CBS – Home of Great Hosts

October 28, 2008

The Columbia Broadcasting System has not only produced great programing during it’s long and illustrious history, it also has produced some great hosts. Two of my favorites are Edward R. Murrow and Rod Serling. Not only were these guys impeccably dressed chain-smokers, they were also brilliant in their fields. Mr. Murrow, who criticized the Red Scare and helped bring about the political downfall of Senator McCarthy, began his career with CBS in 1950 on “The CBS Evening News” and soon after appeared on various programing including: “See it Now” & “Person to Person”. I love these photographs of Mr. Murrow below, especially the old microphones and television screens in the background.

Check out the old microphone

The old camera and broadcast room is incredible!

Rod Serling, was the creator, host, and also a writer for CBS’ hit series “The Twilight Zone”. Serling used the show to express his progressive social views veiled with a touch of Science Fiction. Mr. Serling, a U.S. Army paratrooper in World War II was wounded in combat and awarded the Purple Heart along with a Bronze Star. He suffered terribly from flashbacks and war time nightmares and these were a driving force behind his writing. I have always loved Mr. Serlings aesthetic: trim and clean blazer, white oxford, skinny tie, and a cigarette…

Rod with his typewriter

One the original 1950's wool sharkskin suits

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Hamilton Electric

October 27, 2008

The Hamilton watch company has a long and extensive history. Although I love the older manual winding Hamilton’s, lately I have been obsessed with the Hamilton Electrics. Research for the first battery operated watch began by Hamilton in 1946. It wasn’t until 1957 that Hamilton announced the release of the “Ventura” the world’s first battery powered watch. For the next 12 years, Hamilton would produce some of the most interesting and highly sought after “Space Age” designs. Check out the Meteor, Altair, Flight, Ventura, & Regulus below. If you watch some of the original Twilight Zone episodes, you might notice Rod Serling wearing the Ventura. Rene Rondeau is considered the leading expert on the Hamilton Electric and also has various models available for purchase from time to time.

"Ventura" model - This was the first ever battery powered watch.  This watch with a white dial was worn by "The Twilight Zone" host Rod Serling

"Meteor" model - The asymetrical shape of this watch is incredible!

I found these really cool photographs of Mercury Project astronauts Gus & Virgil Grissom with suit technician Joe Schmidt on Apollo Mission Photos. The Mercury Missions were the United States first attempt at putting a man into orbit around the earth. The program ran from 1959-1963. The Mercury-Atlas 6 mission was the first flight to achieve the goal. The astronaut suits along with the undergarments are unbelievable. It must have been a real thrill to have the challenge of designing something with such advanced function and technology.

Astronaut Virgil Grissom suits up with technician Joe Schmitt

Astronaut Virgil Grissom suits up with technician Joe Schmidt. I love the insulation details on the undergarments.

Spacemen Al Shepard and John Glenn in front of the MR-4 Capsul at Mercury Mission Control.  Check out the skinny ties and French cuffs! 

Gus Grissom with suit technician Joe Schmidt

Gus Grissom with suit technician Joe Schmidt. These suits were all full pressure.