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Ian House
This is an invitation to all Dismukers -but especially to those of you living in Idaho- to join me for the first annual Lee Morse Homecoming event to take place during this years annual "Kooskia Days" celebration in Kooskia, Idaho.

..... Friday, July 28th 6:30-7:15pm.....

I have been working with Kooskia's Chamber of Commerce in collaboration with the University of Idaho to establish an annual tribute event dedicated to the memory of Lee Morse in her hometown. The Chamber has shown an interest in this idea and has agreed to let us present a short 45 minute event for this years Kooskia Days celebration to "test the waters" for a more comprehensive annual event (starting next year). The future dedicated event will likely take the form of a Roaring 20's dance and costume contest using Lee Morse as the signature artist. However, this years trial event will be a simple introductory lecture with a modest tea dance to follow -total time = 45 minutes. We are currently communicating with members of both the Taylor family in California and the Morse family in Idaho to, hopefully, join us for this special celebration.





..... Click here for directions to Kooskia, ID

..... Click here to visit Kooskia.com






Flapper Girl
A nice presentation, Ian on your upcoming adventure to Idaho. The comparison photos of the street in Kooskia shows little change in its appearance in the past 100 years. Is that the main drag? I hope there may be some Dismukers up that way who will be able to attend. It is out of the question for me – just too many miles between here and there, but I hope the event goes well and the lecture generates interest to make it an annual event. The potential for a Roaring Twenties dance beginning next year sounds like fun – with authentic costumes, of course. Any luck in getting Taylor/Morse family members to attend in July?

Flapper Girl
tferbe
Good luck Ian. I would definatly be there if I lived anywhere within a hundres miles or so but it's just to dern far. It sounds like a lot of fun and I'm sure you will have a blast. biggrin.gif biggrin.gif biggrin.gif
Ian House
Thanks Flap, Thanks Ted !

I have no serious expectations for folks not living near Kooskia to attend this lecture/dance -it's only 45 minutes in length after all :-) It's really just a "seed planting" event for bigger and better things in the future.

Is there anybody on this message board living in Idaho??

_ _ _

Yup, that's the main drag in Kooskia -known as Main Street (aka Highway 13). In 1928, Lee recorded one of her own songs called "Main Street" which is, presumably, dedicated to this road...( I have no hard proof of this -but it's a reasonable assumption based on the lyrics). It will be one of the recordings played during the lecture.

I can't wait for July 28th; Just tonight, I finished creating the stage backdrop and decorations -basically a diorama of the above poster with a life-size cutout "standup" of Lee sitting on top of a tall art deco pedestal with long-stemmed roses, pinecones, etc... Behind her is a six foot title poster for the back wall. She will also be flanked on either side by two gigantic (30 inch) records (one Pathe and one Columbia) each accompanied by their own vintage sleeve. Both "records" are mounted on pedestal fans which I will turn on and off as the dance songs are played. Unfortunately, the fan speed at its lowest setting is still much faster than 78rpm -so I hope nobody in the audience calls me on it! ... All together, the visuals will, hopefully, look pretty attractive...

I have recently developed a friendship with Lee's nephew, Arod Taylor, who, as it happens, lives just 5 minutes away from me in Millbrae, Ca. Arod is the son of Glen Hearst Taylor, Lee's younger brother. Glen Taylor, the "Singing Senator", had a colorful career in politics and, before that, show business. Arod was born into the family business in 1935 and became the youngest member of the vagabond "Glendora Players", a Western vaudeville-style roadshow headed up by his parents. He still sings and plays the ukulele -maybe the last of a long line of talented Taylors to do so. If I can somehow convince him to make the trip in July, he has agreed to perform one of Lee's songs during the event... which, of course, would thrill me beyond all measure.

Both John and David Morse live in Moscow, Idaho -just a short trip to Kooskia... so I hope that they will both be in attendance...

Thanks kindly for the good wishes :-)

Ian
Flapper Girl
Ian,

I suspect you have had past experience in designing and creating sets? Were you a member of a theatre group at one time? My brother belonged to such a group during his college years and enjoyed it immensely. He was in charge of the lighting, but also worked on sets for their productions. I am trying to envision your stage set-up from the description you give. You will have to take a photo of it so I can see how close I came to it in my mind’s eye. Sounds really nice. As you are pouring your heart and soul into this event, I’m sure the Taylor/Morse family members must be very pleased and will be ready and willing to lend support in any way they can to make it a success. I do hope Lee’s nephew will attend and perform one of her songs. That would be really neat. I assume he is an older man, so perhaps the travel distance may be a problem for him?

I just took a tour of the Kooskia site and see that they have a link to your Lee Morse site there, as well. I meandered over to it and listened to her Main Street song. It does appear that the song must have been written about her own hometown and it seems she must have felt very comfortable there. As Kooskia’s population is only 675 residents now, I wonder what it was back in 1906? It is interesting to speculate and look back over the years to those times. Have you ever been there before or is this a first?

F.G.
Ian House
QUOTE(Flapper Girl @ Jun 11 2006, 11:23 AM)
I suspect you have had past experience in designing and creating sets?   

