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#1950s

Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Getting into the Stove Business Meadows Mfg. Co., April 1954

Meadows Manufacturing worker, 1954.

From 1920 to the mid-1950s, Meadows Manufacturing Co. made clothes washers from its plant on Bloomington’s near southeast side. n the spring of 1954, the company, then part of Thor Corp., began making electric stoves as well.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

New Two-Way Radios, Part II Bloomington Fire Department, 1953

New radios for the Bloomington Fire Department, 1953.

This is BFD Chief Roland Behrend, who was now able to talk to firefighters back at the station or those “on the trucks” and racing to a fire.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

New Two-Way Radios Bloomington Fire Department, 1953

The Bloomington Fire Department testing out new radios, 1953.

The BFD tried out its new two-way radio system in late August 1953. Seen here are Fireman Robert Colyer (left) driving the service truck as Capt. Ernest Lockenvitz contacts the station.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Up and Over Downs May 1953

Aerial view of the village of Downs, 1953.

Even the small Village of Downs had a post-World War II housing boom (relatively speaking). Note also that there was no Interstate 74 in 1953!

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Bloomington Federal Under Construction, August 1957

Bloomington Federal Savings & Loan Association building, 1957.

The “new” Bloomington Federal Savings & Loan Association building under construction some three months before its grand opening in November 1957. Designed by visionary architect A. Richard Williams, additions to this bank building were made in the 1970s and 1980s.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Meadowbrook Subdivision July 1954

Meadowbrook under construction, 1954.

Meadowbrook, a 167-lot development southeast of Lakeside Country Club, was well under construction in this summer 1954 photograph.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

State Farm’s ‘Midwest Office’ Move-In Day, July 15, 1957

New State Farm building, 1957.

In mid-July 1957, some 700 State Farm employees settled into their new quarters at 2309 E. Oakland Ave. In 2016, State Farm still occupies this office building.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

'Madly for Adlai’ Sen. Estes Kefauver, Oct. 18, 1952

Sen. Estes Kefauver in Bloomington, 1952.

Sen. Estes Kefauver of Tennessee stopped in Bloomington to campaign for fellow Democrat and hometown favorite son Adlai E. Stevenson II, who was the party’s presidential nominee. Stevenson would lose to Republican Dwight D. Eisenhower in both 1952 and 1956.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Walter Schroeder, August 1958 High-Moisture Shelled Corn

Livestock farmer Walter Schroeder, 1958.

Back in the late 1950s, livestock farmer Walter Schroeder (second from right) of rural Bloomington Township fattened about 500 head of cattle a year.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Sinoark’s ‘Frontier Room’ Opens October 1959

Phil-Kron drive-in theater, 1959.

Located at the junction of South Main Street and the Route 66 Beltline, the Phil-Kron drive-in theater featured a full restaurant built under the movie screen.

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