Aug 29, 2011

Allentown Memories

click on photo to enlarge
From low income sections of center city, to expensive suburbs, Allentown and the Lehigh Valley is becoming home to more and more outsiders. I'm afraid the time will soon come when local memorabilia will have little appeal. Fortunately, for those interested, some impressive collections still exist. This past year Robert Bungerz published Allentown Remembered, documenting his outstanding collection of historical postcards and other objects. David Bausch, former County Executor and authority on Automobile Art, is also a expert on things Allentown. Then there are the many small collections, home of the hidden treasures. Above is an early aerial photograph of the Allentown Fair. Those interested in the recent commotion concerning the 19TH Street Theater District may find the upper right of the photograph interesting. There is no theater, there are no houses on Saint George Street and most of the buildings seem to to garages and automobile in nature (don't tell Auto-Zone). This gem is probably from the late teens or early 20's, and comes from the Thomas Reed Collection. Thomas is aka Z1pyro, long time expert shooter for Zambelli Firework Company. He retired several years ago, and we who appreciate fireworks, notice his departure.

reprinted from July 8, 2008


Anonymous said...

what is happening in the fair grounds in yhe photo?

binzley said...

great picture--what are all the things inside the race track?

michael molovinsky said...

at that time the fair was much more agricultural, and the grounds were filled with buildings to exhibit different animals and crops. the racetrack infield is filled with parked cars.

click on photo to enlarge

steelbreast said...

do you think people were opposed to the fairgrounds when it was first proposed?

michael molovinsky said...

when the fairgrounds was established, it was on the far outskirts of town. no merchants were displaced, etc. i have received another comment, trying to assign racist intent to my use of "outsider". this post refers to the fact that local memorabilia is less significant currently, because less people have a frame of reference.

Anonymous said...

Mike I hope at some point the Art Museum does an exhibit focusing on pictures just like this one and many of the others you've used on your blog and talked about.

This area has a tremendous history and it would be a damn shame to forget it or allow it to be rewritten.

The Banker

Anonymous said...


I would bet if Pawlowski, Reilly, Browne, Butz & current city council had been around they would have started planning for the neighborhood improvement zone.

I wonder if they could have kept the secret that long, though.

Sorry - I could not resist. Also, I see someone cut down the trees, probably to generate revenue for the city through the sale of the lumber.

Hasn't that been done since?

an old dutchman said...

I am sorry you got a bad message regarding you use of the term "outsiders." I know you are only helping to preserve the important historical past of our once great city. Thanks.