Historic Germantown, Philadelphia
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November 1-15, 2009

where can I find this picture of Miss Catherine that is mentioned here by Maryalice Brennan?? Would love to see it. Joe Taylor
joe taylor [11-14-2009]

GERMANTOWN - November 13, 2009 (WPVI) -- Police are investigating a fatal shooting in Philadelphia's Germantown section. The shooting happened at Wayne and Logan Avnues shortly before 7:00 p.m. Friday. Police found a man in his 20s with a gunshot wound to the head
Hollow Guy [11-14-2009]

Just one more thing I want to say Gerry and I will not stoop to your level ever again. You are taking this so personal I bet your last name begins with "Mc". It's probably Gerald Mc......
anthonyg [11-14-2009]

This site is becoming a real battleground and it is a shame that it is drifting away from it's real purpose. If people don't agree they can state that in a much more civil matter instead of acting like an idiot. I won't be coming back on here very often. This is the exact same reason why I left before.
anthonyg [11-14-2009]

Yes Rosmarie, Miss Catherine did remind us of Granny.
anthonyg [11-14-2009]

Hey Gerry you finally came out from under your rock. Lynne was right in correcting you. The definition of mettle is"quality of temperament and spirit and courage." Get a dictionary. You did use the wrong word. Yes I will stand by what I wrote. That is exactly what happened. I am not complaining, just stating facts. You know my mother lived right across the st from St. Vincent's but she was not able to attend that school because of her ethnic background. She had to walk blocks to get to Holy Rosary. Only those of Irish descent were able to attend that school. And that is exactly the way the student got back into CD. I am proud to be a graduate of Germantown High. I don't have to throw stones at people like you do to get my point across. People like you are one of the reasons I stopped visiting this site. I wasn't even going to until someone gave me a heads up on your lunatic rants again. You are the one that needs to get a life.
anthonyg [11-14-2009]

To Pat Sirianni, I think i remember you. did you and your sister go to any of these schools?
tony braspennincx, im am 55 years of age went to school at H,h.Housten-leeds and germantown high [11-14-2009]

Paul Borian[Bor]:There has been a lot of commentary about Catholic Education in recent blogs and you posited a rhetorical question about life at LaSalle and The Prep back in the day.The Jesuits were founded by Ignatius De Loyola-a military general. The learning environment was very structured and the teachers could be intimidating and daunting-they were bright. Nobody could compare to Knobby Walsh and Black John from North. You met many of my friends from The Prep including Lou Pauzano and Rev. George Bur S.J. with whom I had lunch at Rembrandt's. Lou is a reserved gentleman but he encouraged me to make a financial contribution to The Prep-his nickname is "The Arm".At the Prep,Lou was in a class[1-D] across from me[1C] and his classmate[Big Bill DeLong] was acting up and my teacher a Jesuit by the name of Tom Pyne runs across the corridor and decks the kid. Tom Pyne was a former Navy-boxer and 6 ft-3 in. I was friendly with a guy by the name of Matt McCloskey, and one day,Macho Tom Pyne calls on me and I froze. He snarls at me and tells me to answer the question. Matt who sat in front of me,whispers the answer. Tom Pyne runs down the row and I thought that he was going to pick me up and hang me up on the coat-rack and I would resemble the Crucifix on the wall. He picks up Matt in his beautiful Harris-Tweed and yells at him to never give out answers to an unprepared student. Both of us,should have been excused to go to the bathroom if you know what I mean.Matt and I rarely talked after that encounter. We are friends and he came to Ludmila's Funeral.In that same clas,Pat Sweeney[East Germantown] sat to my left and he was not particularly fond of Tom Pyne.After we finished Freshman Year,we had a class picnic at The Jersey Shore. We were playing touch-football on the beach and Tom Pyne's team kicks off to us. Tom P. puts a Gino Marchetti move on Pat Sweeney-Pat staggered and Pyne has a smirk on his face. I blind side him with a clip to the knees and he falls to the sand. He was shocked and we were cusing each-other under our breath. I learned that maneuver from playing football at the Hollow. Rowland[Mole] Adamoli would try to block The Goo with that type of move. This guy was a good teacher and he left The Jesuits to marry a pretty young-thing. You went to Germantown High and also Catholic Colleges. In the future,I would like to comment on your Alma-Mater on High Street.
JBS[Schmitty] [11-14-2009]

To Gerry: I don't know your generation, but in mine (50s, 60s), there was a lot of Anti-Italian prejudice even among the clergy. This was discussed some time back on this site when we were blogging about the Monsignor at St. Francis and his overt prejudice. Also, I mentioned that my parish in Overbrook tried to counter this prejudice with discussions during class praising the culture, music and art of Italy. So don't say this didn't happen - it was very prevalent back in the day and is a blot on the Catholic Church for permitting it.
Rosemarie Rinaldi [11-14-2009]

Gerry..Whats your problem? All you want to do is start a fight over nothing. You act like a kid in the playground saying my school is better than yours. I went to GHS before CD was opened so how does that read on your smart meter, since you seem to be a know it all. I think you should be the one to get a life.
rich [11-14-2009]

Wow Gerry, that was a post that required a shot of bourbon afterwards! Sort of reminded of this guy that posts on the CD message board on Classmates who insults and antagonizes everyone and everything, but I don’t think that wasn’t your intent there. While I would have to agree with you that CD is and was a better school, than Germantown HS, you really need to look at time periods. Germantown HS was a fine school with strict academic and disciplinary standards through the 50s, into the 60s. It’s been downhill since and an absolute mess today. Gratz’s decline probably started sooner. Olney HS was a wonderful school into the 70s, but its decline was fierce and fast and is one of the most violent and under-performing HS’s in the city today. Same with Roxborough HS, a wonderful HS going into the 80s, a mess today, but not as bad as Germantown, Olney or Gratz. Even CD isn’t immune to the changing of the times. A couple years ago, I saw videos on YouTube taken by a CD student, of CD students. I was shocked at the language, the grammar, the unruliness ­ one on the bus stop, another in the school yard where you could see teachers, so all was going on within their earshot. That was an eye-opener for this CD alum, because that was not how I remember CD in my time (1970s). And, the correcting of grammar on a blog like this is ridiculous. We all type fast and send it with little or no review. I’ve done quite a few Urkles after sending a post, “Did I write that????”…. It ’s accepted…. With Anthony G’s accusation, it could have happened as he told it. The religious were a different breed back in the day, to say the least. It was not unusual for the religious back then to treat folks differently. Maybe they didn’t like your look, your smirk, your attitude, a family member, whatever. Unless you were there and know the facts firsthand, even if what you hear in a post doesn't quite seem right, just let it go….
Dennis McGlinchey, Born and raised in East Germantown [11-14-2009]

Gerry....This is in response to your 11/12 post;Webb site stress can wreck your immune system,increase your blood pressure,and speed up aging.LOOSEN UP!..........P.S. I graduated from Germantown High School in 1956.Received a good education,made many friends,had a great social life,and many,many fond memories.The school and the neighborhood was as safe as any other Philly neighborhood.........Paul Borian
Paul Borian [11-14-2009]

Gerry, you do not need to attempt arrogance...you are arrogant! This wonderful site is not here for you to prove your fantasized superiority. The blogs are not written for you to grade. Surely you are bright enough to read between the misspellings and enjoy the content of the blogs. I must point out though, that most of the misspellings are written by parochial school graduates. lol But, so what? Who cares, really? High school is behind us and we're trying to just share memories here. Chill, Jerry...
anonymous [11-14-2009]

Someone asked me about Noble Tranzillie's Water Ice in Gtown. My Brother use to serve water ice/pretzels in front of Sylvie's Steak House at Haines and Belfield in the 60s. Is he still in business?
Ed, Chester, VA [11-14-2009]

Comment about what Gerry had to write about GHS and Catholic high schools I was shocked at what you wrote. Many of my high school friends were from public schools and catholic schools. YOU seem to forget that not everyone is Catholic and attended Catholic high school. Sure there were some outcasts who were in public high school AND there were some who could not stand the regimentation of catholic high school. You were lucky your parents could afford to send you to Catholic High School BUT did YOU really receive a CHRISTIAN education? To my high school friends, Ernie Dawe, Billy Van Horn, Monty Van Horn, Bobby Edwards, Tommy Zimmerman, Lee Harrison and many other "public" high school pals I salute you, students of public high schools.
Arlene McMahon [11-14-2009]

Lynne, Thank you for a true picture of how we got along with our friends regardless of what school we went to. I don't remember it being an issue then, and it certainly shouldn't be an issue now at our age. I also wanted to let you know that "mettle" is indeed a word. In my place of business we use several online dictionaries (Merriam Webster, The Free Dictionary, Business-Words). It is listed in all of them. Anthony G. You also have the right to voice what you truly believe to be fact. This is your opinion and you are certainly entitled to it without it being refuted by someone who was not there. I have no idea if you're right or wrong, but it's not my place to decide what the situation was. Gerry, In the middle of your ranting response you say "Please do not correct anyone for misspelling or grammar. It does not show you are at all educated." I believe this entire spelling/grammar fiasco started with you correcting Anthony G. for his misuse of the word principal. You seem very angry at anyone with a difference of opinion. I don't think this forum is the place to get overly critical of others. I hope we can let this go and get back to the interesting and just plain funny things that happened to us growing up in G-Town. I pray that your spirituality will help you to speak to people with less venom in your heart.
anonymous [11-14-2009]

