plep Archive

15th July
A Hard Day's Night. London Transport after dark.
'We have chosen the following selection of photographs and posters to contrast the glamour of London at night with London Transport's current and historical night time operations.'
'London at night means neon, noise, bars, concerts, theatres, cinemas, cafes, grand streets and grimy alleyways. Posters have been used, since 1913 to encourage people to use public transport to have fun in evenings; to eat out, watch a film, a play or enjoy some sporting action ... '
Thames Tales. 'Everyone can push the boat out this summer at London's Transport Museum by visiting Thames tales. This unique, interactive family adventure explores the changing life of the River Thames from royal pageantry and palaces to bridges, buoys and boats. The exhibition looks at the history of Londons main artery, as a working environment, leisure attraction and royal waterway. '
Both of the above links via London's Transport Museum.

Middletown: A Photographic History. The photographic history of a town in New York State. 'Peter A. Laskaris, a historian and member of the Historical Society of Middletown, has approved the digitization of his book, Middletown: A Photographic History for the education and enjoyment of students, library patrons, Middletown residents, and our Internet visitors. '

Unsealed: The Art of the Bottle Cap. 'Bottle-cap art, long a poor cousin to tramp art, quilting and other established folk crafts, is finally achieving a measure of collectable respectability. Though still a scavenger art whose modest aspirations, rough edges and obscure origins baffle the uninitiated, it is no longer strictly a sideshow inspiring only hard- core aficionados.'
'The anonymous figures that populated thrift-store shelves so abundantly in the early 1980s have made the jump to antique markets and even the odd corners of design-magazine photo spreads. More recently, the work of Iowa farmhands Clarence and Grace Woolsey has roiled the art and antique world, both in its prodigiousness and in the stunning price appreciation following its 1993 discovery ... '
Via Interesting Ideas.

The Aboriginal Mapping Network. From the 'about' page :- 'The Aboriginal Mapping Network is a collection of resource pages for First Nation mappers who are looking for answers to common questions regarding mapping, information management and GIS. It is a network where First Nation mappers can learn about what other native mappers are doing, and share their own experiences throughout the aboriginal community. The AMN has a British Columbia focus, but is not limited to this geographic region. It is intended to be used by any group who is active in aboriginal mapping, from the introductory level, to the advanced. It is a source for both technical information on GIS mapping, to general information relevant to decision makers.' (GIS=Geographic Information Systems).
Map gallery.
I dreamt of chicken barks. 'On the curious similarities between McDonald's chickens and farmed Atlantic salmon.'
GIS Implementation at the Squamish Nation.

Earth | Moon: Ted Hughes's Books for Children. 'Ted Hughes was a prolific writer for children. Throughout his career he has published more than twenty major books for children. Quite a few of them have become real classics and his most well-known children's book, The Iron Man, has been adapted into an animated movie. '
'But writing for children was only one of his concerns. He was at least equally concerned about education, children's reading and writing. Some of his most revealing essays stem from this pre-occupation. Hughes was also involved in a project called Farms for City Children, set up by Clara and Michael Morpurgo, and he was very much in favour of creating a Children's Laureateship. '
Farms for City Children.
The Ted Hughes Homepage.
Ted Hughes and the British bardic tradition.
Iron Man mixed-up sentence exercise.

Kamogawa's Mist. An interesting short story.
Via this ukiyo-e collection. Some good stuff here.

Red Guard Tabloids - Unique Documents from China's Cultural Revolution.

Architecture of Angkor. Views of the Cambodian temple complex.

Radio For Peace International. 'Radio For Peace International (RFPI) serves as the global messenger of peace and hope to the farthest reaches of the earth. The ultimate goal of RFPI is to create peace in hearts, homes, communities, and all nations of the world. In order to foster a worldwide culture of peace, RFPI transmits programs via shortwave and the Internet. The programs champion human rights; increase global awareness; promote tolerance; inform and educate isolated populations; equip listeners to become architects of peace; expose prejudice, hatred, and injustice; celebrate diverse cultures; and advocate environmental awareness.'
'RFPI began broadcasting on shortwave in September, 1987. Shortwave signals are not stopped by political or geographic boundaries and can be heard worldwide.'

Homeless Project London 2001. Photography.

Valerie Burke, Dancing with the Sun. An exhibition of pinhole photography.
Via Pinhole Visions.

Anglo-Australian Observatory Astronomical Images. 'This page is the gateway to a unique collection of wide-field astronomical photographs, mostly made with the telescopes of the Anglo-Australian Observatory by David Malin.'

13th July
A Glimpse into London's Early Sewers.

