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1973 Indy 500 Time Trials TV coverage

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  • #16
    Originally posted by dalz View Post
    Your local library's microfilm of the local newspaper can be a wealth of information, even mundane sources like the TV listings. That's how I, ahem, scooped the Doctor in that the first year of ABC's expanded 3hr. 500 broadcast was 1980, not 1981.
    Much of what I know has come from extensive microfilm research (along with old racing publications). Which is why so many of these myths and tall tales can be shot down so quickly. There are a lot of newspapers available online now, but for many newspapers, it is still a matter of using a microfilm reader at a local library. Unfortunately, the microfilm readers are often either in poor condition or not working. Fortunately, I know how to go MacGyver on them, and can field strip and cobble together one workable reader from three different machines ​ It might not be "blood, sweat and tears", but it's close. My hands and fingers are usually covered with nicks and cuts after using poorly operating microfilm readers.

    I truly have lost count of how many libraries I've used microfilm at. I'd have to do some thinking and figuring.
    Last edited by JThur1; 03-07-2020, 03:47 PM.
    "Versions of a story that are more tidy, compact, and camera-ready should generally be viewed as historically suspect." - Jackson Landers

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    • #17
      Based on this photo taken by a family friend during JR's post run interview, I'd say Chris was covering the pits that day.

      DW040a.jpg

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      • #18
        Originally posted by JThur1 View Post
        Much of what I know has come from extensive microfilm research (along with old racing publications). Which is why so many of these myths and tall tales can be shot down so quickly. There are a lot of newspapers available online now, but for many newspapers, it is still a matter of using a microfilm reader at a local library. Unfortunately, the microfilm readers are often either in poor condition or not working. Fortunately, I know how to go MacGyver on them, and can field strip and cobble together one workable reader from three different machines ​ It might not be "blood, sweat and tears", but it's close. My hands and fingers are usually covered with nicks and cuts after using poorly operating microfilm readers.

        I truly have lost count of how many libraries I've used microfilm at. I'd have to do some thinking and figuring.
        Yes, the machines could be broke for months, and I think it's possible that nobody would notice. Fortunately at least some of them are always functional at my town's main library, as there are a few hardcore oldsters researching something to keep them used.

        I get easily sidetracked looking at them; other current events, sports, local people, places pop up and I'm lost for an hour or two. I guess that's half the fun.
        You have the IndyCar you deserve.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by dalz View Post

          Yes, the machines could be broke for months, and I think it's possible that nobody would notice. Fortunately at least some of them are always functional at my town's main library, as there are a few hardcore oldsters researching something to keep them used.

          I get easily sidetracked looking at them; other current events, sports, local people, places pop up and I'm lost for an hour or two. I guess that's half the fun.
          Sadly true about the broken machines. I once had a young librarian stand by and watch me operate the microfilm machine. They said: "I haven't seen anyone use this in the time I've been here."

          Between the machines falling apart, their lack of use and the microfilm aging, I'm afraid that much of this too is going to be lost. A shame, because it's a treasure trove of information.

          It's very easy to get lost in it, even when focused on specific events.
          "Versions of a story that are more tidy, compact, and camera-ready should generally be viewed as historically suspect." - Jackson Landers

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          • #20
            Newspapers.com and similar database venues have increasingly freed researchers like me from the burdens of microfilm research (and they also allow you to do direct searching). It's now just a question of whether microfilmed data will become part of an accessible database.

            The Indianapolis Star is accessible in newspapers.com and the $200 per year price tag I think pays for itself even if you don't need the database as part of your regular job (as I do).

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            • #21
              Newspapers.com and others databases are nice, but there are still a huge number of newspapers that haven't been digitized. Strangely, it seems those are ones I most often need to check. I'd estimate about 75% of what I looked up in person over the last 20 years has since turned up digitized, but sometimes it took 10 or more years before they showed up online.

              It used to be that microfilm from any library in California could be sent to any other branch library within the state, but that program seems to have ended (either that or they've forgotten how to do it at my local library, I was never able to determine which)
              "Versions of a story that are more tidy, compact, and camera-ready should generally be viewed as historically suspect." - Jackson Landers

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              • #22
                There is a lot that needs to be done still. Unfortunately some newspapers don't show up in newspapers.com because the entity that controls the rights might have a deal with another database that you can only access at libraries. The NY Daily News is the only major NY paper you can get on newspapers.com. The Times has its own database that's ProQuest based and the old Herald Tribune is also only available through that. When I tried to find the old NY Journal-American, I found only the NY Public Library in Manhattan had microfilm and you had to put in requests days in advance to get them retrieved from some Long Island vault!

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                • #23
                  My town of Dubuque, Iowa (approx. 60,000) has it's daily paper digitized back to the 1800s and is available free to anyone. I was able to easily solve a graveyard mystery I had been wondering about for a few years.
                  "Charging a man with murder here was like handing out speeding tickets at the Indy 500."- Capt. Willard, Apocolypse Now
                  "Ain't nuthin' like [being with a woman], 'cept maybe the Indy 500."- Bunny, Platoon
                  "To alcohol! The cause of- and solution to- all of life's problems."- Homer J. Simpson

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                  • #24
                    I watched the 1973 WWOS pole day coverage on the west coast (Portland OR), so it had been taped earlier by air time. Preceding the pole day coverage, Chris Schenkel came on the air (in the studio) and announced the death of Art Pollard (which I can still hear in my head as clear as a bell - it was quite a shock). There was a short clip of the car at speed on an earlier lap and then a partial view of the accident, but not the impact with the wall. A lot of the WWOS pole day and bump day coverage could still exist; a lot of WWOS episodes existed in the ABC vaults as recently as ten years ago, ESPN Classic was showing many of them.

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by Stick500 View Post
                      How in the hell do you have access to 1973 TV listings? Did you save all the TV Guides like Homer Simpson?
                      I'd answer, but everyone else pretty much figured it out.

                      I have a Newspapers.com account, and looked up the day's TV listings. They have the Star, the News, plus lots of others (like Cincinnati Enquirer, etc..), plus the Orlando Sentinel which is good for Daytona history.

                      Prior to that, like others, I'd spend countless hours at the library microfilm machines. Plus I have (or had) boxes and boxes of old newspapers. Much of which I got rid of when Newspapers.com was easier to work with.
                      Doctorindy.com

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                      • #26
                        I pay $150 a year for newspapers.com and about $70 a year for genealogybank.com. Good deals, both of them. But then I'm a reporter, so I can write it off as a business expense. I'd probably do it anyway.

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