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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • WE CAN DO IT! BUT FIRST, COFFEE

Detroit Creamery: 1915

Detroit Creamery: 1915

Detroit circa 1915. "Detroit Creamery Co." At right, the Hotel Tuller; at left, a dealer in Studebaker wagons. 8x10 inch glass negative, Detroit Publishing Company. View full size.

 

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Don't Cry over Spilled Milk

It appears that the Creamery was located at the three-way intersection of Cass Avenue (to the left), Middle Street (to the right), and Grand River Avenue in the foreground. Middle ends at Clifford Street, the dark building beyond the laundry wagon. An aerial photo from 1949 shows the building to the left still there, but this corner was already a parking lot.

Good Luck and Prosperity

That's what the swastika on the back of the wagon, far right, symbolizes in Asian cultures. It became infamous about twenty years after this photo, when adopted as the symbol of the Aryan "race" by the Nazis. One wonders what the lettering on the wagon says.

[STANDARD LAUNDRY. Which advertised in the city's German newspapers. - Dave]

"Circa" covers a lot of territory

Rumour has it this photo is somewhat older: 1908 ... which seems more consistent w/ the lack of motor vehicles (OTOH in 1915 they proudly announced the opening of their new garage and stables for "253 horses...and 132 milk wagons", so who knows?)

And don't even think about checking: nothing remains at Cass and Grand River but the sky (Tho an utterly charming Romanesque building remains from to the left of where the camera was).

[The photo shows the Hotel Tuller annex addition completed in 1910. Horse-drawn ice and milk wagons were used well into the 1950s. - Dave]

The Tuller could settle it, but, unfortunately the side we're seeing - in this print anyway - is the Adams Street side, which was built c. 1906. (I'll concede however it must be after the 1910 addition of 5 floors to the top).

[The "New and Greater" Detroit Creamery and Ice Plant shown here had its grand opening in February 1911. This is not a print -- it's an inverted scan of the camera negative. - Dave]

I see

... what looks to me like a little person peeking out of the window above and between the words DETROIT and CREAMERY to the right of the main doors. Then there is the pair discussing something -- or at least, a young man is gazing out of the window while someone (I can't tell if it is another gent or a lady but I suspect it is the former) is speaking earnestly to him. The horse second from right is either sneezing or neighing, or both ... and the black wagon to the far right is decorated with swastikas, which, according to Wikipedia, were a symbol of auspiciousness and good luck in the West prior to 1930.

Thanks, Dave. I was going to say, either a little person peeking out, or a flower pot.

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