Saturday, July 30, 2011

Valentine Photos

September 15, 1945

Chris Shoulet found pictures in an antique shop of her great-grandmother's brother Lew. They are publicity photos from the Acme Newspictures Company in New York. Each had copy on the back.


NEW YORK - - Lewis J Valentine, Former New York City Police Commissioner, Starts his radio career as “Gang Buster’s” Teller of Tales. Flanked by pretty maidens Louise Fitch (Left) and Julie Stevens (Right). Sound Effects Man Robert Prescott (background) holds two pistols in the air to put people in proper mood. Valentine quit his post as Police Commissioner to take radio job. He made his debut Saturday Night (Sept. 15)...BU 80...
Credit Line (ACME) 9-15-45 (RM)

July 31, 1940


NEW YORK CITY - - Lewis J. Valentine, Commissioner of New York City Police, making his plea, for distribution in the nation’s movie houses, for information concerning the bombing outrage at the British Pavilion at the New York World’s Fair in which two detectives were killed several weeks ago.


(Stamped Aug 10, 1940. Photo By Acme Newspictures, Inc, 820 E. 42nd street, new York city, Please Credit “Acme Photo”)

September 6, 1945


NEW YORK - - Police Commissioner Lewis J. Valentine says goodbye to the press in his office today (Sept, 6) after he announced his resignation, to be effective from Sept. 14th. Commissioner Valentine will assume the role of Chief Investigator and Commentator on the “GANGBUSTERS” radio program. He has been affiliated with the New York Police Department for 42 years. 11 of them as Commissioner. Left To Right: Al Williams, First Deputy Police commissioner,; Commissioner Valentine; and John J. O’Connell, Chief Inspector.

CREDIT (ACME) 9/6/45 (MO), BU #1A MGS, (Stamped Sep 11, 1945), ACME NewsPictures, inc. 3) 770932, New York Bureau, 11? Eighth Ave, New York City. Please Credit “ACME Photo”

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Sixty Six Years Ago

According to my baby book I was christened in Jackson Heights on July 22, 1945. My mother wrote an account of the festivities in my baby book, a nice snap shot of the McNallys in the last month of World War II.

St Joan of Arc on 35th Avenue and
83rd St in Jackson Heights

Here's what the page says:

Godmother: Veronica A. McNally
Godfather: Charles Bentley

Notes: Everyone had a fine time and you slept all day and evening but cried from midnight till 4 AM the following morning.
[In my defense I have to say I was remembered as a colicky baby with milk allergies. I bet they gave me ice cream. I still cry all night when I eat ice cream.]

Those Present: Grandmother and Father McNally, Aunt Marie & Jack, The Duanes, Aunt Vera, Bentleys, Aunts Lora, Dorothy Pat, Veronica, Tom Berry, Mr. & Mrs. Callahan, the Gisigers. Uncle Jack was not present as he was overseas. Uncle Bud was not present as he was in the hospital in Georgia. Aunt Anne was in Mississippi and Uncle Tom had a date.

Bud and Tom 1944

Joan & Pat
Summer 1945

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Hanging Rock

July heat brings memories of the beach at Halesite/Huntington Harbor.

 A vivid memory is the rock commemorating the spot where Revolutionary War spy Nathan Hale was captured and hung in 1776. This is the reason the place was named Halesite.

There were bronze plaques on all sides.

It's one of many monuments to rebel Hale whose last words are reported to be, "I only regret that I have but one life to give my country." (Rather than: "Woooo. I have to be the most inept spy ever, having been captured the minute I landed on the beach."

The monuments were supposed to be inspiration to children but I recall the whole idea as darn scary. When you are five and told that somebody was hung right here on this spot 175 years ago it might as well have been last month.

I was always on the lookout for British hot to hang somebody else and bury them in the sand.

This rock may have been moved to the town of Huntington. Here's a recent picture, but I think there is still some kind of monument at the beach scaring small children today.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Taylor Tots

Reading an account of the loot I raked in on my first Christmas in 1945 I see my father's parents are listed as giving me a "Taylor Tot."

You didn't call it a stroller, you called it a Taylor Tot.

I recall it as blue but here it is red.

And here is cousin Steve in it.
I think I am trying to flip him over.

Here's one from eBay, a fixer upper.

They also sold a miniature version.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

A Sesquicentennial

Elizabeth Daly Valentine was born 150 years ago this week in Ireland. She came to New York in 1874, long after the Great Famine of 1845-1852, but this Sesquicentennial year of her birth might be a good time to visit the Irish Hunger Memorial in Manhattan.

My penpal (e-pal) from New York visited the Memorial in the city on Memorial Day. She writes:

I was so pleased with the Irish Hunger Memorial! It was easily accessible (I'd misunderstood that before), one block from the site of the World Trade Center, and it was so beautiful that day!

The "ruins" of a stone cottage (about 10' x 15'??) without its thatched roof were imported from Ireland by the Memorial designer and are nestled on an artificial hill planted with the greenest of grasses and wild flowers, with a winding path up to a short-walled ledge about 2 stories high off the ground that overlooks the Hudson River.
There are stones placed about the Memorial bearing inscriptions from each County in Ireland -- they sent the stones engraved with the County name specifically for this Memorial.

To get to the cottage you walk through a short tunnel that has bars of lighted glass with quotations and information about the Famine, so massive and so sad, and about relief efforts.
Outside this tunnel is an appeal to fight hunger as it appears in the world today -- this is very inconspicuous and you'd miss it unless you make an effort to read the side of the Memorial. There is also a little narration about the Famine inside the tunnel if you chose to listen. With no admission and no staff, it's unobtrusive and a glorious contrast to the glass and steel towers behind it. A jewel really, an emerald.

The Memorial was designed so that the visitor could look over the parapet wall downriver and see the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, but they've built a new Ferry station that blocks that view. It doesn't matter, because the view of the River and of the park that strings along our side of the Hudson is still great and no one who came here to escape the Famine saw either Ellis Island or the Statue of Liberty anyhow -- they came in through Castle Garden, the former immigration hub that preceded Ellis Island. Ellis Island and Liberty post-date the Famine.

The Irish Hunger Memorial is dedicated to raising awareness of the Great Irish Famine (1845-1852), designed by artist Brian Tolle, landscape architect Gail Wittwer-Laird and 1000 Architect. Opened in 2002, it's at the corner of Vesey Street and North End Avenue.