Historic Germantown, Philadelphia
Return to Current Your Thoughts page | Achives Index
EARLIER ENTRIES »
« MORE RECENT ENTRIES

Your Thoughts Archive
January 21-31, 2011


Does anyone from the "Chew & Chelten" area have any recollection of a group called the "Bloyd St. Eagles". It was either a club or a gang with a reputation for being very rough and wanting to beat up anyone that crossed their path. Since I never met an actual person that was affiliated with them, I am starting to believe their existence was an "urban legend" or, otherwise, a mythical organization. I remember that the very mention of the name "Bloyd St. Eagles" struck fear into the hearts of young men who roamed the streets of East G'town in the mid-50's. But, to the best of my recollection, I never met anyone who even knew anyone that was a member, let alone that got beat up by them. Can anyone confirm the existence of the Bloyd St. Eagles or is my memory just playing tricks again as it is wont to do these days. Help? Thanks. Andy
Andy Anderson, ICS '58; CDHS '62 — Longwood, FL [01-31-2011]

I don't know what's involved with being webmaster but I appreciate the time you spend. I really like this site. I am impressed with how well everyone has done. Germantown was a great place to grow up. Reading these entries has reminded me of all the places I could walk to as well as the great transportation to Gtn & Chelten & downtown — train, 2 trolley lines which connected to how many buses — the J,K,H,XH,E to take you to just about anywhere in the city.
Denise Duckworth Tumelty [01-31-2011]

Purchase your gas from these companies ! They are the only ones that DON'T buy their oil from OPEC--SINCLAIR--ARCO--MAVERICK--FLYING J.If we all did this,we could put a good hurt on those GREEDY so & sos LOU GIORNO
lou giorno, lou from burbs [01-31-2011]

Denise Duckworth Tumelty-Thank you for helping to jog my memory. I was a young child then and I had forgotten about Dairy Maid until you mentioned it. What a great place! I will be visiting the neighborhood soon to see the old camera shop, but in the meantime, can anyone tell me if the Orpheum Theater building still stands? The last time I saw it there was a phone company store in the building...
Casey Fox, Wilkes-Barre, PA [01-31-2011]

Ed Burke: I appreciate your kind remarks about my contributions to The Germantown-Web site. There are so many great writers and thinkers on this site including many students of Sister Grace from St. Francis. I must say that you had a great idea about a book about Germantown since there is so much information emanating from here. Many folks applauded Joe Lynch for his comments about keeping the legacy of Germantown for future generations. I am amazed how some of these old jocks write so well. I knew Paul Borian from The Hollow and he was always playing baseball,basketball, and playing poker at the sand-pile of all places. Buddy Curran whom you probaly knew, sent Hollow photos to this site. Now, the Bor is posting eloquently here, keeping up with Frank Klock and wanting to take his postion at Point-guard when we play for Old Grand Dad and Old Fashioned Bourbon. I was so impressed with Joe Graber's blog and how he dealt with his affliction- I felt it viscerally. Bob D'Angelo's post to Joe Graber was so laudable and sensitive. The D'Angelo Brothers write so well, I knew Dr. Joseph D'Angelo[brother] from Fernhill and St. Joe College. There is a lot of fire-power in your family and all of you are good talkers-you are Irish. You have a lot of information about interesting characters like your neighbor,the wild and crazy biker and your legendary father who traveled in Germantown and K&A. Apparently, you read that book about K&A. I know that people like John Berkery and Goony [Thomas] Walsh did not like that book since so many people were outed. Goony came to The Continental and knew Ed Burke Sr[DAd] and it was fortunate that they liked each-other if you know what I mean. Your father was bigger but Goony could compete with the best of them. Tom Cusack who was in John Murray's class at SFA[1954] felt very protected at The Dunes[Somers Point] when he talked to Thomas[Goony]. Your little brother,Big John, is friends with Mike Garvey who knew Gooney and Joe Crosley[local 30] back in the day. I spent a lot of time at K&A but I liked Germantown and the people much better since I thought that they had a better rap. I am a home-boy and I liked everything about Germantown including The History. I met Ron Ebert[North] in Germantown at Fernhill Park on the court and it was a fudging bad experience for me. Ron was on the other team in a summer-league game. I drove down the pike and he looked at me as if I was trespassing in his drive-way-I did not get my shoot off and I was pissed. It was arrogant of me to think that I could get a shot over a dude 6 ft. and add 6 inches. I went with plan-B which was to work my jumper in John Fries's zone. He had a smirk on his face since my drive to the basket had been rejected. I worked my way to the basket with a leaning jumper and I was called for a foul. I shoot a jumper and get called for a foul-ridiculous. Fries gets the ball and I strip him and I was about to go coast to coast for a possible jam and the whistle blows. The ref, Mike Sweeney from SFA, calls another foul. I told him that was a clean strip and he tells me to shut my face. I respond with a pithy retort, challenging his IQ and vision. He was the same size as Big John and I must have hit the jugular because he was ready to rumble-being a reserved guy, I did not intimidate him. This was going to be a battle between David[me] and Goliath,the big marine. David's sling-shot was a little left-jab which was no weapon against the Falcon Gladiator. I retreated and continued to play an inept game. I was going against 3 Falcons, Tall Ron Ebert, John Fries with his grin[Think scatological] and biased Mike Sweeney. Twenty years later, I bump into John Fries at Mace's Crossing on The Parkway and he tells me about that game where he scored 18 points and his team was victorious. John F. had a good game but Ron Ebert was the reason his team won. Ron had married your cousin Nancy and they were a handsome couple. Ed! I am looking forward to see you and Brother John at The Buck.
JB Schmitt [01-31-2011]

