Thursday, January 21, 2010

That was then...

Last weekend I had the pleasure of walking in the Whatcom Falls Park in Bellingham. A fast-moving creek with rapids and waterfalls is the park's main attraction. The bridge that crosses the creek near the falls certainly enhances the effect. I couldn't help but note the plaque set into the bridge.

Most of the WPA designations I've seen (on structures, on the title pages of books) are dated a few years earlier than this one. I've always been curious about them when I've run across them, wishing I could learn more about the individuals involved in designing and building them. But now, all too aware of the soaring unemployment rate and the abysmal state of the economy (which favors only bankers and other Wall Street investors), when I saw the plaque designation WPA creation this weekend, the designation struck me as having acquired an aura that is nearly otherworldly. A plaque designating WPA creation is far from unusual in the Western US. Is it an accident that the structures they accompany are usually pleasing to the eye? Myself, I doubt it.

1 comment:

Sara said...

There is a huge amount of documentation out there about the WPA in the PNW -- what do you want to know? *GRIN*

Yeah, a lot of it is grey literature, but it is totally out there. The Forest Service has commissioned a bunch of studies, as have a number of other agencies and municipalities in our region.