Louisville Magazine

AUG 2013

Louisville Magazine is Louisville's city magazine, covering Louisville people, lifestyles, politics, sports, restaurants, entertainment and homes. Includes a monthly calendar of events.

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bit the JUST SAYIN' S ince April, a new website called 502louisville.com, which devotes itself to old photos of Louisville and any conversation they might spur (and stir), has piqued local history bufs' interest — especially through its timelapse MASHüp Monday feature. For the mashup, site curator Marcy Werner re-shoots in color the same scene ofered by a vintage black-andwhite, then digitally stacks the images and shows you the subjects' aging in quickly sequenced gradations. It's cool as can be to see, say, a 1930 Piggly Wiggly grocery turn into an Impellizzeri's Pizza outlet. A late-June series of old Cherokee Park postcards I found on the site, most in hand-tinted color, instigated a personal quest for more yesteryear eye candy. You know where I ended up, don't you — eBay, which at that moment was (and most likely still is) loaded with dozens of early- to mid-20th-century images of Louisville for sale by people from Shively to Austria. Amazingly enough, one German knickknack seller was ofering a ceramic vase with a 1920s photo stencil of a drearylooking downtown Fourth Street at night. Particularly intriguing among the Fourth Street images were the earlycentury postcards printed by the Detroit Publishing Co. and F.M. Kirby & Co., along with, of course, Caufeld & Shook images. Te handtinted scene you see at left shows a shopper-rockin' 600 block of Fourth in 1942, with a Bette Davis movie at Loew's and the Rialto and Mary Anderson theaters in the distance, a block from the Seelbach. Another eBay Fourth scene, this time the 500 block shot circa 1910, showed both horse-and-buggy and electric streetcar users passing the lordly Seelbach, with the new Majestic vaudeville theater in the foreground. Two short-lived limestone monoliths ruled the east side of Fourth at the turn of the century — column-fronted First Christian Church, completed in 1876 and demolished for the Starks Building in 1909, and the fortress-like U.S. Post Ofce and Custom House, built in 1893 and deserted by 1932. (It was deconstructed in 1942 and its footprint used for a public park during the next decade.) All in all, it's easy to see from such photos why downtown's grand past so thoroughly diminishes its present. — Jack Welch www.kentucky.healthcharities.org 24 LOUISVILLE MAGAZINE 8.13

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