Sepia Saturday

Sepia Saturday

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Up, Up and Away........and Down Again.

It isn't ancient history but it has been quite a few years since we attended the Indianola Balloon Festival in Indianola, Iowa. The photo shown here shows the owners of the balloon blowing hot air into the balloon.

When younger I would see these balloons, usually just one, used to advertise for an event or for a company.  It would be easily seen floating above Des Moines, Iowa with a banks name on its side.

The shaped of a balloon seems to be one of form following function.  The patters of color add to the beauty of the shape but the uniform panels of cloth sewn together makes it into a soft sculpture.

In a balloon race they are to all take off from another location at the same time. They then land onto this location.  Sometimes the wind currents takes a balloon hostage and the balloonists have to pass on by as they will miss the place altogether.  The people in the basket take it with stride and wave as they float on by knowing that it is not a pure controlled science. I guess there must be an emergency field somewhere down the way, like a hay field that they can land onto.

At the end of the race the balloons maintain the inflation but stay anchored to the ground.  Then in unison they all turn on their burners to cause the balloons to look like glowing candles.

Many participants in Seipia Saturday create blogs to share.  They all tend to follow the same theme.  If you click HERE  SEPIA SATURDAY you will be able to go to the main site to view other versions of the theme.

Thanks for stopping by for a visit.

A painting that I did a few years back.  It has a definite balloon problem.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Marching Band.........

I don't believe I have any archived photos of people playing musical instruments.  My three brothers played wind instruments.  This brother played a baritone and my older brother played the french horn.  Even though it was a french horn he did march in the Murray High School band.  I do think that my older brother Ron did have his photo taken at the same time as this one but I don't seem to have it in any of my boxes of photos.

My brother Rex shown above would practice his baritone horn in the upstairs bedroom with his window open.  The neighbor lady who was a few miles away claimed she could hear him while she was out hanging out her laundry on the clothes line.

The uniform, which was purple and white,  was fancy and each member was required to wear white dress pants.  The moms of the members were required to sew a purple cloth band down the side of the pants. With white shoes and a barrel tube hat with a brim, they looked really great.  They had ostrich feathers to stick into the top of the hat.

The practice times of the band when they were marching outside was at the same time as we had recess.  Students would line up and follow the band as they marched.  I am sure it looked like a good "Spanky and our Gang" type of movie with all those little urchins marching behind the high school band members.  I think it funny now that no one bothered to makes us stop doing that.  I would think the music instructor would have been out there but I guess the majorette was in charge of the band's practice. No teacher on duty either so it would have made for great chaos.

 The feather top notches are still used today by marching bands. As I do remember now that I do have a photo of both of my sons in band uniforms.  Unfortunately they are in photo form as the computer wasn't invented yet for private citizens to use.  Maybe I can put that on my lists of things to find when I do have some free time. I see many band hats, as we use to call them, are on sale on the internet. The photo has been swiped or borrowed from the sales site of ebay.

Those who are responding to the call of posting in SEPIA SATURDAY can be found by clicking on the Sepia Saturday name.  You will find others who are posting about musical things or maybe something else altogether differently than that.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Lookie, Lookie......

An old photo of four men who caugth some fish from the river. Times look tough so they will have meat on the table for supper.  My grandfather is the one who isn't wearing bib overalls.  I don't have any idea of who the other guys are but my grandfathers name was Leroy Martin Brown. The heavy eyebrows were inherited by a couple of generations beyond him.  I had a uncle and his son that did look like him on the family tree branch. My cousin Gerald looks like him now as he is older than probably than my grandfather in the photo back then.  Leroy died in 1937 from TB and is buried in Moon Cemetery near Macksburg, Iowa.

These three guys are all giving us that stare except for the young ones on the end.  The short guy is my Uncle Donald, my dad Jesse Burgus is the second one from the left. Uncle Ralph, Uncle Carl and then Uncle Cecil ends up the lineup. My dad was born in 1917 and if he looks 12 years old here it would date the photo as 1929. Ten years later he would be dating my mom and getting married and a couple of years later he was on his way to fight in the Battle of the Bulge in Germany.  These guys all had a German father and grandfather and a British mother and grandmother.

One more gaze from the Uncle Weaver Wheeler and his wife Ellen.  I could imagine him having a car as he seemed to do well in figuring out how to make money.  He and his wife lived away from the rest of the family up in Hardin County, Iowa.

It is number 301 posting for the group and I hope to see more posting from me.  It is a pleasure to share and to remember.  Visit others on SEPIA SATURDAY  by clicking on the name.  See all who have created blogs to join a group of people from all over the world. 

Friday, October 9, 2015

300 is Good!!!!

I started on Week 11.  I had to look it up.  I really didn't think that I could compete with the big ones who post so well and write so well, but I have hung in there.  I have stumbled a long the way and found life to be too busy to post.  I have always come back.  Not with the gusto that I once had but with the same interest that I had when I first began.

Family shots were my priority as I tried to organize and identify so many photos of my family's past.  The above photo is of my dad, creeping up on my two oldest brothers who are sitting in the yard.  As I look at it I am believe they are trying to get the boys to look at the camera and smile. The little girl is a first cousin that I have never met, lost because of a divorce, from family connections.  She and the guys are all older than me as I am not born yet in this photo taken probably in 1943.

