When Milton D. Martin’s Quiet Reading Room was anything but quiet

library

An audience overflowed from Martin Library’s Silent Reading Room in a Fixing York forum this week. The library’s original benefactor Milton D. Martin, in the portrait, top center, looks on. Also of interest: The Who’s Who that have led the Martin Library Board of Directors.

Someone noted to the crowd at Martin Library that they were in the Quiet Reading Room. But the place was anything but quiet.

Indeed, the room was filled with a productive buzz and useful discourse in the two-hour Fixing York session last week.

Fixing York is a York Daily Record/Sunday News initiative that works to empower people to ID what works and needs work in the city and beyond. Citizens can then learn from things that are working and offer solutions for those that don’t.

Perhaps it was fitting that Martin Library, which will reach its 80th anniversary on Halloween night, played host for the evening.

A portrait of Milton D. Martin, whose bequest originally funded the library, oversaw the proceedings. That was appropriate because Martin’s life and legacy offer lessons that apply to York today.

 

Continue reading

Posted in Archives, all posts, Events, Explanations/controversy, For photo fans, Local journalism & Web, Local landmarks, Wheels of York | Tagged , , , , , | Comments Off on When Milton D. Martin’s Quiet Reading Room was anything but quiet

Award-winning Manchester Township Historical Property Review: ‘This stately house was the home of Dr. Adam Eisenhart’

church
This is the 1800s home of Dr. Adam Eisenhart, now part of the Stillmeadow Church of the Nazarene’s campus in Manchester Township, Pa. It’s among scores of properties on the Manchester Township Historical Society’s Historical Property Review. A digital file on the building lists the property of high historical value. ‘According to census data and genealogy research, the 1860 owner was Dr. Adam Eisenhart, 1811-1872. His wife was Leah Ferry (or Ferree), 1820-1882,’ the property review states. The review also gave this summary: ‘This stately house was the home of Dr. Adam Eisenhart.’  The historical society’s review consists of a mapped, searchable database of such historical structures. See second photo, courtesy of Scott Mingus, below. Also of interest: Dallastown Area Historical Society does right thing: Promoting borough history on Web, too.

Every year, the York County Heritage Trust recognizes people who have made special contributions toward the ‘preservation, interpretation, or promotion of the history of York County.’

One of the awards this year went to the Manchester Township Historical Society in recognition for its work on its Historic Places Register.

It’s a rich and deep and easily accessible registry of historically significant buildings in that township. Wonderful work.

Two things to say about this. It’s an example of how the local history enterprise is rushing to embrace the digital world. Local history is made for that, with searchable databases and the ability to access information from afar.

Manchester Township Historical Society’s activities do not center around a museum or other expensive-to-keep-going buildings, so it can focus its energy on digital audiences.

Secondly, this gives an opportunity for readers to see how colorfully and wonderfully and passionately Steve Feldmann, a banker and historian, introduces winners in this annual recognition.

So, here is Steve’s introduction of the Manchester Township Historical Society’s award: Continue reading

Posted in Archives, all posts, Civil War, Explanations/controversy, Farms, fields & mills, For photo fans, Genealogy/research, Local journalism & Web, Local landmarks, Longtime York families, People, Small-town life, Unsung/obscure sites, War | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

This York, Pa., building, mysterious for years, now is used as a crematorium

smoke
This York County, Pa., building and its smokestack have brought up all kinds of stories, often spooky, over the years. One persistent rumor was that it was used to burn bodies. The odd thing is that it’s now used as a crematorium. So where does this still mysterious building stand? Btw, what was its original use? Answer. Also of interest: Check out scores of additional quizzes and fun tests.

Check out 5 more History Mystery photo quizzes below. (Click on the date if the photo does not appear). Continue reading

Posted in Archives, all posts, Explanations/controversy, For photo fans, Local journalism & Web, Local landmarks, Medical/health stuff, Quizzes & (fun) tests, Susquehanna, waterways, Unsung/obscure sites | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on This York, Pa., building, mysterious for years, now is used as a crematorium

The Susquehanna’s riverbed: What can you do with a face like that?

Linked in/Neat stuff: Cameron Mitchell film shown as fundraiser/A week of historic anniversaries
jayplotkin
The York, Pa., Daily Record’s Jason Plotkin’s photos from above the Norman Wood Bridge are telling for several reasons. With a Susquehanna River bed like that, it’s obvious why the river over the centuries could not be navigated – or at least navigated by flatboats only in certain rainy seasons. It’s also why canals had to be put in on both sides of the river so that farmers and merchants could get their goods to market on the Chesapeake Bay. From above, other perspectives about the one-mile-wide river come to mind. It’s indeed wide, and formed a barrier that help define York County, Pa., giving much of it a north/south orientation for long periods of its history. It was always hard to get across the river – and the crack in the Norman Wood Bridge that is causing wide detours north and south underscores that hasn’t changed. Also of interest: The Norman Wood Bridge at sunrise.

jayplotkin1
But there was a lot you could do on the Susquehanna. Just north of this southeastern York County, Pa., bridge, the Holtwood Dam crosses the river. Just south, the Peach Bottom nuclear power plant sits along the Susquehanna. For years, man has found the Susquehanna to be useful for power generation, as a place to dump untreated and treated sewage, outdoor fun and a host of other things. It’s been useful and versatile as well as beautiful. Also: Who was Norman Wood?

