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Sunday, 25 November 2012

New York Yankees, posted by an English man! (Feedback from the States or Yankees fans would be very welcome)


New York Yankees
The New York Yankees are an American professional baseball team based in The Bronx borough of New York that competes in Major League Baseball in the American League's East Division. 
DivisionAmerican League East
World Series championships

NicknamesBaltimore OriolesDamn YankeesNew York HighlandersThe BombersThe Bronx BombersThe Bronx ZooThe Evil Empire,The PinstripesThe YanksYankees

While officially known as Highlanders, local sportswriters often referred to them as the Yankees or Yanks because it was much easier to type, and fit in headlines. The name Yankees comes from the fact they were the American League team, and Americans are often referred to as Yanks by the British and the same thought process was applied. The team decided in 1913 to make Yankees its official nickname. 


The New York Yankees began their storied history as the New York Highlanders, in 1903.  The distinctive pinstripe uniforms were introduced in 1912, and one year later, in 1913, the Highlanders became New York Yankees. 
Over the next 80 years, the Yankees have gone on to become one of the most recognised teams in all of Sports, making history and shattering records all along the way.


In 1913, the Highlanders abandoned their stadium and their name, by moving into the Polo Grounds as the New York Yankees.  Two years later, the Yankees got a new owners when Col. Jacob Ruppert and Col. Tillinghast L´Hommedieu Huston purchased the team for the sum of $460,000.  In 1920, the new owners made one of the best decisions in the history of sports when they bought Babe Ruth from the Boston Red Sox for $125,000!  In 1903, Frank Farrell and Bill Devery purchased the down and out Baltimore Orioles, for $18,000.  Moving it to Manhattan, the new owners renamed the team the New York Highlanders.  They opened their home season at "Hilltop Park" with a 6 - 2 win against Washington.  Thus began the winning tradition of the soon to be New York Yankees.
Babe Ruth was signed to a two year contract for $20,000 per year.  This move instantly doubled the attendance at Yankee games, as thousands flocked to see his tremendous home runs.
In 1923, Yankee Stadium opened its doors for the first time with a 4 -1 win over the Boston Red Sox.  Babe Ruth hit the first homerun in the Stadium's history that same day, and soon gained its famous nickname, "The House that Ruth Built".
In 1925, Lou Gehrig began his streak of 2,130 consecutive games played by pinch hitting for Pee Wee Wanniger.  Then, in 1929 the Yankees set a precedent by becoming the first team to make numbers a permanent part of the team uniform.  This late became a standard among all teams by 1932.
In 1932 Lou Gehrig becomes the first player to hit four home runs in a single game in the Yankees' 20-13 win at Philadelphia. He remains the only Yankee to hit four home runs in one game.  Two years later in 1934, Babe Ruth hit the 700th Home Run of his career.  He would hit just 14 more before the end of his career.  Just four months later, the Yankees made another incredible deal when the purchased Joe DiMaggio from the San Francisco Seals for $50,000.
ronx New York

In 1939, Lou Gehrig's streak of 2,130 consecutive games came to an end in Detroit, as the Yankees beat the Tigers 22 - 2.  One month later, "Lou Gehrig Appreciation Day" was held at Yankee Stadium.  Gehrig's number, 4, was retired, making it the first number retired in the History of sports.  Later that day he speaks his famous words "Today, I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of the earth".