kevin McKernan: Care to share who you had for religion at CD? I had:
Fr. McGee (Freshman Yr.)
Fr. Monihan (Sophomore Yr.)
Fr. Benonis (Junior Yr.)
Fr. Bartos (Senior Jr.)
To be honest, none of them gave us any flak when questioned about some religious dogma. Fr. Mcgee was the best. An licensed pilot, he took the whole class up flying. It was my first time in a airplane. Fr. Monihan, was recently ordained and I think it was his first year teaching, and allowed open discussions about religion. Fr. Benonis wasn't as bad in 60-61 as he later is reputed to be. He used to be a wise guy himself and had no problem dealing with wise guys. Fr. Bartos, was somewhat strict, and didn't allow too many open discussions. None of threaten us with being shipped off to Germantown.
John Fleming, Tampa Bay, Florida CD'62 [01-31-2011]

Webmaster, Thanks for the offer of, and link to dictionary.com. I use it a lot on this site to look up words, but in this case I'm okay, as I know the meaning of both ostentatious and vocabulary. LOL
John Payne [01-31-2011]

Steve Swift: Your are welcome for the vpike.com reference. I too enjoyed that site. I have used Google Earth in the past to visit these sites, but vpike seemed very user friendly. Also, regarding being anoymous; that wasn't my intention, I just post too fast sometimes, and skip some steps. Glad you enjoyed the site.
anonymous [01-31-2011]

Eastsider, I forgot to sign and need to own up to posting the vpike.com info. It is an eye opener when you see the old hood in real time. I remember all those spots you mentioned and had many lunches at Fats and the Doghouse. Wolfmans had a great burger at Gtown & Chelten. The Avenue had everything we needed growing up, shopping, eating, entertainment and fun.
Gman [01-31-2011]

Bill, eastsider, the Vernon Men's shop was at Gtn and Price on the east side across froom Vernon park. I lived on price st on the 200 block. I don't know if Greg Strino still comes on here, but he would know. His brother worked there. As for the Adams men's store I really don't know where that was. You anonymous, you are correct.
anthonyg [01-29-2011]

JBS: Thank you for peeking behind the disputatious curtain, where we outliers dwell, and acknowledge Frank Klock's and my own meager posts. Your response was impressive. It's obvious that you were inundated with a lot of theological philosophy at the Prep and St Joe's. Unfortunately, my religious experiences at CD was disappointing. The good parish priests, operating as part time teachers, hit me with a lot of unquestioned boilerplate dogma. Too many ontological questions would quickly get you classified as a "wise guy" and if you persisted--get you shipped off to Germantown HS--and, according to them, "your life was over". (my apologies to GHS) This experience left me in a stupor and alienated me from my church for many years. It was only the modest reforms of Vatican 11 that greased my re-entry back into the fold--with conditions: I would never again confuse the Message with the messenger; and, I would never again follow any Judas-goat, be it in theology, politics or ethics. This covenant has worked well for me, and I'm sure many other boomers came to a similar arrangement. While our philosophical pursuits may have taken different directions in different institutions, there is convergence. I am familiar with several of the scholars you referenced, particularly Karl Bart. One of his quotes has remained with me and illustrates more than one path: "It may be when Angles go about their task of praising God, they play only Bach. I am sure, however, that when they are together en famille they play Mozart and that then our dear Lord listens with special pleasure." Me thinks our Lord might also enjoy a little R&B as well. After all, he did create their artists. Oh, I do hope there is rock and roll in Heaven...
kevin McKernan, "Without vision the people (and Germantown) perish." [01-29-2011]

