Saturday, March 22, 2014

Locarno, Canton of Ticino, CH

There are nine Swiss heritage site of national significance in Locarno. Three of the sites are churches; the church of S. Francesco and former convent, the church of S. Maria Assunta (new church) and house of the canons and the church of S. Maria in Selva with Cemetery. The Castello Visconteo complex (part of which may have been designed by Leonardo da Vinci) is on the list. Two schools, the Ai Saleggi primary school and the Secondary School at via Dr. G. Varesi 30, as well as the Cantonal Library are also listed. The last two are the Pinacoteca comunale Casa Rusca at piazza Sant’Antonio and the Casorella at Via Bartolomeo Rusca 5 make up the rest of the list. The entire city of Locarno is listed on the Inventory of Swiss Heritage Site

Temple of Hephaistos in the Ancient Agora of Athens, Greece

The Temple of Hephaestus, also known as the Hephaisteion or earlier as the Theseion, is a well-preserved Greek temple; it remains standing largely as built. It is a Doric peripteral temple, and is located at the north-west side of the Agora of Athens, on top of the Agoraios Kolonos hill. From the 7th century until 1834, it served as the Greek Orthodox church of St. George Akamates.
Hephaestus was the patron god of metal working and craftsmanship. There were numerous potters' workshops and metal-working shops in the vicinity of the temple, as befits the temple's honoree. Archaeological evidence suggests that there was no earlier building on the site except for a small sanctuary that was burned when the Persians occupied Athens in 480 BC. The name Theseion or Temple of Theseus was attributed to the monument under the assumption it housed the remains of the Athenian hero Theseus, brought back to the city from the island of Skyros by Kimon in 475 BC, but refuted after inscriptions from within the temple associated it firmly with Hephaestus.

Construction

After the battle of Plataea, the Greeks swore never to rebuild their sanctuaries destroyed by the Persians during their invasion of Greece, but to leave them in ruins, as a perpetual reminder of the war. The Athenians directed their funds towards rebuilding their economy and strengthening their influence in the Delian League. When Pericles came to power, he envisioned a grand plan for transforming Athens into the centre of Greek power and culture. Construction started in 449 BC, and some scholars believe the building not to have been completed for some three decades, funds and workers having been redirected towards the Parthenon. The western frieze was completed between 445-440 BC, while the eastern frieze, the western pediment and several changes in the building's interior are dated by these scholars to 435-430 BC, largely on stylistic grounds. It was only during the Peace of Nicias (421-415 BC) that the roof was completed and the cult images were installed. The temple was officially inaugurated in 416-415 BC.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Fraserburgh, Scotland, GB


Storm 14-14 [Explored], originally uploaded by linlaw39.

The town has had a local lifeboat on service since 1806 which was run privately by the local Harbour Board until the first RNLI operated station opened in 1858. This was the first official RNLI station opened in Scotland. Throughout the 20th century, Fraserburgh suffered three lifeboat disasters. First, in 1918, the 'Lady Rothes' capsized while assisting H.M. Drifter Eminent. Coxswain Andrew Noble and Acting Second Coxswain Andrew Faquhar drowned. Second, on the 9th February 1953, six crew members lost their lives when the lifeboat capsized while escorting fishing vessels to the harbour. On this occasion Coxswain Andrew Ritchie, Mechanic George Duthie, Bowman Charles Tait, Assistant Mechanic James Noble and Crew Members John Crawford and John Buchan all lost their lives - the only survivor was Charles Tait. Lastly, on 21 January 1970 while on service to the Danish fishing vessel Opal, the lifeboat The Duchess of Kent capsized with the loss of five of her crew of six. Those killed were Coxswain John Stephen, Mechanic Frederick Kirkness and Crew Members William Hadden, James RS Buchan and James Buchan.[6] In 2009, a local campaign was started to raise £40,000 to erect an official monument to the 14 men who lost their lives whilst serving on the Fraserburgh Lifeboat. Coxswain Victor Sutherland announced in June 2010 that the total had been achieved. The monument was unveiled by Flora Fraser, 21st Lady Saltoun, in August 2010 .

Grand Haven Lighthouse, Michigan, USA

A set of range lights built in 1905 to mark the entrance to the Grand River at Grand Haven, Michigan. The lights are set on a concrete breakwater extending into Lake Michigan on the south side of the river mouth. Because of the early importance of the Grand Haven harbor, a lighthouse was built here as early as 1839 Inner - A red, conical steel plate 51-foot tower fabricated by the American Bridge Company in 1905. The original Sixth Order Lens was given to the City and replaced by a plastic lens. The original Sixth Order lens was given to the City of Grand Haven when a plastic lens was installed.

Pierhead (outer) - is the original fog signal building built in 1875 which was moved to end of breakwater in 1905 after the pier had been extended several times. The red, wood frame structure was sheathed in corrugated iron in 1922.

The story-and-a-half building once housed the boilers to run the fog signal. It has a unique, massive concrete V-shaped front facing Lake Michigan, that is designed to protect the building from the fury of lake storms. This concrete gives the building the appearance of a ship's bow. The octagonal lantern is fitted with a plastic lens.

An elevated catwalk connects the two lights, but now stops short of running all the way to the beach. When the lights were manned by keepers, the catwalk was used to move from the shore in heavy weather.

The concrete breakwater is nice place to walk and fish, except when Lake Michigan is blowing. The buildings are not open to the public on these active aids to navigation. The U.S. Coast Guard Station-Grand Haven is responsible for maintaining this light and 15 lighthouses on the West Michigan lakeshore.

The lights are located at the end of South Harbor Drive in Grand Haven.

© Copyright 2010 John McCormick , All Rights Reserved.

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