Sunday, February 26, 2012

Ghost Fails

I'm afraid, dear reader, that I've utterly failed you.  That "glass and plow" building I just recently talked about?  Yeah, well, I got it wrong.  And now I'm compounding the error by giving you shot in which you can't read it anyway (but it's better than the blurry, poorly-lit shot of the whole sign I was originally going to use).  The horror.

But it turns out that it wasn't "rch."  It was "rgh," as in, "Pittsburgh" and as in "Pittsburgh Plate Glass Co."  And the building with that name has a story to tell (and its own Facebook page).  It's also called the "Northern Implement Company," thus explaining why it says "plow" on the side.  I'm guessing PPG, short for Pittsburgh Plate Glass, is the successor company, which seems to be going strong.  If so, it seems they no longer have local operations.  The rather generically-named implement company is hard to investigate, as its main presence on the internet is pointers to this building.

The Historical Society has a bunch of interesting images.  Here's the leaded glass department at the very beginning of the 20th Century.  It doesn't look that much different a decade later.  Finally, here's the outside of the building, and the cobblestone street, another decade after that, or another, or in the 1970s.

In news of other failures, I also can't believe that I told you the story of Wilbur Foshay without checking on what's available from the Historical Society.  Not surprisingly, there are tons of pictures featuring this Twin Cities landmark.  Go look at all of them.  I'll just highlight a few: 1926 before there was a tower, excavation for the tower in 1927, the Foshay football team in 1928 with the Tower on their uniforms, the skyline during construction, brand-spanking new tower the same year, the dedication ceremony in 1929 featuring "scantily" clad women, and the auction of the building in 1930.  And, of course, things would not be complete with out shots of Wilbur himself before the trouble, at the time of arraignment, at trial, and in Leavenworth prison working on a pardon while wearing a shirt, tie and cuff links.

Finally, in failures past, perhaps you remember the "Witt's" saga.  It turns out that if I had walked through the alley behind it, I might have been able to make out this very dilapitated sign and known what I was looking at:

No comments:

Post a Comment