Hey Joe DAgostino from Jersey.....Loved your post regarding"ANYTHING WITH A BALL."Did you ever play POCKETBALL?We had some guys at the Hollow who were very good pocketball players.Some of the best in Germantown......Paul Borian
Paul Borian, Not very good at Pocketball [01-29-2011]

Maryanne G.McFarland,I was happy to see a name from the past.I am glad someone else recalls shoemaker & chicken store.Hope your family is well.?Say hi to Shelly. Marie
Marie Bommentre [01-29-2011]

Schmitty....Your long-term memory is failing you.I was the supreme play-maker.The guys from the Hollow always wanted to play on my team during those three on three's.My teamates would get all the shots because I would rebound the ball and set them up with a perfect bounce pass.Once in awhile,Goo would give me permission to take a two-handed set shot......Paul Borian
Paul Borian, After skiing,put another log in the fireplace,and have another old fashion. [01-29-2011]

Hi Bud, Good to hear from you.I for one have a bad case of cabin fever.Shoveling snow is not for the old and faint of heart, is it? The date you have set for the next luncheon is perfect for me. I have a hard time on thursday and friday because of golfing and work at the course. It will be great to see all you old timers. Hope all is well with you and looking forward to our luncheon. Take care Ed
ed burke [01-29-2011]

John Payne: There appeared to be some obfuscation in my post where I used Jack Nicholson's line from " A Few Good Men". You are a smart and literate guy and I was paraphrasing Nicholson's line to emphasize the importance of truth in life. Apparently, you are a purist and reside in the literary-school of metaphasing and formal equivalence. Now that I know this aforementioned fact, I might use a verbum dicendi for future dialogues with you. It is not so easy to clarify your mataphasing literary-style and it is not my intention to be pedantic or professorial but I simply want to be didactic on this matter. My friend, Dan Hartnett, is steeped in Theology, Religious-Doctrine, and has read The Bible extensively. He will tell you that The Bible contains mostly paraphrased text. Many of the bloggers on this site paraphrase their blogs and desist from metaphasing and formal equivalence. However, I do get your point that there should be an element of diaphaneity in our blogs.
JBS [01-29-2011]

link to dictionary.com

Erda Armstrong Brennan, Thanks for your message. I tired to reach you, but mail was returned. sorry. naomi
Naomi Vitelli [01-29-2011]

Anybody have memories of the Wayne Ave 5& 10. I did a lot of Christmas shopping there. A set of juice glasses I gave my mother are now being used by our older daughter — right next to her Waterford. I also bought my sister & her husband a Nativity set there for their first Christmas in 1954. Each piece was about $0.15 each. I wrapped each individually so they would have lots to open. They used it right alongside their Hummels until they gave this too to our older daughter. You could also buy turtles there & the dyed chicks at Easter time. We weren't allowed to buy the chicks but they were such fun to look at — and I remember the wood floors. I guess kids today go to a dollar store for these kinds of experiences.
denise Duckworth Tumelty [01-29-2011]

Thank you to Anonymous who posted vpike.com. It was cool looking at the old block — E. Stafford and Musgrave — and Waterview Recreation Center.
Steve Swift, E. Stafford St. [01-29-2011]

The restaurant was Falatico's. I think that is the correct spelling. Yes, it was a really good family type place = nothing fancy — just good food. Speaking of neat food places, how about DAIRY MAID? They had both counter & table service with woderful "tea sanwiches," milk shakes & ice cream sodas. They also sold candy — the most delicious "sandwich mint." I have never been able to get any like them. I loved the coffee fountains in H&H and the cafeteria.
Denise Duckworth Tumelty [01-29-2011]