Nope. This has been my first such experience... but I've been having SO much fun playing around with it :-) ... All I could think about while working on the set design was that hilarious scene in Christopher Guest's movie, "A Mighty Wind" in which Jonathan Steinbloom is scrutinizing and criticizing every little detail of the set design. LOL :-) ...

QUOTE(Flapper Girl @ Jun 11 2006, 11:23 AM)
I am trying to envision your stage set-up from the description you give. You will have to take a photo of it so I can see how close I came to it in my mind’s eye.   

Hey Flapper, to prevent you from having to spend the $500 air fare, I can show you some video of the setup (from within the cramped quarters of my small apartment!). I have prepared these videos for the Chamber of Commerce in Kooskia to describe to them the ongoing progress; Unfortunately, everything has to be planned and organized from a distance.

video 1: overview
video 2: playing record

For some reason, the lighting in these videos makes the Columbia record appear to be brown -but rest assured gramophiles, the actual prop is jet-black!

QUOTE(Flapper Girl @ Jun 11 2006, 11:23 AM)
Have you ever been there before or is this a first?   

Yup, ... in 2003, I took a trip to Kooskia to research Lee's childhood for my website. I couldn't find many people there who were even aware of her career in the first place -which became the primary inspiration for this "Homecoming" event - I really want the people in Kooskia to learn more about her roots there. If you visit my site again, you can take a look at my photo journal of that trip (go to the "rescue" part of the "Search and Rescue" section...
Flapper Girl
Hey, Ian!
I like it! I like it! You surely have put a lot of thought, time and effort into this project and have come up with a pretty spiffy looking set. The life size image of Lee is wonderful and I also like the idea of the spinning 78’s. Who’s to know or care if they aren’t spinning at exactly the prescribed rpms. Very nice job and when you have a little more space to spread it out a bit more, it will be even better. I also checked out your website again and took a look at your trip to Kooskia. I had perused through your site a few times in the past, but didn’t remember reading about the trip. Very interesting and it seems you didn’t leave a stone unturned in retracing Lee’s life there – actually walked in her footsteps, so to speak. I find genealogy and delving into the past to be so fascinating. Bet you had a ball doing it!

Thanks for the sneak preview.

F.G.
Greg H
This is exciting news. I live in Moscow, ID and discovered Lee Morse last year. I'll definately be there for this event. Looks like you had a lot of fun putting it together. The set looks great! I have a vintage music radio program in Moscow on Thursdays and I'll be playing some Lee Morse and talking up the event the day before it occurs.

Ian, you mentioned that John & David Morse live in Moscow. What relation are they to Lee? Thanks for putting together an excellent website on Lee. Now I can go to Kooskia with a little sense of her history there.
Ian House
QUOTE(Greg H @ Jul 1 2006, 11:35 PM)
This is exciting news.  I live in Moscow, ID and discovered Lee Morse last year.  I'll definately be there for this event.  Looks like you had a lot of fun putting it together.  The set looks great! I have a vintage music radio program in Moscow on Thursdays and I'll be playing some Lee Morse and talking up the event the day before it occurs. 

Ian, you mentioned that John & David Morse live in Moscow.  What relation are they to Lee?  Thanks for putting together an excellent website on Lee.  Now I can go to Kooskia with a little sense of her history there.

Hi Greg,

First, welcome to the board! ... I am SO thrilled that you will be attending our event. GREAT news about your radio program -the PERFECT venue...

Let me answer your question: John Morse is Lee's adopted grandson and David is his first son (of 2). Lee's son Jack (her only child) could not have his own children with his wife Robbie -so they adopted John. John works in some capacity at the University of Idaho and David is studying law there as well. I met David a few years ago when he was working as an archivist at the International Jazz Collections office at the UOI. The Morse family donated half of Lee's personal collection to the University...

I have good news: I had a delightful conversation with John Morse earlier this week and he is planning to join us in Kooskia...

_ _ _

When in Kooskia, you can join me in my effort to save the Fenn building -it has been condemned since my visit there and, to be honest, it is not a very attractive prospect for investors... but it is the only remaining historical structure in Kooskia with a connection to Lee (it was her home during her brief marriage to Elmer Morse from 1915-1920) I have a photo of the interior on my site... I was lucky to get it before the building was shut down...

_ _ _

Greg, I have had a FANTASTIC couple of weeks research-wise which I will outline in a subsequent post. (It may take a while to write up!) Please consider this promised post as your formal welcome gift!

Ian
Ian House
OK Greg,

Here is your official message board welcome gift, a special sneak-peek at some never-before-published original photos, etc from Lee's past... I will be adding dozens of such photos to my site later this year -or early next.

As stated above, I have become close friends with Arod Taylor, Lee's nephew, who ( as INCREDIBLE good fortune shines down upon me) lives a mere 5 minutes away!! Maybe it was just meant to be :-) We are both on a MISSION FROM GOD to piece together the lost facts of Lee Morse history -and, trust me, the database on her is quite moth-eaten...

Lee's birth name was Lena Corinne Taylor (her first two names were acquired from her mother's two sisters) She was born on November 30th, 1897 (we think in Portland, Oregon) I can't go into the entire family history here but all of her elder brothers went into some sort of vagabond Vaudeville style of show-business. Lee herself started at the age of three in a mining town show where the miners threw $20 gold pieces at her feet during her first performance ($500 worth) She was an instant local phenomenon -and, she was HOOKED for life!...