Yes, everything Bob Teranova posted concerning mini strokes is right on the money. High blood pressure is labeled as the "silent killer", as it can strike without warning. Controlling it is quite simple, and can be done with medication, proper diet and exercise, not to mention taking the aspirin. Everyone should have their blood pressure checked frequently, especially those carrying a few extra pounds, even if its at one of those machines found at most drug stores.
John Fleming, Tampa Bay, Florida [11-14-2009]

jbs.Spring Lake is a beautiful place to meet for lunch. I just need a heads up so i can arrange my work schedule. I love having small GTN reunions. This Saturday Bodie Howard's daughter Erin got married and Dave Glancy, Tom Lynch. Charlie Durkin and Kevin/denny McCarthy as well as Mizzie were at our table.I laughed my ass off all night. Bodie was very tippsy and funny.I have not seen him in that state for 20 years! Do you know that Louie Pauzano was in my brother George's class at St. Mike's??His family were close friends of my parents and lived directly across the street from Lou's pharmacy. I recall that Lou was one of the first people to buy property in Queen's Village before the boom and yuppie invasion in the 60's or 70's. I was closer to his brother Al who as we all know ducked the bullet recently with a liver transplant. Thank God. Your loyality to the St. Joe's/ Jesuit tradition is very admirable.Keep in touch if you are planning a lunch and I'll try to attend.Take care. Bob Terranova
bob terranova, lbi,nj [11-14-2009]

Pat, that must have been on the other side of Morton st. I didn't venture down there often.
John DiRenzo [11-14-2009]

WOW, I can't imagine what kind of response "Anthony G." is going to give to Gerry....after reading his recent comments re: CD. Vs. GHS.. Anon-FEM
anon [11-14-2009]

Is germantown now a combat zone. Why are all the reunions held elsewhere. When I lived there it was fun all the time. Looking at the lights at connie mack stadium from atop of Fern Hill park. Even swimming back the creek near Walnut Lane and Johnson st. Going down the ave. going to vernon fair. not even to mention becoming the greatest basketball and soccer player at the Boy s Club. going sleding on tommie s hill. also going on boys day swimming at Waterview. and also swimming at the Boy s club. Al,so to mention a few places Duva s,Fitler school,the I C carnival, the fair at St Francis,the famous Pulaski Back Sox Baseball team, also Cowtown, P and M, Bluebell,the Hollow and Big Bob, all the movie houses, the Walton, Orpheun, Rialto, Band Box, New Lyric. Let s all go back and do it again
Steve Donohoe, 61 Germantown all the way [11-14-2009]

hi mary alice i was one of the lucky ones but my older sister was not ... miss katherine would pick on her constantly and even told her she was not allowed to bother with our cousins whom we lived with and miss katherine knew this. one day miss katherine actually slapped my sister in the face because she was playing with our cousin in the school yard during recess .... my sister passed away the following year and i suppose miss katherines guilt over what she put my poor sister through ... made her go to the other extreme with me even going so far as buying me pretzels and juice or chocolate milk and allowing me to get away with a lot. she did tell our mother that she was sorry for being so hard on my sister but she felt that my cousins were bad kids (can you believe that) and was only trying to help my sister from becoming like them ... geez ! rosemarie
rosemarie hite malageri [11-14-2009]

Hey Gerry, your remarks about CD being better than GHS reminds me of when we were little kids and we'd say that my father can beat up your father. Let's face it, it's what you put into it, that you get out of it. Period!
Educator, GHS vs CD [11-14-2009]

I was born on Magnolia ave in 1952. Then when I was 4 years old, we moved to Stafford st. benind the Knights of Columbus.Lived there until I was 14 then moved to the far northeast and went to school at Ryan and Washington. Went to college at the Boston Architectural Center.
John DiRenzo [11-12-2009]

we lived on mechanic st. from 1956 to 1961 next to a junk yard in a single house.we rented.it was a great place to grow up.
pat sirianni, 57 living in nw phila. whent to holy rosery [11-12-2009]

Bob Teranova: I want to thank you for the astute medical advice which I and baby boomers on this site can utilize. My sister Joan just had a Mini-stroke and is recovering. I will pass your comments to your former colleague. I liked your blog about Joe Quenan,the great satirist and writer who went to my Alma Mater[St. Joe]. Your friends,Joe DeAngelo,Dave Glancey,Frank[All very literate and superb writers]-all graduates of that excellent Jesuit Institution. Tomorrow,I am having lunch with Rev. George Bur S.J. and Lou Pauzano-my former Prep classmates. I was fortunate to attend this great Catholic Institution and have so many Prep friends-loyal and real. It pained me to hear these terrible stories emanating from your old Alma Mater[North]. My older brother[Cactus Jack] went to North[57] and had a bad altercation with Knobby Walsh. My Irish mother saved him from getting expelled-my brother always spoke with a forked-tongue and had a wise-guy grin. He knew some really tough guys and he thoght some of the teachers at North were too macho and were all talk. Like Larry Rinaldi,he liked Pete P.,the big Football player. I know that there were some great teachers at North-your friends did well there. Bob DeAngelo made some comments which provoked some interesting reactions. I wonder how Bob's brothers are doing-Joe and Tony. It would be great to get together with the DeAngelo Brothers or some of your friends from Fernhill. I see that Tom Cusack[the dancing machine] is now blogging on this site and I am still buddies with Pat McIlhinney after a few years. I like to hang out in The Spring Lake area which is equi-distant from Princeton and LBI-we do'nt have to talk about religion.
JBS [11-12-2009]

Lynne, I, and other graduates of CDHS, would all agree that CD was a superior school to Germantown HS . Most from Germantown know it was superior and that is a fact. GHS was, after all, the dumping ground for students de-selected from the non-public schools. All social researchers would say schools differ widely in their value and achievement results. I know a friend who taught at GHS and he was mugged not once, but twice, going to his car after school by students at the high school. We know this because they were arrested and found guilty. I personally witnessed out of control fights after GHS let out on Germantown Ave. I do not think your views are credible-ask graduates here. Second, Lynne, the critique of "metal" is invalid. According to the Oxford English Dictionary (the official dictionary of the English language). There is no word that you infuse into your correction as “mettle”. I assume you speak English? Get a life-This is also in response to the 'Female graduate of the Academy'. But you are all missing the substantive point in my critique. It is that Anthony G. charged "discrimination" towards not only a priest-but the head of the high school. A very serious accusation which he passes as having acceptance by readers on this site . I strongly disagree. He believes he was not allowed back to school after he screwed up just because his name ends in a vowel- this is his stupid explanation. I do not buy it; and he, like many other "failures", is searching for a rationalization of his poor behavior. He must have done something bad-and he admits he did-so why is he complaining? Because some "Mc" got back in he says! Please do not correct anyone for misspelling or grammar. It does not show you are at all educated. Come on bloggers: which school was best CD or GHS? That question needs little reflection in my view-it is like comparing Simon Gratz High with Saint Joe's Prep or Central High. No contest. LOL! I am not trying to be insensitive or arrogant but when some acknowledged "failure" accuses my principal of violating his 14th Amendment rights I get interested and inquisitive. Anthong G., you shamed your family and you were treated accordingly-do not try to revision that history by blaming the churchmen who tolerated your abuses. Be a man and accept you were wrong. After 50 years you are sadly full of anger when you were clearly wrong. Some advice…there is redemption in acknowledging your wrongs and forgiving those who you feel wronged you. And yes, I am a spiritual man.
Gerry [11-12-2009]

To all my fellow Vets, Happy Veterns Day to you and have a beer today for the guys who didn't make it back.
Dave Byrne [11-12-2009]

Bonnie, thinking of your Dad & all the water ice we bought from him. Is that true that Ralph passed on?? What a GREAT place to grow up!
Joe Melchiorre, 62 years young, live in Phoenixville, PA [11-12-2009]

OMG Rosemarie, I love the picture of Miss Catherine as Granny. ROTFLMAO. I really, really, disliked her. The first day I walked into her class, she started to berate me because of my brother. She was extremely cruel to him. Made him knell in the back of the class for an entire day because he did not perform to her expectations. As an adult we learned that my brother was dyslexic and had ADD. She thought he wasn't trying hard enough. Anyhow she was already winding up to get on me before she knew anything about me as a student. Luckily I was a fairly good student but the whole year she would make derogatory remarks about my brother. Fortunately Erda did not have her. Maryalice
Maryalice Armstrong Brennan, Still in G'town [11-12-2009]

i would like to hear from anyone who lived on magnolia ave., mechanic st., high st and /or haines in the 50's.
DREAMER [11-11-2009]

jbs. thanks for what i took as an invite for lunch.I would love to participate in the discussion but doubt that i could make it during the week. I'll just share this with you and you can pass it on to all our members of the GTN family of aging baby boomers.To reduce the risk of stroke we need strict control of high blood pressure, diabetes, cholesterol and other risk factors liking smoking and drinking excessively,also exercise and take aspirin 81mg or 325mg. that's it. the rest is up to our genes.take care bruce. Bob terranova
bob terranova, lbi,nj [11-11-2009]

anthony g correct me if im wrong ...but i just had an image of miss katherine and who i think she reminds me of ... oh my gosh im sorry but she reminds me of granny on the beverly hill billies ... just a little ! rosemarie
rosemarie hite malageri [11-11-2009]

