The Lake Cliff Amusement Park was established in 1906, and immediately became a popular destination for Dallas-area residents. The park featured an eighty foot tall, electrically powered Circular Swing (manufactured by the Traver Circle Swing Company of NYC), a Skating Rink, Carousel, Bathing Pavilion, restaurant, roller coaster, and the ride shown here: “Shoot the Chutes”. A booklet promoting the park was published at the time of its opening, and it described the ride this way:
In the swift, smooth, gliding descent and the final sensational plunge of the boats into the water, while spray dashes high and the heart is thrilled with the ecstasy of rapid motion, is a something that appeals to the modern love of novelty and exhilaration. That’s the chief reason why the Shoot-the-Chutes is a perpetual favorite.
With spray flying to either side- but not on the passengers, the gondola takes the water as easily and naturally as a sea-gull swoops down on the breast of Old Ocean and settles in its God-given element.
It is noticeable that nearly all who try the Shoot-the-Chutes are not satisfied till they have taken a second ride at least, often several more. A common remark, especially of girls who take the ride, is- ‘I’m going down again and keep my eyes open this time.’
Here’s an interesting postcard that advertises the theatrical production of “Hawthorne of the U.S.A.” Starring Douglas Fairbanks (who, interestingly, didn’t repeat the role in the 1919 film version), the play appears to have had a lengthy run at Brooklyn’s Montauk Theatre as well as at many other venues.
Can someone explain this one to me? I’m afraid I’m at a loss. The postcard, mailed in 1919, has plenty of writing on both the front and back, and given time I could probably decipher it. Just hearing about Murdo, South Dakota makes me smile, as our road trips from Texas to the Black Hills always includes catching I-90 at Murdo. (after the mandatory tour of the Pioneer Auto Museum)
Most folks down Texas way probably know about “Crazy Water”, but for the remainder of the Union I’ll share a little back-story. In the late 19th century the natural mineral springs in and around Mineral Wells, Texas began to acquire a reputation for having healthful properties. (as they did in countless other locations across the country, I might add) One well in particular, today referred to as the “Crazy Well”, was originally dug by “Uncle” Billy Wiggins in 1881. It seems that a local woman, the town lunatic, hung around this well daily asking people to fetch her a drink. Well, apparently the regular doses of the miraculous water helped her condition immensely, and soon folks from all over, crazy and otherwise, flocked to Mineral Wells to fix what ailed them. And they still do: Crazy Water
The oldest surviving building on the summit of Mount Washington, Tip-Top House was a hotel constructed to compete with the nearby Summit House. It opened in 1853 and today survives as a state historic site.
Here’s a view of a boat house on Echo Lake in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. The early undivided back postcard features an image copyrighted by Detroit Photographic Co. in 1901.
So what was “Bevo” you ask? Bevo (pronounced BEE-vo) was a non-alcoholic malt beverage that Anheuser-Busch introduced in 1916, a soft drink that helped quench the public’s thirst for beer during prohibition. Waning sales prompted Anheuser-Busch to discontinue Bevo in 1929.
“Curb Brokers” along Broad Street, New York City.
This real photo postcard shows a man at the helm of a horse and buggy. Unmailed, we can date this postcard by examining the AZO markings on the back, as the upward-pointing triangles at each corner of the stamp box reveal that it dates from between 1904 and 1918.
This embossed Thanksgiving postcard doesn’t indicate the publisher, and probably dates from around 1910.