Kodak History Notes – Kodak in Space

Eastman Kodak was recruited during World War I to help start taking aerial photos.  That continued during WWII where airplanes would take photos to know where to drop bombs to do the most damage in Germany and the Pacific.

At the end of WWII the US captured enough parts to make about 80 of the German’s V-2 rockets. Those were sent to White Sands Proving Grounds, in New Mexico. It wasn’t very long before the US was testing those rockets. In October  1946 the first photo taken from space was taken by a Kodak camera. The July 10, 1947 issue of Kodakery has the picture of V-2 rocket showing were cameras are located (right). The Kodakery dated Nov. 11, 1948 gives more technical information and says that it took 3½ days to retrieve the cameras from a V-2 rocket. Also by that time, the Navy had created their own rocket (the Aerobee) and it took 19 days to find that camera in the desert.

In 1958 the US sent up the first reconnaissance satellite. It used a camera from another manufacturer but used 70mm Kodak film that was 8000 feet long. Film would be ejected and come down on a parachute  which ideally would be caught by an airplane with a fork. If it landed in the ocean, Navy divers would have to recover the film package. The film was developed at the Hawk-Eye plant on St. Paul Blvd. Kodak supplied technology for spy satellites for many decades.

In 1966 and 1967 Kodak designed the photographic payload for lunar orbiter missions. These were used to determine possible landing sites for the Apollo missions. On Apollo 11 Neil Armstrong took extreme close-up pictures of the lunar soil with a unique stereoscopic camera built by Kodak. In 1997 Kodak (digital) imaging sensors landed on the surface of Mars on a rover. Also that year the Earlybird satellite using a Kodak system became the first commercial satellite system. The Quickbird (commercial) satellite of 2001 could capture 0.61-meter resolution black & white images and 2.4-meter color images.

Kodak’s space operations came to a halt in August 2004 when, because of financial troubles, they sold the division to ITT Industries.


Guide – Ethnic Histories

German Evangelical Nursing Home

I uploaded a new chapter to the Genealogical Guide on Ethnic Histories or more exactly a list of links to find those histories. A few older ones have been digitized but for the most part you will have to find the books in a library near you.

Germans are well represented and Kathleen Urbanic’s book on the the Ukrainian community well details those immigrants. There is a chapter in one book on the Irish that came to the Rochester area but why isn’t there a full book on the Irish immigrants to Monroe County?

Originally I thought that I would have the Genealogical Guide completed by the first of the year but I fell way behind. I’ll try to finish as soon as possible. Meanwhile check out chapters that are completed on the Genealogical Guide web page.

Wilkinson Scrapbook Article #24

In this article from William Wilkinson’s scrapbook “One Hundred Great and Near-Great Events, Person and Places in Rochester History” (1947) he writes about Hamlet Scrantom. Also included is a poem written by his son, Edwin. For more information on the Scrantom family see page 42 of biographies.

The first dwelling erected on the One Hundred Acre Tract has the log cabin built by Henry Skinner for Hamlet Scrantom. It stood on Lot Number One, The cabin was completed in June 1812 and on July 4th the Scrantom family moved in, leaving the Enos Stone home across the river where they had made their home 2 months before. when they arrived at the Genesee Falls. Edwin Scrantom, a mere lad at the time, well remembered it all. He wrote many letters to the newspapers about early Rochester.  He wrote this poem:

“In Memory’s flickering light,
I see the scenes of other says,
Like meteors in the night.
The garden, with its low-built fence,
With stakes and withes to tie it;
The rude log-house, my early home,
And one wild maple by it.” (by Edwin Scranton)


1960 East High Yearbook

I uploaded the Orient 1960. That is the yearbook for East High School in Rochester. There were 317 seniors that graduated in 1960 with pictures for 307 of them. Besides the pictures of the seniors, there are the standard pictures of school activities and sports. Then there are 9 pictures of homeroom classes like the one to the right.

This was the first year that East High was in their new building on East Main Street. The building must have not been completely finished as the “doodles” throughout the yearbook are drawings of construction workers. Also in the picture of the flag raising, you can see tire prints running across the lawn.

This yearbook has some writing in it. In one case I had to erase some of the writing as it was a little too personal.

Rochester Public Library has yearbooks for East High from 1904 to 1940 on their “School Heritage Collection” web page.

Spammers !!!!

It is said that 80% or more of the emails sent are spam. A good share of those are caught by your Internet Service Provider (ISP). Still the spammers keep trying to get through and a very small percentage will find there way to your email in-box. Be very wary of any email from someone you don’t know, especially if there are attachments. Also if they have links, don’t click on them. If it appears to be from someplace like you bank, instead, go directly to your bank’s website and see if they actually sent you a message.

I also get spam comments on this blog. Everyday it runs between 10 to 20 comments that I have to delete. A good share of the spam comments are ones pointing to foreign websites that sell prescription drugs. Then there are comments that are selling SEO services. SEO is an abbreviation for “Search Engine Optimization, which means that they will try to get your website to the top of search results. Google says that these kind of services don’t work because their criterion changes often. The third kind of spam comment is one that is complimentary on a post or the blog in general. Those usually have a link to malicious foreign website.

There doesn’t seem to be any way to stop spam comments. Spam emails are illegal but that sure hasn’t stopped those either.

Top Hit Songs of 1967 – #8

The Monkees were back again with another hit with “A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You.” The song was written by Neil Diamond as he was just beginning his singing career. Music producer Don Kirshner had Davy Jones record the song with a group of studio musicians and none of the rest of The Monkees were involved in the recording. Some people say that one of the people in the background singers is Neil Diamond, but no proof has ever been found.

“A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You” was the top song on the Cash Box record chart for the weeks of April 16 – 29. On the Billboard Hot 100 chart, the song only made it up to the #2 spot for the week of April 23 – 29.

WDYTYA – Liv Tyler

Liv Tyler will be the last person to search for ancestors on this season of Who Do You Thin You Are? (WDYTYA). Don’t look for this episode in the usual Sunday night time slot. TLC is putting this episode on Monday night at 8 p.m. (eastern and western times). Sunday night at 9 p.m. is an episode of Long Lost Family; followed by This is Life Live. Then after WDYTYA on Monday night there is another episode of Long Lost Family.

Liv Tyler started out her life as Liv Rundgren and thought that she was the daughter of rock musician Todd Rundgren. She was eight years old before her mother told her that she was actually the daughter of Steven Tyler, the lead singer of the group Aerosmith.

Liv wants to uncover the mystery of her paternal grandmother Susan Blancha’s maternal line.We know from previews that she finds a brave Civil War ancestor. She also pays a visit to the Clinton County Courthouse in Plattsburgh, NY. Then Liv and her father visit the grave of Eliza Elliott, who died in 1916.

Note: Broadcast times edited after I found out that two programs guides that I referred to were wrong.