Saturday, February 5, 2011

Back Trackin' to Fort Worth

First of all, a brief, but BIG, Thank You, to all followers. I sure appreciate all the encouraging comments and hope all of you will visit often.

In a recent post I mentioned being a "railfan", one of the more friendly terms given to those of us who are fascinated, in one way or another, with trains. My fascination with railroads started way back in the 60s. (Yes, I know, almost a forever ago.) I was just getting interested in photography as well. Back tracking to that time, I was living in Fort Worth, Texas, and a new bridge had just been built over the rail yards west of downtown.

I went to the bridge late one afternoon to capture the shot above. I wish I could remember what kind of camera I had. I think it was a Pentax. In those days I saved most of my pictures in the form of 35mm slides. Scanned it into the computer and used Photoshop Elements to clean up the dust and scratches from 40+ years of storage.

I hope someone in Fort Worth sees this and lets me know if the skyline has changed much. LOL. Taking a look at Google Maps I can see that the rail yards probably haven't changed too much.

One more shot below was taken from the same spot but very early one morning just at dawn. Fort Worth's tallest building at the time had a giant clock on top which displayed digital time on one side and CNB on the other, for Continental National Bank.  It's fun to reflect on images taken so long ago.


  1. Hmmm. Not sure how much Ft. Worth has changed. It's been quite a while since I've ventured that far west (and this weekend with the Superbowl, I'm not going any where near either Dallas or Ft. Worth or points in between.)

  2. I can tell you a few things about Fort Worth that I remember from back in 1952. I was working my way back home from Tucson, Arizona. Instead of thumbing, I went to work for a guy driving a station wagon with 4 other people in it. They were selling Encyclopedia Britannica in Arizona and through New Mexico. I sold sets to some of the poorest people in the world in New Mexico. By the time we got to Texas and Dallas we were selling pots and pans. I sold pots and pans to folks in Dallas and in Fort Worth. It used to take a long time, I thought, to drive from Dallas to Fort Worth. That's what I wanted to tell you. They were two distinctive places separated by real desert country.

  3. I never tire at looking back through my old photographs ... usually brings back good memories. It would be interesting to return to Fort Worth and take some new pictures from the same perspective. Very cool looking images, John!

  4. One would never suspect your images are that old! Love the light in both (you obviously had a good eye, even back then) especially the second.

  5. My late husband would have loved to join you at the tracks.He loved trains and had a large model railroad layout.As a matter of fact I am in the process of trying to sell this.

  6. These are wonderful images, John. There's something just so fascinating about trains. I love them!

  7. I always enjoy stopping by your blog John!! When I was litle my Dad used to take us to the railroad tracks and we would leave pennies on the tracks and watch the trains go by then hunt for the flattened pennies ! :)

  8. Such a tangle of tracks! But they did untangle old memories. Our farm was next to train tracks, and the cars filled with tiers of new cars were almost more exciting than waving to the guy in the caboose!

  9. Some friends, and my brother who lives at El Campo, Texas, have told me that the two cities are like one nowadays. For me, seeing it or going through it selling pots and pans and encyclopedias in 1952, I find that much desert space filled-in, hard to imagine.

  10. Back from the weekend in Cowtown. Great picture because it captures the commerce of the day with Downtown in the background. You know the clock and the building are gone replaced by a 40 story building. The 30 story Ft Worth National bank building was build probably 10 years after your photo. It was blown out in the Tornado in 2001 and is now condos. The Bass brothers of course with their two buildings and another 40 story tower has been built. Smaller buildings like the Tandy Center and the Pier 1 buildings would be visible if the picture were taken today. Bottom line in 45 years Ft Worth has grown. By the way the Hulen bridge is being enlarged right now and it is shut down to just two lanes.
    What I like about your first picture is the light was just perfect. I have never seen the morning shot but it is neat to see the downtown lights and the clock.
    My question is did you scan the slide of the evening picture or did you scan the print you had of it? I remember you had an 8x10 framed hanging on your wall.
    Comment to Abraham, yes homes and cities have filled in the area between Ft Worth and Dallas,BUT Ft Worth is as different as night and day from Dallas. Ft Worth still has the small hometown western character and Dallas is just big city with freeways that are always clogged.
    John, keep up the good work on the blog. I look forward to your next walk down memory lane, maybe a couple of GTO's sometime.


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