Other neat stuff from all over … .
 +++

Yorker Terry Downs previewed an interest week – a fascinating week in his words – in York County, Pa.

He wrote this as a letter to the editor under the headline ‘A week of fascination in YORK’:

This coming week heralds many high water marks for our town. We have much to laud, and exhilarating people connecting dots to make things brighter and visible. The slate includes –

Hotel Yorktowne celebrates 90 years of being York’s premier hostelry. This “modern hotel” of the Roaring ‘20s brought York into a new sphere of welcoming guests. And it has hosted many prominent celebrities. But the real star of the Desk is its Manager, Rick Cunningham. Under Rick’s watch, it has seen highs and lows, and with some aspects of its present murky in viewport, it likely will rebloom to a supreme White Rose icon as it enters its next decade. Kudos Rick and staff of Yorktowne Hotel!

Zion United Church of Christ commemorates its location from where Royal Square is taking what we knew as Woolworth’s – and in 1914 branched out at Kurtz Addition near Penn Common, building a magnificent edifice as a tribute to God and its longstanding heritage – being the second oldest church in York proper. Congratulations! Special program occurs Sunday October 18th.

And no lesser a feat –, First St. John’s Evangelical Lutheran Church, 140 West King St also holds a milestone and a distinction. Parting from the mother church Christ Lutheran in the 1800’s, it strived to retain German roots which were York’s origin. At the 140th Anniversary of its facility, it still conducts special services in German, keeping its basis intact. And – it was the first commission of young York architect John Augustus Dempwolf – being dedicated October 1875. Special program Sunday afternoon October 18th also cherishes this major milestone.

York is the benevolent haven of beauty, its churches, public buildings and homes. As the churches boast the works of York artisan John Horace Rudy, the Historic York – Rudy Collective Tour of J. Horace Rudy’s prolific pieces in 11 places around York City takes place Saturday October 17th in the afternoon. An exhibit is now on display at Rudy Collective’s Gallery, 25 East Philadelphia St. Tour ticket sales donations help Rudy Collective and Historic York continue to do work promoting York’s art and architecture. Information accessible on Facebook and EventBrite.

On the cusp of York’s 275th Founding date next year – we as citizens have much to embrace.

+++

Honoring Cameron Mitchell: Fundraising is continuing to fund a scholarship in the name of the movie star who grew up in York County. The Mitchell movie ‘All Mine to Give’ will be shown at 7 p.m., at Bethlehem Steltz Reformed Church, 5890 Steltz Road, Glen Rock, Pa. Phone: 717-235-1523.

+++

History Mystery: Can you name this place?

History Mystery: That grassy area beyond the stone bank of the Codorus Bank up to – and around – the Keystone Color…

Posted by York Daily Record/Sunday News on Friday, October 9, 2015

Posted in Archives, all posts, Art & artists, Events, Explanations/controversy, For photo fans, J. Horace Rudy, Linked in/neat stuff, Local journalism & Web, Local landmarks, Nostalgia & memories, People, Susquehanna, waterways, Unsung/obscure sites, York County aerial photos | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on The Susquehanna’s riverbed: What can you do with a face like that?

Gen. Jacob L. Devers’ famous hero’s ride came in R. W. Bowman’s Cadillac

deverscad

Gen. Jacob L. Devers receives a hero’s welcome back after leading two Allied armies in Europe in World War II. A York resident believes the Cadillac he is riding in was owned by his grandfather. This photo is part of the extensive Devers collection at the York County Heritage Trust. Also of interest:  Gen. Jacob Loucks Devers as a post-war celebrity: ‘I was very excited and proud to get his autograph.

YorkTownSquare.com readers have many ways to deliver mail and tips to me – Facebook, Twitter, comments on this blog, email.

I love receiving and reading the mail and often share it with readers here.

Most come digitally, such as the recent one from York resident Mike Bowman. After reading my York Sunday News column about York’s Gen. Jacob Loucks Devers, he wrote (excerpted here):

Continue reading

Posted in Archives, all posts, Events, Explanations/controversy, For photo fans, Local journalism & Web, Mail bag, War, Wheels of York, World War II, York celebrities, York High achievers | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Gen. Jacob L. Devers’ famous hero’s ride came in R. W. Bowman’s Cadillac

65 years in York, Pa.: Three generations of Hayman photographers have rolled from film to digital

Hayman Studio Staff circa 1977. Submitted
Pros at Hayman Studio mug for the camera at the North York commercial photographer’s quarter-century mark in the late 1970s. The third-generation firm of photographers is celebrating its 65th anniversary this year. Also of interest: Check out this view of founder Jim Hayman Jr. at the firm’s 60th birthday.

