photographs of Maracaibo taken from the air. Taken
in different eras, it's interesting to see the areas we were
so familiar with, and where we spent so much time, from this
perspective. Also interesting is the progression of changes
between the different Creole Camp/Creole Club
Bayne contributed this fabulous aerial-view photograph
of the Creole Camp, taken sometime during the mid 1930's.
A historical treasure, it was
originally thought to have been taken in 1940. But under
high magnification, it was noted that the houses have
porches, which did not exist after 1938 (see photo below
showing House 16), and a few 1930's-vintage automobiles
can be seen. Also, when this photo was taken, there
was no pool nor checkerboard-tiled dance floor in front
of the clubhouse.
". . . points to note
which 'younger' folks will recognize are:
3 Bachelor Quarters to the left of the camp with space
in front in which we held our movies until about 1950
when the projector house was moved top the tennis courts.
Behind the Batchyquarters are the original workshops
and Commissary as I recall.
Top centre are the Company Offices with tank on stilts
behind which were still there in the early 1950s.
To the extreme right is the Camp or Company Managers
two storied House. You can just see the shades over
the windows and the opulent gardens that were still
there in the 1950s. The house opposite the Manager's
is house 22, first in the row, where we lived in 1951
to 53. Below that is House 21, then 20 where we lived
from about 1947 to 1951. Opposite that is House 16 where
we lived (also opposite the club) from about 1940 to
1947 about the time of the photo.
In the centre is the club and tennis courts with the
garages in front of the courts. Its hard to make out
the pool but I know it's there as I have photos of me
in it as early as 1942."
(Click on this photo for a high-resolution
view measuring 1851 X 879 pixels (4769 Kb)
for detailed viewing. If you have a good graphics
program, simply right-click on the enlarged image
for a sub-menu to download it so that you can further
magnify it with even greater detail.)
Click on the thumbnail below for
a 1008 X 484 marked-up version of the image above
(164Kb), as originally sent to me by Oster Bayne.
This image, modified by Doug Becker, shows location
pointers to help identify prominent landmarks as well
as a compass rose to orient the viewer.
You can also click here
to download a 489kb higher-resolution zipped image
for viewing with your graphics program.
Note in this image that names marked
within parenthesis are 'future' sites; i.e., the name(s)
mentioned had not yet been constructed at the time
the photo was taken.
I invite further additions, corrections,
or enhancements to this modified view. My thanks to
Doug for his efforts.
aerial view of the Creole Camp area, which was found
and sent to me for inclusion here by Doug Becker,
is another historical treasure. It comes to us courtesy
of Phil Wolcott, a Creole geologist.
Phil lived in eastern & western Venezuela from
1938 to 1956, and again from 1963 to 1969. In between
those years, from 1957 to 1962, Phil lived in France.
He and his wife Mercedes now live in Marco Island,
is believed to have been taken sometime in the early
1950's. The autos that are visible on the streets
are from this era, and a fence can be seen around
the club. According to Doug, this fence went up sometime
between September 1949 and December 1950.
By the time
this photo was taken, the new Coromoto Hospital
had been built. The living quarters for hospital staff
can be seen to the left of the hospital. The club
pool & tennis courts can be plainly seen, as well
as the clubhouse, which by now had doubled in size
from the previous photo, renovated with a mirror-image
addition. Also, note the clear view of the movie screen
by the tennis courts. The dance floor in front of
the clubhouse is still a concrete slab as it had not
yet been tiled and enlarged with the checkerboard-patterned
tiles many of us later became so familiar with.
to Phil Wolcott for allowing us to post this photo
here, and to Doug Becker for making it possible by
discovering it and sending it on to me.
to download a 2,916 X 2,334 pixel (9.27" X 7.78")
high-resolution zipped image of this photograph for
magnified viewing. As this file is 3.037 MB, a high-speed
Internet connection is recommended.
image of the El Saldillo area of Maracaibo was donated
by Pedro López, of Documentación
Activa, Instituto de Investigaciones,
Facultad de Arquitectura y Diseño,
Universidad del Zulia, in Maracaibo.
