The Great Photo Album Adventure (Part 13): Who Are We?

If you’ve followed the story on our blog,  you know that a friend gave us a fabulous housewarming gift:  a 12-pound photo album from the 1960s,  packed with images from nightspots in and around South Philadelphia.

You also know that we’ve been on a grand hunt to identify the hundreds of entertainers,  sports figures,  business people,  politicians and  “just plain folks” cavorting on its pages, with the goal of donating them to Temple University’s Urban Archives for safe-keeping.

WHO  ARE  THEY?

The photos were collected by South Philadelphia newspaper columnist Arthur Tavani, and many are already on our website,  along with whatever identifications we have.  

In September,  2015,  we added our  first section of “Who Are We?” photos,  asking for help in identifying the many unknown women in them.   Today,  we published 27 new photos on our website,  all showing at least one person we can’t identify.

Some photos include famous Philadelphians….

17_02_02-1-197-waw2-al-martinoYes,  that’s South Philadelphia singer Al Martino second from right,  with columnist Art Tavani (far left) and Philadelphia council president Paul D’Ortona (far right).   But who’s the man with the flower in his lapel?

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The Great Photo Album Adventure (Part 11C): Linda Hoffman & Bobby Rydell

(Continued from Thursday,  May 26.   Click here to see Part 1,  or here to see Part 2….)

It was 1964,  and still-shy Linda Ferrino  (now Linda Hoffman)  had just been appointed Bobby Rydell’s National Fan Club President.

16_05_31 1 Bobby Rydell Linda Hoffman 2014(Linda Ferrino Hoffman and Bobby Rydell in 2014)

So when Bobby was invited to appear on the nationally syndicated Mike Douglas Show,  she did what any responsible chief executive would do:  She had her mom call school and say she’d be out sick that day.

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The Great Photo Album Adventure (Part 11B): Linda Ferrino Hoffman & Bobby Rydell

(Continued from Tuesday,  May 24.   Click here to see Part 1….)

It was Easter weekend,  1960,  and young Linda Ferrino was pouting – big time.

She and her young-at-heart mom had both been smitten by Bobby Rydell when he sang “Kissin’ Time” on American Bandstand.   It had even been her mom’s idea to watch.

Now her mom was insisting that they couldn’t attend Bobby’s Steel Pier show,  because they were expecting Easter guests at their Jersey shore house.

16_05_26 1 Steel Pier(Atlantic City’s Steel Pier flaunts its star power on an undated postcard.   That’s Mr. Peanut tipping his hat at the far left.)

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The Great Photo Album Adventure (Part 8): Lou Marks

It was the last weekend of November,  2014,  and we were celebrating our new holiday display:  26 lighted photos of South Philadelphia celebrities  –  drawn from our star-packed 1960s photo album  –  looked down from our windows onto E. Passyunk Avenue and Tasker Street.

15_11_16 1 Celebrity Windows(And, yes, everyone from Bobby Rydell and Fabian, to Al Martino and
Joey Giardello,  will be back in our windows in January, 2016.)

Feeling festive,  we headed out to Stogie Joe’s Tavern for a square pie with sausage and broccoli rabe.

It was the perfect choice:  Stogie Joe’s Passyunk Avenue building once housed the gym where boxer Joey Giardello trained,  and Joey was among our window celebrities.

But,  like everything related to Art Tavani’s magical South Philadelphia photo album,  the coincidences didn’t end there….

“NICE  LOOKING  MUSSELS!”

Soon we were comparing appetizers with the people at the next table.

“Be sure to check out our holiday windows on your way home,”  we told them.  “We’ve got everyone from Bobby Rydell to Fisher and Marks up there!”

15_11_16 2 Fisher & Marks(Singer and dancer Al Fisher,  left,  was the semi-straight man to comedian and jitterbug champ Lou Marks)

“Fisher and Marks?”  one of the men asked.  “I’m friends with Lou’s son!”  Continue reading

The Great Photo Album Adventure (Part 6): Carmen Dee

One of the perks of researching our fun and fabulous 1960s South Philly photo album has been meeting the families, friends and fans of the many entertainers, athletes and other public figures it contains  –  and,  a half-century later,  meeting some of those same celebrities ourselves.

FINDING  CARMEN  DEE

Last year,  we were charmed to meet Carmen Dee,  the celebrated bandleader at South Philadelphia’s famed Palumbo’s restaurant and nightclub for over 30 years.

15_10_25 1 Palumbo's Postcard(A Palumbo’s postcard from the late 1930s.  Palumbo’s opened in 1884 as a hotel
for Italian immigrants,  and morphed into a top entertainment and wedding venue.
And, yes, that should actually read “Catharine” Street.)
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The Great Photo Album Adventure (Part 5)

If you’ve followed our blog and website, you know that a friend gave us a fabulous housewarming gift:  a 12-pound photo album from the 1960s, packed with images from nightspots in and around South Philadelphia.

You also know that we’ve been on a grand hunt to identify the hundreds of entertainers,  sports figures,  business people,  politicians and  “just plain folks” cavorting on its pages, with the goal of donating them to Temple University’s Urban Archives for safe-keeping.

15_09_18 1 Jimmy Durante(South Philly nightclub favorite Jimmy Durante, left, with Arthur Tavani, the nightlife
columnist and photographer who assembled the photo album in the 1960s)

Now we’d like to get  you  involved in the hunt… Continue reading

The Great Photo Album Adventure (Part 4)

(Kate resumes the story….)

It was March, 2014 as I nervously approached Virginia Tavani Romano’s front door with a laptop full of photos in one hand and a potted plant in the other.  For months, I’d been poring over Art Tavani’s magical 1960s photo album, trying to unlock its mysteries. Now, only four blocks from home, I was about to meet his sister and her nieces Suzanne, Clair and Elaine.

“Let’s hope they have a sense of humor,” I fretted, yanking at my newly dyed violet and teal hair…..

15_7_13 1 Kate Hair_0652

(Hey, even middle-aged girls just wanna have fun…)

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