Found: Beautiful Washington Park, Milwaukee, WI

Found: In "Beautiful Washington Park," Milwaukee.
 © E. C. Kropp Co. Publishing, Milwaukee No. 4201. Circa 1900.
Handwritten in fountain pen on the frontside: "The lilies in this pound are as big as a plate."
Washington Park in Milwaukee, designed by American landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted, included a band shell and a zoo. Begun in 1891, the park faced financial challenges throughout the 20th century.  The zoo moved away to expand in 1958 but the Urban Ecology Center located in the 135 acre park in 2007. The  Center's mission is to carry out Olmsted's vision of municipal parks as respite for people form all walks of life. Olmsted believed that parks could connect city people with nature thus providing "spiritual uplift." Today, volunteers and neighbors work to restore native plants, wetlands, animals, and maintain gardens in the park.


Quonset Huts, Appleton, WI

Quonset Huts along Railroad Tracks, East Randall Street, Appleton, Wisconsin, September 2014
© J. Shimon & J. Lindemann
Quonset Hut along Railroad Tracks, East Randall Avenue Appleton, Wisconsin, September 2014
© J. Shimon & J. Lindemann
Designed to be lightweight and easy to assemble without skilled labor, the Quonset hut served more than 86 official military uses during the World War II era. Sometimes built along railroad tracks in small Wisconsin towns, they could be used to store supplies needed for the war effort. In Appleton, for example, Kimberly-Clark made bomb fuses that needed to be stored and accessible. After the war, Quonset huts were repurposed as housing, churches, libraries, liquor stores, movie theaters, and more.


Harvestore Twins, Brillion, WI

Harvestore Twins, County K, near Brillion, Wisconsin, September 2014
© J. Shimon & J. Lindemann
The sign of double prosperity, with two matching Harvestores towering above
previous farm structures and still, predict the bunker silos that co-exist there now.


Found: Indian Basket Maker, Northern Wisconsin

Found: Indian Basket Maker, Northern Wisconsin #5. Real Photo Post Card. Kruxo EKD circa 1923.
Our friend from Madison, Tom Jones, has been researching Ho-Chunk baskets and we thought of him when we dredged up this real photo post card portrait of a basket maker from the recesses of our collection. He has contributed to important books examining photographs of native peoples mainly People of the Big Voice: Photographs of Ho Chunk Families by Charles Van Schaik and For a Love of His People: The Photography of Horace Poolaw.


Santa Face, Holland, WI

Santa Face at Night, County CE, Holland, Wisconsin, 12.3.2014
© J. Shimon & J. Lindemann
Holiday decorations glow in the night in small towns in rural Wisconsin.
Beer signs on taverns are sometimes repurposed as Santa Claus as in this example.


Found: Bethesda Mineral Spring, Waukesha, WI

Found: Bethesda Mineral Spring, Waukesha, Wisconsin. Circa 1910s. © E. C. Kropp Co., Milwaukee. Written in cursive in fountain pen on the backside: "Dear Fran & family. This is a handy place & we all like it. I hope to feel better before I leave here. I will see the Dr. to-day. Take care of Babe. Best love, Stella."
Native Americans pointed early settlers toward the healing springs throughout Wisconsin. What became Bethesda Mineral Spring was one of them. Historian accounts explain that "people flocked to the spring, hoping to be cured by the magic waters." Cures included diabetes, constipation and other maladies were documented. But in time, Waukesha's many springs dried up. Nineteenth-century civilization--from out houses to pavement to overuse--made it impossible for the springs to replenish with rain water and then they were gone. No more water bubbling up from the ground. Increased demand for water from the growing city also required deeper and deeper wells which also drew from the water table. By the late 20th-century even the deep weels became contaminated with radium and were dangerous to citizens. What was once a paradise of more than 50 fresh water springs is gone and Waukesha is now asking that water be piped in from Lake Michigan.


Harvestore with Santa's Sleigh, Darboy, WI

Harvestore with Santa's Sleigh,
Highway 55 near Darboy, Wisconsin, 12.3.2014
© J. Shimon & J. Lindemann
Holstein cows pulling Santa's Sleigh with a Harvestore silo towering nearby.


Found: Columbia County Jail, Portage, WI

Found: Columbia County Jail, Portage, Wisconsin.
© E.C. Kropp Publishers, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Circa 1906.
Postmarked Portage, Wisconsin, December 3, 1906 2 PM.
Written in fountain pen on front side:
 "Merry Xmas & Happy New Year. Metta."


