Palace at Versailles: Hall of Mirrors

architecture, Black & White, Photography, Portraits, Travel

Above: Le château de Versailles as seen from the gardens. 

In continuation with Palace at Versailles Part One, it’s time for part two.

There’s more Palace de Versailles then a person could fathom to tour and document in one day. Between hordes of people and long walks with minimal refreshments or restrooms the end of the tour was welcome.

One of the highlights was the hall of mirrors, also known as la grande galerie. The hall of mirrors was the utmost symbol of power and vanity from a time when mirrors were were only for the wealthy. Perhaps the most well-known story involving the hall of mirrors – if not the entire Palace – is the Treaty of Versailles. The armistice that ended WWI on June 28, 1919, also often credited the leading cause for WWII, was signed in this hall. WordPress.com has a detailed and succinct post about the treaty. 

Historyplace.com has a photo credited to U.S. National Archives of the absolutely packed hall during the signing.

treatyofversailles

Here’s the hall of mirrors from a not-so-high vantage point I shot July 13, 2013. The similarities and differences between the amount of people but their purpose for their visit are shocking. Chandeliers and much decoration have apparently been since added. 

Lots of people.

Lots of people.

Decoration and mirror closeup.

Decoration and mirror closeup.

And for good measure an image from the other end of the hall of mirrors.

Versailles, France.

Versailles, France.

D-Day: My Grandma and The Michigan Daily

Photography, Portraits, Travel

According to my grandma, Claire Thomas, D-Day June 6, 1944, was a day everyone knew was coming. The question was, when? At the time Thomas was the editor of her school newspaper, the AP syndicate and still operating Michigan Daily. I am incredibly impressed by the ability of my grandma not only to rise to the position of editor, but to do so through what must have been very limiting sexual discrimination. Her hard work and attention to detail surely played a role. That attention to detail often finds typos in my writings, for which I thank you grandma.

When I was visiting a few years ago she had recently found a copy of the very issue printed on D-Day. Listening to her anecdotes of waiting by the phone, rushing to the office late at night to put the paper together, and the tension felt by Americans from every upbringing was fascinating. In retrospect it would have been a great conversation to record.

Here she is holding the June 6, 1944 issue on the porch of her house, Lake Washington in the background.

Claire Thomas holds a copy of The Michigan Daily from June 6, 1944. She was editor of the paper during the D-Day invasion of Europe.

Claire Thomas holds a copy of The Michigan Daily from June 6, 1944. She was editor of the paper during the D-Day invasion of Europe.