• Old Photos: Rows And Rows Of Well-Fed Democrats…

    This tagline struck me as being weirdly funny, but I don’t write them, I just copy them. Without further ado – some photos from the William M.Boyle Jr. testimonial dinner conducted in Kansas City in October of 1949. William M.Boyle Jr. was the Chairman of the DNC at that time.

    Banquet of the Century. The home folks of Kansas City were proud of Bill Boyle—none more vociferously than shrewd, elephantine Roy Roberts, Republican president of the Kansas City Star— and they had vowed to give him the banquet of the century. By the time the President entered Kansas City’s vast civic auditorium that night, they had come comfortably close to success.Three thousand men & women in evening dress were sitting at tables on the great floor (at $15 a plate). Among them were virtually all the ranking officers of the Administration and all shades of local politicos, including Democratic Boss Charlie Binaggio, who had just been subpoenaed by a federal grand jury to tell what he knew about the revival of racketeering in Kansas City. Six thousand non-diners watched and applauded from the flag-bedecked balconies. An army of harried waiters served 3,000 tenderloin steaks without allowing more than minor peripheral cooling to set in—no mean achievement since all had come from the kitchen of the Muehlebach Hotel, three full blocks away.

    Rows and rows of well-fed Democrats attending William M. Boyle Jr. testimonial dinner, listening to the speeches.

    Rows and rows of well-fed Democrats attending William M. Boyle Jr. testimonial dinner, listening to the speeches. © Time Inc.George Skadding

    Posting of banners and signs during testimonial dinner for Bill Boyle

    Posting of banners and signs during testimonal dinner for Bill Boyle.© Time Inc.George Skadding

    Cold turkey with all the trimmings, embellishing a big buffet lunch given during Bill Boyles Day celebration.

    Cold turkey with all the trimmings, embellishing a big buffet lunch given during Bill Boyle's Day celebration.© Time Inc.George Skadding

    Steaks consumed during the testimonal dinner for Bill Boyle, requiring 600 attendants to serve dinner.

    Steaks consumed during the testimonal dinner for Bill Boyle, requiring 600 attendants to serve dinner.© Time Inc.George Skadding

    Family and friends attenting the William M. Boyle Jr. testimonial dinner.

    Family and friends attenting the William M. Boyle Jr. testimonial dinner.© Time Inc.George Skadding

    James Pendergast (CL) autographing a menu while attending the William M. Boyle Jr. testimonial dinner.

    James Pendergast (CL) autographing a menu while attending the William M. Boyle Jr. testimonial dinner.© Time Inc.George Skadding

    Charles Binaggio sitting with his wife, while attending the William M. Boyle Jr. testimonial dinner.

    Charles Binaggio sitting with his wife, while attending the William M. Boyle Jr. testimonial dinner.© Time Inc.George Skadding

    Presidential aide Clark Clifford and Major General Harry H. Vaughan, talking with Roy A. Roberts while attenting the William M. Boyle Jr. testimonial dinner.

    Presidential aide Clark Clifford and Major General Harry H. Vaughan, talking with Roy A. Roberts while attenting the William M. Boyle Jr. testimonial dinner.© Time Inc.George Skadding

    Guest of honor William M. Boyle Jr. (R), looking over a silver service that cost $2,250, given to him at the testimonial dinner by the Democrats.

    Guest of honor William M. Boyle Jr. (R), looking over a silver service that cost $2,250, given to him at the testimonial dinner by the Democrats.© Time Inc.George Skadding

    Time cover: 10-08-1951 of William M. Boyle.

    Time cover: 10-08-1951 of William M. Boyle. © Time Inc.

    Notice the caption: “Democrat Boyle: Bureaucracy Thrived On Bureaucracy“. Also of interest is the price of yearly subscription for the Time – just $6.

    in 1951, (Boyle) was implicated in an influence peddling scandal involving loans made by the Reconstruction Finance Corporation. While a Senate investigation found no evidence of wrongdoing by Boyle, he resigned later that year due to “ill health”

    This article in the Time “Boyle’s Law” talks about his rise to prominence, connections to Truman and Pendergast, and shady machinations for which he was investigated. Some passages in the article read like they were written today.

    Some names you might have recognized: Charles Binaggio, Jim Pendergast, Roy A. Roberts.

  • We Buy Old

  • Old Photos: Kansas Doctor, Frank J. Strick

    Besides the name of the doctor -Frank J. Strick and the year these photos were taken in Kansas -1949, I wasn’t able to find much about this set. One photo shows a road sign with distances to Burlington, Yates Center and Iola, KS so that somewhat outlines the general area in the Southeast Kansas.

    © Time Inc.Thomas Mcavoy.

    Continue reading →

  • How Many Years Can A Building Exist…

    There are multiple predictions about the future of the Earth after the humans are no longer populating it; scientists, writers, movie directors are guessing how long it will be before the Planet erases all the traces of our existence. These predictions are not very hard to make: there are multiple examples of abandoned and lost cities from the ancient times and not so ancient like Chernobyl.

    And then there is former Benchmark Express Furniture store in Olathe, KS – a slowly deteriorating reminder of a failed business I drive by several times a day. The store closed around 4 years ago, when the economy was still doing fine and people still were spending the money they didn’t yet know they didn’t have. Recently one of the large signs fell down and I thought it was a good time to stop by and take a few photos.
    Apparently the letter X is the first to go:

    This sign crashed a month or two ago:

    No one backed up to the loading dock for a long time:

    Concrete is slowly converting back to its original ingredients:

    Customers are long gone…

    …and trespassers are not welcome:

    Grass is growing on the parking lot:

    This sign may last a year or two before it falls:

    Formerly grand facade is sprouting cracks:

    Even the parking lot signs are tired of standing idle:

    Wind is blowing through the banner:

    Soon after the final sale was over with and the store was closed for good, the developers promptly constructed more retail space across the street.

  • Old Photos: May Day

    Another May Day is here and there is still plenty of time to celebrate by walking around with red flags, playing marching music and shouting the approved slogans:

    Long live the unity and close ties of the peoples of the nations of the socialist community! Let strengthen the indissoluble fighting union of the Communist parties of the socialist nations on the basis of the tested principles of Marxism- Leninism and proletarian internationalism!

    Fraternal greeting to the working class of the capitalist nations–a selfless fighter against exploitation and the domination of monopolies and for the rights of all workers, for peace, democracy and socialism!

    Warm greeting to the people of Latin America, carrying on a courageous struggle against the oppression of imperialist monopolies, against reaction and fascism, for free and independent development, for peace, democracy, and social progress!

    ©Time.James Whitmore

    US Communist Henry Winston at May Day celebration. ©Time.Stan Wayman

    Khrushchev and Fidel Castro in Red Square on May 1st.©Time. Stan Wayman

    Red Square, Moscow. May 1st,1961 ©Time.James Whitmore