Lucille Ball & Desi Arnaz At The Brown Derby Restaurant – 1948
Lucille Ball flashes her best smile as her husband, Desi Arnaz fumbles with a corsage as they dine at the Brown Derby. photo: Acme 3-6-48
In 1948 Lucille Ball was starring in the CBS radio program My Favorite Husband. With the success of the show CBS proposed that Lucy develop My Favorite Husband for the growing medium of television. That show would become I Love Lucy starring Lucy and real life husband Desi Arnaz.
Let’s then contemplate that Lucy’s phenomenal success may never have occurred had she gone through with the divorce she filed against Desi Arnaz on September 7, 1944. Continue reading →
Romantic Couple Robert Preston & Dorothy Lamour Bid Adieu 1940
ROMANTIC COUPLE SEPARATES
But not for long, perhaps. Here are Robert Preston and Dorothy Lamour, who met and fell in love during the making of the Paramount production, “Typhoon,” together at a farewell party for Dorothy before she left for a vacation in Honolulu. Friends gathered at the Cocoanut Grove to bid her bon voyage, Preston abandoning his work in the San Jacinto mountains on Northwest Mounted Police” to keep the date. Photo: Paramount, May 11, 1940
As many co-stars do, Preston and Lamour did have a love affair during the filming of Typhoon. Despite the intimation that this vacation break was temporary, the young and glamorous couple did soon permanently separate.
Dorothy Lamour was born Mary Leta Dorothy Slaton (December 10 1914) in New Orleans, LA.
Lamour was three years older than Robert Preston, so maybe age and life experience differences would hasten the end of the relationship.
Robert Preston & Dorothy Lamour, Cocoanut Grove nightclub Ambassador Hotel Los Angeles 1940. photo: Paramount
Soon after the love affair was over Preston married actress Kay Feltus (professionally known as Catherine Craig) on November 8, 1940 in Las Vegas. The two had met while studying acting together at the Pasadena School of the Theatre. Continue reading →
Manhattan Meals – Some Pre-Prohibition Turn-Of-The-Century Restaurants
Maxim’s Restaurant 108-110 West 38th Street. Maxim’s was the first restaurant raided a few hours before prohibition went into effect January 15, 1920
With few exceptions owning a restaurant is among the most precarious businesses to enter. Long hours, high upfront costs for rent, food and labor and changing public tastes almost insure that few restaurants can make a long and successful run.
100 years ago many of New York’s older restaurants shut down because of an unexpected decline in business- the victims of prohibition.
Once cafes and restaurants lost the right to sell beer, wine and liquor many closed soon after the Volstead Act went into effect in 1920. Some restaurants known for fine cuisine were able to ride out 13 years with no alcohol sales. Other restaurants would turn to selling spirits illegally. Others like cafeteria and luncheon type restaurants survived, having always been patronized for their food.
All of the following restaurants shown below closed long ago.
Restaurant and Cafe Leo
Restaurant and Cafe Leo stood on the southwest corner of 14th Street and Fourth Avenue. Note the Star of David over the entrances, not always the sign of a Jewish establishment, but a decorative element. In this case however, proprietor Leo Greenbaum was letting potential diners know this was a Jewish owned business. By 1923 Cafe Leo vanished from the city directory. Continue reading →
Hotel Victoria’s 1934 Three Day All Expense Tour Booklet Of New York City
Accommodations, Fancy Dining, Night Clubs, Museums, A Bus Tour, Ellis Island, Top Of The Rock & More – All For $11
In the midst of the Great Depression visitors still came to New York to see the sites. If you were staying at the Hotel Victoria (7th Avenue and 51st Street) you could purchase this booklet with prepaid tickets for accommodations, entertainment and various attractions around the city.
When I acquired this booklet the most valuable tickets had been used by the previous owner. Though there is no date on the booklet. The directors of each attraction are listed, and based on that information I was able narrow the date of the booklet to 1934.
Jack Benny and Wife Mary Livingstone Dine At Ciro’s 1955
Jack Benny and his wife Mary, enjoy an evening at Ciro’s in Hollywood. Benny started his career in the entertainment world as a doorman at a theater in Waukegan, Illinois, his birthplace. The Benny’s have been married 28 years. photo: Inside Hollywood by Nat Dallinger for King Features Syndicate week of August 12, 1955
The Detroit Publishing Co. photographer was probably intrigued by the spectators lining the sidewalk. This undated scene is from around 1905 based on the clothing and vehicles seen. We are looking north on Mott Street from Worth Street and something worth watching is going on.
A horse drawn coach is carrying a large model of a building upon it. It may have something to do with the building with the steeple in the background, which is the Church of the Transfiguration.
The model building has crosses on it and appears to be ecclesial. The fact that the horses are draped in white fabric signals this is a religious ceremony, rather than a funeral. The other horse drawn vehicles following the procession which are dark, does make the scene look funereal however.
In the foreground, a peanut cart is selling three measures of fresh roasted nuts for a dime. Continue reading →
Lunch Carts Serve Customers At The Corner Of Broad & Beaver Street 1906
A Detroit Publishing Co. photographer preserved this scene in 1906 at the corner of Broad and Beaver Street.
Then as now, food carts set up and do a brisk lunch business. This slice of life in old New York has many elements that can be seen by looking closer, so let’s examine them.
Frankfurters are advertised at 3¢ each or two for a nickel! The same sign informs (warns?) purchasers of an interesting caveat: “No frankfurters sold during the summer.” Hmmm. Possibility of food poisoning? I could not find any explanation in contemporary literature to why a sign would say this.
Postcard Views 1910 – 1949 & A Short History Of Chinese Restaurants In New York City
The Chinese Tuxedo Restaurant in New York’s Chinatown 1910
Along with Chinese immigration to the United States in the 1850s, came Chinese food. It wasn’t long before Americans took a liking to the transoceanic cuisine. The Chinese population in New York City was only 747 in 1880. By 1900 it had grown to 6,321.
There “are eight thriving Chinese restaurants that can prepare a Chinese dinner in New York, almost with the same skill as at the famous Dan Quay Cha Yuen (Delmonico’s) of Shanghai or Canton,” according to Wong Chin Foo in the October 1888 Current Literature Magazine. With only one day off, Chinese patrons, usually working as laundrymen, would crowd the Chinese restaurants on Sunday’s.
Port Arthur Restaurant 7 & 9 Mott Street, considered among the finest Chinese restaurants in New York City est. 1899