On May 14, 1941, Joe DiMaggio's 56 game hitting streak began with a single off Edgar Smith in a game against Chicago at Yankee Stadium.  Two months, and 56 games later, his streak came to an end in a 3-1 Yankee victory after Cleveland.  DiMaggio went on to hit safely in the next 16 consecutive games, giving him a total of hits in 72 of 73 consecutive games.  That same year, Lou Gehrig died of the disease that bore his name, at the age of 37.
In 1945, Dan Topping, Del Webb and Larry MacPhail purchased the Yankees for $2,800,000 from the estate of the late Col. Jacob Ruppert (Ruppert had bought out his partner Huston for $1,500,000 in 1922).  
In 1947, Major League Baseball celebrated "Babe Ruth Day".  A little more than one year later, on the 25th anniversary of Yankee Stadium, Ruth's number, 3, was retired.  On that same day, he made his final appearance in Yankee Stadium.  He died two months later at the age of 53. 
In 1951, the next great Yankee made his debut.  Mickey Mantle played in his first game on April 17, going 1 for 4 in a 4-0 win over Boston.  Two years to the day after his debut, Mantle hit the first "tape measure" homerun in Major League History, with a 565ft shot against the Washington Senators.  Later that year, the Yankees won a Major League record 5th consecutive World Series title.
In 1961, Roger Maris beat out his teammate Mickey Mantle for the single season homerun record, by hitting a whopping 61 homeruns.  Mantle finished with 58.
In 1964, CBS purchased 80% of the Yankees, for the staggering sum of $11,200,000.  They later purchased the remaining 20%.
On August 8, 1972, the Yankees signed a 30 year lease to play in a renovated Yankee Stadium.  As a result, the Yankees were forced to play their 1974 and 1975 seasons in Shea Stadium, home of the New York Mets.
The Year before the Yankees moved into Shea Stadium, the Yankees current owner, George Steinbrenner III (aka The Boss) purchased the controlling interest of the Yankees from CBS.
On April 15, 1976 the remodeled Yankee Stadium saw its first game, with the crowd enjoying an 11 - 4 rout of the Minnesota Twins.  Later that year, Chris Chambliss (The current Yankee Batting Coach) hit a Walkoff homerun in the 9th inning of game 5 of the American League Championship Series winning the Yankees their 30th Pennant.
Later in 1976, the Yankees signed Free Agent Reggie "Mr. October" Jackson to a five year contract.  This proved to be a great move, as just one year later, Jackson hit an incredible 3 homeruns in game 6 of the World Series.
On June 16, 1978 Pitcher Ron Guidry struck out a Franchise Record 18 batters in a 4 - 0 win over the California Angels.  Trailing the Red Sox by as many as 14 games, the Yankees season came to a climax when they beat the Red Sox in a Divisional Playoff, clinching the AL East Title.
The seventies ended on a sad note for the Yankees as their team captain, Thermon Munson was killed in a plane crash on August 2, 1979.  A little over a year later, the Yankees signed future Hall of Famer Dave Winfield to a ten year contract.


The Early 80s were an uneventful time for the Yankees, characterized by frequent hirings, and the subsequent firings of countless managers by "The Boss". 
On December 14, 1985, Yankee great Roger Maris died at the age of 51 at his home in Huston, Texas.
Things started to look up for the Yankees in 1987, as the new first baseman, Don Mattingly, began to set the American League on fire with his outstanding offense and defense.  On July 18, 1987, Mattingly homered in his 8th straight game, tying the AL Record held by Dale Long.  Later that year, Mattingly set a Major League Single Season Record by hitting his 6th Grand Slam that year.
December 9, 1988 saw the signing of a 12 year television contract with the Madison Square Garden Network. 
August 14, 1993 was declared "Reggie Jackson Day".  On this day, "Mr. October's" jersey number 44 was permanently retired from the Yankees.  Later that season, Yankees one-handed pitcher Jim Abbot tossed a No Hitter in a 4-0 victory over the Cleveland Indians.  This began an amazing run for Yankee Pitchers in which they threw a total of 2 no hitters, and 2 perfect games.
August 13, 1995 was a dark day for the Yankees as Mickey Mantle died of Cancer at the age of 63.  A little more than one year later Dwight Gooden threw the 8th no hitter in Yankee History, shutting out the Seattle Mariners 2 - 0.
On January 22, 1997, Don Mattingly officially announced his retirement from Major League Baseball, after a career of only 14 years.

May 17, 1998 was a day that would go down in Baseball history as David Wells pitched the 14th perfect game in regular season history.  14 months later on Yogi Berra Day, Well's teammate David Cone pitched the 15th regular season perfect game.
On October 21, 1998, the Yankees began their 3 year run of consecutive World Series Victories, sweeping the San Diego Padres.  They went on to sweep the Atlanta Braves in 1999, and defeat the New York Mets in 5 games in 2000.

Sunday, 18 November 2012

Portraits of true grit: Amazing black-and-white photos capture the everyday struggles of Oklahoma farmers fighting to survive the Dust Bowl.

