Monday, November 23, 2015

Three Street Lamps on the Bowery of New York City

This picture comes from the archive of the New York Public Library and shows a shot of the Bowery and Bayard Street in Manhattan.  This picture is undated but it appears to be from the middle to late fifties.  The first lamp, seems to be a short version of one of the popular street lamps, the "Covingtons", I hope I spelled it right.  The Bowery was the route of the Third Avenue El and perhaps this lamp was short because it had to fit under the el structure.  The second lamp, one of the first florescent lamps on the east side is shown.  I believe they were also on 3rd Avenue in midtown Manhattan, after the el was taken down.  The last lamp in the distance is what was called in another blog a "gumball" incandescent lamp from the same era.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

San Francisco Street Lamp falls on account of Urine Corrosion

  In the United States, last week, a street lamp fell unto a car because the base was corroded by human urine and dog feces.  I believe the motorist was not severely hurt but was very close to getting killed. Now streetlamp bases are being checked for corrosion by city inspectors.  The city government recommends that if someone has to urinate in the street, they should use a fire hydrant because it is made of cast iron.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

What Happens when you combine a trolley line pole and a street lamp?

  This shot comes from a wonderful website called "Forgotten New York" that deals with some of subject matter discussed here.  This shot, is several years old and is located in the Canarsie section of of Brooklyn.   Streetcar service left the area in 1951 but many of the poles were still standing until a few years ago.  This location is near the terminus of the "14th Street - Canarsie Line" or what is called the "L"train, which is very popular today.  Streetcars in the area once traveled to the Canarsie shore using a private right of way.  I do not know if this pole is still standing but it is very interesting.  Who knows what the age of this pole is, it may be from the beginning of  electric traction.  Incidentally, the electric street lamps are being upgraded with LED lamps.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Our Old New York Streetlights are the reverse of Europe's Street Lights

This image was taken off the web.  This is the standard "Bishop Crook" street lamp that was a fixture on New York City streets for decades.  They were replaced by modern "stick like" lamps and posts of various descriptions since the late 1950's.  Some are coming back as replicates in historic neighborhoods such as Park Slope and Greenwich Village.  Should  I say Park Swup instead?

In this image below, you can see that the Warsaw lamps below are reverse of the New York lamps.  These lamps are also replicates.

This interesting cartoon was taken off the web.    Now you can see why these lamps are called "Bishop Crook Lamps".

Sunday, July 19, 2015

What if the "Fishbowls" Ruled the World?

New York City always was and remains to this day, very pro-bus.  Around the time that this last remnants of electric surface transportation disappeared from New York, during the period of 1956 to 1960, General Motors designed a new style bus.  Nicknamed "Fishbowls" because of the fish bowl like windshield, GM fishbowl buses would rule the road and streets of America for many years.  In New York City, the transit authority only purchased Fishbowls for a time because perhaps there were very little sources of bus manufactures for heavy duty rapid transit buses. During this time, Europe and elsewhere renewed their trolleybus and streetcar fleets, even after some cities transit systems were destroyed during World War II.   Many cities in Europe have large tram systems, such as Amsterdam, Prague and Warsaw.  I saw some videos such as (A Trip to Prague, 1960) and others giving me the impression that Czechs and Poles love their streetcar systems.  What would have happened if these cities abandoned their street railways after World War II?  Would the United States provided GM Fishbowls?   Would Poles and Czechs and others love their Fishbowls?  I do not think so, in my humble opinion.  In the picture below I took a picture of a New York City Fishbowl and I added a Warsaw tramway destination from their tramway map.  I choose a destination that had text that an American keyboard can handle.  The sign did not come out clear but it is route number 27 in Warsaw.