Mark this moment in history


Sat Jun 3 23:25:55 2006 DST


Thank you, good sir or madam. Now begins the drive for 20k!

First one to 20K gets a free Forgotten-Roanoke.com T-shirt!

Pics coming soon.. of the t-shirt..


3 hits away

This blog, yes - this very blog you are reading right now is 3 hits away from 14k hits since inception.

Personally, I'm very excited about this.

It's the weekend!

No matter how grumbly the newspaper makes me today, no matter how much I might want to bitch, moan, complain about something - I won't.

It's the weekend.

But, Oh, I could have a list a mile long right now I tell you.

Nah - weekend.

Podcast up on Monday, "Remember, Roanoke" will continue as well. I'll let you know when.

But seriously.. is the media that blind that they still focus on the word gang, rather than the actual crimes committed. Which is probably symptomatic of the reason the very gangs are allowed to exist in the first place. Much like thousands of other issues lately I've noticed.

No, Weekend!



Seriously now, would it be possible to refocus on the fact that the shooting on Melrose was NOT gang related, and infact the claim of being gang related was leveled by someone who did not want the true nature of the "nip joint" being revealed?

Or is that fact lost on deaf ears?

Seriously now, your talking about a shooting which involved an illegal operation, involving alcohol, gambling, and several other illicit activities I've been told.

Wouldn't it be nice to have something else to blame it on? Maybe even distract the police from the real facts?

Well, it did not work on the police, but it did work on the media.

What a wonderful distraction to keep us from ignoring the fact that the whole house was involved in illegal activites.


One thing comes to an end, another begins.

Remember Roanoke has launched.

Bet you didn't know the valley had it's first "snowbird" type community back in 1671? A seasonal thing, just like some of the snowbirds do now.

It's true.

Oh, and I promise you, as we move on in time - there will be more photos. You'd be suprised at how few images of the valley in the early, early 18th Century there are.

Anyway - enjoy. Comments? Thats what the messageboard is for.


Final Report

All in one night. Over 100 years of history fell.

The building that housed Tony's Place/Lonesome Dove was built in 1918, but prior to that, there was also a building there. Which also housed a restaurant. Roughly 120 years of restaurant history fell tonight. (I might be quoted as saying 140, I was in error, thinking of a different building.)

Even at that rate, the bricks witnessed more history than most realize. And in a matter of hours (and yes, contrary to Jeremy Crider's SLS report - it was not 14 minutes, thats just how long he was there) it was no more.

There were a few moments of trepidation, when the building seemed to twist in the wind. A time when it seemed as if the entire front of the building would fall straight down, before the machines even moved in.

First to go was the chicken coop. The rear machine moved into position, then appeared dormant. Then suddenly, it sprang to life, wrenching the coop off the building and tossing it to the ground. It dug further in, hollowing out the building, the machine in the front carefully lining itself up the entire time.

Out front, surgical precision - in the back, brutal force.

The windows, which I thought initially would go at any moment, held till the last. Even under the one-foot flex the building shuddered through, the windows held. The last blow was the endgame. And everything fell.

As the machines moved in, and full demolition began - lightening flared up in the skies beyond.

Several times prior - a single pidgeon flew to perch on a newly exposed beam, or board on the building. And moments before the final blow, a single pidgeon flew into the crawlspace between the ceiling and the roof. And then the building was gone, leaving only a massive cloud of dust in its wake.

And a flight of pidgeons in the sky.

Check out Roanoke Photos for more photos of last nights demo of the Lonesome Dove.

Live scene report from Lonesome Dove Demolition #2

this is an audio post - click to play

Live scene report from Lonesome Dove #1

this is an audio post - click to play

As I speak

Roanoke.com reports it's coming down tonight, and tomorrow night. Start time of 6pm.

Folks - get your cameras ready.

Or if you cannot be there in person, watch it online here.

Getting closer

As I curse myself for not having my camera with me, I send out a news tip, which Im sure someone will grab and run with - get some photos of.

The Lonesome Dove/Tony's Place is falling down.

I'm guessing that all the shaking of the ground has compromised the structure.
Which leads me to question something I saw today down there.