Rosemarie hite Malageri: I have not been into work for one wk, now. Out with a leg injury. Just returned today. I did not make reservations, but will call. I don't think that many people are coming, last count I only had about five. No one has let me know, except for (some of your friends,) which is great. If I can walk, I'll be there, but if I am limping, due to this injury...I'll let you know. I sprained my leg muscle...doing something dumb..now I have to pay the price, like the sports guys do. ha ha Hope to see you there on sun. at 1:30 for lunch..even if it is just 'us'. ha
L.Fontana, Montgomeryville, Pa. [11-11-2009]

Sally Moore Quinlan: I am extremely upset at your comments directed towards me.I would NEVER 'trash' anyone. I loved many of the nuns who taught me in both grade school and High School. You used both my name and my school on this site to 'vent' at me. Now, I understand why people sign on here as 'Anon.' I am so very annoyed I can't even find the right words to express my anger right now. You also went onto my work site and told me that you wrote this...please do NOT do that, again. thank you. I received a terrific education from some of the harsh nuns, they were only like that so that you would, in fact, "LEARN" / and not just breeze through school. The word 'trash' is insulting to me, personally, when connected to a verbal onslaught..re-read what I wrote and you may understand what I was trying to convey. Don't think I will write anything here for awhile, now I know how Anthony G. may feel. Linda "F"./P>S> 'Miss Sally" I think you may have sat next to me in choir, when I was in my Freshman Yr., you were in your Senior Yr. Sr. Anne DeLourdes taught that class.
L.Fontana, Montgomeryville,Pa. [11-11-2009]

anthony g it doesnt sound to me like it mattered whether you kept your mouth shut or not since you lived next door to the convent! you my friend couldnt win for losing ha! rosemarie
rosemarie hite malageri [11-11-2009]

There are a few St. Francis of Assisi alums (class of '71 and '72) getting together this Sunday at Kildare's in King of Prussia at 1:00. If interested call me at (484) 682-9850 or e-mail at mtbuchanan@comcast.net or just drop by. Mike.
Mike Buchanan, Kennett Township, PA [11-11-2009]

linda fantana looking forward to sunday ... did you make a reservation and is it in your name or "germantowners" and if you have heard from people do you have an idea of how many of us there will be ... ha hope to see you and many others as well ....rosemarie
rosemarie hite malageri [11-10-2009]

Dan Hartnett: Set a date for lunch at the Porterhouse in LaHaska across from Peddler's Village.Possibly,some of the old-heads might show up. I will have to read-up on Aquinas and St. Augustine to to be able to dialogue with you about theological and profound topics. Bob Teranova should join us-we can help him philosophically and he can educate us on avoiding a TIA[mini-stroke]. Dan! You graduated from Germantown but it is a tragedy what is happening to North and CD. Many great bloggers graduated from those 2 aforementioned Catholic Institutions.
JBS [11-10-2009]

And Rosemarie that is exactly how it was. When you got in trouble in school you never went home and told your mother or father because you know they would have punished you more and told you, "you probably deserved it." I kept my mouth shut.
anthonyg [11-10-2009]

Very well put Lynne. You really laid it all out to Gerry.
anthonyg [11-10-2009]

I received wonderful education from the public school system.
anonymous [11-10-2009]

JBS-Good to hear from you after your brief hiatus, reading items you have done in the past I knew you like to travel so I just figured that you were on a brief trip. This web site is very fortunate to have the wealth of information that you possess, you are the spark for many of us readers. Funny that you asked about my thoughts on the Phila. sport teams because about six weeks ago I was talking to someone here and for no reason I just said that the Phillies will be in the world series--there was no thinking on my part just the mouth going faster than the mind, it was just that local pride coming forth---little did I know that they would be there. I hope the next time I get up there I will be able to join you and Dave Byrne for a drink at your favorite place and talk about these events. I was a student for three years at North and then my final year at Germantown HS because I felt that North was too far to send the students of St Francis. At the time I did a little study of the distance and traveling time for myself to North Catholic and Cardinal Dougherty ----North was 1 mile more and 15 more minutes of time traveling--more or less, well at least from the part of Germantown we lived in, we would travel on the H or XH bus to the end of the line of the 56 trolly, interesting these trollies were 2 men crew with the money collector in the center. Anyway I felt St. Francis should be going to Doughtery---which years later they did change. So in my third year I went to talk to the administration at North and asked them if I could go to Dougherty- It took me quite a while to get the nerve to go and talked to them (I think it was Fr. Tocik or Fr. Conlin but I’m not sure) He was very nice and explained it was the Archdiocese’s rules, which I understood. So that is why I landed in Germantown HS but I was not anywhere as smart a student as my brother Joe. At North I remember reading what was on each of the trophies, the older ones were more interesting because in many cases they listed all the members of the team plus special catch phrases such as, the winning pitch that..... or with 5 seconds to go.... So there was no doubt about it, North was a Powerhouse for many years in various sports. I would go to the library and go through the old yearbooks and by just looking at those photos of the past teams I could understand and actually feel the esprit de corps that made them what they were. I notice that some yearbooks were missing, so asking the librarian about them she told me that they were taken by students but that they had a complete set locked up. I think of that now and wonder what they will do with items like the yearbooks and the trophies, some of the trophies were pure silver. Many a student shed more than a drop of blood or a tear drop in the events that won the school those prizes, they are part of history and each one of us is a part of that history. I’m now thinking--what happen to those items from the other schools that have passed along this same path. I can tell from just reading the blogs of others that even if we didn’t attend Dougherty or North, we knew others that did, Their stories and the various names and events they told us about have been pressed into our soul and we never forgot them as they are part of us, so with the closing of both schools we are losing part of ourselves.
Jack McHugh [11-09-2009]

hi jimmy mckernan my cousins went through the same thing with miss kathrine .... as i suppose most everyone did who had older brothers and sisters who passed through her class before them ... and ... i think that a lot of the nuns and teachers did the same thing ...ha! but, as i said i did like her in spite of her stern looks and eyes in the back of her head ... good to hear from you jimmy ... i hope all is well! rosemarie
rosemarie hite malageri [11-09-2009]

Gerry, I think it was rather rude and insensitive of you to say that Germantown High School never was and never will be a step above CD. There were so many elementary schools and high schools that we all went to from Germantown. Most of my friends were as proud of their high school as we were of ours. In the end, whether we were at a dance, a party, or even down the shore, we always gravitated to other people from Germantown. It didn't matter what part of Germantown you were from or what school you went to, we all stuck together and had each others back. I loved my school, I had a great time there. I was respectful of my teachers and was respected by them. I got a good education and was fully prepared for the outside world and the future. I didn't have to get whacked over the head to learn any lesson. One of the great things about this site is the fact that we can all relate to each other on many levels. We are meeting old friends and making new ones, because we have the common bond of all growing up in a great place. I realize that there are other neighborhoods in Philly, but I think that we are unique in the fact that from upper Germantown Avenue to Wayne Junction and from East Germantown to West Germantown, we were, and still are friends. Remember that we're not all perfect, and you see plenty of words spelled incorrectly, as well as typos. So what. You incorrectly used the word "metal" instead of "mettle" when speaking of the rules Anthony G. did not follow. so you see, even us public school kids learned grammar Let's not demean each other. We have far too many interesting thoughts to share.
Lynne [11-09-2009]

Jack Focose, what happened to you, Mike Bresnan from Belfield
Mike Bresnan [11-09-2009]

Hi Peggy, Lost your phone number. How are you doing? Maryalice Armstrong Brennan
Maryalice Brennan, Still in GErmantown [11-09-2009]

I was very sad to read Linda Fontana's trashing of the nuns at Cecilian Academy. I keep in contact with most of my classmates and some from other years. We all have wonderful memories. We laugh at some of the episodes that happened with the nuns. I stress that we laugh. Cecilian will always be in our hearts.
Sally Moore Quinlan, Cecilian Academy 1962 [11-09-2009]

is there anyone out there that graduated from holy rosary in 1952?
DREAMER [11-09-2009]

Hey Greg Striano do you remember me. I'm Dominic ( Harpo ) milione's nephew. They used to call me " Little Johnny " or " Little Harpo ". I used to hang with Donnie " Ears " and Ricky Hart ( Rollie's brother )
John DiRenzo [11-09-2009]

JBS: I am up for lunch with a group of former Germantowners. I am available on Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays any week starting 11/16. If no one has a suggestion, maybe Chamber's in Doylestown or The Porterhouse which is a brewpub on Rt. 202 going into Peddler's Village (great burgers). However, I'll go anywhere.
Dan Hartnett, Former East Germantown [11-09-2009]

Peggy James Servay ... I was in your father's boy scout troop 170 .. really a nice person and ran a good scout organization ... my father, Joe Cusack, ran the cub scout pack at St. Francis and I believe knew your father.
Tom Cusack [11-09-2009]

Has anyone graduated from Holy Rosary in 1967
John DiRenzo [11-09-2009]

Hi, Peggy: I was a Boy Scout 50s and your father was my Scout Master. Troop 170, right? I became a patrol leader and went to those Friday night meetings in the basement of St. Francis religiously. Your dad was a great man and a great influence on me as a kid. He had a quiet leadership quality. I stopped being a Boy Scout when I was 14, but up until that time the camping trips with Sonny Kennedy, Gene McKelvey, Gavin Muir, the Goldman brothers and the notorious Panther Patrol with Henry Clemmer, and the Frankie Maier meant lots of real adventure and fun. We camped out for long periods of summer and winter and went to Treasure Island Boy Scout Camp up on the Deleware. Thanks for reminding me of your father. He was a great man.
John Brogan, Maine man [11-09-2009]

I would like to hear from anyone who lived on 5000 block of Keyser Street or in the general area.I lived there from 1947 to 1970. My dad ran the boys scout troop at St. Francis.
Peggy James Servay, grandmother of 7 /lives in Burholme/ still working full time/age 64/went to mSt.Francis of Assisi graduated fron grade school1959/Little Flower 1963. [11-07-2009]

Hello Tom Cusack...it's Max. I'm having my leftover chicken for dinner tonight. Smiles! I browsed through the archives, as you suggested. What was your average last night? Just curious.
Max, Former Germantownian, Manheim & Greene Sts [11-07-2009]

tom cusac i enjoyed your stories of the germantown dances. it must have been so hard for the guys to ask the girls to dance and risk being turned down in front of everyone. i never realized how brave it was just to walk across a room and tap someone on the shoulder. to all the young, idealistic, horny young men, hats off to ya!

