Cee’s topic of choice for the Black & White Photo Challenge this week is Store Fronts & Building Signs. Opting to focus on the store front aspect of the challenge, and going through the photo files, I realized that more often than not, when I’ve stopped to take a picture of the exterior of a commercial building it’s usually been either a pub or a restaurant, neither of which technically meets the ‘store‘ criteria. However, I did come across one or two stores that I thought might be of interest the first of which is Tiffany’s in Oak Brook shopping mall.
From the opulent to the soon-to-be defunct; the end of an era. I had to stop at our local Toys R Us store to capture an image before it closes and is eventually torn down. For more than forty years we’ve been buying things for our kids, grandkids, great-grandkids and, alright, maybe even for ourselves at this once great toy store. I’m sad to see it go after all this time.
It might have been the flowers that first caught my eye at this store in Bartlett but even in black and white the building has a pleasing, small town, country look about it.
The store sign below has a little bit of history attached to it although the store itself is in a comparatively new shopping mall in Glenview. The ‘Hangar One’ part of it is a nod to the Glenview Naval Air Station that once occupied this spot from 1923 to 1995.
Going back a little further in history, many of the commercial buildings in Marion have names and dates incorporated in their architecture. I thought this store in the town square translated well into monochrome.
For more on Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge go to Store Front and Building Signs
Every city, town or village has a story to tell and Marion in southern Illinois is no exception. Whenever we visit somewhere that is new to us we like to explore and find out as much as we can about the place, not only about the present but also the past, and the best place to learn about the history of Marion is undoubtedly the Williamson County Historical Society Jail Museum and Library. Every floor in this building is packed with interesting memorabilia and artifacts. The jail itself has a story of its own which can be seen here in Jail Time
The past and present are defined by the mix of buildings in the Town Square vicinity, some of which date back to the early 1900’s. While many of these buildings have been well-maintained, some, like the old offices of the Marion Daily Republican newspaper have fallen into disrepair.
The Marion Cultural and Civic Center has undergone extensive renovations but I was happy to see that they had preserved the old entryway inside the new lobby.
This memorial in the Town Square tells another story about the terrible destruction that Marion suffered during a tornado, one of the largest in Illinois history, that touched down in 1982, killing ten people and causing close to $100 million in damages.
It’s interesting to see the different styles of architecture in this city of some 17,800 inhabitants, from the stark lines of the First Baptist Church to the more ornate exterior of the Carnegie Library and even a touch of whimsy as evidenced by a mural painted on the side wall of a local artist co-op that tells its own story.
For more on The Weekly Photo Challenge at The Daily Post go to Story
Mayslake Hall, part of the Mayslake Peabody Estate in Oak Brook, Illinois, was built in 1919 for coal magnate Francis Stuyvesant Peabody. This Tudor Revival style mansion is open for tours during ongoing restoration work and it’s interesting to see just how it’s coming along. Naturally, I paid particular attention to the doors and there were quite a few that were decorative as well as functional. The woodwork in the library is particularly impressive.
The Forest Preserve District of DuPage County now owns the estate and several of the rooms are used for programs, art exhibitions and wedding receptions.
Apparently the Peabody family were very health conscious and had a sleeping porch built that allowed for plenty of fresh air. There was more than a touch of irony when Francis Peabody died of a heart attack less than a year after they moved into the house.
Strangely enough, the plainest door in the building has the most interesting history attached to it. Because of the unrest between coal miners, the unions and the coal mine owners, it is thought that Peabody may have had this hidden door installed in his private study as a means of escape in case of trouble. It opens onto a flight of steps that lead down to the first floor and out of the house. There were even rumors that an underground tunnel existed, although so far they have been unable to find it. It would seem that Peabody had the right idea, however, as it was in 1922, not long after the mansion was completed, that the Herrin Massacre, a bloody fight between striking miners and non-union workers, occurred in downstate Illinois.
For more on Norm’s Thursday Doors go to https://miscellaneousmusingsofamiddleagedmind.wordpress.com/2017/11/09/thursday-doors-november-9-2017/
The Mayslake Peabody Estate in Oak Brook provided some excellent opportunities for photographing doors, both inside and out. In fact I don’t think I’ve ever seen so many different styles in one building before. Mayslake Hall is in the process of being restored and up until now our only view of its doors has been from the outside. The architecture is called Tudor Revival and if you look carefully you will see a representation of the Tudor Rose in a couple of these images.
Mayslake was built for Francis Stuyvesant Peabody in 1919 but he only got to live here for little more than a year when he died of a heart attack while out riding. His family didn’t want to remain at the residence and eventually sold it to the Franciscan Province of the Sacred Heart who used the mansion as a retreat house. The estate now belongs to the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County.
Stay tuned for more on the inside doors of Mayslake in next week’s Thursday Doors.
For more on Norm’s Thursday Doors go to Thursday Doors – November 2, 2017
The first thing I thought of when we arrived in Marion, Illinois, was that I had to find doors. Not just any doors but ones that might make a good picture, so off we went to Tower Square Plaza to see what we could come up with. The Marion Cultural and Civic Center on Market Street looked like a good place to start. After a fire destroyed the former Civic Center in 1997, a new facility was erected in 2004, incorporating parts of the old building that had survived the fire. The ornate doorway was rather difficult to capture since it is so closely enclosed by the entryway but I gave it my best shot.
The red doors of the First United Methodist Church on Main Street really caught my eye.
The Marion Carnegie Library, made possible in part by an $18,000 grant from the Andrew Carnegie Foundation, was opened to the public in 1916. At that time it had 1,162 books and 680 borrowers.
Not nearly as grand are the green doors that can be found on the side of the old Post and Press building, built in 1907, that used to house The Marion Daily Republican newspaper.
After spending the morning looking around the downtown area in Marion, we went on to visit an interesting place called Mandala Gardens, more of which I’ll be featuring in an upcoming post.
For more on Norm’s Thursday Doors go to https://miscellaneousmusingsofamiddleagedmind.wordpress.com/2017/10/05/thursday-doors-october-5th-2017/
The subject for the Weekly Photo Challenge at The Daily Post is windows. Since joining the ‘Thursday Doors’ crowd, I’ve stepped up my efforts to look for doors and also windows and during a recent trip to Marion, Illinois, we discovered several of both that were worth a shot or two. This was our first visit to Marion and we spent one morning looking around the Tower Square Plaza area where there was a mix of new buildings along with several old places that looked like they’d seen better days.
This was certainly true of the building that once housed The Marion Daily Republican newspaper. I noticed that the sparrows had found a conveniently broken window frame, giving them access to the interior.
The windows at the Lewis building and the former Sheriff’s residence, now home to the Williamson County Historical Society Jail Museum and Library, are in better shape.
Part of our trip to Marion included a visit to Mandala Gardens, more of which I will write about in a future post.
For more on the Weekly Photo Challenge go to Windows
This week, Cee is looking for four-letter words starting with D for her Fun Foto Challenge. While I have plenty of duck, deer and door images, I decided, after sifting through the photo files, to go with dome. These may not, in the grand scheme of things, be quite as elaborate as some of the world-famous domes I could mention, except for the first one and I’m not even sure if that could technically be considered a dome, but I work with what I’ve got.
The Baha’i House of Worship in Wilmette, Illinois.
The dome of the State Capitol building in Springfield, Illinois.
The Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis, Missouri.
The dome of the Old Courthouse in St. Louis, Missouri.
The State Capitol building in Salt Lake City, Utah.
The State Capitol building in Madison, Wisconsin.
The dome of the State Capitol building in Cheyenne, Wyoming.
For more on Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge go to Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Letter D – 4 letters words that start with D