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Wednesday, October 29, 2003
All these houses have now vanished beneath the waves. This 1957-1965 photographic survey of Capel Celyn, Wales, (originally found at the Solipistic Gazette) shows the small village now submerged beneath the Llyn Celyn reservoir, starting in 1965. See also the story of the construction of the Clywedog valley reservoir. Both schemes were dogged by local protest, which manifested itself in violence, courtesy of the MAC (Mudiad Amddiffyn Cymru - the Movement for the Defence of Cymru or Wales Defence Force, one of several such organisations). This was unsurprising, given that Welsh land was being ‘stolen’ to provide water for British cities (mainly Liverpool and Birmingham). More about the Tryweryn Valley, the story of which found its way into 'Ready for Drowing', a song by the Manic Street Preachers. A Quicktime panorama of the Llyn Celyn reservoir as it is today. The reservoir at dusk. Location map.

The source of these images, Gathering the Jewels, is an excellent site, a visual record of Welsh cultural history. See also the Steelworks gallery, with these long-demolished worker's terraces. As you might imagine, it’s especially strong on industrial subjects, but there are many other gems (pardon the pun) to be found: Beaumaris Gaol Misconduct Book, 1847-1874, the Curiosities page is also well worth a visit: albino moles, scold’s bridle and this most unusual of crimes:

On 30 August 1872, at the Justice Room, Corwen, John Day was convicted of cutting up and depositing the body of a camel in an exposed situation near the turnpike road between Corwen and Bala, in the parish of Llandrillo-yn-Edeirnion. He was ordered to pay a fine of five shillings and one pound nineteen shillings costs, and was imprisoned at Dolgellau gaol for fourteen days with hard labour.

Solipistic Gazette also links to Medical Ephemera. Another photographic archive, this time from the US: King County Snapshots / Encyclopaedia Robotica (via gordon.coale).

Mark Irving’s feature on Chernobyl at Domus (free registration required): a huge concrete arch will be constructed, then slid over the existing nuclear power to seal it for the foreseeable future. (Related: Nuclear advert 'misleading') See also Robert Polidori's new book, Zones of Exclusion: Pripyat and Chernobyl. I can't find any of these images online, but you can flick through a postage stamp-sized slideshow of his award-winning photo essay on Brasilia / UFOs in Medieval European Art (via fiendish is the word). More UFOs in ancient artwork.

Thanks to Chris at Anti-mega for pointing us towards these early escalator concepts at the Elevator Museum / two galleries of Burning Man photos. I think the weirdest thing about this whole Burning Man thing for a European is the alien landscape. The activities and people are just like Glastonbury / suitably Halloween-y sculptures from Elizabeth McGrath / comprehensive site about Orson Welles' classic broadcast of War of the Worlds / Beckfordiana, the William Beckford website. Stunningly comprehensive and beautifully illustrated.