Hayman Studio started in 1950 with Jim Hayman Jr. capturing a little of everything – even coroner photos – on film.

It continues today in its third generation with digital images and video work mostly for commercial customers.

Continue reading

Posted in Archives, all posts, Art & artists, Explanations/controversy, For photo fans, Local journalism & Web, Longtime York families, Mail bag, Notable images, People, Wheels of York | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

York’s rock ‘n’ market house: When Central Market becomes a musical venue

Linked in/Neat stuff: A fitting tribute to James Getty/Difficult World War II days
kh

This is a fun type of adaptive reuse. Take a 125-year-old market house and turn it into a concert venue. Actually, Central Market was used from its earliest years as a meeting place – even a place for large conventions. Think about it. Where could you go in the late 1800s if you needed a place for a large audience. Churches perhaps. Or covered markethouses such as those like the venerable Central Market. Kable House Presents, a concert promoter, has a series of musical acts coming to the market this fall. Actually, this is not just fun adaptive reuse, but smart adaptive reuse, getting a new generation of folks into the historic market house. Check out the schedule: What to expect from a Kable House show.  Also of interest: More than 5,000 crowded Central Market in York for revival services in 19th century.

Other neat, unrelated stuff from all over … .  
Continue reading

Posted in Archives, all posts, Explanations/controversy, For photo fans, Local journalism & Web, Local landmarks, War, World War II | Tagged , , , , , , | Comments Off on York’s rock ‘n’ market house: When Central Market becomes a musical venue

One man’s opinion about popular opinion in York, Pa., in 1892: ‘Let well enough alone’

New "Gazette" article from February 6, 1892. George S. Schmidt penned this essay for the York Gazette on Feb. 6, 1892, urging York, Pa., residents to wake up and inhale the spirit of progress, as one of the city’s newspapers was then doing. Industrialist A.B. Farquhar was at the helm of The Gazette, breathing new energy into the publication, founded as the German-language Die York Gazette in 1796 and the English-language York Gazette in 1815. Also of interest: Andrew Carnegie to York’s A.B. Farquhar: ‘… I am ready to go out and enjoy myself.’

 

 

Leading businessman George S. Schmidt liked the way York was heading in 1892 – five years after it had become a city.

But he felt some folks had held too firmly to the past for decades and, in fact, were still doing so.

” ‘Let well enough alone’ was a motto which we devotedly followed for a hundred years and which might well have been engraven on our borough seal,” he wrote in the daily York Gazette on Feb. 6, 1892.

He didn’t stop there.

“We lived a life as placid and contented as it was narrow and biogoted,” he wrote. “and blindly sacrificed on the altar of a mistaken conservatism every tendency toward municipal advancement.”

Whew!

He would have been right at home in the Fixing York Facebook Group, where some people are known to be outspoken.

Continue reading

Posted in A.B. Farquhar, All politics is local, Archives, all posts, Events, Explanations/controversy, For photo fans, Local journalism & Web, Local landmarks, Mail bag, York City neighborhoods | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Top York Town Square blog posts: Check out this best-hit list in September 2015

lafayette

Stories and photos about the Lafayette Club, for years the bastion of York’s elite, are always popular with readers. It’s their opportunity to see inside this mansion, a men’s-only place for much of its long history that ended in 2012. Last month, news that York College of Pennsylvania had acquired the old mansion to use as a Center for Community Engagement brought the former club back into the news. And it scored 10th on the most-viewed list on YorkTownSquare.com in September. Also of interest: Most popular York Town Square blog posts: Check out this top 10 list in August 2015.

Check out the rest of the Top 10 list – and more Lafayette Club photographs from YDR’s archives – below … .

Continue reading

Posted in Archives, all posts, Explanations/controversy, For photo fans, Local journalism & Web, Local landmarks, Unsung/obscure sites | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Top York Town Square blog posts: Check out this best-hit list in September 2015

York Pa. building reuse: You can’t tell the value of a building by the way it looks

warehouse
Interesting how this works: A building that looks like a warehouse – it was a warehouse – can win awards, serve as a hub for entrepreneurship, create jobs as an incubator and offer a place for young people to achieve. That’s the value of rehabbing old buildings. Now the question: Can you locate this old York, Pa., building? What was its use for most of its life? Answer. Also of interest: Check out these quizzes and (fun) tests.

Check out these 6 additional photo quizzes! (If the photos don’t load, click on the dates). Continue reading

Posted in Archives, all posts, Explanations/controversy, For photo fans, Local journalism & Web, Local landmarks, School days, Unsung/obscure sites, YorkEats: Hogmaw & such | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on York Pa. building reuse: You can’t tell the value of a building by the way it looks