The discoveries have been great, As I met blog deadlines I surprisingly found a photo of my grandparents visiting the Pacific ocean.  The took a train across the  United States to Oregon to visit their grandson. The boy is a year older than me and my grandfather died later in the year.  I never met him but Charlie was said to be a friendly old man.

I found a shot of two great great aunts.  They were my great grandmothers sisters.  I have only a newspaper copy of a reunion that my mom and others attend 70 plus years ago. The family name was Maxsun.
My Great Grandmother on my mother's side was Carrie Rosella Maxson Brown Driver

The two woman above are two of her sisters and the photo identifies them with their married names.  The woman on the left is Ida Roberts and on the right is Cara Brown. To have found this photo and it actually would be my Great great aunts is all amazing to me. 

Two other sisters were Jane Henderson and Ellen Boward.
There were also two brothers John Maxson and Walter Maxson.
That would make seven in total in the Maxson Family.

Because of this blog I was forced to find the facts and meet more family than I knew existed. 

Because of this blog I learned to tell the difference between my Grandpa Leroy Brown and my other Grandpa Charles Burgus. I use to confuse them and would put the wrong name on each.  This is my Grandfather Leroy Brown shown left.

 This is the photo of my Grandfather Charles Thomas Burgus. I never knew either one of them.  Grandpa Brown died of TB in 1937.   Grandfather Burgus died the year before I was born in 1949.

Sometimes my blog seems like a train wreck as I get started telling a story and it just plain derails before I am done.  I like that the purpose of the site is to share photos of the past and if one knows the history then you get to tell your story. I am so glad that I can post on the week 300.    Thanks for stopping by and check out the others who are posting on the 300th week anniversary.  Click on Sepia Saturday Posts and see what others are sharing. 

Monday, September 7, 2015


At the south end of Lake Superior, the deepest clear water lake in the world, sits a harbor.  Duluth, Minnesota, where there is a lot of history in the shipping of lumber, iron ore and other products that are shipped all over the world.  The entrance to the harbor has a draw bridge that raises up to allow the ships to move through the channel. The harbor has a lot of history with the people thriving on fishing and companies shipping goods.

The view is towards the inlet of the Atlantic ocean near Bar Harbor, Maine.  The bridge from one dock to another is crucial as the one dock raises and lowers with the tide.  The chains are there to keep things from floating away. When the tide is down the chains are long enough to stay connected as things drop 12 feet or more.

A bridge in the same area to all the docks is used the  photo of my youngest son and his wife.  It was their wedding day and they had been married on Cadilllac Mountain earlier.  This was taken a few years ago.
Among my dad's war photos is this one of Belgium children fishing off of the bridge.  The time in history would be around the 1940's and soldiers are waiting to be shipped out to go to the front of the Battle of the Bulge, trying to send the German front troops back into their own country.  I don't think my dad is one of these guys but I can't be sure.  The one guy has borrowed a pole from the kids to see what he can do.  I have had this photo around for a while but never noticed that it originally was a metal bridge and it must have been bomb.  A makeshift wooden bridge has been interwoven into the old metal one.

I searched my archives for bridges and I know I have more. They just didn't show up for me.  Others are blogging on Sepia Saturday.  You can click HERE to go to the main site to find all the other links.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

A message for BCIRISH

I will post this temporarily for you BCIRISH  as you left me no email address.  I did not get permission to share this so once you read it will you please let me know so that I can remove it from the net.  I hope this will give you some information to help you with your visit to family home town and house.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Oldies but Goodies........

 The older looking building in Des Moines, Iowa is the Polk County courthouse. It still stands today and is on the National Registry. The building itself is designed with a combinations of decorations from so many historic buildings from overseas.

The present courthouse was built in 1906 on the same square as the previous courthouse. It was built for $750,000 in the Beaux-Arts style.  It was designed by the Des Moines architectural firm of Proudfoot and Bird. The original columns, stairways and walls were constructed in marble. Murals on the fourth floor were painted by Charles A. Cummings and Edward Simmons.

This is full view of the back of the building as I took the shot from a parking lot on Saturday.  I am always amazed at the mixture of all of the architectural details of so many buildings found in Venice, Athens, Rome and the country of Greece. Notice the sharp contrast of a modern building to the left that declares no decoration other than line and value.

A quick look of the reality of the shot is shown here in color.  I am glad that the building is protected and the people will just build a newer building elsewhere.

Just for fun I want to share this one other older building in downtown Des Moines.  It has had some form of a bar on the main floor for many years.  I saw it still standing while downtown on Saturday and I had to get a shot of it. I had thought the building had been torn down.  By the signs in the windows I think that it is still a bar.

One final photo, just for fun, is of this modern building that sits to the left of the courthouse.  It is an interesting modern building with one decoration that has become famous.  The front of the building has the typical modern design for an accent to its look.  It is said the architect did not know that when it is lighted at night that the shape of a Seagram's Whiskey bottle would be in view.  The building could not light some of the windows to prevent the bottle from showing up but now it has become its trademark even though it is not a Seagram's building.

Thanks for stopping by to see my posting today.  You can visit others who are posting blogs on Sepia Saturday by just clicking here.