Monday, January 27, 2014

Normandy




This is another great picture of the D-Day invasion at Normandy. You can get a feel for the magnitude of the operation.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

D-Day



Today's picture is of the landing at Normandy, also known as D-Day. It was some of the most intense fighting of the way, and was the start of the US involvement in the European theatre.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Road Racing



We wrap up Men of Adventure week with this picture of Bob Burman. He was one of the pioneers in road racing, and participated in the first Indianapolis 500 in 1911. He died in a race crash in 1916.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Charles Lindbergh



What better example of a Life of Adventure than Charles Lindbergh. Charles was a pioneering aviator, and among other things, is remembered as the first person to fly nonstop, solo across the atlantic ocean. The early days of aviation must have been very exciting.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Buffalo Bill



It is hard to imagine anyone who lived a more adventuresome life than William Frederick "Buffalo Bill" Cody. He was a Soldier, Scout, Bison Hunter, and Showman. He is genuinely a man who lived life to the fullest. This is an early picture of him from around 1875.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Robert Peary



Robert Peary is recognized in our "Men of Adventure" week for his life of Arctic Expedition. For most of the 20th century, he was credited with leading the first expedition to the North Pole. More recently, many question whether he actually made it all the way to the pole on his expedition. It is fair to say that he led one of the very early expeditions that got really close to the pole. In my book, that is good enough to be recognized in our Man of Adventure Week.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Sir Edmund Hillary


What man could better exemplify a Life of Adventure that Sir Edmund Hillary . . . the first man to climb Mount Everest. I should qualify that he did have a Sherpa with him, Tenzing Norgay. Hillary was a spectacular climber, and spent his life in pursuit of adventure, and he is also remembered for his philanthropic acts.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Indian Cowboy



We wrap up Hat Week with this picture of an Indian with a Cowboy Hat. I love the combination! The picture was taken in 1903.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Military Hat



Today's picture shows a man in a military style hat that I believe is called a Slouch Hat. The distinguishing feature is that the brim is pinned up over one ear. I have never understood where this tradition began, given that the primary purpose of a hat is to shade the face.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Sombreros



Today we look at the classic "Sombrero", a favorite hat of the Mexican Revolutionaries. The picture above was taken in the early 1900's, and shows Castillo, one of the figures of the Mexican Revolution of those days. I have to say I admire the Sombrero for its wide brim, and superior shade generating properties.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Stetsons



You did not think we would make it through Hat Week without looking at the much loved "Stetson" did you? Well, here is a picture from my home town, Eldorado, Texas, showing a couple of men at a horse auction in 1939. They are sporting some fine western headgear. It is interesting to note, however, that "Stetson" is a brand, not a hat style. Stetson made all styles of hats, but is best known for the cowboy hat . . . so much so that the brand has become synonymous with the Cowboy hat.

The picture shows another tradition that endures to this day in West Texas. Many ranchers do not light their cigars. They put a cigar in their mouth in the morning and sort of chew on it all day, but never light it. You still see old timers around town with unlit cigars in their mouths. funny thing about this picture is that it really could have been taken yesterday, as you will still see scenes like this today.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Backwoods



Today's picture shows a gentleman from the Backwoods in the South. I have to say I love the hat. I am not sure what type of hat it is, but the hole in it is classic. Uncanny how much one is reminded of the TV character "Jed Clampit" from the 1960's TV show.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Bowler Hat



Today we look at the Bowler Hat. To be honest, I do not care for this hat style much. To me, it is neither practical nor does it look very good. These hats were popular in the early 1900's.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Hats



They say that the Hat Makes the Man, so welcome to Hat Week here at OPOD. We will be looking at various hat styles and see the things people have put on their heads over the years.

The picture above is quiet interesting. The man in the middle, as well as the man on the left are wearing a hat which I believe is called the "Pith Helmet". The pith helmet appears to have its origins as a military hat, it is actually a quiet practical hat for everyday wear. There is a band inside that holds the hat to the head, so the hat itself does not touch the head. That leaves a gap between head and hat that allows good airflow. Most pith helmets either have holes to allow air circulation, or they are actually made of a mesh like material. The provide good shade, some nominal level of protection for the head, and good airflow to keep you cool.

Now, we also see men in turban, but someone else will have to detail the ins and outs of turban wearing. 

The really interesting thing about this picture is that the timid, unassuming man standing between the men in Pith Helmets is actually T. E. Lawrence, a.k.a. Lawrence of Arabia. Talk about a man with an exciting life, this guy was it. It is interesting how he is almost unnoticeable in a crowd.

Friday, January 10, 2014

The Tower of London



OK, we are wrapping up London Week with this picture of the Tower of London. The picture was taken in 1900.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

House of Parliament




Today's picture shows the House of Parliament in London, as seen from the river. This is another really interesting shot of London from about 1900. I would bet if you stood on the same spot today, not too much would look different, except maybe the boats.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

St. Paul Cathedral



Today we have a picture of another London landmark . . . St. Paul's cathedral. It was built in the 1600's and is still going strong today. It is really very impressive architecture.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Westminster Abbey



OK, our tour of Old London continues today with this picture of Westminster Abbey. This is a church or sorts, under the control of the British monarchy. It is used for royal weddings, a place to coronate new royalty, and where royal funerals are held. The amazing thing is that the building was built in the 1200's. That is hard to believe that a building has been up and in use for that long. 

Monday, January 6, 2014

Water Transport



Today's picture shows water transportation in London at the turn of the last century. I bet it would have been a magnificent ride to be on that boat.

When I visited London my biggest impression was how old everything was. Many, many buildings appeared to be very old, but they had modern features on the inside. It is like they kept many of the original buildings, and simply kept modernizing the inside part.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Tower Bridge



We continue our exploration of London circa 1900 with this picture. It shows the Tower Bridge, as it is being opened to allow a ship to pass. I wonder if the bridge still stands some 114 years later?

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Old London



OK ladies and gentlemen, it is my priviledge to welcome you to Old London Week here at OPOD. We will be looking at days gone by in the city of London. We start with this picture from 1900 of Piccadilly Circus. I am curious why these roundabouts are called "circus".

Anyway, I visited London once and must say the city is full of interesting old world beauty. I would not mind returning some day when I had more time to see the sites.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

The Babe



The year 1914 was also the year that Babe Ruth made his major league debut. One of the best players to ever play the game started with the Red Sox 100 years ago. How wonderful it must have been to be a fan back then.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Happy 2014!



A Happy 2014 to you all! I hope you had a nice New Year's Eve. One can not help but wonder if 2014 will be an uneventful year, where we are able to continue to live our lives and mind our business in peace and quiet, of whether the year will hold unforeseen events to rock our world. I am hoping for a quiet year.

We continue our review of the year 1914. This was the year that Honus Wagner, pictured above, became the first professional baseball player to get 3000 career hits. Wagner was the original "Flying Dutchman".