On the happy trails of Shorty, the Prairie Pals and Raw Hide, York County, Pa., entertainment icons

Valley View Park was a stage in Hellam Township, Pa., that drew Earl Scruggs, Johnny Cash and other country acts. Here, a York County Heritage Trust display in 2006 features a photo of the 101 Ranch Boys. The venue featured local talents like the boys.  Developers purchased the park in the 1980, and Jehovah Witnesses church is the featured occupant there today. (See additional photo below)  Also of interest: Roy Rogers took York County stage, but not alone.

Joshua Fincher is related to Shorty Fincher, longtime operator of entertainment venue Valley View Park in eastern York County.

He’s doing research on his relative, as the following email tells:

I found your blog post about Shorty Fincher and his Prairie Pals on the
York Blog.

I’ve been trying to do some research to find out more about Shorty and
Hamilton “Raw Hide” as Shorty is my father’s great uncle and Hamilton
his grand father.

I saw in the comments section of that post that you pointed (commenter on the past) Angela in the direction of (York County Heritage Trust’s) Lila Fourhman-Shaull; I will definitely be contacting her.  I was hoping you could also put me in contact with Angela as I’d love to share information/photos with her.

I’d also be very willing to share this with you in more detail once it
arrives in the mail.  I just won this on eBay today.

I emailed Angela asking her to get in contact with Joshua.

Valley View Park today is an interesting place. You go out to this remote locale, and you’d never think that hundreds of cars and thousands of folks gathered there for events.

If you have information on Shorty and Raw Hide, please comment below.

Also of interest

101 Ranch Boys play on in York County memories

The ‘Uncle Jack Singers,’ past performers at Valley View Park, were featured in the York County Heritage Trust exhibit. They’re seen in a 1935 photo.

About Jim McClure

Editor of the York Daily Record/Sunday News, ydr.com and its many digital products. Journalism/history blogger: yorktownsquare.com. Author or co-author of seven York County, Pa., history books.
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4 Responses to On the happy trails of Shorty, the Prairie Pals and Raw Hide, York County, Pa., entertainment icons

  1. Linda Sleeger-Williams says:

    I remember going to Valley View park on Sundays when I was a kid. I saw Marvin Rainwater there more than once. There were picnic tables and we used to take a picnic lunch with us, mostly fried chicken and potato salad and baked beans. I’m related to the Inners of Inners Amusements, and they had cotton candy, candy apples, and such for sale.

    I remember one time in particular that it rained cats n dogs, but mom and dad wouldn’t leave. We were soked clear thru, but when the entertainment finally got there, he came out on stage and said that if we waited all that time to hear him sing, then by God he was gonna give us a show. And he did. I was only about 4 or 5 years old, so I wasn’t really impressed. As I got older, I found pictures we had taken and what a surprise!!!! I had seen Hank Williams Sr. and he was great, (as great as a 4-5 year old could think, anyway). I wish I could see him now. What a memory.

  2. Linda Flinchbaugh says:

    I just ran across your article. I was going through my Mom’s old suitcase of stuff and she has an autograph book with names from the Prairie Pals and Sons of the Pioneers … even Roy Rogers. When she was a teenager they went to Valley View Park on Sundays … late 30’s and early 40’s. She said her mother would make fried chicken and the Prairie Pals would join them for a picnic. Her and her sisters would also visit them at the local radio station. She was telling me lots of stories, but I would not be able to keep all the stories and names straight. She is still living in east York … age 88. She had lots of pictures with Roy Rogers and Trigger, but unfortunately, most were lost in a fire. Can contact me via email if you would like to talk with her.

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