I have a detailed account of this performance which was written by Glen Taylor for his autobiography "The Way It Was With Me" -but it was edited out of the final draft due to the length of the entire manuscript...

The Taylor family relocated to Kooskia, Idaho in 1908. I never dreamed that I would ever see an actual photograph of their homestead ... but dreams DO come true :-) Arod has been truly generous in allowing me access to the originals -and I can't begin to express my appreciation to him. Note: Lee's parents were named Pleasant John (PJ) and Olive (Ollie):




Please forgive me for the clumsy presentation. I am currently very tight on time (moving across the country on July 21st!!)... so I only had time enough to throw the photos on the scanner bed ... I'll pick up the pieces later when I get to Indiana. I will do a full digital restoration for each photo when I publish them to my site...What makes it worse (or BETTER :-) ... each time I visit Arod to return some material, he has uncovered more!! Yikes! I wish I could have met him 5 years ago!! Such is life... but I'll happily suffer the time crunch.

Anyway, probably the best set of photos is a series of 22 family reunion pictures never before seen. This reunion occurred at the Allen, Oklahoma home of PJ and Ollie in 1927 (at the zenith of Lee's career -she had just switched over to Columbia's Viva-Tonal) She poses with each family member in different combinations -and as a group. Here's a sampling:





The most endearing photos to me are the ones from her childhood. She seems like such a unique individual, often caught in her trademark frown -just like Wednesday Addams from the Addams Family! ... These are also the shots of her before she had any front bangs... Here's a family photo which will require a lot of restoration attention:





And finally, Arod phoned me just this morning (as I was packing up my scanner for the move :-)... and said "Hey, would you be interested in any of Ollie's old letters?" ... My jaw dropped, my scanner packing stopped, and my keys turned over the ignition (all within 6 minutes)... Here's just a taste of some of the ACTUAL letters ranging from 1895-1909:






An actual letter on Lee's birthday!! I still can't get over it :-) ... I just wonder how they celebrated on that day...?


_ _ _

One aspect of my website that I would like to develop is a Taylor Family message board. It would be a HUGE benefit to have a venue for the family to communicate with ... and to help us with all of the unknowns... That will definitely be explored when time permits.
_ _ _

Anyway, welcome aboard Greg. I can't wait to meet you in Kooskia...

regards,

Ian
Flapper Girl
What an incredible series of events, Ian. It seems the heavens have opened up and sent all these Lee Morse “goodies” falling into your lap. I can feel your excitement and enthusiasm as the event in Kooskia draws closer. I couldn’t believe my eyes to read the note from Greg and to learn he not only lives in Idaho and will attend, but that he has a radio program there and will publicize the event.

Any commitment from Lee’s nephew about attending and singing one of her songs? That would put the icing on the cake. Hope you will be taking lots of photos and giving us a complete report.

Flapper
Ian House
Thank you Flap,

Yes, I can hardly believe my own good fortune with the events of the last two weeks; Greg's post has filled me with great hope that the Kooskia event might be well-attended by some Jazz Age fans as well...

_ _ _

In regard to Arod's attendance, I am gently nursing along his enthusiasm... Every visit proves to be more encouraging as I throw out some subtle hints for a commitment. Presently, I think there's an 80% chance that he will be in Kooskia... At the conclusion of our first meeting, he told me -while playing a little air uke: "Ya, maybe I can play my ukulele and sing Lonesome Darlin'!" (a song Lee recorded in 1950 -maybe his favorite...?) I haven't brought up this "offer" since -and I'm beginning to fear that it was mentioned in jest... but Arod (b. 1935) was brought up in show-business himself so I don't think he would suffer from stage-fright necessarily. I really hope that he was serious but no promises should be made.
Greg H
Wow Ian, you really hit the jackpot with the new historical material. So nice to find information that has been buried for many years. I'm going to contact the Swing Devils, an organization here in Moscow that sponsers weekly swing dances. They might have an interest in hearing about the event. With your permission, I'll also print a few of your poster above and place them on the bulletin boards around town. Maybe it'll bring some of us Jazz Age fans out of the woodwork.

Good luck with your move. I hope to meet you in Kooskia. Will you be a part of the presentation so I'll know who you are? Thanks for the great welcome gift.
Ian House
Hi Greg,

You'll be able to recognize me. I'll be the guy who:

1. is setting up the stage backdrop...
2. is moderating and introducing the event...
3. is wearing a fedora...
4. is polishing Arod Taylor's ukulele...
4. has a big smile on his face...
5. has a big belly on his body...

Please do introduce yourself when you're there.
_ _ _

I would like to talk to you offline if possible (in regard to the swing dancers)... If you're willing.
Ian
Flapper Girl
Well, Ian, I assume the countdown is on for your liftoff to Kooskia and beyond? You must be getting anxious to hit the trail. Do you have a firm commitment from Arod on doing the “gig”? Wish we could drop by and see how things go. I hope there will be a good turnout and that Greg H. has been doing his part towards that end. Could you give us an update?