Why would you fill in a hole you just dug?

AM-CAM current image
Wayy in the back there, behind Billy's Ritz. That last yellow machine on the left.. filling in a hole that it had dug just the past week.

Strange. But not nearly as strange as the two large oil tanks which were exhumed and removed in the same day - and hidden from public view (on Salem Ave.) behind a pile of dirt.



"Were just two lost souls swimming in a fish bowl, year after year..."
-pink floyd

It has begun. Where last week we were all sniffling, sneezing, and wheezing from allergies - these past days we have been trapped.

Stuck down deep in the bowl of the Roanoke Valley, the collect for all the heat and humidity. Closer to the Sun than say.. New York City. But not so high the atmosphere thins and cools. The pressure cap is on, and we simmer.

I find myself fighting an urge lately to walk into the Municipal Building, grab the first politico I see, and ask them what they did to this city so many years ago. Maybe shake them up, apply some pressure till I get an answer.

It seems as if the city was asked to choose at gunpoint, Your money or your life.

I'm pretty sure at this point there was a 3rd option, but what it was - its hard to tell. Muddled by the years, apparently thats the one the city chose.

A weak form of government, usually found in cities with smaller populations. A citizenry that is trampled in the name of progress. As evidenced by the current Sundays on the Market - where just 3 weeks ago vendors lined the tables along Market St., now it is slowly being overtaken by the restaurants outdoor seating - to the point where the street is now the public sidewalk, according to some.

A City which has shoved its best and brightest out the door, off to other places rather than engage in the futility of change, but will more than welcome them back when they retire - and are quiet and not likely to demand more.

Submission is a desireable trait.

A City where fear is the ultimate motivator. Ranging from fear of reprisal by the City itself, to fear of contact from your fellow citizen - worry they will personally attack you, take your job or somthing similar.

Baseless fears work, for reasons no one can understand. The City banks on the ignorance of the citizens to not fully understand all it says and does. It only works based on innunendo and rumor, no full divulgence of information. The less you know, and the more you think you know - the better.

A City which has layered itself in protective shields against all community involvement. Be it EventZone, or Downtown Roanoke, Inc. Even the Libraries lost in a cloud of disinformation.

Did you know the City Library system allready has a working agreement with Roanoke County Public Libraries? The nonsense of merging the two into one unit is just that, nonsense. It's a deflection tactic. They are, for all intents and purposes - merged. You can get any book, any media from any library in the area - and have it dropped right at your local library. You can also return that book to any other library, and it will find its way home.

Did you know that?

Regardless. A long time ago, this City banked on the lack of interest from its citizens - the continued alienation of the citizenry from those in power. Give them an issue or two to keep them occupied for 20 years or so, like Victory Stadium.

No longer can the City bank on such notions - there is a rising tide of younger adults who are not willing to stand by, oblivious to the actions of the City. These are Adults who are now willing to stand their ground, and not be chased from the City they love.

For those of you who had given up hope for Roanoke in the past, I have a song for you... a hot, hazy, humid version - perfect for Roanoke.

"Wish you were here..."


Memorial Day

The image “http://www.wildflower-seed.com/images/flanders.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors. http://history.amedd.army.mil/booksdocs/wwii/Normandy/Tegtmeyer/Tegtmeyer16thIRStaff.jpghttp://www.remember.gov/history/images/korean_war/kw1a.gifhttp://www.remember.gov/history/images/vietnam/vietnam_march.jpgGulf War Friends

Every war has it's moments - when the bullets are still, the battlefield quiet.

The image “http://www.library.unt.edu/archives/barsanti/images/c_omb_040b.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.The soldier's remember for a moment.

Stop. and remember today.

And every day.


Coming Soon

Coming soon to Forgotten-Roanoke.com

"Remember Roanoke"

After much debate (both internal and external) it has been decided that the Orphans page, as cute as it is - was never really going to answer the questions it laid forth. As part of the ongoing and continuing story that is Roanoke, and Forgotten-Roanoke, Remember Roanoke will illuminate things we all know, but vaguely remember.

Hoping to shed light on the stories that lurk at the fringes of our collective memory..

The next page will be up before the week is out. Software problems solved.