Hobbs Chapel Cemetery

Hobbs Chapel CemeteryWhen you live in the land of skinny pine and palm trees, you forget how impressive the big trees of the Midwest are. I’ve taken photos in the Hobbs Chapel Cemetery before, but I can’t lay my hands on them just this minute.

What caught my eye Sunday, though was not the gravestones, it was the big tree dominating the cemetery.

Chapel completed in 1892, burned in 1993

Hobbs Chapel CemeteryMissourian photographer Fred Lynch had a photo of the church in his July 15, 2013, blog. I’m not sure, but the skinny tree in one of the photos taken by One-Shot Frony in 1935 might be this one.

 

Missourian Equipment Move

Missouiran equipment moveIt looks like a heavy piece of equipment is being taken out of The Southeast Missourian building. It’s hard for me to tell what it is, but I think it might be a plate maker that etched the zinc plates used to make halftone photos. The man on the left in the patterned shirt is one of the many Hohlers who were responsible for producing the paper. I just can’t remember which one he is.

A balcony for parades

Missouiran equipment moveThat balcony opened off the newsroom, so it was a perfect place to watch the parades go by.

Missourian Building a landmark

Missouiran equipment moveThe Missourian building may not be as iconic from a distance as the Common Pleas Courthouse or Academic Hall’s dome, but it’s a Cape landmark, nonetheless. If you are interested in the history of the building, here’s a link to the National Register of Historic Places registration form.

Spooky place at night

Missouiran equipment moveI loved sitting up in the newsroom all by myself at night. It was a great place to do my homework. There were three police monitors hanging from a shelf on a column that would occasionally crackle to life from time to time with some minor call that I could usually ignore. In fact, over the years, I got to where I could pretty much tune out the sound of the cops and robbers in the background until I heard a change in voice stress and cadence, then I’d perk up.

The spooky part was the Western Union Clock on the wall. Every hour, it would make a sound as it synchronized itself with the mother ship, wherever it was. Even though I knew what it was and should have been expecting, I’d always jump.

Of all the places I worked, I don’t think any felt more like a newsroom “home” to me.

Shooting from the balcony

G.D. Fronabarger, Southeast Missourian photographerLooks like I got the high ground on this occasion. I snapped off a photo of One-Shot Frony standing on the sidewalk while I was on the balcony.

Mississippi River Ice

Ice on Mississippi River c 1966The Mississippi River never iced over enough for me to shoot people and cars crossing over to Illinois, but I have taken pictures of floating ice before. These photos were taken in the mid-1960s.

Walking across the river

Ice on Mississippi River c 1966Fred Lynch posted a Frony photo from 1936 showing people and a bike on the river, but he said it didn’t run, possibly because the paper didn’t want to encourage such behavior.

The ice floes were a little thicker when I shot the river in 2000.

 

Jo Ann Bock’s Book

Jo Ann Bock at Tom Nuemeyer book signing 03-14-2010I photographed Jo Ann Bock at Tom Neumeyer’s book signing for his photo documentary book, Cape Girardeau Then & Now back in 2010.

When Mrs. Bock wrote Around the Town of Cape Girardeau in Eighty Years, she asked if she could use one of the photos on the back cover of her book. I didn’t hesitate to give her permission. She sent me a copy of the book in return. I was pleasantly surprised to see she had some extraordinarily nice things to say about a piece I wrote about her husband, Howard Bock, when he died.

Mr. Bock Changed my life

Howard Bock CHS 23In the curious way that things in Cape are intertwined, Mrs. Bock was my Cub Scout den mother and knew I was interested in photography. When I got to Central, her husband was in charge of the Tiger and Girardot photo staffs and asked if I’d like to join. That was, indirectly, the start of my photography career.

We saw different slices of time

Jo Ann Bock BookHoward and Jo Ann Bock were getting married (1950) just about the time I was getting born (1947), so we view Cape through slightly different lenses. She stayed in Cape, except for a few years, and I left in 1967, although Cape has never left me.