Oklahoma 1932

When the first dust storms blew through Oklahoma in 1932, few people in the state could foresee the catastrophic devastation that clouds of sands carried aloft by the hallowing winds would bring to the region over the next decade. 
Massive dust storms that swept through the Southern Plains caused severe erosion by blowing off millions of tons of topsoil in southeastern Colorado, southwest Kansas and the panhandles of Oklahoma and Texas, leaving farmers destitute. 
By 1934, it was estimated that 100 million acres of farmland had lost all or most of the rich topsoil to the winds, leaving the fields barren and the farmers destitute.

Tough times: Four families, three of them related, with 15 children, from the Dust Bowl in Texas, at impromptu overnight road camp

Meagre livelihood: John Barnett feeding livestock on his farm in 1942

Survivors: Dust Bowl farmer John Barnett (left) , his wife Venus (center), and their three children: Delphaline, 17 (top), Lincoln, 11 (right), and Leonard, 9

Unbreakable: Venus Barnett trying to raise vegetables in garden of family farm in the Dust Bowl for a second time after a windstorm blew the first seedlings away

Daily struggles: Farmer's wife Mrs Venus Barnett and son Lincoln in room of their worn farmhouse, Oklahoma, 1942

Barren land: Oklahoman agriculturists work on way to fix the Great Plains region's catastrophic erosion problem in 1942

Desperate times: Harvesters hitchhike on route 64 en route to a wheat harvesting in the Dust-Bowl ravaged state of Oklahoma in 1942

Devastation: The great clouds of dust that swept through the Southern Plains in the 1930s buried structures and rendered once-fertile soil barren

Sand-choked wilderness: Sagebush and sand surround John Barnett's house and farm buildings. There is no topsoil left on the 160 acres. He grows rye and fodder in sandy loam For some, the phrase ?Dust Bowl? conjures a place: the Great Plains, but a Great Plains of abandoned homes, ruined lives, dead and dying crops and sand, sand, sand. For others, the phrase denotes not a region but an era: the mid- to late-1930s in America, when countless farms were lost; dust storms raced across thousands of miles of once-fertile land, so huge and unremitting that they often blotted out the sun; and millions of American men, women and children took to the road, leaving behind everything they knew and everything they'd built, heading west, seeking work, food, shelter, new lives, new hope.

Hardy: Countless farming families, like this Oklahoma clan pictured in 1942, stayed behind in the Dust Bowl, suffering through the very worst of the decade and fighting for ever

Henri Cartier Bresson # 3 Quotes

To take photographs means to recognize - simultaneously and within a fraction of a second - both the fact itself and the rigorous organization of visually perceived forms that give it meaning. It is putting one's head, one's eye and one's heart on the same axis. 

Think about the photo before and after, never during. The secret is to take your time. You mustn't go too fast. The subject must forget about you. Then, however, you must be very quick.

The photograph itself doesn't interest me. I want only to capture a minute part of reality.

To photograph is to hold one's breath, when all faculties converge to capture fleeting reality. It's at that precise moment that mastering an image becomes a great physical and intellectual joy.

Above all, I craved to seize the whole essence, in the confines of one single photograph, of some situation that was in the process of unrolling itself before my eyes.

The creative act lasts but a brief moment, a lightning instant of give-and-take, just long enough for you to level the camera and to trap the fleeting prey in your little box. 

Photography is an immediate reaction, drawing is a meditation. 

Actually, I'm not all that interested in the subject of photography. Once the picture is in the box, I'm not all that interested in what happens next. Hunters, after all, aren't cooks.

Memory is very important, the memory of each photo taken, flowing at the same speed as the event. During the work, you have to be sure that you haven't left any holes, that you've captured everything, because afterwards it will be too late. 

Saturday, 17 November 2012

The River Tees North and South Gare vintage photography. (Thanks to Chris Turner for lending these images to me)

South Gare

 is an area of reclaimed land and breakwater on the southern side of the mouth of the river Tees in Redcar and Cleveland, England. It is accessed by taking the South Gare Road (private road) from Fisherman's Crossing at the western end of Tod Point Road in Warrenby.
Before the building of South Gare, permanent dry land stopped at Tod Point, at the western end of Warrenby and there was only Coatham Sands and the mudflats of Bran Sands. The creation of South Gare extends this by a further 2.5 miles (4.0 km). The building of South Gare offers a safe harbour in stormy weather to ships off the coast and allowed for the dredging of the river Tees entrance. South Gare itself was a settlement but the houses there were demolished many years ago.