Nervous Industries. Experiments in snail mail and collaborative mail art.
' is our online presence, where we try experiments in Land Mail (also known as Snail Mail), to see if we can find new ways for people to interact and communicate. We encourage your participation! '

Portraits of Chinese Emperors. Historical portrait paintings from the Qin, Han, Tang, Song, Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasties, including the first and last emperors, Genghis Khan, Kublai Khan etc. A really good site, although there are a couple of broken links.

The Tree Register of the British Isles. 'A unique record of Notable and Ancient Trees in Britain and Ireland.' With pictures.

'The North American Indian'. 'This page is a gateway to information concerning approximately 80 western Native American tribes, visited and photographed by Edward S. Curtis from 1890 to 1930, taken from The North American Indian, Curtis' massive lifework. The North American Indian consists of 20 volumes of text, describing in detail all aspects of each Native American tribe's life and customs. '

United Colours. (BBC) London communities. '... 33 boroughs, seven million people, 300 languages and enough global cultures to experience a different part of the world every day. Here you will find information about 30 of London's minority groups. '

September Eleventh Families for Peaceful Tomorrows.
' Members of Peaceful Tomorrows met with Hiroshima-Nagasaki Emergency Peace Mission (survivors of the atomic bomb) in New York in Late April.'
Cards from kids in Afghanistan. 'When Peaceful Tomorrows members traveled to Afghanistan in January, they brought donations, cards and letters from children in the US, expressing a message of friendship to the children of Afghanistan. A classroom of older students (15-20 year old young women) at the Alfatha school for girls in Kabul wrote back to their new pen pals.'

Between Waters. An interesting puzzle site which features a daily cryptogram.

Koolakamba. 'Any discussion of the great apes must eventually encompass the mysterious Koolakamba. Speculation will then ensue as to its importance and even its existence. Over the past several years, while I have worked at what is currently the Coulston Foundation Holloman AFB site, I have followed this discourse with interest since this facility has been home to a few individuals identified as Koolakamba. If we accept the premise of the existence of the Koolakamba as a distinct entity then we must ask; is it a subspecies of the chimpanzee, a gorilla-chimp hybrid, or perhaps representative of individual variation? If we do not accept the premise of its existence then we must assign it to its place in the traditional folk mythology of the indigenous peoples of West Africa, as well as the more contemporary mythology of the international clan of primatologists. '
Virtual Institute of Cryptozoology :- 'The koolakamba is an unidentified ape from Western Africa, possibly an hybrid gorilla x chimpanzee.'

'ArtMagick is a virtual art gallery displaying paintings from art movements of the 19th and early 20th centuries (for example, Symbolist, Pre-Raphaelite and Art Nouveau).'
'The site places an emphasis on displaying works of art by artists who have been forgotten or neglected in recent years. The majority of paintings on display have a mythological or literary subject matter. ArtMagick is a site in progress and additional content will be added frequently.'
'The Vampire' by Philip Burne-Jones, 1897.

' The mystery of how ravenous Chinese walking fish wound up in a Maryland pond has been solved, according to state investigators, who said it all began with a man's simple wish to make soup for his ailing sister... ' (Washington Post) Thanks, James!

Fog buildings.

Lyingmofo, a literary parody blog.
'I began to lay the table, hastily at first then more slowly as I placed each long, firm piece of cutlery with deliberation. We were eating batter-pudding and jam. '
' "Take your pudding in your hand," said Mother in a short breath. '
'I held myself back, so as not to blunder brutally through each quivering mouthful. Some distance away could be heard the rhythmic braying of a merry-go-round, and the tooting of a horn as it was pulled and released by a skilful hand. '
' posted by D H Lawrence at 12:36 pm'
Via methylsalicylate.

12th July
Coming to New York: Chinatown's History in Photos.
About the site.

International Campaign for Tibet: Stories of the Escape into Exile.

Lighthouses: A Photographic Journey 'is an independent project which seeks to meld the work of photographer and lighthouse enthusiast Donald W. Carter with a comprehensive guide to the lighthouses of Michigan, The Great Lakes, America, and the world. '
Includes an expedition journal, alphabetical and geographical index.

Crossroads of Continents. (US National Museum of Natural History) Contacts between Siberia and Alaska.
'Northeastern Siberia and Alaska - the rugged and remote lands that rim the North Pacific - were among the last regions on earth to be described by Western explorers and cartographers, or to be coveted in the courts of Europe and Russia. The North Pacific remained a great blank on world maps until well into the 18th century, less known to outsiders than the unexplored heart of Africa. Yet this vast northern wilderness of mountains, forests, tundra and ice, geographically linking the continents of Eurasia and North America, was in no sense an uninviting wasteland.'

