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TWA Star Stream: the luxury standard

Posted August 12, 2014 at 11:00 pm

By Michael Bushnell
Northeast News

Trans World Airlines launched its first jet service on Jan. 25, 1959, between New York-Idlewild and San Fransisco.

The route was chosen by TWA’s then President Howard Hughes to compete with American Airlines new jet service between New York-Idlewild and Los Angeles. Hughes pushed TWA’s finances to the limit to enter the jet age by ordering eight new Boeing 707-120′s in February 1956. TWA dubbed the new jet service “Star Stream” and even gave it its own set of standards in luxury jet travel. The 707 was widely known in aircraft circles as one of the most versatile jets used in commercial passenger service. Pilots who flew the four engine, 189-seat-liner knew she could take a beating and still be airworthy. Test pilot Tex Johnston proved this in

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    Larrapin Lou and the Babe

    By MICHAEL BUSHNELL
    Northeast News
    August 6, 2014

    George Herman “Babe” Ruth and “Larrapin” Lou Gehrig played in a barnstorming game on Oct. 15, 1927, at Muehlebach Field, Kansas City, Mo., to benefit Mercy Hospital.

    The promotional card shows both Gehrig and Ruth donating a new electric refrigerator with a “monitor top” to officials at Mercy Hospital.

    After the Yankees’ 1926 World Series win over the Cardinals, Ruth and Gehrig traveled as “Bustin Babes” and “Larrupin Lou’s” in

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    Horse Shoe Bend a thing of beauty

    By MICHAEL BUSHNELL
    Northeast News
    July 30, 2014

    This historic postcard was published by the South West News Company of Kansas City, Mo., and shows what was then referred to as “Horse Shoe Bend” on beautiful Cliff Drive.

    The card was mailed to Miss Alice Bursley of New Orleans, La. on January 23, 1907. Cliff Drive has long been known for its natural beauty and rugged splendor, limestone bluffs overlooking the East Bottoms. In 2000, Cliff Drive, which was designed by early Parks Architect

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    All aboard for railroad's Golden Age

    By MICHAEL BUSHNELL
    Northeast News
    July 23, 2014

    The old Union Depot went out with a wild party in the fall of 1914, when the new Union Station on Pershing Road opened for business.

    The heyday of Union Avenue had come to a close; the old depot built in the late 1870s had seen its last flood and its last train. After the great floods of 1903 and 1908 that had inundated the depot in close to 10 feet of water each time, city

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    Creamery offers wholesome goodness

    By MICHAEL BUSHNELL
    Northeast News
    July 16, 2014

    This week, we offer this lovely advertising postcard from the Blue Valley Creamery Company, spotlighting three of the company’s facilities in Sioux City, Iowa; St. Joseph, Mo.; and Chicago.

    “Churners of the celebrated Blue Valley Butter” is noted on the front of the card. The Blue Valley Creamery Co. had 21 large butter making plants in the United States and was noted for paying the highest price for cream.

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    The Larry-Don Excursion boat

     

    By MICHAEL BUSHNELL
    Northeast News
    July 9, 2014

    If you’re a fan of Lake Ozark and everything that is the Lake of the Ozarks, then you’ve no doubt seen the Larry-Don plying the waters of the lake, ferrying sight-seeing tours along the almost 1,400 miles of shoreline on a daily basis.

    This week’s postcard, “The ‘Larry-Don’ Excursion Boat, Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri” was published by the Corwin News Agency of Jefferson City, Mo. The description on the back of the card states: “The newest

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    Artistos Flour – Guaranteed!

    By MICHAEL BUSHNELL
    Northeast News
    July 2, 2014

    This week, we spotlight a promotional postcard for the Southwest Milling Company showing the company’s A and B Flour Mills. The “A” mill was built in 1913 near present day 18th Street and Kansas Avenue on the banks of the Kansas River. Advertised as fireproof and of the most modern construction, the plant was Southwestern Milling’s flagship plant along the Kaw River for many years.

    At its peak, its output was roughly 4,000 barrels of flour

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    The always fashionable Brookside Hotel

    By MICHAEL BUSHNELL
    Northeast News
    June 25, 2014

    This week, we take a look at the lobby of the Brookside Hotel located at 54th Street and Brookside Boulevard.

    The old Brookside Hotel was built in 1918 and officially opened for business in October, 1919. It is said that the hotel was much like Chicago’s Edgewater Beach Hotel on Lake Michigan. During World War II, the facility was used by the Army Air Corps to house officers attending Rockhurst College.

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    Flooding no stranger in West Bottoms

    By MICHAEL BUSHNELL
    Northeast News
    June 18, 2014

    The Kansas City Flood: “The heavy rains during the month of June in the Missouri and Kaw River valleys was the cause of a flood which almost equaled the flood of June 1903. The rise reached the height of 29.07 feet in the Kaw and 32.03 feet in the Missouri River.

    The immense drift built a dam at the Missouri Pacific Railroad Bridge which forced the water to back up in all the sewers

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    No finer view west of the Hudson

    By MICHAEL BUSHNELL
    Northeast News
    June 11, 2014

    Built in 1906-07 by the Swenson Construction Company at a cost of $15,000, the stone arched 15th Street Bridge spans what was then R.T. Van Horn Road by the new Blue Ridge Boulevard. At its highest point, the bridge is 80 feet above the roadbed and is noted as one of the highest elevations in Kansas City at close to 950 feet above sea level.

    The view offers sweeping vistas of downtown Kansas City to the west

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