Rosemarie...greetings from an old friend. Miss Catherine..wow! The only lay teacher I recall from my time (1950-1959) at St. Vincent De Paul Grammar School. I carried her bags/books home a few days. She lived near the corner of Germantown Ave and Penn Street next to the shop. She was a spinster, and a lovely teacher-though, as some have observed, peculiar. I think it was second grade she taught...I recall her preparing us for our First Communion. She would hold out a cup of hosts taking one in her fingers like the priest and ask us..."What is this"? We had to respond "The body of Christ" which seemed weird to a young lad...then she dropped her eyelid looked at me (Jasus there were 65 pupils in the room) and said McKernan's brother would not eat it last year! Don't be like him. So we ate this wafer of bread thinking we were eating Christ-it still puzzles me. But she taught us how to tell time. Do any recall the clock with the paper dials that she would wind up and say "What time is it"? And, she taught us a lot more..God Bless her
Jim McKernan, Professor North Carolina [11-07-2009]

anthony g im sure you will agree .... the nuns and priest were right whether they were wrong or right and their word was law and it extended to your parents .. and not only did you catch heck in the class room for whatever the infraction but then you would get it again when you got home ... ha! rosemarie
rosemarie hite malageri [11-07-2009]

joe taylor ooooh ...soooo you knew there were actually eyes in that bun too ...ha! i loved st vincents and have mostly good memories of the time spent there most of my nuns were not tooo bad and although there were a couple who would smack real hard before asking questions i still wouldnt trade the time there for anything ...rosemarie
rosemarie hite malageri [11-07-2009]

Ed, well said. To attack typos is pathetic. They all got the message but did not like the truth.
anon [11-06-2009]

rosemarie: You mentioning Miss Catherine sure brought back a memory or 2. joe Taylor
joe taylor [11-06-2009]

Bette B.- The Pennyslvania Magazine of History & Biography lists the address of the Thones Kunder house as 4537 Main St. (now Germantown Ave.), located "one door north of Danenhower's Lane (Wister Street). My great-great-grandfather moved into the rebuilt house and establsihed his barber shop there in 1860. The 1900 Census lists the address as 5044 Main St.
yetanotheranonymous [11-06-2009]

Tom Cusack....You certainly made the rounds at the dance halls.You must have been one hell of a dancer.Tell me,was your dancing better than your moves on the basketball court? Did you ever dance on Bandstand? I was there once but never made it to the dance floor.My best moves were on the basketball court,not on the dance floor.You must have had a great time dancing with the stars(from Happy Hollow and Fernhill Park)........Paul Borian
Paul Borian [11-06-2009]

Yea Fran, he would get a full report and depending on what the nun told him, whichever grade it was, that determined whether I was in after school or could hit the streets. He was tough, but he had a big heart. And I remember your mom, that smiling face. My father couldn't touch me when she was around. She would always defend me. Where did the time go?
anthonyg [11-06-2009]

From reading the postings on this website, it has jogged my memory of growing up in late 50's early 60's ... I graduated LaSalle High in '58 ... as we all know, back in those days the weekly dances were the hub of social life (also known as boys looking for girls and vice versa) before you entered the night club stage ... no matter what area of Germantown you grew up in, I bet we rubbed elbows at some of these dances: St.Francis of Assisi on Saturday nights, LaSalle on Saturday nights, St. Joe's on Allegheny Avenue on both Friday and Sunday nights. Funny thing about St. Joe's dance .. on Friday nights guys were dressed in spread collars and peg pants, and on Sunday nights the same guys were dressed ivy league, with natural shoulder sport coats and button down collars. Reflects the two syles of dress at that time .. one on the way out and one on the way in. Plus there were some out-of-neighborhood dances I ventured into once or twice: St. Timothy's in the Northeast, Holy Family in Manayunk, St. John of the Cross in Roslyn. I never made it to Gelarts, Wagners, Chez Vous, nor St. Alice's. No matter what dance ... the rules were simple ... the guys had to suck it up and ask the girls to dance .. or else stand in the corner. I know .. I know .. the girls have a different perspective on this! I have fond memories of the dances .. the era before the night clubs. More on that later.
Tom Cusack [11-05-2009]

Bette B. - The address of the New Lyric theatre at Gtn. & Manheim was either 50** or 5101 Gtn. Ave. The place to the right was the "Dog House" which had the best hot dog in town for only .15cents with the works.
D., Saturday Matinee/ Lucky Pass Patron [11-05-2009]

hello linda fantana im just looking at the information on the restaurant la fantana we will be meeting in ... and it looks very nice and the pricing is not bad either. for those who donot know already ... the place is called cafe la fontana 58 s york road hatboro pa 19040 215 672 8118 i hope this helps anyone who is interested in joining us ... see you soon, rosemarie

Ok, some people misspell a word now and then, It's a blog! I jst cant belve sum flk.
Ed, Chester [11-05-2009]

Bucks County Gang: Dave Byrne[Fernhill] wants to get together for lunch,like Paul Borian,Dan Hartnett,and Dennis McGlinchey,he lives near Doylestown.One of you street-savy guys can select a date and a spot for lunch or breakfast in that area.
JBS [11-05-2009]

Yes, gerry, you want to attack someone who is only stating facts and you try to correct his use of words and can't even spell it correctly.
anonymous [11-05-2009]

Yea, Gerry, what is a prinicpal? I may have used the wrong word, but at least I spelled it correctly.
anthonyg [11-05-2009]

AnthonyG, I can visualize your dad waiting for the nuns. One day, I decided to stay home from school (LF)and told my mom. She warned me that if I did, she would not sign my note. Well when I wrote the note she refused to sign. The nuns caught me and questioned the signature. I stuck to my story; mom wrote it. They called her at home and she gave me heck for making her lie to a nun. I thought I'd never hear the end of it.
FrannyB [11-05-2009]

With North Catholic closing I remember in the 1950’s when because of the large number of students at North, St Francis of Assisi had a 9th grade (pre Cardinal Dougherty) As I recall the boys wore grey pants and a reddish maroon jacket. Even when I went to North in 1958 North still had an Annex at one of the parishes-but I believed that they closed it in one of the following years I was at North. In the beginning North wasn’t the high school that the students from St. Francis feed into, the students went to Roman and the public schools went to various Jr. highs, Gillespie being the one for the southwest area of Germantown. In the 1930’s and into the 40’s the students in the southwest part of Germantown close to Wayne Ave. went to Simon Gratz HS. As for the teachers at North, David Loscalzo was from Germantown he taught English, I want to tell 3 short stories of 3 teachers. First is Mr. Vito Parisi who taught music for string instruments, I took violin from him. I always felt sorry for him because he was relegated to one of the rooms in the stairwells, which I guess was made for maintenance supplies but because of overcrowding that was the only room left for him, plus he didn’t have many students. Well one day he play for us a beautiful song on the violin which he wrote. Afterwards I thought, what a marvelous piece, as great a work as any I have heard but how sad not many people have heard it, also thinking that most of the students here at North don’t even know this man let along his music. The 2nd story is about Mr. Thomas Hayes who taught English, I had him my first year. Like all teachers he would tell stories about himself, and his stories were on WWII where he served as an officer on Gen. Patton’s staff. Many students took these stories with a grain of salt until one Sunday night on TV when they had one of those programs with real film footage and who was sitting in the back of the jeep with Patton---our teacher. Well that monday he was the talk of the school. My third story is a little different, it was told to us in class by our Latin teacher. At that time at North they had men who were training to be priests in the order of the Oblates of St. Francis De Sales teaching classes, I believe we addressed them as Rev. Mr., besides teaching they were used to oversee jug (detention after school), Rev. Mr, Schelich told us that he had this one student who would not be in the detention 10 minutes when he would fall asleep and this happen 3 days in a row. The next day the student was there again---Jug was in the lunch room and at the front was a wooden platform where the moderator could view everything---there was a large clock on the wall behind them. R.Mr. Schelich in a low voice (he had a very loud normal voice) told the other students that he would let them leave if they did it quietly and did not wake the one boy---when all the boys were gone he went up to the clock and changed it’s time to around 6 PM--then turning off the lights walked up to the boys and in a soft voice said “son it’s late you better go home”---the boy looked up at the clock and then with his head down low walked to the door.
Jack McHugh [11-05-2009]

[John Fleming from Tampa Bay Florida are you retired from the PFD? D., Old Germantowner [11-03-2009]] No I am not, but I think I know the John Fleming you mean. Did he have red hair? I only know of him, because he and I, at one time or another dated the same girls,and the girls would ask me if I knew him. I have always admired the man's taste in women.
John Fleming, Tampa Bay, Florida [11-05-2009]