I know it will be great fun and you will get to meet a lot of new and interesting people. Hopefully they will all be more sociable and fun than the company I have been entertaining over the past few days. It is said that fish and company stink after three days, but this company reeked the minute they walked into the door. You see, Mama Skunk and several offspring have decided to take up residence in an outbuilding in my back yard, getting in through a small opening under it. Needless to say, it has been a battle between man and beast (or woman and beast, as the case may be) and so far it is Skunks 5, Flapper 0. I have sent them an eviction notice, but they refuse to vacate and my next step is a Cease and Desist Order concerning their odoriferous activities. How do you evict a skunk? (and don’t say, “Very carefully!”) I believe I may need to enlist the aid of “The Pied Piper of Hamelin” to bring this to a conclusion. Wonder if it would work on skunks? Just love that song by Al Bowlly.

All my best wishes in Kooskia and have a safe and pleasant cross-country trip to Indiana.

Enjoy and take care,

Flapper
Ian House


Oh No Flap!!

SKUNKS? What a mess... I suppose that Bowlly's version might come to the rescue... but do you have a backup plan if it doesn't?? I have faith in you to even the score -AND FAST!!

_ _ _

Yup, my departure is getting SUPER close now. I can't wait! ... Unfortunately, Arod Taylor will not be able to attend the Kooskia event after all -I guess the notice was just too short. Still, he was very gracious to record a short message (with two short uke songs :-) to play in absentia during the event. Here's the mp3:

Arod Taylor's greeting

And here's a photo of Arod when he was performing with his parents, Glen and Dora Taylor -sitting in front:



Glen Taylor (Lee's younger brother) went on to become a Senator from Idaho known as "The Singing Senator"

_ _ _


For my trip, I have invested in the necessary wireless technology in order to maintain a daily travel journal with photos and videos of interesting landmarks along the trail. I will still be active on Dismuke -in fact, you may never notice that I've gone anywhere :-) Naturally, I will be looking for Jazz Age points of interest en route ...and, perhaps, the folks on this board can suggest places of interest that they are aware of. For example, if time permits, I will be visiting Gonzaga University in Spokane where the largest collection of Bing Crosby memorabilia is located.

If anybody wishes to follow my adventures, they can do so from my website: ianhouse.com

Hopefully, I'll remember to take a lot of photos in Kooskia :-)
Flapper Girl
I am absolutely dumbfounded with your Road to Indy website. It will be such fun to be able to follow your wanderings all the way to Indiana. Stupendous, Magnifico and all the rest! This technology is something else. You certainly have an extensive list of scheduled places to see along the route. I would love to see the Bing Crosby museum, as I have always been a big fan. I definitely will be checking your site on a daily basis to see what you have been up to.

I’m sorry to hear that Arod won’t be able to make it to Kooskia. He sounds very nice on the clip and it will be great to have a family member represented, even if it is only through a recording. Too bad he couldn’t have been there in person, though. He seems right at home on the uke and I enjoyed hearing him. Thanks.

Concerning my on-going battle with Mephitis, mephitis (stinkis skunkis), I am in the process of implementing Plan B. (Plan A was not feasible due to the high cost of The Pied Piper’s services.) However, our esteemed and beloved friend in Arizona, along with Blondie, recommended stringing speakers out there and “blasting them out.” Ummmmm….. worth a try!

A search of the web brought up a site on “living with skunks”, subtitled “I Never Met a Skunk I Didn’t Like.” (Debatable, I’d say.) It was very informative and had numerous suggestions on how to get them to move on without trapping or doing them in. Playing a radio was one of the suggestions, as well as ammonia soaked rags or mothballs across the entrance to where they are denned up. It recommended human voices vs music, so they will be listening to talk radio overnight. I wouldn’t want to lull them off to dreamland to the strains of Brahm’s Lullaby. Anyway the radio is now wired up, ammonia on standby and Plan B will be implemented this evening. The action starts at dusk and with a bit of luck I will arise skunk-free in the morning.

Flapper
Ian House
Hey Flap,

How did the skunks warm up to PLAN B ??
Flapper Girl
The jury is still out as to whether my guests have left the premises or not. I will be playing the waiting game over the next few days to see if they appear in my backyard. I’m not about to barge into that shed and call out, “Hey, guys, are you still here?” Somehow, I don’t think it would be the prudent thing to do just in case Plan B didn’t get results. It is a storage shed with piles of lumber and lots of things to hide under, so they can be well hidden away. Don’t think I want to start moving things around out there just yet.

Flap
honeybadger
That's some seriously impressive work! HATS OFF to you for everything you've done to bring this wonderful singer to so many new ears... sorry I can't make it, but I hope everyone has a BLAST!

Cheers,
~HB.
Ian House
Thanks for your kind thoughts HoneyBadger!

Tomorrow, I will be driving down through Idaho alongside the BEAUTIFUL Lewis and Clark trail headed towards the Taylor family's Clearwater Valley... It will likely be a gorgeous Summer day -Life just DOES NOT get any better :-)

I can almost hear Lee's echo from where I'm typing this in Spokane...

Ian
laughland
Ian,

With the big day upon us, I just wanted to wish you the best of everything on Lee's big homecoming day!

I sure wish I could be there!



