From Untapped Cities
Like the rest of Grand Central, the Campbell Apartment serves as a testament to the grandiosity of another era. But this testament is one that can be imbibed. If appropriately attired, enter a room resplendent from paraphernalia of the past and sip on cocktails from the fin de siècle in this virtual museum to the opulence of New York’s high society of the past.
Though it did have a kitchen and butler, this was once the office, not apartment, of tycoon John C. Campbell. President of the Credit Clearing House, Campbell rented the space to be closer to the hub of the New York Central Railroad (Cornelius Vanderbilt’s train empire), of which he was a major stockholder. Rumor has it that he used to sit behind the massive desk (that to this day takes up much of one side of the gorgeous 25 by 60 foot room) half nude, as he detested wrinkles in his trousers. The Campbell Apartment deteriorated drastically after its namesake vacated it in the ‘50s, and like everything else in the terminal, it fell on hard times. Metro North claimed the space as first a signalmen’s headquarters and later a police station, temporarily detaining criminals in what was once Campell’s wine cellar and storing their firearms in his curio cabinet. It was restored to its original glory in the late ‘90s, and is an excellent place to get a real taste of the decadence of Grand Central’s past.
Grand Central Station also holds a tennis court, a top secret room, and a secret railway line that is only used when the President is in town.
Two great pictures (umm, one’s a postcard) of Saskatoon’s 2nd City Hall which is King Edward School. The City bought King Edward School from the Saskatoon Public School board and used it as City Hall until the new one (designed by architect David Webster opened in 1956).
I post it here because I find it interesting and also as a point that it is awfully hard to find good information about the City of Saskatoon’s history without going downtown to the Local History Room at the Saskatoon Public Library. It’s almost as if the internet doesn’t exist locally. Some cities celebrate their past, Saskatoon locks into a tiny room across from City Hall.
New York Magazine asked 53 historians what Barack Obama’s legacy will be
Almost every respondent wrote that the fact of his being the first black president will loom large in the historical narrative — though they disagreed in interesting ways. Many predict that what will last is the symbolism of a nonwhite First Family; others, the antagonism Obama’s blackness provoked; still others, the way his racial self-consciousness constrained him. A few suggested that we will care a great deal less about his race generations from now — just as John F. Kennedy’s Catholicism hardly matters to current students of history. Across the board, Obamacare was recognized as a historic triumph (though one historian predicted that, with its market exchanges, it may in retrospect be seen as illiberal and mark the beginning of the privatization of public health care). A surprising number of respondents argued that his rescue of the economy will be judged more significant than is presently acknowledged, however lackluster the recovery has felt. There was more attention paid to China than isis (Obama’s foreign policy received the most divergent assessments), and considerable credit was given to the absence of a major war or terrorist attack, along with a more negative assessment of its price — the expansion of the security state, drones and all.
So I was looking for some information on Keeler, Saskatchewan, where my family is from and I came across this family history of my family. My grandfather and I weren’t that close after my dad left in 1982 but I couldn’t help but notice he spelled my name wrong in the family history. And if this is accurate, my father is now 62 years old. I had no idea.
In case you are interested, this is his old house (and post office), this is the bar I hung out in when I was six and this is his old garage. Also when I was six, I may or may not have held up the general store.
I had my trusty dog Tip, a pop gun, a cowboy hat and what I thought was a reasonable demand that she gave me some ice cream. I would have gotten all of the ice cream if I hadn’t fired my toy gun (she thought it was real). When nothing appeared to have been shot, she told my grandmother. Crime never pays kids. Crime never pays.
Interesting trivia note is that I have the till from that General Store in my house today. It weighs a ton and everywhere you can grab it has very sharp edges. I also think that the book is incorrect as I have memories of Mrs. Garry running the store when I was older than three.
Of course as I am reading, it just clicked in that these must be my great grandparents.
Totally unrelated note: A well known lawyer in town has told me that he think the reason that he is in Canada is because his great great grandfather possibly killed one of my ancestors in a drunken fight back in the U.K. Even weirder is that we have known each other for years before and he found this out while researching his own family’s genealogy. Its stuff like that gets left out of small town history books.
I guess I am glad that we don’t come from an honour based society where I would have to kill one of his family and so on and so on. If I remember correctly, he did buy dinner the night that he told us this so we could be even.
What else did Bobby Kennedy know? Last year, the son and namesake of the late Attorney General Robert Kennedy revealed publicly that his father had considered the Warren Commission’s final report, which largely ruled out the possibility of a conspiracy in the assassination of John F. Kennedy, to be a “shoddy piece of craftsmanship.” Robert Jr. said his father suspected that the president had been killed in a conspiracy involving Cuba, the Mafia or even rogue agents of the CIA. Historian Arthur Schlesinger Jr., a close friend of the Kennedy family, would disclose years later that he was told by Robert Kennedy in December 1963, a month after the president’s murder, that the former attorney general worried that the assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald, was “part of a larger plot, whether organized by Castro or by gangsters.” Schlesinger said that in 1966, two years after the Warren Commission report, Kennedy was still so suspicious about a conspiracy that he wondered aloud “how long he could continue to avoid comment on the report—it is evident that he believes it is was poor job.”
Newly disclosed documents from the commission, made public on the 50th anniversary of its final report, suggest that the panel missed a chance to get Robert Kennedy to acknowledge publicly what he would later confess to his closest family and friends: that he believed the commission had overlooked evidence that might have pointed to a conspiracy.
The documents show the commission was prepared to press Kennedy to offer his views, under oath, about the possibility that Oswald had not acted alone. An affidavit, in which Kennedy would have been required to raise his right hand and deny knowledge of a conspiracy under penalty of perjury, was prepared for his signature by the commission’s staff but was never used. Instead, the attorney general became the highest ranking government official, apart from President Lyndon Johnson, who was excused from giving sworn testimony or offering a sworn written statement to the commission.
The decision to scrap the affidavit is another example of the extraordinary deference paid to the attorney general and his family by Chief Justice Earl Warren, the commission’s chairman. In an unsworn August 1964 letter to Warren—already public and long seen by historians as evasive, if not as an effort to mislead the commission outright about what he really knew and suspected—Kennedy said he was aware of “no credible evidence to support the allegations that the assassination of President Kennedy was caused by a domestic or foreign conspiracy.” Kennedy’s private papers, however, suggest he struggled over signing even the unsworn letter to Warren.
There you go, some JFK conspiracy content for you on an early Tuesday morning.