Bonnie: I lived on Knox Street between Logan and Wyneva. I remember you very well ... I was good friends with Ralph .. he was one of the nicest guys in the neighborhood ... and a good athelete ... not only QB for North Catholic but one heck of a basketball player also .. I regret hearing that he passed on .. I feel grateful to have been friends with him .. eveytime I have lemon italian water ice I think of your father .. I used to buy his from the side of your porch ... hope you are doing well .. this is a great website ...
Tom Cusack [11-05-2009]

To D.Oldtimer, since he didn't respond and may not be back anytime soon, that John Fleming that posted did not work for the PFD but was a Daily News deliver. He grew in Logan and went to CD.
Dennis McGlinchey, Born & rasied in East Germantown [11-05-2009]

Thought I'd clarify my recent blog where I mentioned that my sons speak fondly of how their father (Larry) raised them. He certainly didn't beat them like old carpets. He WAS strict in that he provided boundaries beyond which they better not go. More parents should do the same and stop worrying about restricting their kids or letting them get away with murder (sometimes literally). However, what I neglected to mention was that everything was done with unabashed love for our sons and Larry rarely had to use physical punishment, tho he did when nothing else worked. We gave them unlimited love and sometimes spoiled them, but they also knew how far they could go and when to cross the line. They have turned out great and are close and loving sons - we're so proud of them.
Rosemarie Rinaldi [11-05-2009]

Ok anonymous, let's end this. If any Happy Hollowers were offended by any of my posts, and if I "belittled" you (or the MANY as anonymous states) in any way, I apologize. Let's move on.....
Dennis McGlinchey, Born & raised in East Germantown [11-05-2009]

To Anthony G. I understood what you meant having the right name. I do beleive some discrimination was used.
Marie [11-05-2009]

Dan Hartnett: Thank you for the very kind words about my family and especially my dad. It's hard for me to believe that he died 40 years ago next month. We had just moved to Langhorne, Pa. because our home was taken by the School Board of Philly, to build MLK high school on Haines st. I was in my first year at Bucks County Community College and I was ready to enlist in the Air Force. I wasn't 18 years old yet, because my birthday was at the end of December. He died in his bed of a massive heart attack. My sister Lorraine and her husband Dan, lived right down the street and we had to call them at 3:30 a.m. to tell them we had just called the ambulance. He died just minutes later on the way to the hospital. I really believe he died of a broken heart having been taken from his old neighborhood on Haines st. He belonged to the Italian-American club on Devon st., the street where he grew up. We lived next door to his twin brother, Dominic, who was married to my mom's sister Pauline. His sister Josephine lived across the street with my uncle Victor, the shoemaker. That seemed to be the norm in Philly at one time, where families lived around each other. That was a special time to be a kid growing up, especially around this time of year. We never seemed to want for anything, even though my dad didn't make a lot of money. I know you were friends with my cousin Ron who lived next door; I know you have stories about him and hanging out at mom's store on Crittenden st. Where you with him the night he wrecked his dad's Mercury? I thought his dad was going to kill him that night. That moment is fresh in my memory. I can laugh about it now and so can he, but what a night that was. Again, thanks for the kinds words. Keep in touch with my sister in Florida; she has a great life down there and a tremendous family. Take care !
Bill Cupo, Immaculate Conception School [11-05-2009]

This is a great story for all you non-Happy Hollowers........Back in 1959 there was a Septa strike(PTC back then) that crippled Germantown and all of Philly.One of our esteemed residents from Happy Hollow stole a Septa bus and transported kids to school and adults to work for three days.He was dressed in a uniform similiar to that of Ralph Kramdem of Honeymooners fame.The bus was returned to the depot without Septa's knowledge that it was stolen.AMAZING!........................To conclude,this is pure fiction,much like our beloved Happy Hollow appeared to be in my eyes.As Goo would say,"I'm just nutting you"...........Paul Borian
Paul Borian [11-04-2009]

Thanks to Dan Hartnett for the balanced perspective on the sad abuses of authority by the priests and religious back in the day and more recently. I'm a convert, and wasn't subjected to what surely was traumatic to all the folks on the receiving end of it, and also am saddened by the way individual bad actors smear an entire class of people and institutions. In this case it was the misbehaving people in positions of power and the hierarchy that turned a blind eye to it for so long. Thankfully, civilization progresses and we hopefully learn from the past and mature. Just as our great country thought nothing of institutional slavery, segregation, and breaking treaties with the Indians, etc. so too the Catholic church had some serious shortcomings in its organizational blind spots - shedding the light of day on them will bring healing and improvement for the institution and the victims. As Dan said, there are countless people within the church past and present who behave in saintly ways and are taken for granted or overlooked because of the ones who misbehave. On a happier note, this item may be of interest to folks as far as contributing to it or the results of it; it's from the Preservation Alliance - "Seniors Invited to Share Memories of Germantown's Past": Germantown Speaks, a partnership of several Germantown congregations, the Neighborhood Interfaith Movement, Cliveden of the National Trust and Partners for Sacred Places, is an attempt to capture stories of the recent past. Germantown High School students will capture the stories of the seniors and help to design a video and mini-exhibition that describes what life was like in Germantown in the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s from the members of the community whose stories, photos, and artifacts can lend more texture to how we understand our community throughout the twentieth century. There will be four sessions provided for people to bring their memories and participate in the interview process, in Germantown: November 9, 4-6pm, First Presbyterian Church; Nov. 12, 4-6pm, First United Methodist Church of Germantown; Nov. 16, 4-6pm, St. Luke's Episcopal; Nov. 19, 7-9pm, Center in the Park. This project is being supported by a grant from the Preservation Alliance. For more info, call 215.567.3234.
Bruce Marshall, 58, still in Gtown [11-04-2009]

helen leone deangelo i used to tremble when miss katherine would walk down the aisles .. but, i did like her in spite of those darn buns in the back of her head that i am sure to this day held eyes through which she saw everyone of us with... ha! rosemarie
rosemarie hite malageri [11-04-2009]

Gerry, you spelling correction is incorrect...lol It's principal..not prinicpal..lol Ok, it might be a typo, but we're not here to hurt feelings...just share them.
anonymous [11-04-2009]

Texas Jack McHugh: I hope that you are still a Phillies and Eagles fan.I hope to be having lunch with your old classmate from St. Francis-Dave Byrne. Like you,he is connected to the Irish Culture. I was impressed that You knew that Che Guevara had an Irish Heritage and the Irish connection in Argentina where I spent a lot of time. Dave Byrne knew the toughest Irishman to come from Piladelphia-Frank Sheeran. Robert DeNiro,who is part Irish,will play the big Irishman in a future movie-he was one scary guy. Recently,I had lunch at The Germantown Cricket Club which was near your home-it is still a beautiful place. Many people on this site,are discussing the closing of North and CD. I do'nt know whether you went to North or Germantown- I know that Brother Joe went to Germantown where he was a great student. It saddens me that these two great Catholic Schools are closing notwithstanding that there were a couple of bad apples in these educational barrels.
JBS [11-04-2009]

Sammy Faia "Appreciation party" is CANCELLED for this saturday(11/7). Our man Sam broke his arm last week. He is still in a lot of pain. We have decided to postpone the party unitl he feels better. I will keep you posted on a new date. Keep Sam in your prayers.
paul amendolia, 48yrs, royal st [11-04-2009]

Helen Leone, I don't remember the ruler with Miss Catherine, but I do remember the thing she said about the eyes in the back of her head. I had forgotten all about that until you mentioned it. And yes FrannyB, the nuns were tough and my father used to stand outside our house, right next to the convent, when we were let out of school and get a full report on me by whatever nun I had at the time.
anthonyg [11-04-2009]

Having been a teacher in Lancaster County for 33 years, I learned a few tricks of the trade. One I happily discovered totally on my own. We all know how teachers were said to have eyes in the back of their heads....as Helen D'Angelo recalled....they always seemed to know what was going on even though their backs were turned. Well, one day while washing my blackboard, I discovered that I could actually see a reflection of the class due to the glare on the wet blackboard. So, when I would have my back turned, I truly could see what was going on....and boy did I have tons of fun with that. My fourth graders thought that I was amazing and that I really did have those hidden eyes:) I also think of the many times that I had to scold my students for their asinine tricks, like forging their parents signatures and signing Mom or Dad instead of their actual names. It was all I could do to keep a straight face. So, it really disturbs me to hear the stories of the brutal punishments that were bestowed upon some of the bloggers. What a shame that they were submitted to such abuse.
Patricia Carr, Attended Immaculate Conception from 1956-59 [11-04-2009]

peter hennessey died. very sad.
anonymous [11-04-2009]

Tom Cusack: Tom, are you from Knox St. below Logan?
Bonnie Gatto [11-04-2009]

