Over the weekend I got an amazing email from Tom Schneck. It included this rare photo of his uncle Floyd Shimalla driving around in the first Manville Police car. If you recognize the name Floyd Shimalla that’s because he was Manvilles first constable and is featured in the pretty famous “First Manville Administration” photo that is on display at the Manville Library. I also posted it on this site… you can see it HERE. According to Tom he was also a professional Heavyweight boxer, which I actually was not aware of, but if you ask me is pretty good experience if you are about to serve as the only constable for a brand new town. Anyway, this photo is dated 1929. I’m not sure what that building is in the background there… anyone know? Thanks so much Tom, for this great photo! Here is the back of the photo…
Archive for the scenic town photos Category
Old Main St. Flood • Click to Enlarge
You know sometimes a photo is just a photo, and this photo is just a great old photo, albeit a blurry one of an old flood. This is Main Street looking south towards the old Weston Station, and the old, long since been replaced crooked tunnel.
I didn’t make this post to talk about floods. I did it to say thanks. I started this blog at the end of 2009 with absolutely no expectations that people would actually care. I did figure that it would generate minor interest from a few folks around the neighborhood, but taking a look at the stats I realized that it’s pretty incredible.
A blog about a tiny town, 2 square miles small, that generates views from every country in the world. Even Today we helped someone in Slovakia find info about their families home in Manville.
Just today viewers also checked in from Indonesia, Phillipines, Canada, Denmark, UK, & Slovakia. I even have a map of the hot viewer areas, and Alaska checks in as much as the mainland. This site has been viewed 128,397 times. Today we hit 1000 comments for only 133 posts. There are 74 subscribing members. All those stats do not even include the people that read through rss feeds and email notifications.
These are all mind boggling statistics, and here’s the best part. The participation from the readers, all the info in the comments, all the submissions, and all the siblings showing the site to their elders to help pass down the information are the very things that make this site great. So I just wanted to take a moment to share those statistics and thoughts… and to just say thanks for continuing to breathe life into this thing. It’s been an awesome ride so far… I’m looking forward to some more good years.
Hello everyone, I was just checking out my buddy Gary Carmon’s Manville site carmonsandusky.com and noticed he put up some great new photos. While we were on the topic of old signs and storefronts I decided to lift a few. These all came from Neal Ranauro’s Manville photo archive, and I’m not sure how I missed these when I was looking through them, but they are great. You can click on the photos to enlarge them.
First is this great photo of the Chester House. If you enlarge it and go to the right of the photo you can see the old Gamby’s Diner at the future site of Quick Check, and Charlie’s Resturant in the back there.
This next photo is a little further down Main St. Starting at Quigleys Bike Shop. The Quigley’s building in now the home of The Grub Hut, but back in the day it was like the great bike shop in town that was famous for the giant tangled bike heap that sat in the middle of the front room. As a kid I remember being slightly afraid to go in there in fear of a bike avalanche and a slow agonizing 8 year old death. I’m still looking for good photos of that place if anyone has any. Anyway you can see the great Liccardi Motors lot in the back there. I’m not sure what year that disappeared, but I totally do not remember it. Looks awesome though. I’m sure it was an asset to an evening drive down the strip in it’s day. You can also see the old corner Sunoco Station way in the back there. Oh and speaking of great advertising… how about the 24 hour milk dispensary. I wonder whatever became of those amazing old signs.
The next photo is more of a birds eye, and was taken out of one of the JM office windows, where Ranauro worked as photographer. This is the corner of Knopf and Main. You can see Lebbings Garage, Shop Rite, and the Esso station, which I believe may have been run By the Manna Family. This is just a great view of Main St. with plenty to look at.
Remember if you have any photos you would like to share please get in touch with me so we can help preserve our towns history. I can help you get them scanned and digitally archived as well.
The Manville Lanes • Click to Enlarge
I took a walk over to the Manville Lanes today after learning is was all closed up and gutted. My main goal was to try and find a worker so I could attempt to procure the giant sign on the side of the building, but no one was around. It bummed me out so much that that classic old sign, a beacon of my childhood might escape my grasp and end up in a landfill somewhere off the side of 287. As I stood in defeat remembering the way only half those neon letters used to flicker and light up the Manville night sky, it occurred to me that I might take a little walk around downtown Manville and get some photos of some of the great local advertising before it dissapears as well..
Like always the adventure was a rewarding one. I wish I has time to cover the whole town but for now here are a few Gems.
