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Around Bloomington, Then and Now



Schools
Theaters
Media
The Old Library
Rose Hill Cemetery

 
 
BHS - at 2nd and College - as it used to be
When it was the Seminary
BHS in the 50s
The Old College
BHS as it was in the 50s

Elm Heights School - as it used to be
Extracted from "City of Bloomington Interim Report Indiana Historic Sites and Structures Inventory"; Bloomington Department of Housing and Neighborhood Development; Bloomington, IN; April 2004
Elm Heights
Caption reads: "The Elm Heights School has been a focal point of activity in the neighborhood since 1926. Its current occupant, the Harmony School, painstakingly acquired funding for a restoration of the building. This photograph provided a clue as to the style and configuration of the original windows.    Photograph courtesy of the Shaw Starkes Collection William Hammond Mathers Museum, Indiana University."
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Theaters
Extracted from "City of Bloomington Interim Report Indiana Historic Sites and Structures Inventory"; Bloomington Department of Housing and Neighborhood Development; Bloomington, IN; April 2004
Harris Grand
Indiana Theater
Harris Grand Theater

The caption for this read: "The Harris Grand Theater, which was located on the corner of 7th and Walnut where the Omega Building now stands, was Bloomington's preeminent performing arts venue. Bob Hope and other appeared there in vaudeville shows. The Harris's (sic) and the Vonderschmitts were Bloomington's most famous impresarios."

As a side note, the Harris had fallen some in stature by the 70's, when Kerasotes (which also owned the generally raunchy Cinema West drive-in) was running such fare as "Deep Throat." The theaters last gasp as a performing venue was in '71 or '72 when, with great doubts about whether the projection screen -- immobile for more years than anyone cared to remember -- would survive being raised for a concert by John McLaughlin and the Mahavishnu Orchestra. The screen did survive, and the sound in the theater was excellent!
Indiana Theater

"The opening of the Indiana Theater in 1922, was anticipated with excitement in the World Courier. Other older theaters like the Princess and the Harris Grand arranged for updates and were remodeled in order to compete."
Photograph courtesy of the Shaw East Collection of the William H. Mathers Museum, Indiana University

Impossible to read at this small size, the marquee heralds "Big Bank Nite Friday." Big, according to the side, was $355. But maybe that would have been enough to draw a crowd to see Herbert McHugh Auer and "Marry The Girl."

Side note: behind the gent offering the lady a firm and hearty handshake (while his buddy stokes his chin in deep contemplation of her charms, no doubt) is what I remember as the Nickas's Indiana Sweet Shop. (Looks like the lady has also drawn the attention of the popcorn machine.)
Early Von Lee
Late Von Lee
Von Lee - early
Von Lee - late

Caption for this one reads: "Built in 1928, the VonLee (sic) Theater opened as 'the Ritz' and quickly closed because of the Depression. As late as the 1970's (sic), the house around which the theater was built still stood as seen in this photograph."

Princess Theater



Roxy
The Princess ... or it used to be.
The Roxy .. what year was THAT movie?
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The Media
Channel 10?
Steve Miller says: " The Bloomington studio for WTTV has been mentioned several times on the mailing list -- the latest being Tulle's and John's bouts with fame and Chesty potato chips. I stumbled across this photo on the web. It obviously pre-dates their visits, since the caption refers to the "Channel 10 studios" on Hillside Drive. Yep, the venerable Channel 4 WAS previously assigned to Channel 10! ... I think that's Daily Planet reporter Lois Lane to the right, having just gotten out of the Nash station wagon (third vehicle from left). That's a '50 or '51 Ford to the extreme left. Can't quite make out what the rest are, but that gives us an approximate time frame for the photo.


Downtown Bloomington from the Air - 1930s
Extracted from "City of Bloomington Interim Report Indiana Historic Sites and Structures Inventory"; Bloomington Department of Housing and Neighborhood Development; Bloomington, IN; April 2004
The Square, 1930s
Another photo from Steve from his treasure book.  He Says: "Actuelement, it didn't turn out so bad. And it's really very interesting -- I tried to identify as many venues with period-correct names, though some are id'd with current "historically-correct" designations.  I asked Steve about copyright, though being a government report it would appear that is not a problem.  Here is his reply:

I doubt there should be any question of copyright violation, as there is no copyright statement within the book. In fact, where you might expect to find such statement, there is this text:

"Revisions to the data in this Interim Report are encouraged. Information should be submitted to City of Bloomington, Housing and Neighborhood Development Department, P.O. Box 100, Bloomington, IN 47402 or the Division of Historic Preservation and Archeology, 402 West Washington, W274, Indianapolis, IN 46204."

The book was published in April, 2004, and additional copy "may be available." Contact the Bloomington Housing and Neighborhood Development Department, P.O. Box 100, Bloomington, IN 47402. Phone number for the Program Manager Historic Preservation is 812-349-3401. There may be is more information at the city's web site: www.bloomington.in.gov.  
I found my copy on eBay -- with shipping, I paid a grand total of $7.25. Per hour, that's a VERY cheap price for entertainment! ----- See  bloomington.in.gov/egov/docs/1067658789_573570.gif  for a map of the historic Bloomington neighborhoods.


The Old Library, now
The Monroe County History Center
from a 2011 email from the Monroe County History Center
The Old Library


Rose Hill Cemetery
Rose Hill
This aerieal photo is downloaded from terraserver-usa.com - specifically  http://terraserver-usa.com/image.aspx?T=1&S=10&Z=16&X=2695&Y=21675&W=1
HC marks Hoagy Carmicheal's grave. This stone is next to the road but the inscription is not easy to read from there.  People leave pennies stuck into the grooves on top of this stone.
AK marks the graves of Alfred and Clara Kinsey,  The two stones are made of  red granite and are in the 2nd or 3rd row.  The inscriptions can be seen from the road.
DK marks Daniel Kirkwood's grave.  It is not visible from any road.
X marks a very interesting stone, polished black, with a laser inscribed picture of a helicopter and a lengthy story to go with it on one side, and a family genealogy on the back.
The oldest graves in the cemetery are in the sections below the "4th St" writing.
Hoagy Carmichael
Hoagy Carmicheal's gravestone with pennies.  Sometimes there are a lot more than this.
Kirkwood Stone















DANIEL
KIRKWOOD
BORN IN
Harford Co. Md.
Sept. 27, 1814
Professor of Mathematics
Indiana University
1856-1886
DIED
June 11, 1895




I do have photos of the "Helicopter stone", but am not showing them here.  The front has a poem "Hovering Flight" by Charles O. Weir,  and a picture of a
"Sikorsky R-4, world's first production helicopter".  There is a copyright symbol on the stone with a 1986 date.  The back refers to people who are probably alive.
You'll just have to visit Rose Hill to see it for yourself.



Postcard and photo scans thanks to Steve Miller, '67, Rose Hill tombstone photos by Margaret Olson, '52.

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last update 7/3/2005