I guess I really started a firestorm with my recollection of Black John. I'm sure that all of you on this site, that attended catholic school felt some wrath from a nun or priest during those years. In retrospect, I guess they felt somewhat "entitled" and on a mission from God to keep us in line and on the straight and narrow path. The physical punishment was equalled by the mental games and fairy tales they spun (eg) Pagan babies, strangers that would lure you into a car, how non -Catholics were not as good,and avoiding anything having to do with sex education or the reality of life. Essentially, we all learned about sex from the street. Admittedly, we have all survived them and it was an interesting trip,but in reality the education was no better than any other type. I did learn to read very well, write coherent sentences, diagram a sentence ( that's helped a lot in my life ?)learn every prayer ( including latin as an altar boy) However, my Math and Science skills were poor and I realized that in college.Because of a very narrow mentality ( and not so subtle prejudice), the greatest injustice that they provided is that they turned many of us off to our schools and left us with few fond memories of the classroom .To this day I find that I am envious when people speak of their wonderful high school experiences. My youthful joy came outside of school, at Happy Hollow or Fern Hill Park playing touch or hoops with the guys. I prefer to dwell on my college years ( at a Non-Catholic school )I truly enjoyed that time. I got to meet people on an international, non denominational level. It shaped me much more than 12 years of catholic school. I am a non practicing Catholic but would never turn to another religion,because Catholicism is my sanctuary and my home. But, it was not influence by the priests at NC or the nuns at St.Mike's. It was my wonderful parents who showed me Christianity and Catholicism with their actions.
Bob D'Angelo [11-04-2009]

Gerry: You sure did 'go after' anthony g....'verbally'..why this onslaught of words? You even corrected his spelling of principle (code of conduct) vs. principal, the head of a school...I don't know anthony g. nor do I know you, but it seems as if you came across a bit pompous, and that's sad. We are all on here just to talk about the good old days, and not 'trash' one another's reputations. Everyone has 'a past school history'.whether he graduated from Catholic School or NOT is irrelevant. He may have had a great career in his life. And you may want to edit your own future writings, before (tooting) your 'graduate horn'..re-read what you typed..e.g. in your chastising you wrote "you seem to still you believe you were a victim, anthony. Now, who lacks education in Eng. Lit? sorry, anon.
Anon FEM, Graduate (all girls )Academy [11-04-2009]

Patty you mentioned Sister Peter Daimen from St. Francis being mean She was the first Nun I had at St Francis and she treated me with great kindness. I guess things change from year to year class to class and person to person, all I can say is I have fond memories of her.
William Dougherty, Doc from Portico St [11-04-2009]

To Ed Farra, I attened OlR school & I loved 7th grade.I had Sr.Marie Christine one of the best.We loved going to the convent up those stairs.
Marie [11-04-2009]

The more I think about CDH I recall the mean nuns St Margret rose ST Joe order,Sr.Mary Pat IMH. One that was nice was Sr,James Michael a grey nun.
Marie [11-04-2009]

even thou there is bickering about the subjects mentioned, did you notice that the one thing they all have in common? germantownites, past and present, all care about one another. you can't buy that. keep up the fine past memories.
A FAN OF GTN NATIVES [11-04-2009]

For research purposes -- can any one give me an address on the Historic house that was to the right of the Lyric theater? ???? Germantown Ave.
Bette Begley, GHS '47 now Dumfries,Va [11-04-2009]

Dennis McGlinchey: You say that you already apologized to Paul Borian for your criticisms of the Happy Hollow bloggers. Good for you, but your apology also should be extended to ALL the Happy Hollow kids you belittled and offended (and there were many).
anonymous [11-04-2009]

Saw John Brogan's mention of waiting for the NC kids to get off the trolley at Sal's, including Larry, and their daily stories of tough priests. Larry says this about priests' physical abuse - believe it or not, he never suffered any of it. He said that most of the physical confrontation was when priests were forced to come between fights and had to get physical with some of the combatants. He mentions a lay teacher named Mr. Paulosky (sp?) who used to play football in the Canadian Football League. Big guy with hands like ham hocks. First day of school, he laid it on the line. Told every guy there that he was the baddest one in the room and would be happy to prove it to anyone in "Room 5". Told them right off that he would not take any crap from them for the rest of the year - and guess what, he never had to. He made his point. Larry thought he was great. Remember, these kids are cocky adolescents with raging testosterone trying to prove their manhood. Tough job for any teacher - you certainly couldn't wimp your way thru. Reminds me also of my grade school days at St. Callistus in Overbrook and some tough nuns we had. Not much physical abuse - a ruler on your padded bottom maybe(mostly to the boys, we girls were good). The nuns did not seem to get tough until 7th and 8th grades, when the testosterone kicked in. One nun stands out in that era: Sr. Frances Austin (7th grade) who was really tough on the boys. Some years ago, we had a grade school reunion and reminisced about our school days. The boys' fondest memories (believe it or not) was of Sr. "Franny Austin", who was the toughest nun of the bunch. They all agreed that even tho' she was tough and took no crap, she was fair and they had deserved it. Since we all separated at the high school level, I have no idea if any of the boys had any problems at St. Tommy More. Maybe Franny Austin laid the groundwork for the priests at Tommy More. Even my own sons speak fondly of not being able to get away with anything and how tough their father was in raising them. Guess it's all in your perception.
Rosemarie Rinaldi [11-04-2009]

Dan Hartnett, you put it so well. There's a lot to be said about hearing from ALL the different neighborhoods of Germantown. I especially enjoyed that some of you called them candy apples and some of us called them apple taffies. But they were all the same treat. Viva la difference!
Rosemarie Rinaldi [11-04-2009]

Dan Hartnett, Thank you for your kind words about the Cupo family. You're "right on" about my dad. He was a gentle, caring man who loved his family & was so very proud of his son, Bill. My brother, Bill LOVED baseball.....still does! Bill lived, ate, slept baseball & played "sandlot". One year he had the privilege of playing in Connie Mac Stadium. I believe it was some sort of all-star game. I don't think he will ever forget that experience & the thrill of playing on a major league field. My dad could not have been more proud. Then the MVP was announced & it was my brother, Bill. I believe he was awarded a pair of baseball shoes. If I'm not getting this story "right", Bill, feel free to correct me. My brother would spend hours on end playing ball in Awbury Park, 3 doors down from our home on Haines St. My parents always knew where to find him when they wanted him. My uncle Victor, the neighborhood shoe repair man, lived across the street from us. He was married to my father's sister, Josephine...better known as "zi zi" ("aunt" in Italian). I never knew her "real" first name was Josephine until I was a teenager. I always thought her first name was "zi zi"! I recall walking home from school & stopping by my uncle's shoe repair shop. It was "on the way". I remember the smell of leather & the strong odor of glue that hung in the air in that small storefront on Price Street. Do shoemakers even exist today? I believe it's a lost art, along with so many other crafts that disappeared over time. Oh well, I won't dwell on the past; but I will recall the pleasant memories that arise from time to time; thanks to the neighbors & friends who contribute to this blog. Thanks for the memories!
Lorraine (Cupo) Kelly, fl; cdhs '59; ic 55 [11-04-2009]

There has been some chatter lately about the pros and cons of folks from various neighborhoods posting maybe too frequently. I just thought I would weigh in with my two cents which of course, carries no weight. I follow the blog every day even though I don't post much. I enjoy the stories and the neighborhood banter. I feel I have gotten to know a whole list of people in a limited way, even though I never met them and wouldn't recognize any of them if we crossed paths on the street. Linda Fontana and Dennis McGlinchey are people who I lived near and maybe I met, not sure. Paul Borian, Bob DeAngelo, Bob Terranova and various Happy Hollow people as well as many others from there, are folks whose stories I enjoyed following. I met JBS through the blog and had lunch with him several times. Billy Cupo, I remember you as a kid. I knew your parents and hung out with your cousin Ronnie and knew his family as well as your uncle Victor who always repaired my shoes. Your sister Lorraine is terrific and we communicate from time to time thanks to this blog. You have a really fine family. I thought that your father was one of the nicest men I ever met and I understand that your mother (just as fine) is doing well. So also to Cheryl Raffie and the young lady from Stockton Road whose last name is Carr ( I knew a Bobby Carr from Stockton Rd.) I just want you all to know that the blog is a joy and your stories are appreciated,
Dan Hartnett, Former East Germantown [11-03-2009]

To JBS: Bruce, Nice to see you back posting. It seemed quiet around here for a while. I thought I was going to have to propose lunch to make sure you were out there. Go forth knowing you are the only guy on this blog who we can address only by initials and almost every one will know who it refers to. Welcome back.
Dan Hartnett, Former East Germantown [11-03-2009]

Gerry you are one of the reasons I stopped coming on this site because of people like you bickering and getting all uptight about things that people were writing. Nothing was ever directed at me, but it was becoming nothing but a war of words. You ought to get a life and stop attacking people who are only putting the truth out there. I guess you are related to someone in the clergy or are a holy roller.
anthonyg [11-03-2009]

Gerry I did own up to my wrong doing and only tried to get back because my father asked me to do it for him. I did not want to go back. Yea, I was asked to leave and did own up to it, as I stated before. My belief was nobody should have been let back once booted out. No, I was not let back in but little David Mc was. I wonder why.
anthonyg [11-03-2009]

The boys of the Hollow/Fernhill Park are back;Jack Brogan,JBS(Schmitty,Tom Cusack,Dom Raffaele,Bonnie Gatto,etc.It seems like the responses from the various Germantown neighborhoods come in cycles.This is great!Being a Germantown High School grad,I thought the level of our education was okay.Perhaps the Catholic School education was better??? Regarding sports,the Catholic league generally beat the Public League in championship games because the players had an extra year playing together(grades 9 to 12)Ther extra year made a big difference in team play,especially football.So glad that I did not attend North and take religion with Black John.No doubt that I would have struck back,get kicked out of school,and finished up at Germantown.Besides,in my Germantown graduating class,the girls outnumbered the boys two the one.In my mind,that gave us an edge in the level of education,plus no violence from priests in the classroom.I wonder if things were different at LaSalle and the Prep?? Paul Borian
Paul Borian [11-03-2009]

For all of you past patrons of the Italian club at Wayne and Manheim during the 80's and present patrons of the Continental Post and anyone else that is interested. There will be a tribute party for bartender Sammy Faia this saturday evening at 5 PM. This should be a great little (or big) reunion type event. Be there or be square.
Joe DePero, St Mikes class of 70, 52, Levittown [11-03-2009]

miss katherine mcgowan, the only lay teacher at st. vincents school also walked up and down aisle before friday benediction and hit all of us with a ruler on our hands - just in case we did something wrong. she also said she could see us when she wrote on the board thru a bun on the back of her head. can you imagine the kids today in second grade believing something like that?

