Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Frozen in time

The 1940s era truck shown here is parked in Rex Alley on the corner of Reinhard Avenue, and if this photo was taken when school was in session sometime between 1959 and 1964 there is a chance that I was sitting in a classroom inside.

If it were snapped in '59 I might have looked out of the window in the lower left corner of the first floor when I was in the first grade and saw the photographer, or if it were taken in 1962 or '63 I may have been milling around somewhere near one of those basement windows putting away my AAA safety flag after finishing up my duties as a patrol boy.

I love these old snapshots of moments frozen in time, especially those that depict something that is not only familiar to me, but one that reminds me of those days when my own life was better than it would ever be again. And even more stimulating is when it is of something I might have been a part of of. And since this one is undated aside from the one recognizable clue ( the truck) there is a very good possibility that I may indeed be in it somewhere, or at least in the vicinity of it.

I know, the odds are astronomical, but in an era when people drove vehicles like this one and when they hung onto them longer than most do now I am betting that I saw this truck somewhere, sometime when it was used every day. The south end of Columbus isn't that big and back in this time there weren't as many vehicles on the road. Certainly not as many pick-up trucks as we now see.

As a matter of fact I do recall quite clearly when most of them looked very similar to this one.

Given where it is there is even a chance that I passed it on my way to or from my assigned corner as a patrol boy because for awhile I was stationed about a block from it on Rex Alley and East Whittier Street. If it were to continue headed in the direction it is in it may have passed me and I may have held out my flag to stop it to allow my fellow students at Siebert Street Elementary School to safely cross the street.

As a photographer myself I can fully appreciate everything about this one. Not least among my reasons is a measure of gratitude for who ever held the camera that captured it, nor for whoever cared enough about it to save it so people like me could appreciate it decades into the future.

I do know this, at some point I sat on that concrete post where the wrought iron fence meets the wooden one and I scrambled around the playground here during many recesses. I also have a few bricks that I salvaged back in 1976 when they tore this beautiful and historic building down.

I could not point to them and be specific as to which ones they are but sometime in the 1980s they were used in building a patio in the backyard of the home I grew up in and came back to purchase in 1997. Those bricks might even be a few on one of the facades shown here.

If a picture is worth a thousand words than I can end this essay right here. I didn't count how many I used to write it but this one speaks chapters of a pretty great era to me.

Click on the photo to enlarge it.

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