Thursday, August 9, 2012

1926 Municipal Index

A slight detour from postcards today, because this book with the unassuming cover and title is absolutely fascinating. If you were a city, town, or county official, this is where you might look before ordering dump trucks, police motorcycles, voting booths, prison doors, parks and recreation equipment, and a host of other necessary items. I couldn't get very excited about the various rollers, crushers, graders, and mowers, but I think I'd like to order some Mack trucks. Hmmm, which one? They're all so multi-purpose.

Then I'd like to order some new motorcycles for our police force. I have a choice between Harley Davidson, Indian, and Henderson.

I guess I should buy some traffic signals too. There goes the municipal budget. Maybe I shouldn't have spent so much on those motorcycles.

Last, but not least, I'm going to order one of those new Junglegym contraptions. The kids seem to love them. In fact, C.W. Washburne, Superintendent of Public Schools in Winnetka, Illinois, has this to say:
"Retains its popularity after several years of use--Would sooner part with all the rest of our playground apparatus than with the Junglegym"
It turns out they never did get rid of it. The world's first Junglegym still stands at Crow Island School in Winnetka, Illinois.


  1. I feel like a kid looking through the toy section of the Sears-Roebuck catalog! I want them all!...BTW, graders and crushers are an acquired taste :)

  2. What a find! That Harley is spectacular

  3. The jungle gym in those pix was indeed probably quite safe, since if you fell you just landed on one of the other people below, rather than fracturing your skull on one of the nice metal bars. The system was perfected later when it was installed on asphalt or concrete, rather than that silly slightly softer dirt...

  4. Each page is fascinating in its own way. I love the brave announcement in the first paragraph of the play equipment page : "There has never been an accident". A slight exaggeration I suspect.

  5. I like all the little boys in their overalls on that junglegym.

  6. I would like to order the triple mack.

  7. This was fascinating! In my new job, I get modern catalogs like this, that include things like handicapped parking signs, sidewalk benches, tension barriers for lining people up into queues, and park trash cans shaped like bears (you toss the trash into the bear's open mouth.) No Mack Trucks or Indian motorcyles though...I guess libraries don't really have a need for them, sadly.



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