Monthly Archives: September 2016

Research Lab


This was the Research Lab at General Shale Brick Plant.  I always wondered what they got up to in there.  It’s gone now, but I guess I ran, walked or rode a bike past it a hundred times over the years.  It was on the road through GS that connected Cherokee Street to Industry Drive (there was going to be an extension of Cherokee Street directly to Industry Drive, but it was never really completed. I walked it a couple of times – it came out on Industry Drive beside that abandoned brick power station).  Clever clogs, these research guys.  Look at the designs in the brickwork.  The one on the right does kind of look like the ABC TV logo, doesn’t it?

Ideal Rubber Stamp


I never know where my buddy comes up with stuff.  We were swapping out some magazines and he handed me this.  “What do you think of it?”
The first thing to catch my eye was that it was from the fairly short-lived gallery that Raymond Williams had on Market Street.  I shakily believe it was in the ’70s.  I’d drop by now and then.  I knew Ray casually; we were both artists.
But the really interesting thing is that it was made by Ideal Rubber Stamps (later Office Supply) at 222 East Center Street, across (for many years) from Copeland’s Office Supply.  I suspect that as Copeland’s eased out of the humdrum paper-and-pencil trade, Ideal took on more office supply merchandise.
When I was at WKPT-TV, I was forever running over to Ideal with a purchase order to get Prestype transfer lettering for whatever sign or ad I was working on (I bowed down in gratitude when I got my first computer and printer at work)(I hated press type letters…only slightly less than I hated rubber cement).
The company was incorporated in 1975 and is listed, as we well know, as “inactive”.
But for a while, if you had a rubber stamp made, chances are Ideal did the deed.

J.P. Stevens first aid kit

kit contents

I would guess this is from the 90s.  The plastic case is in pretty good condition, not broken, and everything listed as contents is here.  It’s 3 -5/8 by 2-7/8″.

Of course, that massive 1920s-era factory has been knocked down and hauled away like Mr. Peabody’s coal.  Somewhere, I hope, someone thought ahead and kept the big, black-and-white aerial photo of the plant that hung in the conference room (I think.  I’m a little hazy on exactly where I saw it…it was years ago).