In the introduction to one of the chapters, she says, “Sometimes a person will ask why I didn’t mention this place, or that person, or recall a special event. My answer is that memories take different directions with people.” Maybe that’s why even though she and I plow the same ground, we come up with different crops.

Her view of Broadway

Vandeven Merchantile Company 1967She and a city directory did a good job of creating a list of businesses and residences along the Broadway corridor. We have some memory overlap on some long-time businesses like Vandeven’s and the movie theaters, but a lot of places she remembers were long gone when the 1960s came around.

Here’s a partial list of what I found along Broadway between Kingshighway and Main Street.

Library and Courthouse

Cook kidsids playing in courthouse fountain on Cape Girardeau's Common Pleas Courthouse grounds June 29, 1967She and I both spent a lot of time in the Cape Public Library when it was located on the grounds of the Common Pleas Courthouse. Unlike these kids, she “never felt right about playing in the fountain with that soldier staring down at me.”

Just for the record, the soldier that stared down at her was smashed by a falling limb. The pieced-together original lives at the Jackson Courthouse, and a replacement casting stares down at children today. Maybe the new one would be less intimidating.

The George Alt House

Trinity Lutheran School neighborhood c 1966We both served our time in the George Alt House, turned into Trinity Hall by Trinity Lutheran School.

A walk down Main Street

107 Main St Cape Girardeau MO 10-20-2009 - Hecht's Mrs. Bock takes us for a walk down Main Street, reeling off a list of businesses that are mostly not there. In fact, the only business still in operation is Zickfield’s Jewelry. Hecht’s is gone, as is Newberry’s, where she worked in the infant clothing department for 15 cents an hour.

Here’s a page where I posted photos of many of the businesses I remembered from my era. The current generation will think Main Street was nothing but bars and antique shops with a little art thrown in.

Hurrah for Haarig

Meyer-Suedekum 03-29-2010_2679That’s the name of her chapter covering the Good Hope / Sprigg area. She drops names like Hirsch’s for groceries, Suedekum’s for hardware, Cape Cut Rate for drugs and the anchor, Farmer’s and Merchants Bank. If she mentioned Pure Ice, I must have missed it.

Music and Majorettes

Homecoming 34Mrs. Bock devotes several chapters to the Cape Girardeau music scene: choirs, operettas, plays, the Cape Choraliers, the Girardot Rose Chorus, and local dance bands. She also mentions being a Central High School majorette in 1946.

SEMO Fair

SEMO Fair Groscurth's Blue Grass Shows MidwayShe and I both spent time at the district fair, both as kids enjoying the rides and exhibits, then later covering it for The Southeast Missourian.

Bring on the Barbecue

Wib's BBQ Brown Hot (outside meat) sandwichThis chapter touched on two of my favorite barbecue places: the Blue Hole Garden and Wib’s.

 Parade of Photographers

GD Fronabarger c 1967You don’t serve as a high school publication adviser and a Missourian reporter without running across that strange subset of humans (some would debate that human part) called photographers. She was suitably enough impressed with us that she devoted a whole chapter to photographers she knew and worked with.

One-Shot Frony, AKA Garland D. Fronabarger, was one of the most unique newspaper photographers I ever ran into. His gruff exterior covered up a gruff interior. He got his name because he would growl around a pipe or cigar clenched between his teeth, “Don’t blink. I’m taking one shot,” push the shutter release and walk off.

Paul Lueders, a Master Photographer who shot almost every school group and class photo for years, was the opposite of Frony: he was quiet, patient and willing to take however long it took to get his subject comfortable.

She mentions several other professional and student photographers who crossed her path over the years, then launches into two pages of such nice things about me I thought maybe I was reading my obit.

How do I get a copy?

Jo Ann Bock Book backIf you grew up in Cape, you might find yourself between the pages of Around the Town of Cape Girardeau in Eighty Years. She manages to work in more names than the phone book. So, how do you get copy?

The book is available on Amazon for $15.49. It’s eligible for free shipping though Amazon Prime, so if you sign up for a 30-day free trial of Prime by January 10, you can save some money and get it in two days.