Cobbles on a Rainy Night

The headline tells it all. Taken August 3, 1967. You can click on the photos to make them larger.

On the other side of the tracks

Well, maybe on the other side of the floodwall and in the MIDDLE of the tracks. Night view looking south on October 26, 2009.

The Mississippi River and the railroads shaped Cape Girardeau in the 19th and 20th centuries. Because of the western migration, it’s unlikely that the majority of Cape Girardeans hear the mournful whistles of the towboats and trains passing by and through the city.

If you’re feeling you’ve been left a little short with just these two photos, here’s a sampler from earlier that has a bunch of Cape pictures, including ones of the riverfront and bridge. Here’s a place where you can see photos I’ve linked to Pinterest.


3 Replies to “Cobbles on a Rainy Night”

  1. Those ribbons of rail have an allure that keep calling us back; there must be something in that old clickety-clack? Or is it the wail of the whistle in the night, that oftime creates that mournful fright?

    The St. Louis – San Francisco Railway favored the sound of Hancock Steamboat whistles for their locomotives.

    1. Thanks, but I’m going to have to make some confessions. The cobble photo was on a strip of negatives I was scanning. I forgot to exclude it from the scan, so it sat in a directory for months. It was so underexposed that I would never have tried to make a print from it in the old days, so I kept dismissing it.

      I had been working on a project most of the day, so I was looking for something quick to throw up for today. This underexposed shot caused me to pause for a minute, then I got to liking it the more I looked at it. I had to get rid of a bunch of spots, but that was easy because almost everything could be taken to pure black.

      There’s probably some kind of metaphor about life in there somewhere. Something about not judging too quickly. There can be value in something you’ve dismissed as worthless.

      I was afraid you’d think I was lazy if I put up just one picture, so I started searching for other waterfront area night shots. When I found the railroad tracks, I thought maybe I had run them before, but I think I had just posted them to Facebook.

      So, I’d like to make you think there was a lot of planning and composition involved, but it was a mixture of serendipity and sleepiness that led to this particular combination.

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