Cauli Le Chat

Cauli Le Chat
Cauli Le Chat, MPL Roving Reporter

Friday, July 18, 2014

Following Paul Hadley's Footsteps, Part Trois

Once again, we're walking in the footsteps (pawsteps, for moi) of longtime Mooresville resident Paul Hadley (1880-1971), who designed the Indiana State Flag and was a well-known impressionist watercolor artist who taught students at the Herron Art Institute in Indianapolis.  If you'd like to catch our earlier installments in this series, click here.  Here, too.

Earlier today, my minions, one of my many "Flat" Caulis, and I visited the Brooklyn Bridge.

Not That One!

Let's begin by showing Paul Hadley's painting of the covered bridge that once stood in Brooklyn, Indiana, which is displayed at Mooresville Public Library.  Click the photos to bigify.

 Taken with the library's Canon digital camera

Compare painting with this 1911 photo of
the Brooklyn mill, dam, & covered bridge
[courtesy of Stuttgen, Joanne Raetz & Tomak, Curtis.
Morgan County (Postcard History Series) (2007).
Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing, p. 87]

Hadley painted the bridge (well, more precisely, his painting OF the bridge) nearly a century ago--but probably after Brooklyn Mill was demolished in 1924 (see photo above).  The covered bridge is no longer there (neither are the dam or mill), but now there's a concrete bridge (constructed in 1948) in approximately the same spot crossing White Lick Creek at Brooklyn's edge.  You can tell by the terrain that this was the correct bridge location--plus we know the road leading into (and out of) town historically crossed the river hereabouts on the way to Brooklyn cemetery (further southward).  Plus we have that 1911 photo above (and historical caption), which pretty well nails the thing down tight.

Brooklyn Bridge Today

 The Lady With the Red Hair & "Flat" Cauli
standing upstream of the modern bridge
looking downstream (south)
along White Lick Creek

Observant readers will have noted that Hadley must have been standing downstream of the covered bridge near the eastern bank of White Lick Creek (looking north at the west end of the covered bridge). He was probably painting approximately where that fisher dude is standing in our above photo (look left beneath the bridge).  Hadley might possibly have stood in the river's shallow waters to capture the perspective.

Upstream (north) view of White Lick Creek
(the modern bridge is behind photographer)

Watch out for traffic across the bridge!

Daredevil Moi with "Flat" Cauli & the Lady With the Red Hair

The concrete bridge is certainly utilitarian, but it lacks the grace of its wooden ancestor Hadley so elegantly captured in his watercolor painting. White Lick Creek, too, looked more charming with those rocks and that little waterfall.

When I first saw Hadley's painting at my Library, I mistakenly thought it was the red covered bridge that, a century ago, spanned the East Fork of White Lick Creek on the Waverly Road (now State Road 144) at Mooresville's outskirts.  Upon closer inspection, however, it's obviously not that bridge in Hadley's painting.  See what you think.

Brooklyn's covered bridge was quite charming.  I'm glad we know its beauty, thanks to Paul Hadley.

Your Roving Reporter On The Go,

Cauli Le Chat

P.S.  Neil Diamond reflected upon his childhood days growing up in Brooklyn, New York (the other Brooklyn) in his song, "Brooklyn Roads" (1968).

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