By the way - I was reading in your little travel log about having trouble with wireless internet access. I just did a long drive through about 15 states and I found that many of them offer free wireless internet at rest areas. They may limit the time you may connect or require signups but I found they worked in a pinch.
Greg H
Just got home from attending the Lee Morse Homecoming that Ian put together in the little town of Kooskia, Idaho. It was a real pleasure to meet Ian who is, as I suspected from his posts here & the few emails we exchanged, a genuinely nice guy. Ian is incommunicado for a few days so I will fill in a few details and allow Ian to do the rest once he gets to where his wireless laptop will work. The steep wall and bends of the Clearwater River don't allow for easy communication out of the valley.

It was a great event in a nice log framed open air structure right on the banks of the Clearwater. The weather was in the high 90's which may have had some impact on the turnout but we managed an "Idaho crowd" of 30 to 50 people. The wind was blowing pretty hard earlier in the day so Ian was worried about his giant 78's blowing over but by the time the event started the day was starting to cool and the wind died down. Ian had to put up with an inebriated heckler who sat right behind me for the first few minutes of the presentation but she finally calmed down after the crowd told her to be quiet. Ian gave a nice presentation about how he discovered Lee's music followed by an informative talk from Michael Tarabulski, the archivist for the International Jazz Collections at the University of Idaho, about Lee's life and music. Ian had hoped to get the Swing Devils from Moscow to come down and give a few demonstration dances to Lee's music but they were unable (unwilling?) to come. Maybe next year. Another game soul (was that Tom Hebert, Ian?) got up on stage and singlehandedly try to stir up interest in getting others to join him on stage for dancing. He had a hard time getting volunteers but eventually got some local teenagers to join him and a few more joined in. You could see by the smiles that they were enjoying themselves. Some more introductions were made including David Morse, Lee's grandson, whom I didn't know 'til a few days ago lives in the same town as I. They also presented the Chamber of Commerce with a very nice framed photo of Lee to hang in the traveler's information building. There were many touching moments. We all had a great time and I conveyed my wish to the Chamber of Commerce representative present that this be an annual event that they build upon next year.

I know Ian had some exciting experiences that he'll want to share with you so I'll leave that to him. I just wanted to say thanks Ian for putting on such a great event and insuring that the music and person of Lee Morse won't be forgotten.
victrolajazz
Thanks, Greg H, for this nice report on the events in Kooskia. I know it was in good hands with Ian and am looking forward to more of his great travelogues!

Eddie the Collector
Doc Savage
I have to join the chorus of Dismukers who wish they could've been there. We would've put a quick kibosh on the heckler!
Thanks for the info , Greg H , and Ian , don't be stingy on the details when you get back to us!
-Doc
Flapper Girl
Thanks so much Greg for giving us a brief overview of Ian’s presentation in Kooskia. I have been anxious to know how it went and thought we would have to wait until he resurfaced in August to find out. I’m not at all surprised to hear that you found Ian to be a genuinely nice guy. His sunny personality has always shown through in his postings and more recently in his “Road To Indy” videos.

Watching the weather reports from that area on Friday, I feared the heat might impact the turnout. Unfortunately, there wasn’t much anyone could do about that, but the heckler should have been tarred and feathered (or placed in the stocks for the remainder of the day at the very least). Other than that little aggravation, it seems everything went according to plan and was well received. It is interesting that there were teenagers in attendance and that they initiated the dancing on stage. Most young people disassociate themselves from any other music except rock. Ian must still be flying high, coming off the success of his event. He certainly put his heart and soul into it and I’m so happy to hear it went so well.

Flapper
Ian House
Hi Greg,

Thanks for sending out a smoke signal on my behalf while I was (am) in a communications-challenged part of the country (no wireless, no cellular service, and no television -in my bed and breakfast room :-)

I am typing this to you from the University of Idaho's "International Jazz Collections" office in Moscow, Id -the institution that holds the Lee Morse family collection ... so I am taking advantage of a VERY brief window of opportunity to use the wireless connection here. Tonight, I will be enjoying an evening with John Morse and his family at their home here in Moscow and then I'll be staying overnight with the Tarabulski family before returning to Kooskia -and NO communications :-( ... I doubt that I will have much of an opportunity to upload any Kooskia updates -without being socially impolite :-) I have some great updates in regard to the Taylor family homestead location, swimming in the same Clearwater River water as Lena did, some great video from the actual property (thanks to the current owner, Marty Graham) -even a shot from WITHIN the home which is located on the exact same footprint as the original Taylor home... Marty gave me a full tour of the property and showed me the old wagon trail and water wells which are presently obscured partly by wild foliage.

My time in Kooskia was originally scheduled for just 4 days -but I have extended my visit (until Friday August 4th) due to the overwhelming outpouring of research opportunities and local interest, etc... I may even have to extend my visit past Friday if I can't run around to everything in time... I have discovered SO many new facts during my visit -including the Taylor family's activity at the town's little opera house from 1912 (which seats just 190!) and the TRUE exact location of the family's second home in town ... and I have to still gin up some enthusiasm to save Lee's third home in Kooskia (1915-1920) which is now a condemned building (also from 1912) across from the Old Opera House -and is on the verge of being torn down.

