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Porch Portrait Project: Eden Viona

A contribution from Abigail Kok's Porch Portrait Project; This is a Goth in daylight, this species only comes out when summoned. In nature she is usually found frolicking in cemeteries, Goth clubs, and the occasional antique mall.


A group of African Americans look on for the cutting of a cake at an unidentified social event at the USO #2, 713-715 Commerce St., circa 1946. The cake has four candles, possibly indicating that it was in honor of the Club's fourth anniversary in September of 1946. In the group were Helen B. Stafford (second from left), Arthur Hayes (fifth from left), Maude Leonard (seventh from left) and Louise Beck (back of center, in hat.) (photograph by F.L. Powell of Tacoma)


The second annual USO Music Festival was held at Point Defiance Park on July 28, 1946. One of the featured performers was the 70 piece Youth Symphony Orchestra of the Pacific Northwest, under the direction of Dr. Francis Aranyi. The concert took place around the temporary bandstand set up in the natural amphitheater at the entrance to the park. It was attended by over 7,000 people. (TT 7/27/1946, pg 2 and 7/28/46, pg 1; TNT 7/27/46, pg.1 and 7/29/46, pg. 1& 2; Photo by F.L. Powell, YMCA, Tacoma)


On July 29, 1945, the USO hosted its first Music Festival at Point Defiance Park. Over 6,000 spectators were on hand to enjoy the concert. The main feature was a performance of Gershwin's "Rhapsody in Blue" by the 362nd Army Band of Fort Lewis. Cpl. William Sumner of New York City was the featured soloist. Cpl. Sumner was the solo pianist with the National Broadcasting Company before entering the Army. Other performers included the 29th Special Band directed by Sgt. Earnest Hayden and the 25 voice Naval choir from Bremerton, featuring baritone soloist Robert Brown. (TNT 7/29/1945, pg. 1; photograph by F.L. Powell of Tacoma)


From September of 1942 until the end of March, 1947, 713-15 Commerce housed USO #2, a club reserved for the entertainment of servicemen and women of color. One of the unique activities in the club took place each year during "Be Kind to Animals" week. Servicemen assisted in the planning and production of a dog show with the pets of local children. Ribbons were presented to the best in each catagory. In this photograph dated September 16, 1945, unidentified children and servicemen pose with a variety of dogs at the club. (photograph by F.L. Powell of Tacoma)


ca. 1947. Orson Welles (right), noted performer and director of stage, screen and radio, posed in this undated photograph with a longtime friend and Army-Navy USO Club leader Bennie D. Brown. The occasion was possibly in March of 1947, when Mr. Welles spoke to 5,000 persons in the Armory as a guest of the Tacoma Jewish Association in observance of Brotherhood Week.

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