Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Revisiting 1949

 Aerial Photo of Cincinnati [1949].
Photo source: mgsmith.

This is a composite I made of four more images from Michael G. Smith's amazing Flickr (70 Years Later set). These really need to be seen in detail, so make sure you visit each link below.
* Note: If you're new to Flickr, zoom into the image by clicking the "All Sizes" icon on the top of the photo, then click on "Original Size" at the next screen.

Some notable differences from today, in order from W to E:

West End - From top to bottom (left side), the large Roundhouse, Crosley Field, and CUT used for its original purpose (with rear concourse still intact).
Downtown West & Covington - The Fountain Square Esplanade on Fifth Street (just east of the Carew Tower), and the Cincinnati's riverfront warehouse/rail district vs. Covington's barren banks.
Downtown East & Newport - More riverfront railways heading east, Broadway Commons railyards in action, and lower Mt. Adams with houses, but no "Big Mac" bridge, nor a competing Newport-on-the-Levee.
East End - More rail/industry along the river, a full Eden Park Reservoir, and seemingly-unending highly-developed city blocks.

Again, significant differences from today: Cincinnati Union Terminal was still acting as grand entrance to the city, Eden Park reservoir was full, Broadway commons was active, and the Riverfront was still playing host to its industrial foundations... and refreshingly, all without sight of the massive spaghetti highways and large parking lots/garages that cut today's city into disparate wedges.

Incredible what 60 years does to a landscape.


5chw4r7z said...

The Eden Park reservoir is very interesting, I remember a short time after moving to Cincy asking about it, I said look, it appears there was a lake here, did they use it for water. No one knew what the heck I was talking about.
Glad my instincts were right although how someone denies the ruins there were a damn is beyond me.

Matt said...

I agree, it's very interesting. Additionally, the large building at the bottom of Cliff Drive (coming down from the upper Eden Park Overlook area) I believe used to be the pump house.

There's a ton of info out there about it, but here are a couple interesting shots of it in its better days...



Also, Queen City Survey did a short then-and-now post on it awhile back...


And the incomparable Cincinnati Views has some specs on it along with a wide selection of pics...


Eric said...

Nice to compare this aerial photo to the Rand McNally 1912 map on Cincinnati Views: http://www.cincinnativiews.net/facts.htm