Thursday, June 1, 2017

Aerial view of Monroe Park and lower Fan. ca. 1928.

Click on this image for a larger view.  Monroe Park and the lower Fan... ca. 1928  Image shared by Richard....

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

The Asparagus Farm and other observations from Emphasis on Virginians, June 1968.

 Laurel Street entrance to The Asparagus Farm.

Rare issue of Emphasis on Virginians, June 1968.

Selden shared this magazine with me. From what I could find there were only seven issues of this magazine issued, from June 1968 to December 1968. The Library of Virginia has them.

The article from this issue of magazine I scanned had to do with night clubs for young Virginians. It includes information about two clubs in Richmond - A.J.'s Gaslight (run by Andy Frank, Jr. whose father owned and operated the restaurant Andy's which stood on the 900 block of W. Grace St. where many students from Richmond Professional Institute would hang out) and The Asparagus Farm, the first psychedelic rock club in Richmond. It closed by the end of September of 1967. Share your memories of these early Richmond clubs. 

Read the article HERE

- Ray.

Monday, May 22, 2017


Scene from Monroe Park from a book entitled "Richmond, Virginia: Her Advantages and Attractions" published in 1895. It shows the stone "pyramid" that stood where the fountain now stands in the center of the park. 

- Ray

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Laurel Street Market, 349 S. Laurel St., 1917.

 
This photograph and some other materials related to the family who owned this store are on sale on Ebay today. I thought I'd share them here.

It's a wonderful image of the Laurel Street Market located at 349 S. Laurel St., corner of Laurel and Albemarle Streets in Richmond's Oregon Hill neighborhood. The seller shows the back of this photograph where it's written: "Taken Feb 27 - 17" - so I assume it was taken on Feb. 27, 1917.  The store was owned by John Frederick Ernest Steinmann (1871-1934).

 Here's an image of the same address, 349 S. Laurel St., from a Google Street View dated June 2015. This bike shop - the Bunny Hop Bike Shop - has since closed. 

Here's another image from this Ebay sale. The seller also shows the back of this image which reads: "Original Bldg. Laurel St. Market, Ernest Steinman, Henry Steinmann, Berta Steinmann, and Willie Smith (helper)."  Where was this?  I'll have to check the city directories.  More later....

- Ray 

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

"Gilded Age Richmond: Gaiety, Greed, and Lost Cause Mania" by Brian Burns, 2017

Brian Burns' new book on Richmond examines the era of the Gilded Age, the 1870s through the turn of the century. Published by The History Press the book is available in local book stores in Richmond and, of course, at Amazon. The History Press' web site gives the background of the book and those times this way:
In the aftermath of the Civil War, Richmond entered the Gilded Age seeking bright prospects while struggling with its own past. It was an era marked by great technological change and ideological strife. During a labor convention in conservative Richmond, white supremacists prepared to enforce segregation at gunpoint. Progressives attempted to gain political power by unveiling a wondrous new marvel: Richmond's first electric streetcar. And handsome lawyer Thomas J. Cluverius was accused of murdering a pregnant woman and dumping her body in the city reservoir, sparking Richmond's trial of the century. Author Brian Burns traces the history of the River City as it marched toward a new century. 
Brian, a native of Chapel Hill, graduated in 1983 from the School of Design at North Carolina State University. He worked as an art director for advertising agencies, including the Martin Agency in Richmond. He was co-producer of The Rainbow Minute at WRIR in Richmond. His first book, Lewis Ginter: Richmond’s Gilded Age Icon, was published by The History Press in 2011.   Gilded Age Richmond: Gaiety, Greed and Lost Cause Mania includes 60 crisp, black and white images, a section of notes to the sources of information he writes about in the book, and a detailed index. Those are major pluses for this book because so many new titles recently published on Richmond history lack those essential parts of a book. 

- Ray