Friday, December 28, 2012

General Office Furniture

From the archives, the former General Office Furniture location in Chicago. This was down on Milwaukee, near Grand if memory serves, and was hanging out front of a building that was clearly undergoing some rehab. When I saw the building the glass was out in the storefront, exposing a tin ceiling and some cast iron posts. I don't know if this sign is still hanging-I haven't been back in years.

I don't know much about the company, except that there's still a General Office Furniture listed in the city, over on Lake Street. I've often wondered if this sign was re-purposed from an old Chevrolet sign.

General Office Furniture sign-Chicago, IL

Monday, December 24, 2012

Happy Holidays

Merry Christmas! by William 74
Merry Christmas!, a photo by William 74 on Flickr.
So a little Chrimbles Cheer this Monday evening. The family Christmas tree, snapped with the ol' iPhone and an app to make it look like an old glass plate. Purty, puts me in the holiday spirit.

So, (insert appropriate holiday greeting here), Everyone!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Bowl-Mor Lanes

Bowl-Mor Lanes by William 74
Bowl-Mor Lanes, a photo by William 74 on Flickr.

When I become emperor of the whole world, I will decree that every bowling alley needs to have an interesting neon sign out front. Preferably a fifties style.

Spotted in Streator, IL.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Monday, December 17, 2012


AAR Cuda by William 74
AAR Cuda, a photo by William 74 on Flickr.

One of the good guys in motorsports, Dan Gurney had a long and varied career behind the wheel. Starting off with hot rods on the dry lakes and drag strips of southern California, Gurney soon moved on to sports cars with varying success. His big break came in 1957, when he finished second in the inaugural Riverside Grand Prix at the famed California track that would eventually become synonymous with Gurney's name. This led to a factory drive at LeMans with Maserati, and by 1959 he was in Grand Prix racing with Ferrari.

A true all-rounder, Gurney went on to race in sports cars, endurance racing, stock car racing (he owned the Grand National event at Riverside, his home track), the Trans-Am, and of course on the Grand Prix circuit. He drove for BRM, Brabham, Porsche, and finally with his own Eagle, manufactured by All-American Racers (or Anglo-American Racers for the GP project).

The AAR Grand Prix project ended soon after that historic win in 1967, but AAR continued to manufacture cars for domestic series, such as USAC and Formula 5000. The company also lent it's name and expertise to Plymouth, for it's Trans-Am challenger, the 'Cuda AAR.

This is a genuine Trans-Am car from the early 70's.

Friday, December 14, 2012

The Majestic

The Majestic by William 74
The Majestic, a photo by William 74 on Flickr.
Streator's fine Art Deco style Majestic Theater. Opened as a vaudeville house in 1907, the Majestic has undergone numerous changes, as well as openings and closings, in it's history. Most recently restored and re-opened in 2002, the Majestic currently shows first run films as well as musical shows.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Out of State Plates

Corvette by William 74
Corvette, a photo by William 74 on Flickr.

Part of an occasional sub-series for our occasional Motorcar Monday series. This is, obviously, a 1963 license plate from Washington state, with a sticker showing it's last current registration from being just three years later. It's also obviously attached to an old Chevrolet Corvette.

However, that's not the whole story. This is an early, first generation 'Vette, a '54 if I'm not mistaken. It was sold originally in the Spokane area, and lived there most of it's life. There's even a dealer sticker on the back for Century Motors, "The Corvette Center". It's stunningly original and in the rare Corvette Copper color, of which a mere 15 were made.

Saturday, December 8, 2012


Elks by William 74
Elks, a photo by William 74 on Flickr.

One of the oldest and largest fraternal organizations in America, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks has lodges all over the country. This one's in Streator, Illinois, in a great old building downtown. It also has this excellent neon sign. I bet it works, too.

Thursday, December 6, 2012


Zephyr! by William 74
Zephyr!, a photo by William 74 on Flickr.

The west wind, known as the Zephyr, is considered to be the mildest and most favorable of the directional winds. In Greek mythology, Zephyrus was the personification of the west wind, bringer of spring and summer.

I've long thought this was an appropriate name for the Chicago, Burlington, and Quincy's famed name trains, most of which typically ran in an east west direction. But, they were also the Burlington's top flight service, and pioneered fast diesels on passenger trains. Fleet, like the wind. This is the lone remaining operable Zephyr train set, the Nebraska Zephyr, currently resident at the Illinois Railway Museum. We've visited it before, but I always think it's worth another look.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012


Typically found on police cars these days, pillar mounted spotlights were a popular accessory for both cars and trucks back in the 40's and 50's, and a pair of Appleton spots were a custom car standard for years. This one is one of a pair of Unity spots on an old Lincoln Continental that used to sit out front of an old gas station. The car disappeared years ago-I don't know what happened to it.

Lincoln Continental-spotlight