Thursday, January 29, 2015

Annie Oakley and the Salisbury Train Wreck

Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show came to Charlotte in 1901

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 This blog post is dedicated to Joe DePriest, long-time Observer reporter who retired this week. Joe loved local history and told me about this fascinating story. We'll miss you, Joe!

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   On October 28, 1901 a 'surge of humanity' flocked to Latta Park to see Annie Oakley and other Wild West Show acts. No one foresaw the wreck of Buffalo Bill's show train that night near Salisbury.

Oakley was especially affected by the accident. See below how it changed her life.

October 27, 1901


 October 29, 1901


But just after the train pulled out of Charlotte ...

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 UndatedPhoto courtesy The Annie Oakley Center at the Garst Museum


After the horrific accident Annie Oakley wasn't the same.

 March 27, 1902


Oakley recovered physically from the train accident but not until after temporary paralysis and five spinal operations.  She went on to perform on stage.

(And she pitched dandruff remedy!)
Charlotte Observer, April 30, 1905

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July 9, 1924

Annie Oakley passed away on in Ohio on November 3, 1926. She was 66.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Vintage Vogue

  Everybody's going retro, even sewing pattern companies!

   On a recent trip to Hancock Fabrics I was excited to find vintage sewing patterns for sale! The big names in home sewing have re-released some classic clothing patterns. Very cool. There is Vintage Vogue, McCall's Archive Collection and Retro Butterick, along with Simplicity's Vintage series. You can find these at any fabric store.

Vintage Vogue: 'Original 1951 Design'

Simplicity pattern, 1950s

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Aprons: Simplicity pattern, 1940s

The 1940s is my favorite decade to blog about -- let's go to the microfilm!

'Anne Adams' sewing patterns ads ran in newspapers from the '30s to the '70s, 
including the Charlotte Observer.

These examples from 1945 could be had for 15 or 20 cents through the mail.
(I can think of a lot of problems caused by sending coins through the mail.)

 This one comes with free apron patterns, probably like the ones in the Vintage Vogue photo above.

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  For the younger set

'Laura Wheeler' sewing and craft patterns appear to have run in papers in the
 '30s, 40s and 50s but I'm unable to find much information. Anybody know?

Monday, January 26, 2015

Myers Park: 'Room to run and romp and play'

Ads for the new 'Myers Park' development ran almost daily in 1917 Charlotte Observers.

They aimed at a wide audience as you'll see: established families and young mothers, folks looking for a bungalow and and those wanting a large home.

(Wish I could've gotten in on the ground-floor of this venture!)

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Saturday, January 24, 2015

The trees of Myers Park

Myers Park Oak Trees

It's hard to imagine but the avenues of Myers Park weren't always tree-lined. 

Here's a look at how it came to be.

'This 1911 photo shows the earliest homes built in Myers Park off Queens Road. The neighborhood was planned as a mix of humble bungalows and grand mansions, scattered with small areas of development and a tract for Queens College.'


'With the assistance of James B. Duke, plans were made to install larger, more mature trees along the streets in Myers Park. Theodore King, who worked for Duke, oversaw the operation which took place in 1916 and the winter of 1917.'
Courtesy: Charlotte Mecklenburg Library

March 19, 1916
(Click on the page to enlarge.)

'Men backing up early back hoe to remove oak tree for planting in Myers Park.'
Courtesy: Charlotte Mecklenburg Library

'Four men removing oak tree to plant in Myers Park.'
Courtesy: Charlotte Mecklenburg Library

'This photo from the collection of the Public Library of Charlotte & Mecklenburg County shows how a huge wheel with spokes was used to plant mature trees when Myers Park was being built in the early 20th century.'

'Image of workman tools around a freshly planted oak tree.'
Courtesy: Charlotte Mecklenburg Library

 'Oak tree being planted in Myers Park with house in distance.'
Courtesy: Charlotte Mecklenburg Library

'Final outcome of the tree planting in Myers Park.'
Courtesy: Charlotte Mecklenburg Library

Myers Park, 2011.
Staff photo: Diedra Laird

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