This faded barn on an alley was my grandpa's in Delta, Colorado. The alley originally may have been a lane. Grandpa would have stored his new cars in this barn. He was a car salesman and bought new cars every year. Now his barn is surrounded by residential blocks. The change reflects the transformation of a small American rural city over the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Closer examination of the window reveals further details of the history of this town.
The window in the barn's side is a recent addition and would have replaced a swinging door. Evidence of the door is in the hinge cut-outs on the right-hand board and the addition of an up-right two-by-four to make the window fit within what was a larger opening. Prior to 1969 a two-by-four was two inches wide. This board is obviously the now standard inch-and-a-half sold as a "two-by-four". A black aluminum window moves the date to something quite recent and the unfaded Mexican blanket places the change to the last year or two.
This barn loft no longer is a place for stuff, it is a home for someone from south of the border. The blanket is clean and new. Poor housing for our latest immigrants. Not even a tenement, but a barn. Waves of immigrants have enriched our country, assimilating slowly moving from poor housing to at least middle-class housing. This window says that the newest immigrants are willing to make the sacrifices to begin the path to a better life.
Now take these windows.
Here are a pair of self-conscious windows, the shades pulled to the precise horizontal position. The small panes, yellow tint and wooden frames all speak of old construction, but the artistic window blinds with their artful effect speak of money and time. Historically as a society gains leisure time, artistic endeavors become possible. Money writes messages. Curved glass was particularly expensive to make. The clean curved windows in the photo below are in the precise center of the financial district of London. Money written in old windows.
Shatter proof, structural glass, triple pane, glass blocks, bullet proof glass. Window glass hasn't yet seen it's last incarnation, nor it's last influence on historical, social and economic events.
|The Shard, Tallest Building in Europe|
The small panes in old buildings let people easily read by daylight. Glass skyscrapers gave recognition with the corner office and took it away with the cubicle. Windows read historical shifts. Windows make history. In 2013 six women climbed the Shard to protest oil drilling in the Arctic. These links show how climbing windows made history. Read on.