Saturday, September 10, 2005

The Stack Must Go!

Image hosted by
Photo: A City Beautiful Is Stabbed By Saint John's Medical Waste Incinerator

As downtown Springfield, Illinois slowly morphs into the beautiful tourist friendly center which ii promises to become certain aspects of its ugly past must be dealt with. One such loose end looms just north of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum.

Saint John's Hospital's Medical Waste Incinerator Smoke Stack is certainly a nasty reminder that not all of downtown is beautiful.

Medical waste should be picked up late at night, and hauled off to a facility far from the urban center. The hideously ugly smoke stack should be torn down.

Then not only will the downtown area be a more beautiful place, but it will also spare those who live, and work downtown from having to breath the fumes from cooked: body parts, blood, pus soaked gauze, vaporized urine, embryos, etc. Need I say more?

While the City of Springfield surely wouldn't want to step on any toes when it comes to Saint John's Hospital, it is hardly likely that this huge facilty would be able relocate in retaliation for having to dismantle its incinerator. Therefore it must be asked why wait?

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Union Station Project Part II

Image hosted by
Photo: Crane - Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library & Museum Union Station 09.06.05

Image hosted by

Photo: Scaffold & Workers on Union Station - ALPLM - Springfield, IL 09.06.05

Image hosted by
Photo: Fabrication on Dusty Road - Union Park - Spfld, IL 09.06.05

Image hosted by
Photo: Crane - Union Park - Union Station - ALPLM - Spfld, IL 09.06.05

Image hosted by
Photo: Fabrication Ready for Crane - Union Park - Spfld, IL 09.06.05

Union Station Now A Part of the ALPLM

Work continues on Union Station located in downtown Springfield, Illinois. Union Station is located in Union Park, and is now a part of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum Complex.

Union Station will act as a visitor's center for the ALPLM. Extensive work has already been undertaken with significant interior remodeling being conducted. Repairs to the roof, and north face of the station is being conducted. After decades of promises from various owners a new clocktower will finally be installed in the coming year. The expected result of this extensive refurbishment of Union Station should add significantly to the historic authenticity of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum, and downtown Springfield, Illinois.

Note: Union Station was built as a passenger depot in the 1890's by the Illinois Central Railroad. It is located on Madison Street between Fifth, and Sixth Streets.

About the Photographs

A large crane projects into a cloudless blue sky just south of Union Station. The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum appears in the background.

Two carpenters, at right of scaffolding, ride a hydrolic lift to continue repair work on Union Station's south facing windows.

A workman's truck throws up dust from the drought scorched service road adjacent to Union Station.

Unfinished polygonal shaped dormers awaiting installation on the north face of Union Station. The thirty story Hilton Hotel, and Illinois Building are present in the distant background.

Correction 09.15.05: The wooden fabrications were not dormers, nor were they installed on the north side of the building. Instead they were installed above entrances on the south side of the building.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

The Hoogland Rock

MidStates Alliance and Supply

The Hoogland's family owned business originally named Midstates Alliance and Supply company was located at 1022 E. Adams - on the corner of Eleventh and Adams in downtown Springfield, Illinois.

An Industry Begins

The year was 1978, the Hoogland's supply company was greatly overstocked (actually "stuck") with a large number of videos in their inventory. Mr. Hoogland decided upon a novel solution - rent the videos out!

The idea of renting movies to the public was essentially unheard of at that time, but as we all know now it was a great idea. Family Video became one of the first video rental stores in the nation. Over the last three decades Family Video has grown rapidly, and now includes over two hundred stores located throughout the Midwest.

Charles Hoogland, wife Kathleen, and sons Keith and Eric manage the family's steadily growing business. Mr. Hoogland has stated publically that he believes that the video rental industry will continue to expand through the end of this decade. Much of Mr. Hoogland's long term plan for Family Video depends upon real estate acquisition.

Family Video's Future

Family Video carefully chooses each location with the post video rental era in mind. Each Family Video store is specifically designed to be able to accomodate several businesses which work together to draw business to the location. For example Family Video will rent space to a pizza shop, ice cream shop, etc., which then draws customers to their video, and game rental stores. Ultimately, when the video rental industry declines Family Video plans to be a major commercial landlord.

The original store remains in use as a video duplication facility, and manufactures shelving, and other materials for Family Video locations throughout the Midwest. The Shop is in fact the single largest consumer of wood products in Springfield, Illinois.

Business operations are now conducted out of Chicago, Illinois.

The Photographs

The photographs which I took for this post include what I refer to as, The Hoogland Rock, The Hoogland Shop Sign, and The Hoogland Dollar.

After photographing
The Hoogland Rock I realized that the Hoogland family, as founders of a multi-billion dollar industry, which changed the way people think of entertainment, deserve a better memorial.

Perhaps one day in the past Charles Hoogland stepped out of his car, looked upon that rock, and wondered if it would be the only tangible, long lasting memorial to his incredible accomplishments?

Perhaps this rock was the impetus, the spark, that led to the start the Hoogland Family Foundation? A foundation which has done so many wonderful things for Springfield, Illinois (i.e., Hoogland Center for the Arts, and UIS Fitness Center).

If so, this rock deserves a place of honor in Springfield's history.

I've been sworn to secrecy about the exact location of the poster sized Hoogland Dollar, but let's just say it's safely posted on a wall somewhere in downtown Springfield, Illinois - say no more.

Image hosted by
Photo: The Hoogland Shop Sign

Image hosted by
Photo: The Hoogland Rock

Image hosted by
Photo: The Hoogland Dollar

All Photographs taken by JeromeProphet.