So, I apologize to anybody trying to email me or to get Road To Indy updates -it's just not going to happen for a few days more. (an aside to Dismuke: I will attempt to phone you tonight to see if I can bump my visit up by another week -to Aug 19th and/or 20th)

_ _ _

Greg described the event quite nicely (...and I was too involved to get much on video)... It was our humble little attempt to "plant the seed" for a more elaborate future celebration -which I am extremely excited to announce has a whole lot of local interest :-)

And I was VERY excited to have met Greg in person; He is a GREAT guy full of warmth and enthusiasm -an asset to this board!

_ _ _

OK, this will likely be my last report for several more days -back to the dark side of the moon!

Ian
Ian House
Hi guys,

I had to take a side-trip up to a great little silver mining town in northern Idaho called Wallace -200 miles north of Kooskia... Anyway, I had another evening of wireless connectivity before I will be returning to wireless-less Kooskia... I was able to update the Road to Indy site with the first day of my Kooskia visit (July 27th)...

Back down to Kooskia...

Ian
bob
I'm visiting with Ian and we are filming this to say hello . Come back later to see this.


Bob
Ian House
QUOTE(bob @ Aug 15 2006, 09:11 PM)
Come back later to see this.


Bob

CLICK HERE to see Bob posting the previous message...

_ _ _

It was a delight to meet Bob, Mary and Blondie in person :-)
Doc Savage
Visiting With Bob:
Great idea for a regular series!
By the way,Nice little airplane niche you have there , Bob!
I noticed the Japanese Zero somewhere in there. Did you build them? They look really good.
-Doc
laughland
I have also been enjoying your little travel updates!
It was great getting to "see" Bob and his family! And the little posing session with Blondie was fun even thought she preferred to keep her backside to the camera (or maybe she was trying to keep her frontside away from the cameraman?)... Anyway, I just love her body shape! What a combination. tongue.gif

I couldn't help but notice that you will soon pass through a certain city in New Mexico. Last month our family drove through and the kids we quite excited when we made a left turn there. biggrin.gif Really they did - after all they've been raised with an appreciation of the classics!

BTW, the dog population at our house has grown since the topic of canines last arose. We have now taken in an an abandoned pup who we have named Snickers. She's all the colors of the candy bar plus in the words of our youngest, "she's kinda sweet, but she's also a bit nutty". We've been told by our vet that she is almost certainly a German shepherd-yellow lab mix. Anyway, here's the trio of she-dogs, with Annie at the top, Zippity in the middle and Snickers in the foreground. I've jokingly called them the "Barkswell Sisters" a few times (but don't you dare try to call any of them "Vet"). laugh.gif

Ian House
QUOTE(laughland @ Aug 16 2006, 06:49 PM)
I couldn't help but notice that you will soon pass through a certain city in New Mexico. Last month our family drove through and the kids we quite excited when we made a left turn there.  biggrin.gif  Really they did - after all they've been raised with an appreciation of  the classics! 



In order to enjoy the experience of sleeping in a Route 66 Wigwam, I had to fall short of my driving goals today -which means that I will need to make up for lost mileage tomorrow and Friday (so that I can keep my date in Ft. Worth with Dismuke and the Texas Record Collectors)...

Anyway, I was originally hoping to visit Santa Fe, NM, -but, alas, I will not be able to make it. Driving east towards Albuquerque, the left turn would have taken me to Santa Fe! ... Therefore, like Bugs, I will be able to honestly regret not having taken that left turn at Albuquerque :-)


Ian

(sleeping in a wigwam)






PS. Laughland, congrats on the addition to the family :-)
bob
Hi Laughland

Glad you liked the photo shoot of Blondie. She is something else. I think she doesn't know she's a dog. We treat her as one of the family. Ian had a great time with her. Said when he gets settled in his new home, getting a dog is on the top of his to do list. Good looking dog Snickers. I like the name. Looks like he found a nice home.

Hi Doc

Yes , I've been in the model airplane business on and off since I was a kid. Mostly freeflight rubber powered planes. Scratch built from a plan, balsa wood . tissue and a little glue. Fast becoming a lost art in this modern age. I do a little R.C. park flying though.

smile.gif Bob
matto
Ian, I really enjoyed getting together with you, Eddie and Dismuke in Waco !

The video of the Baker Hotel interior are very interesting as is the humerous speech by Dismuke next to the Dismuke's pronto-lax bottle.

See that here


Hope you enjoy Ft. Worth !

Matt
victrolajazz
I'll have to "second" everything that Matt said! Dismuke gave his usual informed and interesting tour of downtown Waco and the Dr Pepper Museum and it was really fun meeting Ian for the first of what I hope is many times to come. Can't wait to see Ian's videos of that day, too.

Eddie the Collector
Ian House
Matt, Eddie,

It was SUCH a joy for me to meet both of you in person -just as it was to meet Bob in Phoenix... You guys are the definition of Texas charm, warmth and enthusiasm. -It's NO WONDER why Lee felt so comfortable here!... I still have some Ft Worth and Dallas left -tomorrow, I will be revisiting my earliest memories in Dealey Plaza -and then a return visit to Palo Pinto and the Baker Hotel in Mineral Wells on Friday.

I would especially like to thank Dismuke for his gracious generosity in touring me around for the last four days... (Oh dear! All that WALKING!!)
I dearly love your city. There's WAY more deco preserved here than I ever imagined. And I can't believe that the Fair Park in Dallas is still intact -that's an extremely rare glimpse into the architecture of the Worlds Fairs from the past...

