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With the opening of the St. Lawrence Seaway, Buffalo’s days as an important seaport had come to an end. Unless a ship had specific business in Buffalo, it would now have to go out of its way to get here. While the businesses which tied their existence to the port, and the workers who found their livelihood there could see the writing on the wall, city fathers spent much e…

As the backdrop for hundreds of television shows and feature films — not to mention commercial cutaways for every sporting event televised from here -- Niagara Falls is Western New York’s most immediately recognizable image. "On location at the falls" “Filming for ABC-TV feature movie ‘The Mighty Niagara’ began Wednesday in Niagara Falls, Ont. At left, three of the stars…

History

Now a place to watch the water fall and try to avoid the urge to feed the ducks, Glen Park in 1959 was an amusement park and summertime entertainment venue owned by Harry Altman, the owner of downtown Buffalo’s hottest night spot, Town Casino. These photos show the special needs kids and their friends from Meyer Memorial Hospital (now ECMC) enjoying the rides and hot dogs…

History

In 1939, King George VI became the first British monarch to visit the United States as the royal train crossed the border at Niagara Falls. Since then, our proximity to Canada has made Western New York a hot spot for royal visits … or at least, royal near-misses. George VI’s daughter, Queen Elizabeth II, traveled to North America in 1959 to officially open the St. Lawrenc…

The changing American economy in the 1970s hit Buffalo as hard as it hit any other city in the country. Plants and mills were closing, and tens of thousands of jobs were moving to the Carolinas and Mexico. A billboard behind City Hall read, “The last one to leave Buffalo, turn out the lights.” As the tax dollars quickly evaporated, city leaders were left with the unpleas…

In 1974, the North Tonawanda plant of the Wurlitzer Co. was humming with the production of new electric organs based on state-of-the-art 1970s technology.  They couldn’t make them fast enough. This was at the same time that collectors were also seeking out the extravagant pipe organs of the 1920s, some of the finest ever created for the nation’s most glamorous movie house…

The environmental impact from leaded gasoline is unquestionable, but the costs to remove lead from gas were being questioned in 1974 and being written about by News reporter Lee Coppola. "They’re pumping the choice out of gas" "Although laws requiring unleaded gas were passed years ago, and all new cars from now on will take only unleaded gas, the impact of the regulatio…

Long before it was a business with profits in the billions, Buffalonians have loved wrestling. From the early days at the Broadway Auditorium (now the city’s Broadway barns) to the bouts from Memorial Auditorium televised by Channel 4 with Chuck Healy, the biggest names in wrestling always remember the great fans in Buffalo. One even opened a restaurant here. Ilio DiPaol…

Exactly what this ”technology” did or how it worked was not made clear, but Buffalo Police did hope that the "Speed-Minder,” a large speedometer, would help stop speeders and cut down on the 63 traffic fatalities in the city in 1958. Patrol car equipped with 'Speed-Minder' “Police Commissioner Felicetta, right, checks new equipment, assisting City Traffic Director Franci…

Not too far from a handful of different city demolition sites, the folks at 1588 Broadway were celebrating a shiny new General Tire store 55 years ago. Eddie Szymanski and his store are both shown in an ad celebrating the opening of the store, which also promised free toasters and tires for $13.95. "Grand Opening"

You might say that the accident at Crystal Beach reported on this date in 1974 could have been worse: the riders could have plummeted to the ground or even into Lake Erie. Luckily, the accident didn't happen in the middle of a ride, but as one ride was ending and another car was loading. Two cars bumped, and two teenage sisters were injured. Park officials said it was th…

Every winter ice jams cause flooding along Cazenovia Creek, but flooding used to be a year-round problem for people living along the creek. In 1959, the people of South Buffalo were ready to take that issue into their own hands. Creekside residents were organizing to send muddy galoshes they needed to traverse their backyards en masse to the Washington office of Rep. John…

It’s the sort of thing you expect to hear from political leaders, but even without the benefit of 55 years of mixed news for the Queen City, Port Authority Chairman Joseph P. Molony’s speech at the Statler Hilton in 1959 likely sounded like a bit much — which is what makes it interesting. Despite being several years into a prolonged slide at the time of the address, there…

The four area Chevy plants and the Hamburg Ford plant were all readying to retool for the 1960 model year cars and each of the area plants were preparing to make parts for Detroit’s newer, smaller offerings. Parts for the Chevrolet Corvair would be turned out of the foundry, forge, and engine units in Tonawanda and the Chevrolet axle plant on East Delavan Avenue. The new …

News of the national Jaycees convention taking place at Memorial Auditorium, the Statler Hotel, and other places around downtown Buffalo was front page news for almost a week in The News. Dozens of photos filled the Picture Page, and sidebar stories on speakers and parades were found throughout The News’ pages. We’ve been the welcoming sort in Buffalo for a very long tim…