Illinois Stories
, WSEC, PBS Interview.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Yeah, We Cool!

This Saturday Springfield's South East Spartans were defeated by the Lanphier Lions 19-6. The Band, Poms Squad, and Cheerleaders put on quite a performance. The Spartans despite the lopsided score put on a good defense in the second half of the game.

On September 3rd, the afternoon of the game, there wasn't a cloud in the sky - no kidding - not one single cloud!

Just before the game, as the team was walking to the field, I overheard on member of the team say to another, "Yeah, We Cool". Now there's the spirit! Keeping cool in the intense heat would have been quite a feat for anyone that afternoon, especially team members in those helmets, and uniforms!

Image hosted by
Photo: Team takes to field 09/03/05 - Low Fiving - Yeah, We Cool!

Image hosted by
Photo: Cheerleader Sailing!

Image hosted by
Photo: Band in Stand

Image hosted by
Photo: Lanphier's Offensive Team Dominated the First Half.

Monday, September 05, 2005

Katrina Aftermath Photography

Flickr is an excellent service ordinarily, but this is the first time I've visited such a site during a national emergency. Incredible photographs taken by contributers all over the effected area, and beyond.

The photographs are in the public domain so they're o.k. to repost, as long as you give credit.

Click on this link below:

Sunday, September 04, 2005

50,000 Souls?

UPDATE: As of 09.09.05 estimates of fatalities have been sharply reduced - perhaps below 10,000. Let's hope, and pray that this trend toward reducing fatality estimates continues. This reduced estimate in no way mitigates the senseless, needless nature in which the victims of hurricane Katrina lost their lives.

Original Post Follows:

I saw an interview of the Mayor of New Orleans today. He stated that the population of the city of New Orleans had been Five Hundred Thousand.

He further stated that under the mandatory evacuation they believe eighty percent had the time, and means to evacuate, leaving One Hundred Thousand remaining in the city.

So far aproximately forty thousand people have been evacuated from the city since the disaster.

No one knows for sure just how many more are still alive and await rescue.

But the math is frightening.

I keep wondering if somehow I've died without knowing it, and this is some version of hell? But no, my spouse assures me, that I am still alive, right here in the United States of America, and the year is 2005.

Something is very wrong here.

Fire Them, or Resign Mr. President!

Seems like Hurricane Katrina is an opportunity to pose for some photos. Better to have these rescue units occupied with a photo session than have them out saving lives.

But what's a little delay as tens of thousands drown in their attics compared to having a photo session with the heads of Homeland Security?

FEMA Photo Op Image One:

New Orleans, LA, September 4, 2005 -- Secretary of Homeland Security, Michael Chertoff shakes hands with Urban Search and Rescue task force members. On the right is Michael D. Brown, Department of Homeland Security’s Principal Federal Official for Hurricane Katrina speaking with another member. Jocelyn Augustino/FEMA

Image hosted by
Photo: FEMA - Department of Homeland Security.

FEMA Photo Op Image Two:

New Orleans, LA, September 4, 2005 -- Michael D. Brown(r), Department of Homeland Security’s Principal Federal Official for Hurricane Katrina and Michael Chertoff (l) Secretary of Homeland Security have their photograph made with Urban Search and Rescue Force 1 members, Jocelyn Augustino/FEMA

Image hosted by

FEMA Photo Op Image Three

New Orleans, LA, September 4, 2005 -- Secretary of Homeland Security, Michael Chertoff speaks with an Urban Search and Rescue task force member. Jocelyn Augustino/FEMA

Image hosted by

FEMA Photo Op Image Four:

New Orleans, LA, September 4, 2005 -- Michael D. Brown, Department of Homeland Security’s Principal Federal Official for Hurricane Katrina shakes hands with Urban Search and Rescue task force members. Jocelyn Augustino/FEMA.

Image hosted by

FEMA Photo Op Image Five:

New Orleans, LA, September 4, 2005 -- Michael D. Brown, Department of Homeland Security’s Principal Federal Official for Hurricane Katrina shakes hands with the Tennessee Task Force 1 members, behind Mike Brown is Secretary of Homeland Security, Michael Chertoff. Jocelyn Augustino/FEMA

Image hosted by

Psst.., these fellas need to be canned. President Bush needs to step up to the plate, and do what presidents have been doing since the establishment of the office itself, and that's fire some good ole boys for the sake of the administration.

With the number of dead possibly in the tens of thousands it may be the worst disaster to hit the United States in its history. In the coming months most certainly investigations will occur as to how it is this disaster was allowed to happen, and how our nation was so ill prepared once it did.

If President Bush continues to believe that his fake southern drawl, and good ole boy charm will save him from the coming torrent of due criticism he's in for quite a surprise.

Someone in his clique needs to step up, and advise him, that it's time for him to get angry, and fire those who he trusted to tell him the truth about HomeLand Security.

We in the private sector never feel secure in our jobs - we take it for granted that we may be downsized, or eliminated for under performance. Millions of hardworking folk lose their jobs every year, it's just a fact of life. But President Bush doesn't like to offend any of his close, and trusted advisors - he's a friendly, and loyal guy.

Can you see Donald Trump keeping these fellas in his organization after such a disasterous performance?

If the President of the United States of America can't bare to offend his buddies, Michael Chertoff, and Michael D. Brown, by making an example out of those who have failed to protect this nation, then he should resign.

email jp






Wired News: Top Stories