I was hanging around in the Friends of Fondren office yesterday when I noticed that the panorama hanging on the wall was not, as I had assumed, the same one we have several copies of in the Woodson. On closer inspection it turns out to be a marvel–a wide view of the south side of campus on what looks to be a late spring day in 1920. If pressed I would guess that it was taken from the top of the late, lamented Gate 3. Because it’s so wide you have to click on it once to get any detail, then again if you’d like to get really close in. Download it and you can get a more helpful gradual zoom.
There’s a lot going on here. Starting at the far right, you can see a slice of Main Street with still newish streetlights and the beginnings of the hedges. As you move left the first thing of note is through the trees–it looks like a construction site for a house in Shadyside. Next are the two mule-drawn wagons, one with an umbrella-like cover to keep off the sun. The large multi-storied building off in the distance just before you get to the Administration Building is, I think, the Plaza Hotel on Montrose, where the Lovett family would live from the late 1920’s on.
In the center, if you look straight up the road towards the Mech Lab then a bit right you’ll see the chemistry annex, the frame house that Mr. Dennis, who was in charge of the power plant, lived in, and right next to that a railroad car, another oil tanker.
At left are the men’s dorms of course, but keep going and it gets more interesting. You can see the men’s tennis courts just to the side of West Hall and then something that surprised me–students walking out towards a pretty full parking lot that had escaped my notice. You’ll also happily note, I’m sure, the workman with the two mules pulling what is most likely a mower. Even better, if you lift your eyes up into the trees behind the parked cars, there are small glimpses of the barns and sheds that came down when the gym was put there in 1950.
What am I missing??