Southeastern Ohio – October 2020 – Views From Above

Todays drone tour starts out in Newark, with the world’s largest basket (building). Previously the headquarters for the Longenberger Basket Company, it is now vacant.

A view of eastern Licking County on a frosty early October morning.

Black Hand Gorge is a scenic area of Licking County.

Additional views of the Black Hand Gorge Natural Area

Views of Dillon Dam and reservoir.

Muskingum County hills.

With more confident drone flying a return to Zanesville allowed me to get a better view of the famed Y Bridge from 250′ up.

The primary destination on this day was the Muskingum River Valley. This view is in Zanesville.

There are a series of dams and locks along the river as it makes it’s way south. This one is located between the towns of Philo and Duncan Falls, and is known as Dam Number 9.

The right side gives a view of the bridges between the towns – the new one was recently opened.

The valley extends for more than 100 miles through southeastern Ohio.

Lock and Dam Number 8 is known as Rokeby Lock.

The tour this day ended at the town of McConnellsville, and the 1913 truss bridge.

Burr Oak State Park Lake.

The final stop for today is in Nelsonville, and an overview of the Hocking Valley Scenic Railroad terminal.

Central Ohio – October 2020 – Views From Above Part 3

The drone tour of Central Ohio continues….

Highbanks Metro Park, with the first tree changing colors for fall

Big Meadows in Highbanks

The sheep farm across the road from Highbanks Park is the last bastion of the former rural atmosphere. The entire area around it is now suburbia.

The largest office building in Ohio – a horizontal skyscraper. The Chase offices in Polaris has 2 million square feet of office space. To compare the tallest building in the state is Key Tower in Cleveland (947’/289m) only has 1.5 million square feet.

Note the entire roof is covered in solar panels and the parking lots and garages to the right are being covered in solar panels.

Ohio gets cold, Ohio gets snow, but alas – no mountains, so this qualifies as a ski resort. Snowtrails near Mansfield.

Mansfield Reservoir

A covered bridge in Union County.

Just down the road from the covered bridge is this corn maze (Maize maze?)

A berry field with a pumpkin sales.

A grain elevator in Urbana, Ohio.

Literally turning to the right you get a view of the old train station, the vacant factory and the rest of the town.

A massive shrub nursery surrounds the town of New Carlisle.

Deceased people and cars.

This view of Madison County shows Interstate 70 along the upper right, US 40 (The National Road) through the left middle, and an airport runway running along side – all in perfect East-West orientations.

Scioto Downs Horse Race Track and Casino (newer building on the left)

The 105,000 seat Ohio Stadium. The GPS in the drone would not allow me to fly any closer without seriously violating FAA rules (which I did not!)

Franklin Park Conservatory

A view along East Broad Street in Columbus

New apartments surrounding Columbus Commons Park.

We end this tour with a view of downtown Columbus, including the State Capitol surrounded by 30 to 40 floor buildings.

Springfield, Ohio – October 2020 – Architecture at the End of the Road

In the 1800s Springfield was known as the City at the End of the Road, since the National Road ended there. Eventually it was extended and most people kept going, bypassing Springfield. Still it grew into a medium sized city with about 100,000 people in the area.

As with most Ohio cities of this size, the buildings tend to be older; built during Springfield’s heyday. This former church is now a community center.

This mural celebrates Springfield’s entertainment history. It covers the entire 6 floors of the back of the Regent Theater.

The side of the YMCA has another great mural.

The former city hall now houses the Clark County Heritage Center. Completed in 1890 the clock at the top must be adjusted manually during the spring and fall time changes.

Ironically despite the fact it was built to house the clock, it was 34 years before they had an actual working one – prior to the it just had a clock face painted on.

As usual I was on the lookout for ghost signs, this one on a building with a perfectly symmetrical, but sketchy looking, fire escape.

The Clark County Literacy Coalition is located in the former Warder Public Library building. It’s patron was from local industrialist Benjamin Warder in 1890. Warder made his money with the Champion farm machinery company, later becoming International Harvester.

The building is built of Ohio sandstone with Worcester brownstone trim, and a fantastic red slate roof.

The view across the street of St Raphael Church is framed by the main entrance’s archway.

Situated on a small hill, St Raphael is very prominent on the skyline of the city.

It is 156 steps to reach the top of the 184′ tower, but much easier to send the drone up for a closer view.

We leave Springfield with three great advertising signs – two old signs – one ghost signs, one in perfect condition, along with a great Big Boy!