Deer Corn Vendor, Combined Locks, WI

Self-Service Deer Corn Vendor,
Buchanan Road, Combined Locks, Wisconsin (May 2014)
© J. Shimon & J. Lindemann
Foraging for twigs, bark, grasses, and leaves is what Wisconsin's whitetail deer are designed to do. Outagamie is among the few Wisconsin counties where feeding deer is allowed. The well-meaning citizen mows the grass, paves the land, and trims back the shrubs where the deer could graze while feeding them corn offered by roadside deer corn entrepreneurs. Outdoor Life advises that, "Artificially fed deer wander off with a belly full of corn and slowly start starving to death as its digestive system struggles to digest the corn."


Found: World's Record Black Bear, Glidden, WI

Found: World's Record Black Bear. 665 lbs. dressed. Shot 5 miles east of Glidden, Wis.
by 2 Milwaukee hunters: Otto Hedbany and Donal Streable. Now on display in
Glidden, Wis., for the public to see.
Photo and Published by G R Brown Co. 2329 Kane Rd. Eu Claire, Wisconsin 54703. Circa 1963.

Putting a stuffed bear on display on main street in mid-century small town Wisconsin helped spread the word that Glidden was the best place in Wisconsin to hunt the animals. Black bear open hunting season is usually in September in this region famous for its black bear population. When this large bear was shot dead and dragged from the woods by seven men near Glidden, Wisconsin, the town began calling itself the "Black Bear Capital of the World." The high school made the black bear its mascot and the Chamber of Commerce bought the stuffed bear in 1964 and kept it on permanent display ever since. Though logging and the railroad brought people to Glidden, changing times made snowmobiling, an annual toilet seat race, hiking and other recreational activities the big draw these days. A north woodsy company called Winter Woods markets wreaths, pine cones, birch bark, mosses, and twigs to craft stores and florists and today is among the largest employers in the town.


Hair Salon, Appleton, WI

Hair Salon, College Avenue, Appleton, Wisconsin (May 2014)
© J. Shimon & J. Lindemann
The symmetry of the architecture on the outskirts of town.
Hair, skin tone, and nails serviced under one roof.


Found: A Little "Dear," Hayward, WI

Found: A Little "Dear" with a "Bare" Behind, Greetings from Hayward, Wisconsin
© Curt Teich & Co., Inc., C. T. Animal Scenes - 10 subjects. Genuine Curteich-Chicago
"C.T. Art-Colortone" Post Card (Reg. U.S. Pt. Off.) Circa 1930.
Lumberjacks harvested all the pine trees in Hayward in less than 50 years. The town needed something new to drive their economy so by 1922, tourism was it. Post cards like this showing the wild life attracted travelers to the north woods. Today Hayward has the largest fiberglass sculpture in the world with its infamous muskie mascot for the Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame.


Metal Silo, Appleton, WI

Metal Silo in the Suburbs, Emons Road, Appleton, Wisconsin (May 2014) © J. Shimon & J. Lindemann
The suburbs encroach...


Found: Little White School House, Ripon, WI

Found: The Famous Little White School House, at Ripon, Wisconsin.
Birth place of the Republican Party in 1854.
Color photo by Fagan. Genuine Natural Color Fagan Publishing Co., Madison, Wis. Circa 1955.
Postmarked Ripon, Wisconsin, June 26, 1959.
We once showed our One Million Years is Three Seconds project about four older Wisconsin men who'd lived through the technological changes of the 20th century at Ripon College. Bob Watt, who was one of the four men, got madder than a hoot owl that we'd show our work, especially photographs of him, in Ripon...the "Birthplace of the Republican Party" in the Little White School House...Though some believe that the party was merely "conceived" in Ripon, among the uniting issues was a commitment to abolish slavery.


Harvestores at County D, Fredonia, WI

Harvestores, County D at Hway 57 near Fredonia, Wisconsin (4.18.2014)
Cyanotype © J. Shimon & J, Lindemann
The A.O. Smith logo is visible from the road on a 90 foot tall Harvestore even across a field of corn stubble with visible nitrogen-laden run-off. Standing amongst farm structures, trees, and overhead power lines and towers, the brand identity remains clear under the cloudless sky.