Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Some Vintage Lockers

Popular Mechanics, Aug 1924
Lockers never go out of fashion. It's true, isn't it? They look just the same now as they did when we were kids - and even the same as they looked back in the 1920s. That was when one innovative garage in Brooklyn installed lockers for people to leave their stuff in when their cars were being fixed. The car cushions were stored separately, because they didn't fit in the lockers.

Mind you, when I think about what we have in the car, it really isn't anything locker-worthy. And as for all the gum-wrappers and used-up pens stuck in the seats, and the Kleenex box from 1996 - I think I would just let them be, if the car was going in for repairs. I guess people had fancier car things back in the Jazz Age.

But when I think of lockers, I mostly think about high school - and swimming pools.

Public beach lockers, 1941
I remember the steel lockers at the old swimming pool at New York's Hunter College very well. You see, a long time ago (that would be the 1970s) I went to Hunter College High School which was - well, between buildings, you might say. When I was in 7th through 9th grades, the school was housed on two floors of a huge old office building - long since torn down - on Lexington Avenue. And as you might expect, there was no room for a gym on those  floors. So we commuted to various locations in New York for our gym classes. I took swimming class at Hunter at 8am one year, during the fall and winter - and it was really cold out! We had to lock up our heavy backpacks and any other supplies like shampoo or extra towels and things, in those old-fashioned lockers. I was always so glad to see my stuff there when class was over - especially my glasses, which I wasn't supposed to wear in the pool.* And although I love beaches and the water, I was pretty glad when that gym class was over, too.

*No, no contact lenses for me. I think they were pretty expensive back then; and in any case, I have never liked the idea of them. Although it would have been nice to see during swim class.


vanilla said...

That is so cool! My late mother-in-law graduated Hunter College High School, 1920.

Lidian said...

vanilla - That is also cool :) It was so much fun going to school in that office building. Our fire drills used to freak out all the businessmen because we made a LOT of noise going down all those echoing stairs ;)