Fantastic, Mysterious, and Adventurous Victoriana. Victorian pop culture and penny dreadfuls.
'In which Your Humble Correspondent endeavours, with what he hopes is at least Partial Success, to list some of the Notable and Obscure Characters and Places of popular Victorian Fiction, that these might or might not be Suitable for Inclusion at some point in the Fanciful Chronicles of that noted Scrivener and author of Penny Dreadfuls Alan Moore (capably aided by the Thomas Nash of the Twentieth Century, Kevin O'Neill) in his Creations Peculiar And Edifying: to wit, the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (a guide to which is located a Short Distance away, Dear Reader: simply Click Here, and you shall see a few Notes Of Worth regarding that most Interesting of Illustrated Novels) is For You To Decide. Your Humble Correspondent simply desires to enumerate a number of fantastic and mysterious characters and places. You will also, should you wish, discover Certain Links of Edification And Wonderment, discovered and refined by Your Humble Correspondent (and a small Team of Select and Capable Worthies) for your pleasure. '

Love Canal, USA. An environmental disaster.
'Love Canal is a neighbourhood in Niagara Falls, New York. The nickname "Love Canal" came from the last name of William Love who in 1896 began digging a canal connecting Lake Ontario and Lake Erie (bypassing Niagara Falls) in order to serve as a water power conduit. It was never completed but the Hooker Chemical Company, located west of the canal, had the ingenious idea of turning the uncompleted canal into a dumping ground for the chemical by-products of its manufacturing process.'
'Once the canal was filled with waste, the land was covered over and sold to the Niagara Falls city school board for $1.00 and a school and subdivision of homes was built right on top of the waste.'
'The chemicals were detected leaking out of the site in 1977 and many health problems were also reported. Residents were evacuated after a lengthy fight with the New York State government. Today, it remains a ghost town. The main dump site is fenced in (with a school and many homes bulldozed over and buried in the ground with the waste). Over the rest of the area of crumbling, dilapidated homes hangs a gaunt, eerie silence, reminding visitors of the spectre that hazardous waste poses in our modern society.'

African American History of Western New York. 'We present an ongoing project to study the historical presence of Blacks in Buffalo, Rochester, Jamestown, Syracuse, Geneva, Ithaca, Corning, Niagara Falls, Canandaigua, Fredonia, and, in general, western New York State from 1700 to 2000.'
Related :- The Underground Railroad in Rochester, NY.

Propaganda Posters of the Great War (World War 1). Representing all sides of the conflict.
'The site features a collection of war-themed postal cards produced during World War 1 (1914 - 1919). More than 2,500 cards will eventually be displayed in an organized fashion. The cards are mementos of a world at war during the second decade of the 20th century. '

The John Curtis British Insects Collection. (Museum Victoria, Australia) 'The full-length flame wood cabinet doors are impressive, beckoning you with high expectations to the John Curtis British Insects Collection. To open the doors is to stand in admiration before the results of years of meticulous labour. As you gently slide out drawer after drawer of tiny, delicately pinned and glued wasps, small wonder, you may think, that Curtis went blind in 1861. Only when you sit down with one of those drawers alongside its accompanying handwritten diary, and observe the pattern of arrangement, can you begin to appreciate fully the scientific value of the collection. The five diaries detail collecting and locality notes for almost every specimen in the collection. '

Xylophone bone and the casket serenade.

Dr. Seuss Went to War. Cartoons 1941-43.

Mikhaela-Land. Editorial cartoons and a news blog (sadly no longer updated, but make for an interesting browse).

Chinese Dissidents Index. '(We present here only a partial list of dissidents. Hundreds of dissidents currently live in exile, and by the Chinese government's own count, some 2,000 people remain imprisoned for the crime of "counter-revolution".)'

11th July
The Electronic Museum of Mail Art.
What is mail art? 'Term applied to art sent through the post rather than displayed or sold through conventional commercial channels, encompassing a variety of media including postcards, books, images made on photocopying machines or with rubber stamps, postage stamps designed by artists, concrete poetry and other art forms generally considered marginal. '

The Trees of Reed College. (Portland, Oregon) 'These pages document some of the natural beauty to be found on the campus of Reed College in Portland, Oregon. There are descriptions for more than 100 species of trees, as well as detailed maps to help you locate living examples. There are also almost 200 color photographs taken here on the campus, and - for most of the photos - you can click to get an enlargement.'

Art of the First World War. Includes a virtual tour.
'From the 1914-18 war to the commemoration of the 80th anniversary of the Armistice of 11th November 1918.'
'An exhibition of 110 paintings brought together by the major history museums of Europe.'
'World War I as seen by 54 painters on both sides.'

