HISTORIC READING

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Since my Hometown of Reading, PA is a very Historic area they should have more of these placed around the City to show what once was there long ago.

There is a McDonalds Fast Food in it’s place off to the left of this Image.

Thanks for reading.

Les

RETURN TO BETHELHEM STEEL

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I tend to enjoy going back to this very historic area just because so much has happened here from years gone bye.  Bethelhem Steel was once the largest Steel producers on the East Coast.  However, due to corporate greed over time and compitation from foreign steel producers, the place just did not keep up with the changing market.  Years ago, the once mighty steel producer, stopped it’s production never to make steel again.  Today, the place is a Historic reminder of what used to be.  The buildings that are still standing retain the color from the blast furnace’s that once roared here.  Some of the buildings have been torn down, but many still stand.

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Here looking down one of the area’s, are buildings that still remain.  On the right is what used to be Machine Shop #2 where gun barrels for battleships were turned on huge lathe’s that are no longer there.  These lathe’s were so big that the operator could sit on the carriage while turning the barrel.  Would have loved to see that.  On the left is the Blower Room that once supplied air to the Mill.  In the distance is the Crane Repair Building where huge Cranes lifted gun barrels onto waiting flat bed cars.

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A Plaque showing the ships that were made from the Steel Plant.

Thanks for reading.

Les

TOWER HOTEL

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Once located on top of Skyline Drive here in Reading, the Tower House was another popular attraction for the Reading area.  Built in1890, it stood just a short distance away from the Summit Hotel.  Here you can see the old Summit Hotel in the distance, with the Railroad that led up to them both.  The Tower Hotel was also destroyed by Arson fire on April 24, 1923.  What is strange about this is the Summit House was destroyed by fire just one day before!  I’m sure that Arsonists set fire to both of them, but why remains a mystery to this day.  They were never caught.

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Built on the old foundation of the Tower Hotel now stands the Mt. Penn Fire Tower that was built in 1932.  The Fire Tower was used as a look-out for mountain fires that surround the area.  The orginial road is still used to this day.

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The Fire Tower as it is today.  The City does not take much care of this structure any longer.  It used to be open to climb the steps to see the City of Reading, but now is closed because of being un-safe.  The lights on it don’t work anymore, and the Dome is falling apart.  The windows are broken and have never been replaced.  It’s used as a radio, cell phone transmitter at this time.

Again, it’s a sorry thing to see that so much History here in my City is going to waste.  As with much of the History here, it also will fall apart.

Thanks for reading.

Les

SUMMIT HOUSE

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The Summit House was once located at the top of Skyline Drive here in Reading, PA.  It was a popular place for people from the City to escape the busy streets of Reading for a week-end or just a few day’s.  The House had rooms, a bar, billard hall, dance hall, and many activities for young and old.  Today, there is not much left of the ole’ place.  On April 23, 1923 it was set on fire by a Arson that was never found.  Image shown was from a Postcard.

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What remains of the Stone steps that led up to the House.  Steps that lead to History.

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Another view of the old steps that still exist today.

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This was once a railroad bed that came right below the Summit House.  People could ride the Train up to the House, and take the steps that I showed above.  The rails & wooden ties have long been torn away.  It’s used as a Walking Trail now.

There is not very much to show of the old place.  The foundation of where it once stood is still there, but in poor condition.  The City of Reading does not take much care of this Historic spot.  It just waste’s away into History.

Thank you for stopping by.

Les

BUNG-HOLE

 Greetings to my NEW readers that I have aquired in the past few day’s.  I appreciate you following what I Post.  Thank you!

Now, on to something else.

In your many conversations with other people you know, have you ever heard the word “Bung-Hole”?  No, it’s not what you might think on the human body!

The word “Bung-Hole” comes from the day’s of Proabition way back in the 1920’s and 1930’s.  Back then beer was made and stored in wooden barrels that were hand made.  It was then used by illegal Rum-runners that would sell them to “speak easy’s” where ever it was needed.

After making a barrel to pour beer into, they had to have a “hole” to get the beer into.  A hole was bored into the barrel and beer was poured into the barrel.  Now, there had to be a plug to keep the beer from spilling out.  The plug was called a “Bung”.  Thus the name and how it came to be.

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How bout’ that!

Thanks for stopping by.

Les

PACKARD AUTO PLANT

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Just recently I have gotten an interest in the Auto Industry that used to be one of the biggest Automotive Factors in the world in Dearborne, Michigan  This is what is left of the Packard Automotive Assembly Plant in Michigan, that used to manufacture luxury cars back in the early years of the 1900s

The PPackardAssembly Plant opened in 1903.  It is a 3,500,000 sq. ft. area that used the latest technology to assemble their cars.  Employing thousands of craftsman, and office workers it became one of the biggest employers in the city.

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This is just one of the many cars that were built there.  It’s the 1950 Packard Deluxe Model.  If you ever saw the movie “Raising Miss Daisy” this is one of the cars that were shown in the movie, but a different color.

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Above is the 1957 Packard Carribian, that also was built there.  In my personel opinion, this car was not bad looking, but back then it was expensive to buy.

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From it’s early day’s, the Packard Plant was slowly going down-hill.  I’m reading the one of the CEO’s bought out the Studerbaker business that used to make the Studerbaker Hawk that never did sell that good.  I’m reading that many mistakes were made during it’s operation, thus contributing to the down fall of the Packard.  Since it was opened for assembly in 1903, and then closed it’s doors in 1958.  This left thousands of workers out of a job, and helping to create Slum areas in Dearborne, Michigan  There were many other factors that helped.  Back then, Detroit, was known as the “Motor City” or “Mo Town” where a number of the Rock & Roll singers came from.  The Ronnetts, and the Supreme’s were just two of them.

I must take time to give credit to Abandoned America for their Images, because I’d never get to see this place for myself.  I would just love to walk around these famous buildings just to experience the History that is here.  I have read in reasearch that these old abandoned building’s harbor some bad things that you don’t want.  Wild dogs, drugs, homeless people, and some of the structers falling apart.  There have been some death’s here in the past.  I’m also reading that the Plant has been sold to some developer that wants to turn it into something, but preserve the past.  Other places like Flint, Michigan was another place were the Auto Industry fell apart.  I am currently reading the book “The End of Detroit” and how it lost it’s grip on the American Car Market.  Most people don’t realize just how close we came to loosing the Auto Industry!

If I have written some wrong information here, please correct me.  Had to Post this on memory.

Thanks for stopping by.

Les

HISTORIC HOMES IN READING, PA

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The City of Reading, PA where I live on the outskirts, is full of Historic Homes that date back to the 1800s.  This is just one of them.

This is the Wilhelm Mansion that was built in 1877 by Charles W. Wilhelm & his Wife, Sarah.  Mr. Wilhelm lived here from 1877-1936.  There is also a Carriage House in the back, that was added in 1890, which I could not get to.  The Mansion is built in the Gothic Style.  It’s located on Center Ave. in the Historic District of Reading.  Is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

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This is just part of what is in the Mansion.  Not my Image.

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This is just one of the ornate ceilings in the Mansion.

When I took the Image outside, the Mansion was not open for visitor Tours during the Winter.  I would just love to see this Mansion inside, but not until Spring.

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This is the same place, but I’ve messed with it using Lightroom CC.  Sort of makes it look a bit “spooky”?

Thanks for visiting again.

Les