Duncan: I can't remember bringing Kilfeather to Fernhill, but I do know you used to beat the crap outta' me. Black and blue Duncan, that was you. I'm up for any advice I can provide about where to go and where to stay and what to do in the great state of Maine. Email me at johnbrogan@aol.com. I think I'm losing it. I never played basketball at Fernhill Park with either of the Kelly brothers. I'm sure they were good players though. Joe Lynch was the king of Fernhill the last few times I played there. Joe was a solid player to begin with and on those rinky dink tin backboards with the little holes in them it was bang-zip and two whenever Joe got the ball. He shot too much. For a play maker like me there was little challenge playing there. Too many selfish players. I only shot when I got the ball.
Jack Brogan, Almost frozen solid. Ten foot drifts out my window. [01-29-2011]

Anonymous: The vpike.com site is excellent. Very nostalgic seeing some of the old locations, and a wee bit depressing at some others. I recommend this site to everyone. I'm sure the navigation is obvious, but just in case it is not, you can do a 360 turnaround by pressing the n, s, e, w, arrows on the compass, or you can go to the white lines that have the street names, and click on the small arrows to travel up and down the streets. Okay, I'm off to California to check out my old residences out there...now where is that mouse...?
John Payne [01-29-2011]

Al Paris: Welcome to The Germantown-Web Site although it has been 55 years since you and I graduated from St. Francis. You were friends with Dom Raffaele who also posts on this site. You knew Dom's cousin,Jim Razzano, and he has passed away. A lot of the guys from The Hollow post here including John Payne Jr. whose brother Frank[Cisco] might have been friends with your brother Paul. You lived on Wayne Ave. where your family owned The May Flower Shop. When I was lucky enough to get a date for a prom, I bought flowers from your parents. Lou Pauzano lived in your block and he must have been a good customer since he was always going to Proms including Little Flower's with Helen Harkins who was in our 1955 SFA Class. We had nice looking and friendly girls in that class. You knew so many guys from The Hollow-Dom Raffaele,Jim Razzano,Ralph Gatto[RIP],Johnny Boy McGeehan,Allen Goode,Ken Schenk,Bob Compton,Allen Goode and George Sharkey. Your brother Paul also knew many guys from The Hollow but I did not remember him from St. Francis. Lou Pauzano mentioned that you retired from The PPD. Did you cross paths with Bud Ballard,Ray McGough, or Ed Gillespie when you were on The Force. You are so lucky to be in beautiful Arizona with all the sun and no snow. Over the years, I spent quality time in Arizona, visiting places like Sedona,Flagstaff, Prescott, Tuscon, and The Grand Canyon. I really liked Sedona with Oak Creek Canyon and Tiaquepaque Village with all The Indian Art. I went to An Indian Pow-Wow in Flagstaff and then headed up to The Grand Canyon. I hung out in Whiskey Row in Prescott and it was interesting to see all the guns on the gun-rack. Obviously, I'm a big fan of Arizona and I even voted for your senator. I spent time in those dessert towns on the border and I gather things have been changing in that area. Al! I was very happy to see your post and you were always a friendly and nice kid- you must have drunk at The Hollow Water-fountain and smelled the roses in The May Flower Shop.
John Bruce Schmitt [01-29-2011]

Bobby D'Angelo: Yeah I was invisable to the girls too. LOL But I had the last laugh, I would always end up with the "leftovers" when we went out girl hunting. But the "Leftovers" were a ton more fun and shall we say more "adveturious" (cough) than the good looking drama queens. LOL I had my sweethearts who never looked at me too. Once again I had the last laugh. My GF is the most stunningly beautiful full Irish redhead you could ever see. And she's even prettier on the inside. Now If I could only teach her how to make and enjoy Lasagna. LOL DAVE LINN: Trust me dude...you were an inspiration to me as well. And you still are.
Joe Graber, Still going in circles [01-29-2011]

Anonymous — sorry but you are probably right. Being from lower Gtown we never ventured much past Chelton — only went so far as Flagg Bros and the Adams Mens store. Do you remember the Pinkus store for electronics, Rowells, Allens, JC Penny's and all the great places to eat like The Dog House, the soft pretzel shop at Gtn and Chelton, Imhoff's restaurant, H&H etc.
Bill, Eastsider [01-29-2011]

