Virtual Travel – Texas

Texas!

2015 09 22 35 Amarillo TX

 

Texas is a big state with a great variety of places for photography, therefore this is a LONG posting.

 

 

 

 

Texas Culture

1952     1958     1991     2007     2009     2011     2012     2016

 

 

Austin – State Capital

2009 08 27 63 Austin

 

The Texas State Capitol dates from 1885. The land it is on was acquired in a barter deal, 3 million acres of Texas Panhandle for this land!

Texas shows it’s Tex-Mex history in the state foods…

State Pastries – two – Strudel & Sopiapilla

Apple strudel     

 

State Small Mammal – Armadillo

 

 

 

The city of Austin is proud of it’s motto – Keep Austin Weird.

With the music scene, including a statue of Stevie Ray Vaughan, and the Congress Street bats it is a great place to be.

 

 

 

Prairies

1949     1969     1972     2013     2014

 

Roads & Bridges

1954     1964     1974     1975     1977     1978    1983     1987

 

I have more Texas Official Highway Maps than any other state. So many this section has combined the Prairies with the Highways which is appropriate because it features Amarillo and Route 66

 

Amarillo

You are half way there – IF you are going from Chicago to Los Angeles, or vice versa.

 

 

The legendary Cadillac Ranch. For more than 40 years people have been spray painting these cars. The good folks of Amarillo liked the planted Cadillacs they have expanded (in different parts of town) to VW Beetles and Combines.

 

 

Mountains

1953     1959     1970     1993     2017

 

 

Terlingua  – The ‘ghost town’ of Terlingua is a former mining town, but is not vacant, as it is a destination for tourist from Big Bend National Park.

Once a year they hold the world’s largest chili cook-off.

 

 

Big Bend National Park and Big Bend Ranch State Park. These two parks cover much of the Rio Grande Valley of West Texas. Their natural scenery is stunning.

A plus is being able to take a row boat across the river to Mexico for lunch in Bouillas.

 

 

Marathon – Gage Hotel   We had the good fortune of spending the night in this crossroads town on the way to Big Bend. The Gage Hotel is a historic property that attracts people just for the atmosphere and food.

 

 

Langtry – Made famous by Judge Roy Bean and his Law West of the Pecos, and even more famous when Paul Newman starred in a movie of the same name. The town is pretty much vacant, but the area is scenic.

Nearby is Seminole Canyon State Historic Park. This park holds significant cave art.

 

 

 

Cities & Beaches

1961     1968     2015     2019

 

 

San Antonio. While the city is large, it has a feel very different than Houston or Dallas. The downtown is much more compact, with a significant amount of Art Deco architecture.

 

 

Missions – There are five missions in San Antonio, and four of those are maintained by the National Park Service (the 5th is the Alamo). Mission San Jose is the most impressive architecturally.  Our day in San Antonio included a visit to Mission Concepcion.

 

Alamo – The most famous mission in the state, and likely the country, it is not known for it’s service as the Mission San Antonio de Valero, but more so it’s use as a fort in the Mexican independence effort when a group of Texas soldiers died defending it.

 

 

Houston – The city is the 4th largest city in the country, with 2.3 million people in the city. It is the 5th largest metro area (by some calculations) with 7 million people.

The city has more buildings over 150m (492′) than any city in the United States other than New York, Chicago and Miami.

There are still a few historic buildings downtown, but many have been destroyed over the years as they went taller and newer.

 

 

Houston Art – One of the great finds in our travels was the very cool, quirky art of Houston. From top to bottom. Giant Presidential Heads – Sanctioned Graffiti – Beer Can House – Luck Land – Smithers Park.

 

 

Parks and Rec  Houston also provided some unique ‘park’ experiences – from going under the Buffalo Bayou Park to see the Cistern, to the Botanical Gardens, and finally inside for some baseball.

 

 

Galveston     Another pleasant surprise was Galveston. It seemed like 3 cities in one – the typical seaside resort with amusement rides and motels, a great state park natural area, and finally the historic area on the bay side.

 

 

Dallas – Fort Worth    While Houston gained lots of photos on this posting I have actually been to Dallas far more, just some time ago and without a camera.

Dallas is corporate, Fort Worth is cowboy (I know – stereotypes, but it seems to fit).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Virtual Travel – Michigan

Welcome to Michigan.

 

2015 09 04 1.jpg

 

 

Great Lakes

Michigan is known as the Great Lakes States, and the plethora of road map covers featuring them is evidence of the importance to the state.

Maps – 1947 – Lakeshore     1968 – Soo Locks     2000 – Lighthouses     2001 – Great Lakes Great Times     2010 – Fishtown in Leland     2012 – Unidentified Small Harbor

 

Bordering 4 of the 5 Great Lakes gives Michigan 3,288 miles of shoreline – more than any state other than Alaska. With that much shoreline, they have a large collection of lighthouses.

