Justin Hall's personal site growing & breaking down since 1994

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21 may 1996

baltimore, maryland:

stoops sandtown-winchester

drivin' around baltimore with peter, we cruise into some downpressed neighborhoods

places where people weren't doin' much I guess,

I only say downpressed because they didn't look too happy about it

lingering in the heat, sweaty, concrete

family and family and friends

this was like a thing cuz everybody was doin' it
neighborhood after neighborhood, people jes hanging out in public
without spending money! without radios or televisions!

car dudes it was real hot.

I told peter I was interested in stoop history, he called his mom Camay Calloway Murphy
she told me some stuff:

in the 1700s, early 1800s, there were a lot of italian craftsmen who did a lot of the marble work on a lot of the buildings
ships coming from europe needed ballast, they would bing over big slabs of marble, cheap
so folks used it to make steps
built working class houses, for a working class city

brick drink stoop a lot of the houses have no air conditioning, small rooms
in the summertime it gets very hot inside, not much air movement
folks sit out on the steps
like they sit on fire escapes in new york
marble is cool to sit on

it became a traditional thing
like old world customs adapted here in various communities
the siesta in europe then in the afternoon folks get dressed up
so here it became tradition to get dressed up and sit out on the stoop

two stoops cleaning the marble on saturday mornings was a youth chore

she recommends I go down to the city life museum
they've got everything I would want to know.
it's too bad I didn't use my zoom better on some of these
I guess you get a sense that I was distant, cruising by a car bound voyeur.

two dudes

felt bad about it, couldn't really take pictures
I can't do it peter, come on talk me into it

hey one reason there's so much poverty is cuz people don't take pictures in neighborhoods like these - you never see sam donaldson comin' down here with his camera crew - these people aren't important enough to have their picture taken.

stoop face

here are the largest versions of each of these files will run you about 330k:

car dudescar dudes
brick drink stoopbrick drink stoop
two stoopstwo stoops
two dudestwo dudes
stoop facestoop face, blown white by the flash

maryland | destin | summer '96 | share

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