I'll never forget my visit :-)

Ian
matto
Glad you were here....everyone should check out Ian's Website to see a video of us playing Eddie's credenza.


Matt
victrolajazz
Talk about an experience!!! Ian and I, with the expert guidance of Dismuke, explored the Baker Hotel, Mineral Wells, TX from the bell tower above the 14th floor, accessible via a metal spiral staircase, to the sub-sub-basement via a metal ladder below an opening in the floor, and virtually every significant area in between. We started this tour at 7:00 p.m. equipped with flashlights and Dismuke's knowledge (the hotel has been vacant since '74 and has had no electricity for two years). Climbed stairs to the 14th floor, saw the Baker Suite on the 10th floor where the old man died of a heart attack in the early 70's and set the hotel's fate into motion. We visited the 14th floor ballroom, looked out over Mineral Wells at the Crazy Water Hotel. We descended the 14 floors in what would have been pitch darkness except for flashlights--periodically we would step out into a dark hallway and shine our lights down the eerie, empty (we hoped) corridor. We visited the rooms on one of the upper floors where people would take their cures--in these white-tiled rooms resembling a surgery were gurney-like fixtures with pillows at one end, then the steam baths that had a coffin-shaped door and an opening from which the head protruded (I didn't open doors to already closed cabinets or suspicious looking small rooms)--all these things that could have other purposes if you employed a morbid imagination--viewed in complete darkness except for the orbs of light from our electric torches and the occasional squeak of a bat. We saw the colonic rooms with their attendant machines and levers and seatboard with the hole in it... In the basement and sub-basement, we viewed the massive machinery that for decades provided unmeasurable power to the hotel--all maintained to perfection, then on a day it was stopped, never to run again and now sits trapped and useless surrounded by tons of concrete. From there we made our way up a long steep ramp to the outside... In short, a tremendously wonderful experience provided to us courtesy of Dismuke.

Eddie the Collector
Ian House
I can't add much to Eddie's wonderful description of our special evening at the Baker. I think the old hotel must have appreciated the attention we gave it ... and Dismuke's love and knowledge of this grand hotel really show through in the following guided tour videos:


The Baker Suite

A Guest Room

The Balcony

The Grand Ballroom

The Bell Tower
Flapper Girl
Ian,

I’m still riding with you, kid and have been enjoying the sights along the way. Must admit I had to hold on to my hat a few times, especially when you made the mad dash from New Mexico to Texas to meet up with Dismuke. I was bracing my feet against the floorboards so hard that they must have crashed through a couple times. Sure glad I wasn’t riding perched on the running board during that stretch of road! You certainly have covered a lot of ground and seem to have enjoyed your odyssey immensely. However, after so many days on the road, I can understand why fatigue must be setting in and you are now anxious to reach your destination and enter the next phase of your life. It has been fun for those of us riding along via your Indy site.

Drive safe and remember that you have an old Flapper riding in the rumble seat.

Flap
Ian House
Flap,

What a delightful way to wish me luck! May I always have a Flapper in my rumble seat :-) ....

Yup, I'm running out of gas ... and I don't want you to have to get out and push -so, as soon as I finish my morning coffee, I'll be making another "mad dash" towards Noblesville. Hang on to your cloche and stay off of the running boards (because I don't have any :-)

Thanks for being there along the way...

Ian
Ian House
Hi Matt,

I tried to visit as many of the San Antonio landmarks as I could: the Alamo, the Riverwalk (and boat ride), the old buildings and theatres along Houston and Commerce Streets ... and (my favorite), the historic Menger Hotel.

Have you ever stayed at the Menger?? If not, you simply MUST !! It has an incredible history :-)

Ian
victrolajazz
Ian,

Really enjoyed your San Antonio videos--I'll have to confess I'd never even heard of the Menger Hotel. It'd almost be worth a trip down there just to stay in it.

NASA was just incredible! In 1984, Houston hosted the National Packard Meet at the Shamrock-Hilton and two cars of us went down there. A trip to NASA was part of the events that week and I've always remembered in how much awe I was at the scale of everything I saw. Thinking of all that massive equipment burning up on re-entry is beyond comprehension--that's really some physics. Kennedy's speech was so poignant--that was the very week I started to college. The decade started with such optimism and promise and ended in total dissolution. Your last comment about going on to Mars says it all--hope I'll live to see it.

Eddie the Collector
Ian House
QUOTE(bob @ Aug 30 2006, 09:04 PM)
Hey Ian

Wasn't NASA great.

smile.gif Bob

(Replying from a different thread)

Hey Bob,

I can't begin to describe my feelings about actually being there in person -after a lifetime of being an Apollo fan. The only thing that could have made it better would have been bumping into Gene Krantz talking to Neil Armstrong in the hallway! ... Even MORE compelling than the Mission Control Center was seeing (and touching) the Saturn V. I will NEVER forget my experience standing beside it -as short as it was (about ten minutes).