Pixelpress | In Remembrance. 'This site consists of work submitted as responses to the tragic event of September 11, 2001.'
'It is intended as a permanent memorial.'

'Manx Fairy Tales', by Sophia Morrison, 1911.

Streakers Hall of Fame. Sheer brilliance.

Guardian Special Report: The Monarchy. The Guardian is challenging the 1701 Act of Settlement (and has been for a couple of years).
(For a more royalist view, there's the British monarchy's official site).

A Bittersweet Journey on the Underground Railroad. (Smithsonian Mag) 'Like a slave escaped from a plantation in the antebellum South--only 150 years later--Tony Cohen tested his fate on the Underground Railroad. He began his odyssey at the Library of Congress, pouring over documents and slave accounts to nail down routes and modes of transport.'
'Then he set out, on May 4 of this spring, from Sandy Spring, Maryland. The journey would take him 800 miles and six weeks, on a route winding through Maryland, Pennsylvania and New York, tracing the byways that fugitive slaves took to Canada and freedom. '

The Red Mirror: Children of China's Cultural Revolution. A site about an interesting book, including the author's introduction.
'The Red Mirror is an anthology of stories that bring to life the tragic personal impact of the Cultural Revolution on the families of China's intellectuals. Now adults, survivors recall their childhood during the tumultuous years between 1965 and 1976, when Mao's death finally drew a curtain on a bitterly failed social and political experiment.'

A Capsule History of Anime.

Senegal Fights Aids. Photo-essay.

Erik's Treehouses. Pine tree house, magnolia tree house, models.

St. Andrew's Church, Wood Walton, Cambridgeshire. 'St Andrews church stands isolated in fields north of Wood Walton village, which is located three miles east of the A1(M) in northwest Cambridgeshire. The Great Northern Railway passes close by on the west side of the Church and each day affords thousands of travellers a good, if only brief view of the historic building.'

Historical Essays on 'Garden and Forest'. (American Memory) 'Garden and Forest: A Journal of Horticulture, Landscape Art, and Forestry made its debut on February 29, 1888, and ceased publication on December 29, 1897. Although financially strapped from the beginning, Garden and Forest's influence spread far beyond its small circulation and brief ten-year run. '
'Self-described at its inception as ". . . indispensable not only to the practical Horticulturist, Botanist, Landscape-Gardener and Forester, but to every owner of a Country or Suburban Home who desires sound instruction in all branches of ornamental and economic planting,"1 it was the first American journal to address the rise of these emerging fields before they diverged into specialties. The editorials and articles published in Garden and Forest on landscape design and preservation, national and urban park development, scientific forestry, and the conservation of forest resources gave intellectual support and validation to the early practitioners who defined these new professions during the last decade of the nineteenth century. '
More essays.

Voices: Family Stories. The stories of Chinese-Americans in Los Angeles.
A Story from the Chinese Diaspora: The Chung Family. 'I am the product of a diasporic migration that originated in China more than one hundred years ago. My paternal great, great, great- grandfather Man Lung departed from the 19th century colonial port city of Hong Kong bound for America as a laborer for the construction of the Sierra Nevada segment of the Transcontinental Railroad. The few existing photographs of these early laborers were meant to reflect the historical record of events and circumstances depicting the conditions under which they build the railroad. These photographs, however, reveal little of the unofficial history that would more accurately be told by the laborers themselves ... '
A Statement of Remembrance. (Oct. 24th, 2001) On the occasion of the 130th anniversary of the Los Angeles Chinese Massacre.
Via the Chinese American Museum in Los Angeles.

'Weston State Hospital, formerly known as the Trans-Allegheny Asylum for the Insane, stands vacant but proud along the banks of the West Fork of the Monongahela River in Weston, Lewis County, West Virginia. Vacated in 1994 when a new hospital was constructed nearby, the building is the focus of adaptive reuse and historic preservation of the Weston Hospital Revitalization Committee and the Weston Hospital Task Force. '
'The Hospital's History is many faceted. It is a fine example of the skills of its architect, R. Snowden Andrews, and of the Irish, Scottish, and German craftsmen who carved it's stone from the West Virginia countryside. It is inextricably tied to the history of the states of Virginia and West Virginia and the American Civil War; and it is representative of the development of mental health care in America. '

International Blog Meetup Day.

London summer, alive with art. (NYTimes requires free registration and login). Some exciting things going on in the city this summer. Thanks to jp for passing it on!

The silent revolution. 'The explosion of non-verbal communication has transformed the lives of deaf people, says Kim Thomas.' (Guardian)

Professor Jenkins goes to Washington. 'This is the story of how a mild mannered MIT Professor ended up being called before Congress to testify about "selling violence to our children" and what it is like to testify.'