Boat dwellings on the Tees estuary Haverton Hill Ship yard, Transporter bridge and ICI Billingham in the far distance

Seaton Snooks

A spit of sand extending into the mouth of the river Tees. Part of the southern end was submerged at high tide. In 1667 fortifications were built at the end to defend the mouth of the Tees. Buried under the sand dunes may be the remains of a chapel dedicated to the martyr Thomas Becket. Teesmouth has changed drastically since then. A slag wall has been constructed east and west across the end although this is now heavily eroded. The land to the east was tidal but has now been reclaimed from the sea.

Seaton Carew 

Is a small seaside resort within the Borough of Hartlepool, in North East England with a population of 6,018 (2001). It is situated on the North Sea coast between the town of Hartlepool and the mouth of the River Tees. The area is named after a Norman French family called Carou who owned lands in the area and settled there, while 'Seaton' means farmstead or settlement by the sea.

The cranes of Swan Hunters ship yard Haverton Hill, can be seen in the far distance

Greatham Creek

Greatham Creek is a tidal channel with extensive areas of saltings. It also has adjacent saline lagoons to the north and south which are always worth a look during the summer for breeding Common Terns and spring and autumn for waders. An additional attraction here is the Common and Grey Seals that bask and rest on the banks of the Creek and are easily visible from the main A178 Tees Road. 

Access to Greatham Creek is from the Teesmouth National Nature Reserve car park off the A178 on the south side of the road bridge. Walk up to the bridge to view both sides of the Creek.

The South Gare

Across the Blue Lagoon at night, looking across from the North Gare

Boat House

Between Seaton Carew and Redcar is Teesmouth 

The Tees traditionally being the boundary between Yorkshire and County Durham. The Tees has one of Britain's most industrialised river estuaries with a dramatic and seemingly endless landscape of chimneys and `space age' towers. Compared to the mouth of the River Tees, the industries of the River Tyne and Wear seem almost insignificant.
Most notable of the industrial plants at Teesmouth, are the giant chemical complexes, the oil refineries, the steel works and a power station at Seaton Carew, to the north of the river. Despite the heavy industry, the area is surprisingly important for its wildlife and the partly industrialised Seal Sands on the north bank of the Tees are the Winter home to thousands of wildfowl and waders. Seals may also be regularly seen `basking' in their man made surroundings. Seal sands are only half their original size having been largely reclaimed for the site of an oil refinery and chemical works. 

The Tees Estuary

Former British Steel complex now SSI UK

Fisherman 1970's

Saturday, 10 November 2012

Remembrance Sunday Headland Hartlepool 2012

Sepia Images

Monochrome Images

Colour Images

Some real images

In the United KingdomRemembrance Sunday is held on the second Sunday in November, which is the Sunday nearest to 11 November Armistice Day, the anniversary of the end of hostilities in the First World War at 11 a.m. in 1918. Remembrance Sunday is held "to commemorate the contribution of British and Commonwealth military and civilian servicemen and women in the two World Wars and later conflicts".
In the United Kingdom, Remembrance Sunday is marked by ceremonies at local war memorials in most cities, towns and villages, attended by civic dignitaries, ex-servicemen and -women (principally members of the Royal British Legion), members of local armed forces regular and reserve units (Royal Navy and Royal Naval ReserveRoyal Marines and Royal Marines ReserveArmy and Territorial ArmyRoyal Air Force and Royal Auxiliary Air Force), military cadet forces (Sea Cadet CorpsArmy Cadet Force and Air Training Corps as well as the Combined Cadet Force) and youth organisations (e.g.Scouts and Guides). Wreaths of remembrance poppies are laid on the memorials and two minutes silence is held at 11 a.m. Church bells are usually rung "half-muffled", creating a sombre effect.

This was my Dad's uncle who was killed in World War One in France (aged 19),  He is remembered on the Headland War Memorial.