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Main Street: 1910

Main Street: 1910

Little Rock, Arkansas, circa 1910. "Main Street north from Sixth." A zoomed-in version of this view. Note the Free Bridge in the distance. View full size.


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Below is the same view from July of 2015.

8:20 or 1:50

Those of us who remember the old Timex watch commercials where they'd torture test a watch by tying it to the blade of an outboard motor or attached it to a jackhammer or some similar method to show that the watch could "take a licking and keep on ticking," will remember that the watch usually read 1:50 - 10 to 2 - and it read that way for a reason. Like 8:20, 1:50 didn't obscure the maker's name or the model type. 9:15 or 3:45 (or worse, 9:45 or 3:15) wouldn't work because there would always be those who would claim that the watch only had one hand! As for why Timex chose 1:50, well their name was at the top (under the 12) of the watch and placing the hands at 1:50 framed the name nicely.

8:18 still common at fine jewelers

While no longer universal, that time is still the most common time watches are set to at fine jewelers, because it doesn't obscure the maker and model information. The to couple of pictures site what I mean. Go to any specialty watch or fine jewelers, and chances are that's the time on the face, if its not actively running.

Okay, but *why* 8:20?

Does the use of the time 8:20 have any special meaning? Or is it for purely decorative purposes, like clocks for sale in shops that have their hands set to 10:10?

[At 8:20, the hands leave plenty of blank space for text. - Dave]

Public Time

These jewelers clocks were very real. During this period of time railroad, street car employees and the better off had personal time pieces and the rest had municipal, jeweler and other clocks for when they were away from home.
These particular clocks had a pendulum that was short enough to fit in the diameter of the face ...

[The hands on this clock (below) are painted on -- it's right twice a day. Same for the other 8:17 jewelers' clocks seen here. - Dave]

Thanks for the enlargements and setting me straight Dave. It really shows up in the symmetry issues of the flourishes at the end of the hands.

Keen Kutter II

Alive and well and highly collectible I might add.

Remembering streetcars and trolley buses

Conductors on streetcars was a job destined to become obsolete as eventually the driver had to handle all the chores.

I remember one corner in Cicinnati where it was rare for a streetcar or trolley bus to make the turn without the the trolleys coming off the wires. The driver would rush off, line them up, and we would be on our way again.

Keen Kutter

E.D. Bracy Hardware Co. Your Keen Kutter dealer. This boat named for the knife, still plies the waters of Lake Winnipesaukee New Hampshire.

Keen Kutter

A little help, please

I'll supply the truck if someone else will let me use their time machine. Then we can go back and get the spiked ball on top of the Stein Co. 5&10 at left. It's gonna look great on my garage!

Ahh, city life!

From the Newsie and the fellow in some sort of Uniform on the left, to the man in the window of "Jones House Furnishings," this is a wonderful image of life in 1910.

The big clock there on the corner, in front of McKinley's Jewelery store tells the time of day (8:18 AM)( This must have been the morning rush hour.) So many of these clocks are either gone or no longer work at all.

[Shorpy veterans will recognize the clock-face jewelers sign as a familiar fixture on early 20th-century streets. They're not real clocks, and all show 8:17. - Dave]

The East 14th St. streetcar is rolling along. (Please pay conductor upon entering car - I wonder what the fare was back then. a nickel? a dime?)

I also see a little business competition in the Stein and Kress 5 and 10 cent stores.

The descent from the Free Bridge looks a bit steep but that could be the camera itself doing that.

I wonder what the "LIGHT" sign above the street means...

Further to the right, in front of the E.D. Bracy Hardware store, There is a nattily dressed gent walking along. We also see some large wheeled bins marked 5 cents. I would like to see what is in those. To either side of Bracy's hardware are a Sporting Goods Store and J.H.Martin's Arms Store.

Then comes the 'Jones House Furnishings Store' with its list of wares that you can purchase within.

Imagine having a time machine so that you could go back and fill your home with furnishings from 100 years ago! Ready made antiques!

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