10 Must-See Photographs from the 1940s
- A mother is photographed while hiding her face in shame after putting up a sign announcing that she is putting her own four children up for sale in Chicago, Illinois in 1948.
- A sign posted to remind soldiers to take Atabrine, an anti-malaria drug, while stationed in Papua, New Guinea during World War II.
- A young man sits and reads a book in the ruins of a London bookstore after the air strikes in 1940.
- A young woman sprays her arm with self-tanning spray from a suntan vending machine in 1949.
- Hitler’s officers and cadets smile for a photograph while they are seated for Christmas dinner in 1941.
- A sorrowful suicide — 23 year old Evelyn McHale is photographed after jumping from the 83rd floor of the Empire State Building and landing on a United Nations limousine in 1947.
- An Austrian boy displays glee after receiving a new pair of shoes during World War II.
- A thoughtful soldier in the trenches shares his banana with a goat during the battle on the island of Saipan in the Mariana Islands during World War II in 1944.
- A distraught little girl desperately clutches her doll while sitting in the ruins of her bombed home after the air strikes in London, England in 1940.
- An anti-comic book movement began in 1940 causing many.watchdog groups to promote the burning of comic books claiming that Batman and Robin promoted homosexuality and that children would become confused about the law of physics because of Superman’s ability to fly.
Lobby, 140 West Street, NYC, New York
Photo by Michael Nagle for the New York Times
Utterly stunning lobby. Photo from a NYT article on adaptive reuse of historic buildings. As a resident of a 101-year-old former office building, I totally support this. -Wendy
From the article, which appeared in July
But the 31-story Verizon building at 140 West Street, across from One World Trade Center in the financial district, may be the grandest of the bunch.
The full-block 1927 edifice, which like the other two phone buildings was designed by Ralph Walker, a prominent Art Deco architect, has an exterior lavishly decorated with carvings of vines, flowers and birds; it is a landmark, as is its vividly finished lobby, whose walls are trimmed in gold paint.
Upstairs, the developers the Magnum Real Estate Group and the CIM Group are adding 161 condos, from one- to five-bedrooms, in a project called Barclay Square, which will have the address of 100 Barclay Street, after the developers create a new entrance out of a loading bay.
The units are expected to hit the market in September, for $2,100 to $3,000 a square foot, said Ben Shaoul, Magnum’s president, although the offering plan for the $500 million project still awaits approval.
Phone companies need less equipment these days, but Verizon isn’t leaving completely; it will retain Floors 1 to 10 in a sharing arrangement similar to the Walker and Stella towers.
But to offer 47,000 square feet of amenity space, Magnum will avail itself of about half of that gilded lobby, which will be walled off and turned into a lounge. Residents will be able to enjoy their morning coffee, Mr. Shaoul said, under murals of the history of communication. One painting on the condo’s side shows a megaphone-carrying Egyptian. “You couldn’t build a space like this today,” he said.
The owners of “View through a House” by Samuel van Hoogstraten, 1662 hung it in their house in such a way that the perspective lines of the painting converge with those of the architecture, creating a remarkably convincing illusion of three dimensionality. Interestingly, the painting depicted the hallway of diarist and secret smutty book fan Samuel Pepys.
Replica of the 1910 Brooke Swan Car. Popular with the elite in Calcutta, features included glow in the dark amber eyes, a beak that could emit a spray of hot water and a valve which enabled the swan to poo whitewash from its rear end.
Honk honk swanmobile coming through
Get out of the way swanmobile here
Restored dress as worn by Ellen Terry in her 1888 portayal of Lady Macbeth.
“When Ellen starred alongside Henry Irving in Macbeth in 1888, there was not a wide choice of fabrics available in England, and Alice could not find the colours she wanted to achieve her effects. She wanted one dress to ‘look as much like soft chain armour as I could, and yet have something that would give the appearance of the scales of a serpent.’ (Mrs. J. Comyns Carr’s ‘Reminiscences’. London: Hutchinson, 1926) Mrs. Nettlship found a twist of soft green silk and blue tinsel in Bohemia and this was crocheted to achieve the chain mail effect.
The dress hung beautifully but: ‘we did not think that it was brilliant enough, so it was sewn all over with real green beetle wings, and a narrow border in Celtic designs, worked out in rubies and diamonds, hemmed all the edges. To this was added a cloak of shot velvet in heather tones, upon which great griffens were embroidered in flame-coloured tinsel. The wimple, or veil, was held in place by a circlet of rubies, and two long plaits twisted with gold hung to her knees.’