Millvale Murals are Masterpieces

Right in Millvale PA, across the Allegheny River from Pittsburgh.

” Croatian artist Maxo Vanka painted a one-of-a-kind masterpiece on the interior walls of St. Nicholas Croatian Catholic Church in Millvale, PA. The 25 murals—created in two intense periods in 1937 and 1941—are unique, evocative and larger-than-life representations of faith and family; the immigrant experience in America; social justice and injustice and the horrors of war”        from the website   Vanka Murals 

When I parked on Grant Avenue, I noticed the banner sign on the lamppost and remembered seeing these dramatic and stunning murals at St. Nicholas Church. Information on the website link about how to get a tour and how to support the preservation of these significant and historic artworks.

1954 KODACOLOR Memory Captured Before It’s Totally Faded

IMG_7577IMG_7580You may have old KODACOLOR prints in your home, fading away.

I captured this one with my iPhone. Not much color left.

I’m posting this one to say Happy Birthday to my brother David.

 

I’m almost two, he’s almost 5 – in this picture of the two of us sitting on our dad’s knees in Montclair NJ.

In Harmony, Pennsylvania

IMG_3363Harmony – the weekly photo challenge.

I thought a report from Harmony, PA would make an interesting and different post.

Always seeking fresh blog content.

I was already out in my car and drove along the Ohio River without the the GPS.  When I put Harmony PA into Maps App I was taken first to the street signs at the bottom of this post.  Harmony, Pennsylvania is about 30+ miles north of the city, Pittsburgh.

Unfortunately the Harmony Museum was closed for the day by the time I got to town so will find a willing friend and return. (Preferably on a Spring day with some blue sky.)

I read they have a German Christmas Market, too. Views of Main Street and

We will have lunch at the Stohr Haus Bakery .

Have to plan to arrive at the right time, next time.

Open       Wed-Fri  7-2          Saturday 8-2

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Below -the Historical Marker for the Harmonist Cemetery.

“Graves were not marked”

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Have you ever seen a cemetery without a single marker?

Link to information about the Harmony Society

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Steve and  I went to Harmony in March 2010 (blogpost at night)  for a poetry reading at the Bottlebrush Gallery   

Today I shopped in the gallery- bought tea towels and a baby quilt.

Because I took a circuitous route, avoiding the interstate and driving the secondary roads, my phone GPS took me to 3 Harmony signs near the town of Baden, PA.  Unintentional but interesting to find three Harmony signs.

Received a great response from Harmony Museum Thanks Ruth!! A great time to visit us next would be June 11th. It is our Herb & Garden Fair (at our Harmonist Barn), Fiber Festival in town, and Springfest in town. Lots going on! Free shuttle between the barn and town. Food, entertainment, artists, demonstrations, so much to photograph that day! Starts at 9 am and runs until 3 pm, though the shops are open later than that!

 

 

The Wilds, Cumberland Ohio

Mark and Erika called Saturday night and suggested we meet up at The Wilds.   Cumberland Ohio.  I took the New Concord Exit on I-70.

I said, sure I’ll meet you there! I was excited cause it was unexpected.  And who knew this place was so interesting?

It was about 130 miles for me to drive there and they drove about 90.  We took a 2 1/2 hour bus ride tour throughout the 10,000 acres and saw lots of wonderful animals.  Most are endangered in the wild and this conservation facility(non-profit) gives them the protected place to reproduce.  It was a beautiful day.

Bactrian Camel

Bactrian Camels- Mother and Child     (Yes, this was photographed in Ohio)

Przewalski Wild Horse

Przewalksi Wild Horse- a female

Sichuan Takin

Sichuan Takin

Zebras

Zebras- Buck and bray a bit while the one looks on

Bison

Bison running away from our bus

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25 cents in a machine and you can get food for the catfish.  They act like they have never eaten before or will they ever eat again. I know these were Jack’s favorite.

catfish close up

The catfish are not particularly attractive to me.