Below are two from the Lake Michigan area near Ludington.

 

Below photos are from various internet sources

Big Sable Point Lighthouse, Michigan at Lighthousefriends.com Lighthouses of the U.S.: Michigan's Western Lower Peninsula

Beautiful Lighthouses in Michigan Worth a Visit | Michigan

Point Betsie Lighthouse Lake Michigan Canvas Print

3 Michigan Lighthouses To Receive State Preservation Grants – CBS ...

 

 

Transportation in Michigan

Maps – 1951 – Unidentified Country Road     1974 – Modes of Transportation     1975 – Interstate 75     1993 – Boats and Cars     2005 – 100 Years of Michigan Transportation

For more than 100 years Michigan has been the automobile manufacturing capital of the world.

 

 

Detroit area map from 1951 – before freeways. Detroit, and other midwest cities, were the first cities in the world built with the car in mind.

Government State Michigan 1951 1.jpg

 

Most of the main roads are multi-lane, with very wide median strips to enable ‘Michigan Lefts’.

In virtually the entire world there are left turn lanes, and protected by traffic light left turns. In Michigan where  there is a boulevard, there are no left turns – rather you turn right, immediately jump over to the left laen, do a U turn, and go on your way.

How the 'Michigan Left' turn became a thing

 

This photo from the Woodward Dream Cruise shows the northbound traffic, with a U turn to return to Marshall Street Westbound . Also note the No Left Turn sign at the intersection itself.

2016 08 20 121 Detroit Woodward Dream Cruise.jpg

 

 

Michigan has a long history of railroads throughout the state. While much of the passenger traffic is gone there are still some nicely restored stations throughout the state.

 

In the small town of Hickory Corners is the Gilmore Car Museum. Built across a campus like a small town, they have a fantastic collection of American cars, plus numerous buildings that have either been moved there or built there to recreate the original.

Below are some examples, a diner moved from Connecticut, and the Cadillac dealership.

The Sinclair station is in a nearby town.

 

 

Grosse Pointe is a wealthy suburb of Detroit. Each year they the Great Lakes Boating Festival at the Grosse Pointe Yacht Club.

 

 

 

 

 

Parks

Maps – 1965 – Douglass Houghton Waterfall     1980 – Au Sable River     1989, 2011, 2014 – Sleeping Bear Dunes     2009 – Roadside Parks     2013 – Pictured Rocks National Seashore Cruise     2016 – Isle Royal National Park

There are a number of National Park Service locations in the state.

 

 

Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. It spans 35 miles of Lake Michigan shoreline, and has dunes over 200′ high.

2008 08 18 63 Sleeping Bear Dunes National Park MI.jpg

 

 

 

Tahquamenon Falls State Park is in the Upper Peninsula. There are two waterfalls in the park, with the upper falls dropping 48′, with a width of 200′ making this one of the highest volume waterfalls east of the Mississippi River. It’s nickname is Rootbeer Falls, due to it’s color.

 

 

Grand Marais is at the eastern end of Pictured Rocks National Seashore.

 

 

Pictured Rocks is one of the most dramatic locales in the east.

 

 

 

Variety  

1970 – Winter in Michigan     1976 – Bicentennial     2003, 2006, 2018 – Collages of Seasons and Regions

 

 

Frankenmuth is a faux German town. It is a huge tourist spot.

 

 

Grand Rapids is the second largest city in the state, far behind Detroit.

 

Meyer May House is a classic Frank Lloyd Wright design located in Grand Rapids.

2008 08 19 29 Grand Rapids MI Meyer Mey House.jpg

 

Also in Grand Rapids is the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park.

 

 

Battle Creek had a forest of trees killed by the emerald ash borer disease. Rather than just clear cut them, they had a number of carvers come turn it into something special.

 

 

Marquette is the largest city in the Upper Peninsula. It is also home to Northern Michigan University. With the long, cold, snowy winters they have opted for a domed football stadium. This one is special as it is primarily wood.

 

 

The Upper Peninsula people (affectionately known as Yoopies) are a unique bunch, with a creative side.

 

 

 

Bridges

1971 – History of Bridges     1984, 1997, 2007, 2017 – Mackinac Bridge

 

Government State Michigan 1970 1.jpg

 

The Mackinac Bridge is the most famous bridge in the state. It connects the Lower Peninsula to the Upper Peninsula.

 

Among the others in the state is the Ambassador Bridge between Detroit and Windsor, Ontario, Canada

 

Sault Ste Marie International Bridge Arch Greeting Card for Sale ...

 

In Battle Creek they have a park where they take all the old obsolete county road bridges and used them in the hiking/biking trail.

 

 

 

 

Detroit – 1973, 1978, 2015

 

 

Tiger Stadium – Home of the Detroit Tigers from 1912 until 1999. It sat empty for 10 years before the city tour it down – but not without much fight from the community.