There are always bad apples in the basket, but when you find them, you don't put them in another basket for someone else to have. You get my drift?
Good & Bad Apples [11-03-2009]

The ridicule that we endured from some of the St. Vincent nuns was as bad as if not worse than being hit.
FrannyB [11-03-2009]

St. Vincent nuns were very strict. Most were very good teachers. Must admit the ones that were tougher got better grades from me. However, I was never hit by the nuns except in the 1st grade class before going to church. LF nuns never hit us but gave detention frequently. One nun hated me at LF because I never answered her back. She said I know what your thinking; I'm sure the look on my face revealed my hatred.
FrannyB [11-03-2009]

To Helen sorry i dont remember you but do you remember Donna Shofler or Angie Fries ? We all used to sled at tommie hill
rich, huntingdon valley [11-03-2009]

John Fleming from Tampa Bay Florida are you retired from the PFD?
D., Old Germantowner [11-03-2009]

Anonymous, my post was to Paul Borian. I already apologized to him IF any of my posts were among the offending posts. Unlike you, I stand behind my posts, not hide behind them.
Dennis McGlinchey, Born riased in East Germantown [11-03-2009]

Here is another Knobby Walsh to chew on.After the Falcons beat Bishop Neuman 12-0 at 12th and Bigler and we were walking to catch the bus at Broad St.,a gang of chain and bat swinging Neuman kids were coming from a park across the street. Knobby Walsh came from nowhere into the middle of the street and stopped them dead in their tracks, preventing a brawl. We did get bricked on the buses going up Broad St.Anyone else attend that game in 1960 and remember? The man did have guts!
ED BURKE [11-03-2009]

Not to continue this blog with abusive Priests and Nun stories of Catholic School, I have a couple of stories to tell. Maybe there are a few Our Lady of Rosary students who claim witness to these events. One responsibility we Seventh Graders had was to answer the front door of the Nuns Rectory located in front of the seventh grade classroom. You had to descend a set of steep stairs to the door. Well the bell rang and one of our students who was rather big boy ran to answer the door, tearing his pants on something going down the stairs. Ashamed of what happened he was rewarded with a chalky eraser being shoved in his mouth. Our mouths dropped as we watched him gagging for breath. On another occasion our last class row was caught talking and tagging each other during class. The Sister ordered the row to the front of class for punishment. I was about next to last and watched as each received a painful whacking across both open hands. When it came to my turn I moved my hands in lower, below the chalk board eraser holder. As she came down the pointer hit the ledge and broke in half, flying in mid air. I cringed to make it look real. The Sister’s eyes got as big as dollar bills and she immediately told us all to sit down. To this day she probably thought I broke that pointer with my two hands. On yet another occasion, in an earlier grade, I was not as lucky; as I often felt Miss Shawn’s red aerodynamic hole drilled double plated red paddle against my rear end.
Ed Farrar, Chester, VA [11-03-2009]

Sister Agnes Dorothy, aka Aggie Baggie...now there's a fond Germantown memory. My knuckles are scarred from her. She was in a league of her own at St. Francis when it gave to administering pain. I can still remember the pain from her yard stick hitting my fingertips when she was extra mad. The fingertips torture was worse than the knuckles. Pull them back and you get two more. I would put her ahead of Black John for meanness. I wonder if they ever met. Could you imagine them together as a couple? Scary.
Bill James, ex-yard stick thief [11-03-2009]

To Anonymous: re: "drunken priest" who just had students read the entire period. There was a priest, Fr. Charles Seston, (Sleepy Charlie), who I was told had narcalepsy (sp?). He did the same thing, and slept pretty much through every class. We actually could smoke, (passing a cig up and down the aisle covertly), and not get caught. Crazy. I don't know if that is who you are referring to or not, and I wasn't ever aware of any alcohol abuse, but anything is possible, I'm sure.
john payne [11-03-2009]

As Chair for the class -- we know where most of the 435 classmates are -- but a few have slipped thru the cracks -- Anybody know what ever happened to Belle Courtney? Angela DeSantis? Rose Ewerth ? Harriet Hartranft? Thanks for any information --Bette Begley
Bette Boyer Begley, GHS class of 1947 Now in Va. [11-03-2009]

Jack Brogan[A Maine Guy]: I enjoyed your comments about North where many of our friends and my brother[cactus-Jack] attended. My brother had an altercation with Knobby Walsh and was almost expelled. My brother's friend[Bob LaValle] was not particularly fond of Knobby and transferred to Germantown where Paul Borian and Dan Hartnett went. Knobby liked basketball and probaly remembered you when you were playing on the LaSalle JV. Lou Pauzano and I had a friend who was a very strong and great football player for the Prep and also played basketball-Mike DeLone. During a game between the Prep and North,Knobby confronted Big Mike for roughing up his Falcon Opponents-Mike D. was not a shooting-guard. Like Dom Raffaele,Frank Felice and many other Hollow guys, I was at that great North-LaSalle game where Joe Heyer shot out the lights but LaSalle lost with that disputed tap-in when the game ended. Josh Keenan talked about the LaSalle idiots. I was friendly with The Yanessa Brothers who went to LaSalle High. Tom Yanessa was in your class[1958] and a very tough football player.As a kid, Tom Y. liked John Wayne movies and Rocky Marciano was his favorite boxer. It would have been interesting to see Tom Y. being called a LaSalle idiot. John Berkery from St. Francis and who hung out at K&A would have made a great referee. Ted Silary would probaly agree that the North-LaSalle game of 1957 was one of the greatest games in Catholic-Basketball history.
JBS[Schmitty] [11-02-2009]

It is with sadness that I read the posts about a Catholic priest, “Black John” and the fallout caused by him and others like him, where people left the church because of their repulsive behavior. I moved to East Germantown when I was 14 and was already enrolled in Roman Catholic High. The pastor of Immaculate permitted me to stay there. Our Disciplinarian, Father Maloney was a tough guy and smacked me many times. I have many friends who went to North and CD, and while most have stories about tough priests, their reactions are no where near as severe as those caused by Black John. I know this doesn’t make it any better for those on the receiving end of this kind of treatment but I would like to add some perspective. It started with Judas. In other words, there were bad apples in the Church from the beginning and they have always been and will always be there, even though we expect otherwise. In any case I should have graduated in 57 but got kicked out in 56. I deserved it. I finished in Germantown H.S. in 58. While there, I met a Happy Hollow guy named Bob LaValle, who got kicked out of North and he and I were very good at tweaking the system and getting away with crazy stuff like consistently cutting double period history, sneaking out the back door, having a few cigarettes and playing the pin ball machine a block from school. We had good training, having been to Catholic high school and learning how to operate. I even passed history. This couldn’t be done in Catholic high school because the faculty understood us for the testosterone driven goof balls that we were. After that, like others, I left the Church but not because of anything that happened in high school. Rather, I had my agenda in life and it didn’t coincide with what I was taught. Twenty seven years later, with a failing marriage, a sick and dying mother, and a strong prospect of losing my job, and never a joyful day, I got up and went to Mass one day and that is when I started coming back and I came back stronger than ever. I learned my religion in ways that I never knew it before, through every period of history from Roman through modern, and I don’t have a single doubt that I got it right. I now teach RCIA classes and do some other things for the Church. Here is what my Catholic Church is. The largest private university system in the world, the largest private charities and outreach programs to the poor and needy in the U.S., the oldest institution on earth ­ 2,000 years, Mother Teresa of Calcutta, John Paul II, St. Katherine Drexel (gave her life and her 20 million to the poor) and to pick three priests off the top of my head, see the following and I could list many more: Fr. Mychal Judge ­ died giving the last rites to the dying under the World Trade Towers on 9/11 while the buildings pieces were falling all around him. Fr. Vincent Capodanno ­ the “Grunt Padre”, a marine chaplain in Viet Nam who died while tending the wounded under withering machine gun fire, continuing even as his fingers were shot away until he, himself was killed. Medal of honor winner. Fr. Maximilian Kolbe ­ murdered in Auschwitz by the Nazis. He volunteered to switch places with a man with children who had been sentenced to death for someone else’s escape. Starved for two weeks and then strangled. All of these exemplified the core of Catholic teaching. A wise man once said “Sometimes, even good dogs carry bad fleas”. Sorry for the long post but I contracted as much as possible.
Dan Hartnett, Former East Germantown [11-02-2009]

in 1950 51 i was a 1st grader at st vincent de paul in germantown. on fridays we would go to benediction, BEFORE we went we held both hands out and the nun would whack us on both hands. she used a piece of desk shelf.one boy and one girl did not get hit. frank d
frank di cesari, 66 years old living in bucks county [11-02-2009]

hi,eastside,westside everybodies standing up fof thier part of germantown a sign it was good for all of us.me and my daughter kelly had the privilege of being invited to the readingof a new screen play co author by a germantown reared tommy razz.it was heid at the four seasons hotel center city phila.this exciting event hosted by mr.razzano. t5he script was call SUSPENDED it's about plight of the 67/68 north catholic basketball team and life at the school during the turbent sixties.the reason i bring this to the site is all the recent blogs about north catholic .kelly and i thought tommys two years work merited two thumbs up and hope the screen play will soon be made into a movie for all of us to enjoy. p.s. a hello johnnyboy, was wondering how he like phillies and dodgers playoff outcome. thanks againto the site dominic
dominic, same [11-02-2009]

never posted before - I like this vehicle
gomez stockton [11-02-2009]