The Gral. Rafel Urdaneta bridge can easily
be seen crossing the Lake in the background. Taken
to Pedro for allowing us to share it here.
aerial views of the Creole area were originally contributed
by Leonardo J. Carrillo S., of Maracaibo. All
of them came from a book produced by the Lago
Maracaibo Club entitled "Más
de 70 Años de História: Ayer, Hoy, y
Siempre Celebrando Tres Etapas de Evolución
y Desarrollo" ("More
Than 70 Years of History: Yesterday, Today, and Always
Celebrating Three Stages of Evolution & Development").
This highly interesting & informative account
of the history of the club can be seen by clicking
on the "LMC - MORE THAN 70 YEARS..."
tab on the Main Menu on the left.
grateful to Mr. Carrillo for providing these photographs
which show all of the many, extensive changes that
the Creole Camp area has undergone over the course
of the last 35 years.
exact year of this shot is unknown but it
appears to have been taken prior to 1985 as
the old clubhouse is still standing, as are
both of the old Bachelor Quarters buildings.
As the movie screen doesn't yet show any "wings"
on it, I'm guessing that it was taken in the
late 1950's or very early 1960's. It's somewhat
similar to the way I remember the area except
that I remember the screen with the "wings"
on it. So I knew it a number of years after
this shot was taken.
Carrillo advises that only one of the old
Bachelor Quarters buildings remains today,
and is presently the site of a European consulate
(previously it was the location of the German
School). The General Manager's compound is
now being used by A.Z.U.P.A.N.E., a humanitarian
association for special children. Where the
old main Creole office buildings
once stood there is now a small shopping center
called the "Mini Centro Virginia".
The exact date
of this following aerial view in not known
either except that it was taken sometime during
the latter part of the 1990's.
The most prominent
feature is, of course, the large movie screen.
The rebuilt clubhouse with the yellow roof
is clearly visible to the left of the screen,
extending well behind the roof. To the right
of the pool, between the pool & the tennis
courts, can be seen the new two-story gym/changing
rooms that were built. Even the large mango
tree between the dance floor and the pool
is visible. Note also the large homes that
were built behind the movie screen that replaced
the old camp homes, and the homes that now
stand immediately in front of the club entrance.
Mid-background is the Coromoto Hospital.
New apartment buildings can be seen further
back in the distance and beyond that, the
are additional photos taken in 2000
from the same book previously mentioned
de 70 Años de História:
Ayer, Hoy, y Siempre Celebrando Tres
Etapas de Evolución y Desarrollo",
sent to me by Marcos
& Elizabeth Salom, Maracuchos
now living in Madrid. Marcos was Chairman
of the Board of the Lago Maracaibo
Club from 1999 to 2001, and it
was under his tenure that this book
We're all extremely grateful to them
for the hard work they put into scanning
and sending these photographs to us.
This is not to mention all the hard
work he put into improving, maintaining,
and carrying on the history of the club
that all of us remember so fondly.
is another aerial view of the club taken
from the north, looking south. One can
see the housing buildup around the southern
and western edges of the club. The western
edge is the front of the club on the
right, where only a large, palm-shaded
lot once stood.
is an "elevated" view rather
than a true aerial view of the pool,
but it was so good I thought I'd include
it here. It offers a good look at the
construction of the side wings of the
movie screen, and also shows the red
& white checkered dance floor, exactly
as all of us remember it. If you look
closely on the right (narrow) edge of
the pool, you can see the jumping blocks
that were put in for swimming competitions.
This was where the diving boards once
stood, and my guess is that the decision
to install them was probably the main
reason the diving boards were taken
down. By this time, the pool had also
received a new interior lining, including
attractive cobalt-blue tile edging around
the top edges of the pool, best visible
in the photo below.
is another elevated view and it shows
how nicely the tennis courts have been
maintained over the years. The courts
had been modernized by changing their
surface and their colors, and the building
behind them was constructed, with a
gym upstairs and bathroom facilities
on the main floor.
this isn't an aerial view, or even
an "elevated" photo of the
pool. But it is a great shot
that offers an excellent view of the
competition jumping blocks at the
edge of the pool that I mentioned
low oblique aerial shot of the Hotel del Lago,
taken from immediately offshore over the lake, shows
the rear of the hotel in excellent detail. It also gives
a great view of southeastern city skyline. Taken in
1987, it comes from the front album cover of a promotional
LP entitled "En Maracaibo Encuentras...Hotel
del Lago" that was produced by Grupo