2008 08 16 104 Detroit Tiger Stadium.jpg

 

 

It was replaced by Comerica Park.

2006 06 13 Detroit Comerica Park 3.jpg

 

 

The Detroit Institute of Art has an amazing Diego Rivera mural depicting the industrial life of the city in the 1930s.

2019 04 07 71 Detroit Institute of Art

2019 04 07 69 Detroit Institute of Art

 

 

The Guardian Building in Detroit is one of the best art deco skyscrapers in existence.

 

 

The Fisher Building is another great art deco building.

2019 04 06 141 Detroit Fisher Building.jpg

 

 

Detroit is Motown.Unfortunately many of the auto factories have long closed like this massive former Packard factory.

 

 

The Woodward Dream Cruise is the largest classic car gathering in the world. It occurs each August in the suburbs just north of Detroit.

 

 

Detroit is home to one of the most important New Car Shows as well.

 

 

Henry Ford spent much of his fortune on building Greenfield Village. He moved actual buildings in (like the Wright Brothers Bicycle Shop) to build the town.

 

 

 

1987 – Mackinac Island

Government State Michigan 1987.jpg

 

This entire island became Michigan’s first state park in the late 1800s.

Main Street (from Wikipedia)

A street, surrounded on both sides by two- and three-story buildings. One person is riding on horseback in the middle of the street, while others are walking on the sidewalk. Bikes are parked at the curb.

 

Hotel

A grand escape awaits at the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island

 

 

 

1996 – State Capitol

Government State Michigan 1996.jpg

 

Lansing is Michigan’s state capital.

State Flag

Flag of Michigan

 

State Seal

Great seal of Michigan

 

State Wildflower – Dwarf Lake Iris

Dwarf lake iris (iris lacustris)

 

State Children’s Book – Legend of Sleeping Bear

Book cover: The Legend of Sleeping Bear

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Montevideo, Uruguay – November 2019 – A Variety of Architectural Styles

Montevideo, Uruguay is a city of approximately 1.3 million people, making up 1/3 of the entire population of the country. As the capital and economic center of Uruguay the city has a eclectic collection of architecture.

Since we arrived by the ‘fast ferry’ from Buenos Aires, the first building that greeted us was the Port Terminal Building.




The Municipal Theater and Museum of Art History is an impressive structure in the Cordon neighborhood.




Along the Avenida 18 July there are a number of impressive buildings leading you to Plaza Indepencia.







The most impressive is Palacio Salvo (also the feature photo). It was designed by Mario Palanti, who designed the Palacio Barolo in Buenos Aires. As a result their looks are very similar.







The Ciudadela Building is on the opposite end of Plaza Independencia from the Palacio Salvo. Designed by Raul Sichero and Ernesto Calvo and completed in 1958, it stands 90 meters high.




The Pablo Ferrando Building dates from 1917, serving as a library and coffee shop




The new Presidential Building is also along the Plaza Independencia.




The remains of Miguelete Prison. But fear not – it’s wings now host a contemporary art museum as well as a museum of natural history.




Scenes in Ciudad Vieja (the old city).







A few miles out of the old town you come to the World Trade Center of Montevideo.







This unique building is the Damaso Antonio Larranaga Zoological Museum.




As you reach Punta Gorda the mid rise apartments give way to single and duplex family homes.




We end our tour with the 1876 Punta Brava Lighthouse. It continues to serves it’s original use to this day.






Boston – August 2019 – Diverse Architecture for a Historic City

As one of the oldest major American cities, Boston’s architecture represents a diverse collection of styles. You can find Gothic architecture framed by a post modern glass and steel skyscraper.




A quiet Sunday morning is the perfect time to explore a city for the architecture as the streets are empty, and parking is plentiful.



Once we arrived in the financial district the contrasts between old and new became even more apparent.


















Our primary objective however was to find Art Deco buildings, and Boston did not disappoint.
























Montreal – July 2019 – Vieux (Old) Montreal

Montreal is a very old city for North America, and as such has many outstanding vintage buildings. Most are in the Vieux (Old) Montreal section, but some, like the Mary Queen of the World Cathedral, is downtown.





The main train station has reliefs depicting Canada culture with the words of the National Anthem ‘Oh Canada’ written underneath.



There are numerous vintage buildings throughout the area, with the usual cool details.











The Old Montreal tourist area has numerous shops.



Some very narrow passages.



The Port of Montreal Clock Tower dates from the 1920s. It is also known as the Sailors Memorial Clock, dedicated to World War I Canadian Sailors.



The original sections of Bonsecours Market date from the 1840s. In addition to serving as a market, it also housed government functions.



Place Jacques-Cartier is the center of Old Montreal tourist activities.









Finally a stop at Notre Dame Cathedral, and an amazing (but brief) light show.