Saturday, July 19, 2014

Then & Now, Texas & Seattle

I always love a good set of "then and now" pictures. Hopefully you do too!

Let's start with this picture from Floresville, Texas (undated, but certainly 1950s), which is about 15 miles to the southeast of San Antonio. We're near the corner of C Street and 3rd, looking toward a sleepy street of small businesses, and the wonderful building housing Ballard Drugs. Hey, I need drugs all the time!

Former Texas Governor John Connelly (who was sitting in Kennedy's limo on November 22 1963) was born in Floresville; scenes from Robert Redford's "The Great Waldo Pepper" (1975) and Steven Spielberg's directorial debut, "Sugarland Express" (1974) were filmed there.

Here's a Google Maps street view, looking remarkably unchanged! Population nowadays… around 6,400. Ballard Drugs is now Wilson County Hardware, but otherwise it's still good old Floresville.

GDB reader "Nanook" should enjoy this shot of the Seattle Center Monorail circa August 1970. The monorail was built for the "Century 21 Expo" in 1962… over eight million people rode it during those six months! 

We're looking up Pine Street, northeast-ish. As you can see, the monorail passes right overhead...

…which puzzled me, since the monorail is still in Seattle, but not in this photo. Where did it go? Wikipedia tells us  that "…the south end of the line was a large station over Pine Street at Westlake Avenue that formed a lid over the street and a portion of Westlake Park. In 1988, the station was moved north a block with the construction of the Westlake Center shipping mall on what had been the right-of-way of Westlake Avenue". So that explains it!

I hope you have enjoyed today's "then and now" photos.


Nanook said...


Brother, Floresville certainly looks fairly 'quaint' even in today's view.

And as for the Monorail's disappearing act - chalk-up one for Wikipedia. Their explanation is actually correct. If we could pull back the camera in the 'current view', although we wouldn't quite be able to see the Monorail train, we would see the SE corner of Westlake Center, and just about 200-feet north of the corner is where the current south end of the Monorail tracks end.

Hey - I was just there last week enjoying Monorail Blue, in all it's 1962 splendor-! (It's not just the Disney parks who get to name their monorail trains based on color. Seattle has Monorail 'Red' & 'Blue'). All aboard-!

Thanks, Major.

Bearride - Raymond said...

ahhh, Seattle.... My hometown!

Major Pepperidge said...

Nanook, I wouldn't mind basking in Floresville's quaintness for a few days. I'm glad to hear that Wikipedia got something right… I figured you would b there to correct any mistakes!

Bearride - Raymond, except for the '62 Expo, Seattle doesn't show up often on my blog!