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Posts Tagged ‘prohibition’...

Drunken Hijinks and Homicide in Rochester’s Sibley Building

Friday, October 5th, 2012

This was the Sibley Building office, and murder scene, of J. Frank O'Connor, a tailor merchant. A sewing machine and its table have been knocked over and lie in front of the radiator. The cutting table is at the right. A lower table, on the left, holds a bolt of fabric, a pressing board for sleeves, and an electric iron. A chair and a box of material sit in front of the lower table. [PHOTO: Albert R. Stone Collection]
J. Frank O’Connor, known by his clients and friends as “Scrappy” O’Connor, was a merchant tailor. After a long weekend of partying, he would be murdered during a drunken battle in his office (shown above) on the second floor of Rochester’s Sibley Building. O’Connor’s body was found about 6:00 p.m., Monday, August 28, 1922. These are actual crime scene photos by Albert R. Stone…

(more…)

Friday, October 5th, 2012
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Posted in Rochester History, Rochester Images | 9 Comments »

Where’s Cogswell?

Friday, September 21st, 2012

This was the corner of Main and Fitzhugh Streets (1884). Can you find Cogswell? [PHOTO: Rochester Public Library]
Often times while I’m doing research for a story, I’ll stumble upon something new and get completely sidetracked. Today I was digging for information on the Academy Building when I found the image above. It’s a shot of the Rochester Savings Bank building located at the corner of West Main and Fitzhugh. The Academy Building is to the immediate left of the bank. But forget the buildings for now. Do you see that strange little man standing in the lower left corner of the photo? That was actually a drinking fountain named Cogswell…

(more…)

Friday, September 21st, 2012
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Posted in Rochester History, Rochester Images | 5 Comments »

1930′s Postcard Decoded

Thursday, October 20th, 2011

Rich Rolwing, a RochesterSubway.com reader, translated the German message on the back of this postcard.
I’ve had this postcard in my collection for a few years now and it’s one of my favorites for a couple reasons. It’s late 1920′s (or early 30′s) and depicts the brand new (at the time) Broad Street and Rochester subway tunnel. The Rundel Library is not shown where it normally would be (to the right of Broad Street) because it hasn’t been built yet. But I also love this card because of the handwritten message on the back. It’s always been very mysterious to me — because it’s in German!

Rich Rolwing, a RochesterSubway.com reader, recently emailed me and very excitedly offered to translate the message. And so the mystery has finally been solved! Here it is, as written in 1938 from Karl (presumably visiting Rochester from Chicago)…

Dear Frank:
Thank you for your letter and also that letter from Foley. Noch immer nichts gehoert f.P. Vielleicht heute oder morgen. Lass dir dann gleich wissen. Waren gestern beim einen Park picnicen. Paul hat jetzt Vacation diese und naechste Woche. hat immer noch Halsweh. sonst alles schoen auch Beer.

Gruss. Karl.

And the English translation…

(more…)

Thursday, October 20th, 2011
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Posted in Rochester History, Rochester Images | 1 Comment »

Prohibition in Rochester

Sunday, October 2nd, 2011

The Doud Saloon on Front Street in the late 1800s. [PHOTO: Local History Division, Rochester Public Library.]
A much anticipated documentary on the prohibition eraexternal link will air Sunday night on WXXI. Ken Burns and Lynn Novick tell the story of “the rise, rule, and fall of the Eighteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution” which outlawed alcohol and tossed everything we thought we knew about America upside down.

The following is an excerpt from a 1992 edition of Rochester History magazine, edited by Ruth Rosenberg-Naparsteck, City Historian…

(more…)

Sunday, October 2nd, 2011
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Posted in Rochester History, Rochester Images | No Comments »

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