Urbana, Ohio – October 2020 – Random Views of Champaign County and beyond

Todays road trip through the country takes us to the town of Urbana, county seat of Champaign County. Full disclosure – some of the photos are likely from border counties as I was on country roads without county line markers.

Each little town seemed to have a commercial block of 100 year old buildings, this one with a restored clock tower.

Talk about a barn find for the Ohio countryside – an old Mercedes with late 1980s license plates!

An abandoned school in a crossroads town.

This stylish little building was in the small town of Mechanicsburg.

Normally ‘Quilt Barns’ are much larger than this, but the contrast of the farm implements added to the look of this one.

Not too many farms date from 1814 in Ohio.

Eventually I reached the town of Urbana. As with most county seats it seemed to have the best collection of buildings in the area. Some nicely restored, some not so much, it was worth the stop.

The Hotel Sowles dates from around 1800, it is said to have hosted every Ohio governor from the beginning of the state until 1900. A community effort resulted in this great old building being restored.

This former bank in an Art Deco look is now a law office.

The Perpetual Federal Savings and Loan has been located in Urbana for 140 years. The building is generally designed in a Roman Corinthian style, but with classical touches. A true midwest building it is built out of Minnesota granite and Indiana limestone situated in a small Ohio town.

Personally I think the Yellow Mini sets it off nicely.

This classic Gulf Gas Station from the 1970s is still in use as an auto repair shop.

The local airport is home to a small museum where they are restoring a B-17.

This small theater started life in 1904, However in the 1930s it was destroyed in a fire, and was rebuilt in 1941 – hence the Art Deco look.

It is currently undergoing restoration.

Urbana has a number of great ghost signs.

This vacant, decaying building once housed a company that provided galvanized iron for railroad use.

Just across the street is the former train station, now a coffee shop. This station served the Pennsylvania Railroad for many decades.

Our time in Urbana is over, time to move on.

Mansfield, Ohio – September 2020 – Surprising Interesting Architecture

Mansfield, Ohio is another old industrial city, where much of the industry has left. Mansfield, unlike many of those towns, has managed to keep much of their downtown buildings in use and in excellent condition.

We start with an impressive old house that is currently undergoing restoration – it will be grand when finished.

St Peters Catholic Church

The Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Building

The tallest building in town – the Farmers Bank Building

This building dates from 1926.The upper level cornices are very detailed.

Mansfield is very proud that the movie Shawshank Redemption was filmed in the area, including Central Park.

Around this nice space are a couple of Art Deco style buildings.

We end our tour with a number of restored buildings along North Main Street.

Eastern Ohio Towns – August 2020 – Architecture Along the National Road

The final posting on the National Road day is of architecture in the towns and small cities along the way. Much like in Wheeling, there is both nicely restored and the delightfully appealing vacant buildings.

Every county has restored their historic courthouse – could be a theme for a posting of it’s own in the future – the 88 courthouses of Ohio.

St Clairsville, Ohio

Morrisville, Ohio

Cambridge, Ohio

Zanesville, Ohio

Wheeling, West Virginia – August 2020 – Architecture

Wheeling, West Virginia is typical of a number of cities in the Ohio River Valley and on into Pennsylvania – it has had a population drop for decades.

Peaking out at about 62,000 people, the city now has about 25,000, which is less than lived there in 1880. As a result there are a number of old buildings, many vacant.

Beautifully restored, or interestingly vacant, it makes for great photography. In addition there are more ‘ghost signs’ in Wheeling that anywhere I have ever seen.

Virtual Travel – Texas

Texas!

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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

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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).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Buenos Aires – March 2020 – The Colorful Characters of La Boca

Our visit to La Boca continued with a stop in the Caminito, a small street full of colorful houses and buildings.

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La Boca has the reputation of being a bit rough around the edges, but in this area it is completely touristy.

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While originally there was a stretch of colorful houses that reputed became that way because they used spare paint from the ships, it is now full blown style of the entire area.

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Busloads of tourists pile off, wander the streets a bit, and pile back on. But it provides lots of income to the neighborhood so I guess it works.

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Throughout the neighborhood are a number of fiberglass statues. With the current Pope being from Buenos Aires he is a favorite subject.

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Apparently his twin with a soccer player.

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The shops have taken over old buildings and are amusing to wander through them.

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Most of the restaurants have a small dance floor where local dancers work hard for tips.

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La Boca – sort of a funky Times Square for Buenos Aires. You have to see it when you are in town.

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