. But I have to follow my muse wherever she may lead me, and today she leads me to TV newsrooms across the country. I can't say exactly why, but I find these old advertisements for network TV news programs to be just so... quaint? Charming? I don't quite know how to put it. I just love how much these ads convey what it must have been like to watch the news back in the day -- not slick in the least. Just a bunch of square white men (and sometimes white women) reading the day's events. And now the news of the 1950s, '60s, and '70s...
Ask anyone who was of driving age in the United States during the 1970s, and they likely remember well the two major oil shortage crises the country faced. The first oil shortage crisis, which lasted from October 1973 until March 1974, was set off when the Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries, or the OAPEC (consisting of the Arab members of OPEC, plus Egypt, Syria and Tunisia), proclaimed an oil embargo. This was reportedly in response to the U.S. supplying Israel with arms following the 1973 Yom Kippur War. On October 16, 1973, OPEC announced a decision to raise the posted price of oil by 70%, to $5.11 a barrel. In the United States, the retail price of a gallon of gasoline rose from a national average of 38.5 cents in May 1973 to 55.1 cents in June 1974. President Richar
As the GOP prepares to party in Tampa and nominate Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan to take on Barack Obama this November, I thought I'd take a look at Republican National Conventions gone by. Here's a selection of vintage photographs from GOP pow-wows starting with 1908 and ending with 1976. 1908 -- Chicago (William Howard Taft) 1912 -- Chicago (William Howard Taft) 1916 - Chicago (Charles Evans Hughes) 1920 -- Chicago (Warren G. Harding) 1936 -- Cleveland (Alf Landon) 1940 -- Philadelphia (Wendell Willkie) 1944 -- Chicago (Thomas E. Dewey) 1948 -- Philadelphia (Thomas E. Dewey) 1952 -- Chicago (Dwight D. Eisenhower) 1956 -- San Francisco (Dwight D. Eisenhower) 1960 -- Chicago (Richard M. Nixon) 1964 -- San Francisco (Barry Goldwater) 1968 -- Miami Beach 1...
It's been just over a year since the last installment of cool color photographs from the Library of Congress's Flickr page, so let's get a gander at some more! These photos were all taken between 1939 and 1944 by the United States Farm Security Administration (FSA) and later the Office of War Information (OWI). Just click on a photo to see a larger version. (Part 1 can be seen here, Part 2 is here.) Not only is this a cool photo for its historical value, it's just a skillfully executed shot all around. The Boeing B-17 was widely used in bombing raids over Germany in World War II and became known as the "Flying Fortress." (Alfred T. Palmer, photographer) *** I find it interesting that the trucks are much more colorful than the cars. I would've figured all that drab
This piece originally ran in October 2008. I've republished it because, really, this should run annually. But to show I'm not just being lazy, I've added posters from Denmark and Italy below! October 25 marks a momentous day in horror history — the 30th anniversary of the release of John Carpenter's slasher classic Halloween. While it certainly wasn't the first horror film on the block, it is one of the best and most influential. I and many other fans of classic horror consider it to be part of the holy trinity of the genre, alongside Friday the 13th (1980) and A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984). In retrospect, it seems like such a simple concept that it's hard to believe it hadn't been fully explored before. A psychopath is on the loose in the streets of a quiet, suburban town (Haddo
In spite of all our technological advancements and so-called human ingenuity, we are ever at Mother Nature's mercy. 2011's deadly tornado in Joplin, Missouri -- just one of many to strike the American Midwest that weekend -- is a stark reminder of that fact. In total, more than 1,000 tornadoes touched down in the U.S. in April 2011 -- the most active month on record. But while the U.S. is home to the most tornadoes on a yearly basis, advances in research and early detection have helped reduce the number of fatalities from twisters. As a result, the list of the 20 deadliest tornadoes (or tornado outbreaks) ever contains just five from the United States. Here are the full top ten. Some of these totals are estimates of course, owing to time or lack of properly published information. #1: D
November 2009 seems like ancient history to me, but that's when I published part one of my look at some of the most interesting color photos from the 1930s and 1940s (as presented on Flickr by the Library of Congress). I love looking at pictures like these because even with the most mundane subjects, seeing them in color brings them to life in a way we never could before (unless you were there I guess). These photos were all taken between 1939 and 1944 by the United States Farm Security Administration (FSA) and later the Office of War Information (OWI). Just click on a photo to see a larger version. (Part 1 can be seen here.) Even in the '40s no road sign was safe from the scourge of graffiti. Although as one astute person pointed out, the markings on that railroad sign c
The postcard has become a lost art; a quaint relic of the past. Oh sure, you can still find quantities of them in those spinning metal racks in any airport gift shop. But who really uses them for their intended purpose anymore? Quick – how much postage does it take to send a postcard in the US? Exactly. I came across these postcards at an antiques show a few years ago. Sure, I like to look at all the nice antique furniture and jewelry. And the old books and china are nice. But postcards are where you can really get a glimpse into the past. And since they’re not old letters, you don’t feel like you’re prying. Of course, I like old postcards for more esoteric reasons. I love looking at the cars, the architecture, the outfits and even the old fonts and signs. So many people use the word