There are some things I know about this photo, and a lot of stuff I don’t know.
What I think I know
It was taken in the Steinhoff family basement.
That’s our Zenith television. You can see the antenna rotor control on the top left of the set.
We’re probably watching KFVS because the picture looks reasonably sharp.
I’m pretty sure that’s Albert Underwood on the left, Bill Hopkins on the floor and Linda Folsom on the right.
It’s probably 1963 or 1964.
What I don’t know
Who the girl on the left is. I sort of want to say Margaret Randol, based on the hairstyle, but that’s a wild guess.
Why they are watching TV at my house. Underwood was a year or more ahead of me and was on the school’s photo staff, but we didn’t run around together. Hopkins was the ineffective (or corrupt) campaign manager who handled / mishandled my unsuccessful student body presidential run. Linda Folsom and I dated briefly (her choice). It’s a strange combination of people to be engrossed in a TV show.
What they are watching so intently. It doesn’t appear to be a news program.
The negative sleeve said “1964 City Election.” When I looked at the film, I couldn’t figure out why cops featured so prominently in the photos until I saw the sign “Vote YES Policemen’s Firemen’s Retirement Fund.” They must have been campaigning.
The last half of October and the first part of November 1964 was missing from the Google Archives, so I couldn’t get any details about the election. In the absence of real news, let’s look at some interesting things that show up in the backgrounds of the pictures. Click on them to make them larger. (I can blow them up larger than you can, so you might just have to take my word for some of the observations.)
The house on the corner of Themis and Caruthers has a sign in the front yard that says “Leible.” Scope out the car to the right of the policemen. It has an old-fashioned gumball machine on the roof and a big fender-mounted siren on the right side. There is no indication of what department it might belong to.
Paging Kent Verhines
Mr. Goddard wants to see you in his office RIGHT NOW. Signs on the door say “Polls close 7 p.m. Central Standard Time;” “City Election” and “School Election.” If you look just above the boy’s head (I think it might be Mike Seabaugh), you can see “KENT VERHINES” scrawled on the brick. Handwriting analysts are being dispatched to the scene to compare handwriting samples to see if Kent is the vandal or if he’s being framed.
A view up Themis Street
This is a pretty good look up Themis Street. At least one house has a tall, tall TV antenna. I guess they needed it to see over the surrounding hills.
Here’s another view of the unmarked police car. The driver looks like he has a uniform cap on, but all of the passengers look like high school girls. A pickup truck with L.R. Seabaugh on the door is parked on the right.
Could it be the Folsom Twins?
I can’t be sure, but the two girls in the car look a little like Linda and Laura Folsom. Or, it could be their twins.
Track team practice?
These guys don’t look heavy enough to be football players.
Election Day at Franklin School
I also made a pass by the polling place at Franklin School. You won’t see this view long. A new Franklin School is being built behind the existing building. When it’s finished, the old building will be torn down. Here are a couple of links to stories about the school and the construction: