Thursday, April 05, 2012

Back to Calico

Blogger has recently updated its user interface, and it has caused me a number of odd problems. I suppose I'll get used to it, but for now it is doing weird things. Like publishing a draft immediately instead of on the date/time that I have assigned to it. So some of you may have already seen this post a week or so ago! There are more screwups to come, I'm afraid.

ANYWAY, it's time for another trip out to the Mojave Desert to visit the old silver-mining town of Calico.

This first image is from a different lot than the other three, but it is a nice shot (from March 1959) of "Calico House", which I am assuming was (is?) the equivalent of the Saloon at Knott's.

The next three images are from March, 1963. Here's a neat shot that gives a pretty vivid idea of how harsh the environment is around Calico; it looks like Mars! See that little train? It's the Calico and Odessa Railroad, which you can still ride today; it is typical of the kind of trains used to haul silver ore back in the old days.

Walter Knott seemed to be a fan of humorous little "photo ops"... they have them at the Berry Farm, and they had them at Calico too (here's a link to another one).

Yet another Fun Foto; the fresh-faced kid's head looks wonderfully wrong on top of that miner's body.


JG said...

Hi Major, I am always ready for more Calico pics.

Yes, the Calico House was the saloon, (Sarsaparilla only, thanks).

The landscape is much like Mars, only less red, no vegetation to speak of, all the trees you see in "developed" Calico are props, not native growth, and probably not even planted by the miners. Trees cannot grow in that environment without irrigation unless they are right on top of subsurface spring, which is often the only sign of a spring, a big tree in the middle of the rocks.

I bet they have changed the description on that bathtub. I have a similar picture of myself, taken at Knotts in a big steel kettle.

Thank you.

I really appreciate your dropping the captchas, i am figuring out how to follow without email, its awkward but still possible.


TokyoMagic! said...

I wonder if Claude Bell did the sculpt for that miner's body? I have to get over to Calico one of these days! I'm hoping it still has most of the charm that we have seen in your vintage pics, Major.

So what else is happening to Blogger? I noticed a message at the top of my "dashboard" that says "Blogger is getting a new look in April. Upgrade Now." I have been meaning to mention it and ask if anyone knows what other horrible changes will be forced upon us? Sorry, but I HATE change! Disneyland SHOULD be a museum! Cedar Fair, STOP DESTROYING KNOTT'S! Six Flags, BRING BACK THE METRO MONORAIL! There, I feel better now.

Nancy said...

this place always looks like it would be fun to see...its not every day you get to visit a mining town OR Mars!

Katella Gate said...

Nice photo blend Major, It's been many years since I was to Calico, your pics bring back memories... mostly irritation. "Why couldn't we have gone to Disneyland instead?" I guess my parents need a vacation from the happiest place on earth.

Not happy about any of the changes being made to Blogger. Obviously, somebody wants the site needs to be "New and Different", but it's turning out "Strange and Unwelcome".


Gojira said...

Always love the pics of Calico, Major! The first slide from 1959 prompted me to pull out my photo of the Calico House from June 2005 -- the three plants on the right were still there only they were so big they were almost as tall as the porch roof and round like a ball. The fire engine on the left of the photo was there too. Parked in the same stall but inside, and a bit worse for wear.

David said...

Never heard of this place, but I would not mind a visit. Though, to be honest, the bottom two pics are...odd. It's not the lady in the tub -though that is weird- its the price for the scrubbing. Is there some sexual innuendo about having the "full scrub" (wink, wink, shrug, shrug). Why only have half of yourself cleaned?

And the boy in the last picture looks awkward, like Mom and Closed Eyed Dad, forced him to pose. I bet June Cleaver there has a six-gun in her right hand.

Pilsner Panther said...

I've been having trouble with Blogger, too, Major. I usually post ten new 1920's-30s-40's songs on the first of every month at Pilsner's Picks, but now I've had to put the page on hold until I get everything ironed out. Once again, some people never learn that very basic rule:"If it ain't broke, don't fix it!"

Major Pepperidge said...

JG, I have a few more Calico photos coming up for you! They are from the mid-to-late 1960's, if I recall correctly, but they are fun. I wonder if that tub is still there?

TokyoMagic!, I also wondered if Claude Bell did that sculpture, although it looks more crude than his other work. As for Blogger's changes, they will just take some getting used to; it's already becoming less of a pain to compose new posts (although not as easy as it has been for the last 6 years!).

Nancy, it is a fun place… but it is also WAY out there in the desert. I want to go, but look at a map and change my mind.

Katella, I think that as a kid I knew that Disneyland was a park that we only could go to once or twice a year, so I was happy to go to Knott's, Calico, Jungleland, the Alligator Farm, etc! I can leave feedback for Google about the updated Blogger, so I'll drop a message about mail notification.

David, haven't you seen the other Calico posts on this blog? As for the "full scrub", you never know… Walter Knott was OK with having a brothel at Knott's!

Pilsner Panther, I didn't know you had a blog! I'll have to check out your vintage songs, it sounds very cool.

JG said...

Hi Major, JG here. I have talked to some other bloggers I know and they have a fix for the email comments thing.

Check your email, I will send to you. It is easy to implement, but hard to find.

Great Calico post. But I would opt to scrub myself. Some things a man can't ask to have someone else do.


Pilsner Panther said...

Major, you'll be able to look at my blog; but for now, that's all. I've probably been on the web with it even longer than you have (10 years), and this is the first time I couldn't post the new playlist at the beginning of the month! So if you'd like to see what the page design looks like, at least, just click on my name in this message header.

I'm going to try to get it fixed by May 1st.