Dennis McGlinchey: I'm not going to be as diplomatic as Paul Borian, but nobody ever said that this blog was the Happy Hollow blog. All anyone ever said was that it was great to connect with so many Happy Hollow kids on this blog. That could also be true for all the other kids from all the other rec centers and sections of Germantown. AGAIN, no one was ever left out of posting their own experiences from their own areas of Germantown. If anyone chose not to post on this site, fine; but if anyone did, that was fine too. There were no censors deciding who could post (except people like you). I myself have enjoyed EVERYONE'S experiences, no matter where they were from. And, yes, you and others WERE mean-spirited. I don't remember any other section of Germantown taking such flak. I will sign "anonymous" because I don't want to incur your wrath, having already witnessed it before.
Anonymous [11-02-2009]

Would love to hear from anyone from Bluebell Hill, Roxbrogh or Germantown who recognize my name.
helen malinda garand mccall lacy, known as g'g'mom [11-02-2009]

Bjack John was a closeted homosexual
anonymous [11-02-2009]

Being a CD graduate myself, I also find memories and stories about CD, especially in the early years very interesting, and most especially those of Fr. Benonis, as I had him for junior religion, and at that time, 1960-61, had not yet blossomed into the icon he became, and started his reign of terror. I say "icon", because inevitably, every time I came in contact with a CD grad, the first thing they would ask is "Remember Fr. Benonis" Remembering him as I did, I didn't understand why he was so noteworthy. I soon learned in a short time, why so many that came after me, remembered him. Other then having him in religion class, the only other contact I had with him, was in junior year, when we all had to have a meeting with a priest for sort of counseling talk. It went smooth enough, until he asked if I drove a car, and when I said yes, he then got a little nasty and asked "Does your father love you?", which I thought was both strange and out of line, especially to someone like myself that couldn't wait until I drove a car.
John Fleming, Tampa Bay, Florida [11-02-2009]

Let's not be chauvinistic -here is a short list of the witches that masqueraded as holy women at St Francis of Assisi: Sisters Agnes Dorothy, Peter Damien, Mary Eustis, and then there was Sister Rose at St. Michael's - rumor had it that she split a boy's head open!
Patty, Germantown, now Jersey shore [11-02-2009]

I went to La Salle High School, but I heard all the stories about North Catholic, mostly while standing under Sal’s tin awning. Larry Rinaldi, Cisco Payne, Charles Durkin, Frank Felice told the tales. Those stories were like hearing about shootouts in the old west. I heard how Black John washed out his mouth with the first slug of coffee every morning during his first Religion class. The kids could see him swishing the coffee around his full bridge. Maybe bad teeth caused his ill humor. and that’s why he kneed a kid in the head for sleeping on a desk. Even as a kid I think I understood the irony of that man teaching Religion. I was often there to greet the walking wounded from North as they slumped off the #53 trolley car stop at Wayne and Logan. (I was there to meet them because I could walk home from La Salle after school.) These days it would be difficult to comprehend the power of a priest in the 50s. Pretty much, they did what that wanted to do. Our parents would side with the priest. End of story. If parents didn’t side with the priest, their options were limited—public school. The priests and nuns talked about public school in the same tones they used when talking about the suffering souls in Purgatory. I used to wonder how anybody amounted to anything after going to Fitler Public School on Knox Street. We called it Hitler School. All the talk about Black John and Knobby Walsh made me remember a story that might illustrate one priest’s power. My senior year I was playing in an important late season game at North Catholic. Packed gym, early spring, hot afternoon humidity forced the janitors at North to open the street end door to the gym right after halftime when La Salle shot at that basket. On the stairs end of the gym a kid with a bright flashlight sent me Morse Code me as I shot a foul shot; but at the other end we shot into the sun and wind. The game got hot near the end of the third quarter. Score tied. Bodies flying. That’s when the North Catholic fans began their cheer. “LaSalle, wow!” That was it, over and over. Then they broke into the Falcon fight song. “See our banners sway proudly before us. Colors.s…Onward! Oward!”...and so on. La Salle’s fans responded with, “Onward, onward, where the hell is onward?” They really got into this one and it was a very loud chant. “Onward, onward, where the hell is onward?” Finally, Father Knobby Walsh had enough. He walked out onto the floor right in the middle of a La Salle fast break. He just walked out there and called for the ball from the kid dribbling. No question, this was a priest. The kid handed him the ball. The referees didn’t know what to do, so they both started blowing their whistles and looking at each other. Knobby Walsh never blinked. He walked to witching 20 feet of the La Salle stands and said the following. “That cheer is an insult to our Falcon fight song. It will stop immediately. If I hear one more word of it, I will clear every single person out of these stands.” With that he flipped the ball to the referee and walked down the court toward the stairs. The gym was silent. A referee blew his whistle and they tried to discover where the game was interrupted, but there wasn’t a single peep out of the La Salle fans for the rest of the game. North won easily. That is power. The North kids at Wayne and Logan after the game thought Knobby was a hero. “Good for him. You don’t screw around with Knobby Walsh.” They were proud of him. I heard that feeling in what my friend Dom Raffaele had to say about the priest on this site. He was tough like a Marine Sergeant but loyal to their school, and the kids from North Catholic liked that part of him. They loved and defended that school and it will be a sad day when it closes. “Hail alma mater of North Catholic High.”
John Brogan, Remember Custard's Last Stand [11-02-2009]

Ginny Clark: Thank you for the information.I will try and find the brickyard site.Frank Payne
anonymous [11-02-2009]

Although I read and enjoy this blog almost every day, it is rare when I submit any comments of my own. Even though I was from the Happy Hollow and Fernhill park area, I enjoy reading submissions from people from other Germantown neighborhoods. I want to thank Paul Borian and Bruce Schmidt for their ability to bring the old neighborhood to life for me with their vivid descriptions of the times and characters that we grew up with. Also thanks to Jack Brogan and Joe Lynch for getting in touch with me. Joe sent me a poem that Goo wrote many years ago .. it is posted back in the June/July archives for this blog ... I saved it so if anyone would like it let me know. First I was shocked that Goo, our version of the Fonz, had the sensitivity to write something like this. It was nostalgic and thoughfully done, and it could apply to all of us going back to the neighborhood many years later .. whether it is East Germantown, Brickyard, Chew and Chelton .. you name it ... Goo did a heck of a job. Lastly it was good to see Dom R. posting to this sight .. I ran into him years ago at the Anglesea Pub where he was the chef ... hope all is well with you Dom.
Tom Cusack [11-02-2009]

Anthony G wishes us to accept that he was a victim of Catholic priest discrimination. By his own admission he was "thrown out of CD High". He then goes on to state "well prinicpal (not 'principle' which he writes) you let someone else return who was thrown out-why not me?...I am an ethnic minority-ergo it must be discrimination" I say that is wrong. Cases are decided on a case basis. Amen. Cardinal Dougherty was hard and the rules were known to all. Anthony did not follow them and did not have the "metal" they say of men who endure. We endured and are graduates. I agree there was flagrant brutality there-and not always at the hand of priests. Though all readers of this site should know that 10 priests were indicted in the Grand Jury Philadelphia sex abuse from that one high school. Anthony, do not rationalize your wrongdoing by saying the administrators discriminated. Take your calling down like a man. You seem to still you believe you were a victim. You were wrong and should have owned up to your wrong-doing. By the way Germatown High School never was and never will be a step above Cardibal Dougherty.
gerry [11-02-2009]

Schmitty, good to see ya back with the words! Are you ready for another Irish lunch?
Dave Byrne, nc, 62 [11-02-2009]

John Brogan [11-02-2009]

Ah, Black John at NC. I only had him for one year, but I couldn't begin to count the number of shins and ankles he damaged when he swung his shoed foot into any one them that was proped up on the desk in front of it.
Bonnie Gatto [11-02-2009]

anonymous [11-02-2009]

Regarding Black John,too bad Goo,Rocky,Shangi,Nicky Abber,and about two dozen other Hollow legends did not attend North.Black John would have received a dose of his own medicine.His teaching career would have been short lived.....Paul Borian
Paul Borian [11-02-2009]

Come on guys your not alone in getting knocked around by teachers. I got popped by a few shop and gym teachers Including the Dean of boys, but I deserved it for the most part and forgot it. I didnt go home and tell anyone you just sucked it up. I think we were better for it compared to the kids today who have no respect for anyone, do drugs openly, abuse teachers, women and animals. At least we didnt have kids walking around with their pants so low their butt crack is out. If we did have one like that in my neighborhood he would get cracked.
rich Rizzo, Germantown HS 62 [11-02-2009]

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