I recently struck up a friendship with the John Krasansky. John has a genius personality that kind of reminds me of Nick Charles in the movie the thin man. The guy can tell great stories, so I honestly didn’t believe him when he told me there was an old Kay Appliance showroom that closed in the 1950s and was undisturbed ever since. But when I got there I’ll be damned if there wasn’t a 1950s appliance store time capsule. I don’t want to post the address because I think I already shook up the neighbors by taking all kinds of photos over there, but I got this great shot through the window…
You can enlarge the photo by clicking on it. It’s amazing that a place like this exists. And speaking of store that closed down decades ago, leaving room fulls of brand new antiques… The Chabra Professional building used to have a hardware store under it. Apparently they just put some white paper over the windows, hung a few wreaths and called it a day. In all fairness this is a pretty iconic building in town. I love the old sign with the terrible spacing.
The next one is an old ghost sign on Main Street that is now obscured by buildings. I managed a decent photo of it. It’s an ad for M.H. Burke & Co. Which was apparently a Dept. Store in Somerville. I’m glad this thing survived…
The next two photos I got are fairly new, but they are great hand painted signs so I included them. The first one is from the Hair Palace… and it’s just super well done.
The next one is out in front of the jewelry store on Main St. This is just a great diamond painting. I’m not sure if they used cheap paint or if they intentionally left the old rickety paint… either way this is great…
This is another classic Manville sign, I wish they didn’t ruin it with the plexiglass. I guess kids were breaking the neon…
Camplain Liquors doesn’t only have this classic neon, but on the side window they have another great hand painted sign. This one is such a classic too…
Ice Cold Beer, I don’t know anyone who can argue with that. This next one is one of my favorite neons around. The Chester House sign. Tommy recently got someone to give this sign a facelift and fix the neon arrow… it looks great.
And finally the old Kay Electric building has a great old sign painted right on to the building. This one is kind of tucked away…
I managed to get a pretty good shot of one of the old service trucks too… it’s pretty cool the way the old paint preserved the logo a little.
Photo by Carl Mydans • Click to Enlarge
It seems like a life time since I put up some good impactful photos on here… and I apologize about that. It seems like I get busier and busier by the hour lately. In a desperate attempt to keep something consistent going here without spending hours warming up a library chair, I checked out the Library of Congress website… and wouldn’t you know it was fruitful. I found these great photos that were Taken by Carl Mydans. All of these are from the mid 1930′s. The photo above of Main Street has actually appeared on this site before, but the quality this time around is a lot better. Also, it’s just a great photo and worthy of a rerun since we have a lot of new folks on here. Here are some more…
This real estate hut was on Finderne Ave. heading out of town. I believe this one was from 1936, you can expand the photo by clicking on it.
I believe this photo is the Federal Creosote Factory, which famously polluted the entire former Rustic Mall and East Camplain Rd section of Manville, leaving “rivers of creosote” under the ground and prompting the closing of the entire mall and a major federal clean up to happen. You can see Main St. and The Manville National Bank in the background.
This photo is just entitled “inhabitant of Manville” can anyone out there identify this man?
Another old homestead photo, which seems to be related to the photo above. What a great looking well.
This last great photo is obviously standing underneath some sort of water tower. My initial instinct tells me its the one on the North side by the High School, but I can not positively identify it. All of these photos were found in the Library of Congress digital archive. I’d love to hear any of your thoughts or additional information, so as always leave em in the comments section. Enjoy!
Photo by Neal Ranauro • Click to Enlarge
I have a few random photos, that are not necessarily about anything. They are just random views around town or what have you. I’ve posted a bunch of them up here over the years, and since this blog is becoming a little too large to scroll through every post on the main page I wanted somewhere to put them all… so I created a category called “scenic town photos”. Hopefully one day I’ll get around to linking all the random ones I already posted to this new category. So without further adue here are two photos from Neal Ranauro’s archive taken from atop the Manville water tower. They are both from the same angle, the one at the top focuses on Roosevelt School and Johns Manville, while the bottom photo is more of an areal style landscape photo . A lot of detail can be seen in both photos if you enlarge them (they will each enlarge twice). These are great.
Photo by Neal Ranauro • Click to Enlarge
AERIAL VIEW OF ROOSEVELT AVE BETWEEN 13TH AND 16TH AVE.
CLICK PHOTO TO ENLARGE
At this point the Manville History Blog could not exist without the great contributions I’ve been getting. Town participation has been incredible. Here are a few great pics that were contributed by Tim K. during the building of his families house in the 50′s right next to Royce Brook on Roosevelt Ave. The photos predate Weston School and the Weston Bridge on 13th Ave. As can be seen in the following photo. That row of trees would be the location of the brook.
CLICK THE PHOTO TO ENLARGE
And then a more ground level shot (note the cement street marker)
And finally the completion of Tim’s families home in 1959… these are such great photos.