One slightly negative emotion that I felt while I was there: It seems that the entire Apollo program is nothing more than a curious Disneyland exhibit, a foggy nostalgic memory, a lost initiative, a black and white TV newsreel ... and so on. What happened? Where did the passion go? We've taken all of JFK's words and stuffed them into a file folder. And today, they are only heard in the context of a museum exhibit -they are no longer used as a useful blueprint ... It's a HUGE tragedy for this nation. What has become of manned spaceflight? Robots and rovers are OK -but they can never replace a guy in a suit, the HUMAN experience ... and we're still using a 25 year old shuttle system...?

To be honest, the tram ride through the Johnson Space Center was a somewhat sad experience of sorts. I was expecting to see the historic Mission Control Building kept well preserved in a complex of modern buildings. Instead, it just blended in because the entire facility is arrested in time. All of the buildings are, as they were, the originals from the early 60s. I don't think that NASA should be as obsessed as I am with nostalgia -stuck in the 60s ... It's obvious that they are not receiving the same funding allocation that Kennedy put forth in 1962. A forward-looking space program deserves a new set of modern buildings.

_ _ _

Anyway, my trip to Houston was simply unforgettable, an incredible experience.
Ian House
QUOTE(victrolajazz @ Aug 30 2006, 10:28 AM)
Ian,

Really enjoyed your San Antonio videos--I'll have to confess I'd never even heard of the Menger Hotel.  It'd almost be worth a trip down there just to stay in it.

NASA was just incredible!  In 1984, Houston hosted the National Packard Meet at the Shamrock-Hilton and two cars of us went down there.  A trip to NASA was part of the events that week and I've always remembered in how much awe I was at the scale of everything I saw.  Thinking of all that massive equipment burning up on re-entry is beyond comprehension--that's really some physics.  Kennedy's speech was so poignant--that was the very week I started to college.  The decade started with such optimism and promise and ended in total dissolution.  Your last comment about going on to Mars says it all--hope I'll live to see it.

Eddie the Collector

Hi Eddie,

Thanks for "coming to San Antonio" with me! If you ever get to stay at the Menger, I guarantee that you will love the experience ... and the history. Also, check my comments above in regard to the NASA facilities at Houston. I agree with you: Beyond comprehension!
Flapper Girl
Upon hearing that you were cutting your trip short and making a beeline for Indiana, I immediately jumped into the rumble seat, threw the buffalo robe over my lap and prepared for the long trek north. As it was sweltering as we left the area, the buffalo robe was soon discarded and tucked away for future use. (It had a rather offensive odor to it anyway.) And so, we left Texas with The Eyes of Texas Are Upon You blaring from the CD player, followed by the strains of Back Home Again In Indiana. It was quite a ride, with little time to stretch my legs or tend to other pressing matters. Needless to say, I was more than happy and relieved to see the Indiana state sign looming up ahead and to arrive safely in Noblesville. Now that the transitional journey from California has come to an end, it is time to concentrate on familiarizing yourself with your surroundings and settling into your new home. Onward and upwards!

Sorry to hear that the change in temps resulted in a killer cold. Didn’t I tell you to put the buffalo robe over your shoulders when we reached cooler climes? Your new “digs” are really nice and know you will be more than comfortable once you have furniture in place and added your own personal touch (already begun with the Starbucks cup and Percy Medicine package).

As for me, I am content to be back home, and will soon be preparing for the onslaught of winter. In the meantime, I will enjoy this beautiful autumn season with all its glorious colors and dream of the summer passed. The life of a vagabond was great fun and I wouldn’t have missed it for the world, but it is time to get back to the old grind once again.

Good luck, my friend. Parting was such sweet sorrow.

Flap
victrolajazz
Welcome to your new home, Ian!!! Sorry you had that cold to deal with, but at least you came down with it at home and not on the road--no doubt the countenance of Baby Percy beaming down upon your daily activities will ensure future health and happiness. You really made a wise choice to head back to Indiana after leaving Texas--I don't know how you kept the pace you did for 40 days--five days would have done me in! Dismuke and I were marveling just on Sunday about your driving around in 100+ heat without using the AC! Your home is going to be quite comfortable when you've gotten it furnished and the Noblesville area looks delightful--especially YOUR courthouse. Best of fortune in your new venture and keep us Dismukers posted!!!

Eddie the Collector
Ian House
Hey Flap,
Hey VJazz,

Thanks again, as always, for your warm support. My life for the next month or so will be nothing but business -moving in and setting up shop ...but soon enough (hopefully), I will be able to get out and explore all the historic little towns and museums in the area.

I think it would be fun to set up a Midwest chapter of Dismuke Jazz Age fans to get together and meet up for special road trips, etc. to replicate the Texas initiative. Perhaps there are a couple of old Baker-style hotels somewhere in Indiana, Illinois, Missouri or Ohio ... ? (I'd be willing to document our adventures and share them with the Dismuke community)

For example, I can't wait to explore as much of historic Route 40 as possible which cuts right through Indianapolis. Route 40 is one of America's oldest roads. Before it became a more-or-less modern highway in 1926, it was a Colonial roadway, and before that, an Indian trail...

Lots to explore!
Greg H
Hey Ian,

Good to see you're settled into your new digs. It must be nice to finally be off the road although you've certainly had some great adventures. Thanks for sharing them with us all. You are certainly a master of documentation. You've given me several new places to check out on future road trips. Best of luck getting your new home and business started. And keep me posted if I can help in any way with next years Lee Morse Homecoming.
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