Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Got the Blues.

Every time I visit I have to take a picture of that beautiful blue marble in the sky.

Ok, I didn’t actually expect you to fall for that, I didn’t really take that picture.  But the rest of these I did.

The auto shop building, halfway demolished.

The high school I went to was built in 1913, right on the Wasatch Fault and before anyone even realized earthquakes happen in Salt Lake.  In the mid 1990’s the school was rebuilt to be seismically safe(r).

The back of the school, which originally was the front.  The shorter part in the front is the added on science building.

I always feel a little melancholy when I drive by it and realize that the building I knew as East High School is gone.  The only part that still exists from my time there is the Auditorium, which was brand new when I was a junior and on the stage crew.

After the science building was removed.

They leveled the old gym, the science building and the auto shop (all add-ons), built the new school around the original building before leveling it, while school was in session.

On the left is where the old gym used to be.  The new gym, that big brick square in the back on the left, was built after I graduated.

It’s probably a lot easier to navigate the new building.  When I was there the main building had 4 floors, with the 100’s, 200’s, 300’s and 400’s classrooms.  In the science building the classrooms were numbered in the 10’s, 20’s and 30’s, with the top floor being level with the bottom floor of the original building.  During one of my years there, my Science class was on the 10’s floor and my next class, English, was a 400 classroom.  That meant running up 5 flights of stairs to get there on time.

The big brick square on the right is the auditorium that opened my junior year.  The auto shop was right in front of it.

Even though it was a conglomeration of buildings slapped together, and even though it had a major fire four years before I got there so all the interior walls were those tacky pre-fab things, I still get a small case of the blues when I think about it being gone.

Click on the banner to see other “Got the Blues” photos, and to add your own to the mix.


Karen S. said...

Blue skies nothing but blue skies do I see....lovely Max....and you fooled me on the first photo!

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

That meant running up 5 flights of stairs to get there on time.

Kids today have it ez!

P.S. Nice pics, Max. You did great with that first one!

Lisa Shafer said...

Oh wow. These pics are a treasure.
Do you remember what year they actually tore it down? I don't. And that's sad.
You were brave to go and photograph it; I hid, refusing even to drive by the place in its sad state.
I did like the story that while the north side of the building collapsed, just like they thought it would in an earthquake, with one bump from a wrecking ball, the south side required dynamite to bring down. Maybe that's just a legend.
All I know is that I never even minded the pre-fab walls inside the building because so much of the old marble and tile still remained.
Ok, the science building WAS ugly and dark, but it was built in the 1950s, so what could anyone expect?
Two parts of the building remain that I knew: the auditorium and the "new" gym.
I never spent much time in that gym, except for going to basketball games when I was in pep club, but the auditorium was a spiffy old place with weird tunnels underneath it (probably long gone now).

Gilly said...

I love your interpretation of the blues!

Its always sad when things from the past that we know well, and will were always just fine go and get ALTERED!

Max Sartin said...

Karen - Yeah, but I have to be honest. It was a friend of mine that took that first picture. I forgot to pick up some zero-gravity batteries for the trip.
Lisa - I only went by a couple of times to get pictures, and kind of avoided it once they started building the new one. Like you, despite the prefab walls, I loved that building too, even the science building. I just wish they could have kept the old stairwells open, I heard they were beautiful. Marble stairs, brass railings. But the fire weakened them too much. The new gym was built right after I left, when I was there it was a big lawn that we used to hang out on.

Lisa Shafer said...

Yeah, I know. They started building the new gym when I started there in 9th grade.
The old stairs had nice banisters, if I remember correctly. There was one broken lock on the second floor, and I went in a couple of times. Mostly they stored old desks on them.

Alexia said...

It was very interesting to see these and read your narrative, Max. This has inspired me to do my 'blues' post along the same lines....

I don't mind that you didn't take the first one - I still enjoy looking at it!

me said...

Great story, they very recently added onto my HS and from the back it looks nothing like it was, depresses me a bit when I happen to drive by. Your blue pp made me smile. Nice shots.

Bob Scotney said...

Somehow you remember the things that have gone better than what replaced them. Your pics tell an interesting story which some of today's kids would not believe. 'Run' between classes you must be joking.
An unexpected take on blues which I enjoyed.

Gilly said...

Thanks for the tip to use Windows Writer programme. I've downloaded it and hope next week's blog will be all hunky dory!

Max Sartin said...

No problem, glad I could help.

Carmi Levy said...

They closed my high school for good last year, so I understand that blue feeling that goes along with losing a place that was so instrumental in your growing up.

I'm glad today's students are at less risk of being pancaked, though. Scares me to think how many substandard buildings remain.

Max Sartin said...

Carmi - Sorry to hear about your high school. I saw the effect that can have on people first hand from the teacher side of it. I taught at Granite High School the last three years it was open, watched the students and parents fight to keep it open and had a part in the teacher's fight; I was one of four teachers that presented to the School Board.
I was there when we got the news that they were closing the school and watched as the students completely gave up a month before the end of the school year, except for the seniors who were determined to graduate from the high school they had fought so hard to keep going.
It's hard enough knowing the physical building that you spent those formative years in is gone, it's even harder when you know the legacy is not going to go on.
P.S. - thanks for coming by, I can see that you spent some time on here, glad you liked what you saw.