Rhino

Rhinoceros family time.   Our guide says there skin is really soft. A group of rhino is called a CRASH.

All photos taken with a Canon 70-200 mm L series lens on a Canon 5D

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Our knowledgeable guide Rob.

Ordinary Rabbit

And an ordinary rabbit.  Not endangered.

 

 

 

And if you want to travel with us on the bus, Anna captured a two minute segment of the tour!  Thanks Anna for the videoing,

Google Pittsburgh

When we first lived in Pittsburgh and Matthew played baseball in Mellon Park across the street from Bakery Square we could smell the aroma of baking. Crackers, cookies, it was the NABISCO Factory built in 1918.  Bakery Square has been “repurposed” as they say.  And GOOGLED.  

There’s a Coffee Tree that opens at 5:30 AM. for the early birds.

 

And a close-up crop of the Google flag.

Buildings Demolished- A Sign Discovered

Converted to black and white to accompany this discovery.

A bit of research on the web  and I found the photograph of the Fiore Family in their Larimer Meat Market.

I drove by just before sunset and was surprised to find some buildings missing.  The ground covered with hay. And then I spied this wonderful sign.  What a gift.  Larimer used to be densely populated with Italian immigrants but this area is fairly desolate now. Vacant lots were restaurants and shops used to be.  There are still homes in the area but lots of spaces in-between of what used to be there. About a mile from my house.

Only the automobiles in the photo give it a date.  TODAY.

I hope some of their descendants find this post and write a comment.

copied and pasted from a Google Search.

 

Bedford, PA- Home of the National Museum of the American Coverlet

Laszlo Zongor explains the system of Jacquard Loom(see below) and the punched holed cards, each card a single line of weaving.

 

 

A two hour drive from Pittsburgh.  My book club had a fun and memorable getaway weekend trip.  We stayed at the Historic Bedford Resort.

Sunday, Joan and I went to see the National Museum of the American Coverlet– housed in a beautiful Historic Common School.   A coverlet is a woven bed cover, although there were some floor coverings, too.  The coverlets display changes every four months.  We learned a lot about the history of the coverlets with our knowledgeable guide explaining the differences. The last photos are of the gift shop where you can purchase reproductions of the antique designs and fabric for quilters.

 from the National Museum of the American Coverlet

The Museum and Museum Shop are open daily, year round.
Hours are Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m.
Admission is $6 ($5 for age 60 and over).  Kids under 12 are free.  Group rates available.

Laszlo Zongor explains the punch cards used in the Jacquard loom.

 If you have a coverlet, you can bring it to Melinda and Laszlo Zongor and they can help date it and identify the weaving method.

The Jacquard Loom

There are looms and spinning wheels on exhibit.

Tug, Barges and Carrie Furnace on the Monongahela River- Autumn Afternoon

After school I drove down the slopes to the flats and headed to Homestead to buy a special cable for an external hard drive so I could retrieve a summer photo for Erika.

I turned onto Waterfront Road towards Best Buy and saw the late afternoon light reflected and warm the rusting metal across the Mon. Pulled over and stood on top of a guard rail to capture the sinking light on the Carrie Furnace, remnants of Homestead Steel Works  and then I heard the tug and saw it pushing the barges up the river.  It was a mighty scene on the river and the limitations of photography or my ability to capture it thoroughly, the seeing and feeling it, became clear once again.

The Rivers of Steel Heritage Corporation sponsors tours but the last one was October 15th so will have to wait until 2012.

If you want to get a real feel for the Blast Furnaces and the incredible history, interviews with employees  and historical photographs I recommend watching at least video # 1 at this website.  I especially liked the man reading the last names of the workers he found in some type of log at the site. He spoke of reading obituaries of workers who gave 30-40 years of hard work for the Homestead Steel Works What a compilation of footage of Carrie Furnace.  Closed in 1986.