I’ve worn baseball caps, cowboy hats, firefighter helmets, bike helmets and riot helmets, but I never had a traditional hat like this dandy in the 1934 Girardot is sporting.
My first thought in seeing the ad for Bohnsack’s – “A Clothing Store for Men and Boys” – was that the man with the hat and mustache was Clark Gable. It might have been Gable, but he didn’t REALLY become famous until Gone with the Wind, which hit the screen in 1939, long after the yearbook was published.
Bohnsack’s had become Sherman Ladies Fashions by 1968, and that address was listed as William Brothers’ Curtis Mathis TV, Linens and Gifts in the 1979 City Directory.
Other businesses on the page
- Lueders Studio survived well into the 1990s, based on family photos we had taken there.
- Suedekum & Sons has returned to its original roots as Meyer Supply company, but it’s still in the same place and it’s been serving the community for more than a century.
- Finney’s Drug Store was still listed in the 1979 City Directory, but Google’s Street View shows it as an empty storefront today.
It wasn’t the start of the school year until Paul Lueders showed up to take homeroom photos for The Girardot. The first step in this herding of cats was for him to size up where everybody was going to sit and stand. He was the consummate professional who never got flustered nor lost his patience. I’ve shot enough group photos to know that’s not easy. (Click on any photo to make it larger.)
Everybody look here
He’s making sure he can see every face. Girardot staffer Marcia Maupin, at right with the clipboard, is trying to get the names nailed down.
Moment of Truth
This is where the wizard disappeared behind the curtain to work his magic. His use of large-format film – probably 4″ x 5″ in this case, was one of the reasons his photos were so sharp and clear.
I apologize for all the scratches and spots on these photos. Time and storage hasn’t done the film any favors. I decided it was too damaged to try to repair everything.
I actually have names for the photos for a change. If there are any errors, blame Marcia Maupin. This is the photo that appeared in the 1965 Girardot.
Other stories about Lueders Studio
After I ran the piece on Lueders Studio the other day, Son Matt sent me a message that he was pretty sure he could put his hands on a photo that he had taken of Paul Lueders after he had taken Matt’s photo (below). Indeed, he did. After the formal portraits were taken, Mr. Lueders gave us a tour of the studio and sat around talking shop with us for about an hour.
This portrait of a Master Photographer, taken by Matt when he was about 15, does a great job of capturing the informal, laid-back style of one of the best photographers I’ve ever known. He’s relaxed, surrounded by his work, and his hands are a blur as he gestures to make a point.
Matt and his brother, Adam, are decent shooters. Both won national awards in Boy Scout photo contests and local competition. Fortunately, their geek genes were stronger than their photography genes and they decided to pursue photography as a hobby, not a profession.
I was looking through the 1934 Girardot yearbook. That was the year my dad graduated from Central. I have his 1931 yearbook, but money was tight in 1934, so he didn’t buy a book and he didn’t have a class photo taken.
I was lucky enough to find this one in a Cape antique shop. An inscription in the flyleaf said that it belonged to Carlston Bohnsack. I wonder if he was related to the Bohnsacks who ran the photo of the Clark Gable lookalike on page 125 of the yearbook.
I did a story on Lueders Studio just the other day. The Suedekum & Sons Hardware store looks much like it did when this ad appeared.
Rigdon’s Laundry and Dry Cleaning
I discovered that Rigdon’s Laundry had a mystery associated with one its drivers that could come right out of a forensics TV show.
Phil Haman’s became Nowell’s Camera Shop
Entrance to 609 Broadway
There should be a groove worn in the tile from the number of times I walked into Nowell’s Camera Shop. I’m still collecting photos taken of Bill Nowell and the store for a longer piece in the future.
Lang Jewelers still in business
Lang Jewelers and Zickfield Jewelers are still in business on Main Street. I’m sure railroad buff Keith Robinson will be able to tell us what a “Frisco, Mo. P. R. R. Inspector” is. Was he certified to maintain railroad watches? Notice how the telephone numbers have two and three digits?
Lang Jewelers today
Lang Jewelers’ sign proudly proclaims that it has been in business since 1916 and its window reflects its colorful neighbors across the street.
We’ll feature other yearbook advertisers on another day.