by Paula Bosse
Another list! Here are my favorite photographs that I’ve posted over the past year. I’ve looked at and searched for more photos of Dallas in the past year than I have in all the other years of my life combined. Looking at historic images has always fascinated me, but when you’re looking at historic images of your hometown, it’s kind of thrilling (and it can also be depressing to see the things we’ve lost). For photo sources and credits — and to read the posts these photos originally appeared in (which are chock-full of interesting things, I promise!) — click the titles in the list below. (Most of the photos I post are usually much larger when clicked — some are gigantic!) Enjoy!
1. “Waiting For a Streetcar on a Sunny Winter Day in Oak Cliff — 1946.” My favorite photo of the year is the one posted above. It is a cropped image from a larger photo (which I also love) which was included in the post linked above. I’ve stared at this photo for so long that I feel I was there. I love everything about this photo.
2. “Oak Cliff Presbyterian Church, Organized 1890.” I’ve come back to linger over this photo time and time again. It’s perfect.
3. “The DFW Turnpike, Unsullied by Traffic, Billboards, or Urban Sprawl — 1957.” Just a fantastic, dreamy shot. I love the way the highway disappears into the distance. Imagine driving from Dallas to Fort Worth in 1957 on a road where billboards were not allowed and along which there were exactly two restaurants (for travelers who couldn’t make the full 30-minute drive without needing to stop for a meal). This shot, looking west, shows Arlington, right where Six Flags is today. Times change, man.
4. “Henry Stark’s ‘Bird’s Eye View of Dallas’ — 1895/96.” Without question, this is the most popular thing I’ve posted this year. I love this photo. It’s even better zoomed in on. Check out the original post to see this photo broken into four magnified crops — that’s when this photo goes from being merely “interesting” to being “incredibly interesting”!
5. “Swooning Over Love Field — 1940.” Be still, my heart!
6. “Canton Street: Poultry, Pecans, and Future Luxury Lofts.” I LOVE this photo. I had no idea the Farmers Market area ever looked like this. See post for what this same view looks like today.
7. “The Arcadia Theater Sign You’ve Never Seen.” This is especially wonderful to me because it shows Lower Greenville (the area I grew up in) back in the late ’20s/early ’30s — and it’s still recognizable today. This “tree” was a movie marquee that lit up at night, and it must have been quite a sight 85-or-so years ago.
8. “The Oak Cliff Viaduct & The Weird Composite Photo –1912.” My favorite component is the panoramic view of the city, but click the link to see what weird Franken-photo this (along with an incredible shot of the viaduct) got turned into!
9. “The Dallas Morning News Lobby — 1904.” Other than the spittoons, I wish places still looked like this. Read about those special mail boxes at the link.
10. “The Trinity River at the City’s Doorstep.” I was born and raised in Dallas, but I was only vaguely aware that the Trinity River had been “straightened,” which is one of the reasons this is such an amazing image for me (see the original post to see the larger photo this has been cropped from).
11. “A Lost Photo of Director Larry Buchanan, Celebrated ‘Schlockmeister’ — 1955.” One of my “discoveries” that got me all excited when I found it but which only a handful of other people will appreciate. If you know who Larry Buchanan is, you’ll probably smile at this. If you don’t know who he is, you should! Hie yourself over to this post and read why he’s important to the history of Dallas!
12. “Forget the Ferris Wheel, Take a Ride in a Centennial Rickshaw — 1936.” Yeah, seeing a rickshaw at the State Fair midway is kind of weird, but it’s not nearly as weird as this photo feels. I always think of “The Prisoner” when I see this. Bleak. And … odd.
13. “‘Life’ at the State Fair of Texas — 1951.” And speaking of Ferris wheels, this may be my favorite photo ever of the State Fair of Texas.
Runner-Up: ALL of the photos I’ve “zoomed in on” — I love the surprising vignettes hidden in photos. I love them all, but I’m particularly fond of one that shows Ervay & Main (“There are Eight Million Stories in the Naked City… — ca. 1920”). This is one of 14 (!) parts of the photo I zoomed in on, this one showing a woman sitting at a window in the Neiman’s building, watching the hustle and bustle below on Ervay. Click on the link above to see the original photo (and all the “vignettes”). For other photos I’ve “zoomed in on,” see them here.
For all the “Year-End Best of 2014” lists, click here.
Copyright © 2014 Paula Bosse. All Rights Reserved.