At the risk of offending anyone by forgetting their names, I want to thank all of my friends who sent me well wishes for my B.D. on 1/26. A big thank you is in order........Bro. Kevin, Love that clever Apple app. that you sent me, its already been put to good use.......On a completely different subject, the Bernie Madoff name came up over the weekend at an auction of his confiscated property for sale to raise cash for his victims here in Baltimore. I read with delight when much of the jewelry & other objects suddenly turned up missing from the lot. One keen observer with the Baltimore Sun paper who was covering the story was overheard to say: "And we thought Bernie was a thief, this Bird is so bad he would steal the last Supper if Jesus turned his back".....I immediately went back in time to the many blogs & experiences of the "second story gang" in Kensington during the fifties & sixties. Our gal Lillian somewhere is smiling with a nod of approval........Enjoy your day everyone.
Bernard f mc kernan, annapolis Md. [01-28-2011]

Lou Giorno and Dennis McGlinchey-Thank you! It is very nice to hear from a former customer and the photo is priceless to me...I was very young then but in those days my parents could send my brother and I around the block by ourselves to the Saturday matinees at the Orpheum. There was a bakery just up the street where we used to go after the movie for milk and eclairs. I have fond memories of this neighborhood, including breakfast at Horn and Hardart's (they had excellent oatmeal) and occasional dinners at the Italian resaurant on Chelton Ave. I'm not sure of the spelling but it sounded like Filatico's. The last time I visited, the old camera shop was occupied by a craft store. I will have to make a trip down there to see what is there now. Thank you for the replies!
Casey Fox, Wilkes-Barre, Pa [01-28-2011]

Attention Ed BURKE, Joe LEONE,Al PATRIZI,Frank MURPHY, Ray DAWES, and George MC CAULLEY. How does Wednesday, April 20th, 2011 sound for our next luncheon at the BUCK Hotel? Let me know if you have another date in mind. Bud BALLARD
Bud Ballard [01-28-2011]

Hey! You “OLD HEADS” us younger generation of athletes at Fernhill Park weren’t too bad either. In the baseball-football scene we could hold our own. Guys like Bobby Duncie, Bob D’Angelo, John Petty, Craig Moore, Ed Belcak, Tom Collela, John Abbamondi, Vinnie Kelly, Rich Pio, John Hahm, and I didn’t do too bad either. I remember hitting a few balls over that high left field fence at the GBC. Yea, that was the best times of all our lives. I think my entire life was baseball, touch football, basketball, wiffle ball, stick ball, wire ball, wall ball,step ball, chink, ANYTHING WITH A BALL! And yes I do remember you guys too.
Joe DAgostino, New Jersey [01-28-2011]

I am humbled by the kind words put forth about me in this bloggosphere. I'm Proud to know guys like Bobby D'Angelo, for one. He always had a smile on his face and was always one of the easiest people to get along with. I Thank you all for the well wishes. I just hope that you all make sure your grandkids get the vacine.
Joe Graber, I always walked north on the beach..that way I didn't limp. LOL [01-28-2011]

Bruce, I was trying to get Jack Brogan to respond. Larry Faust, Bob Schaefer, and Jim Katcavage were professionals and only came on occasion, while Frank Harkins put more balls through the Fernhill park nets than anyone. I was probably second. I'm looking to vacation in Maine this summer, and I need "Brogs" advice on where to stay. Duncan Hubley.
Duncan Hubley, McKean Avenue age only 71. [01-28-2011]

Bob D'Angelo, I second that motion on our friend Joe Graber.
Dave Linn, West Side of Gtn. [01-28-2011]

Paul Borian: I liked your match-up between teams from The Hollow and Fernhill albeit I am washed-up since I go to the gym frequently and I do wash up. If Bobby Goo Guarinello were the coach,he would not put The Bor at point-guard and he would put the smartest guy on the court at that position,Frank Klock. Frank would not be happy if you took his spot and from the get-go, this would cause friction. The Fernhill team would play bigger and you would have to be under the boards for the few rebounds that you would get. Leroy Kelly for Fernhill, was a good rebounder and played on the rim. Being competitive, you would be fighting for the rebound and this would be a problem. Leroy went to Gratz and you had a bad reputation with The Kats from Gratz, you even had a police escort after a Gratz-Germantown game. You and Bill Haas played for Loudenslager Post. Leroy had a problem with Bill Haas and he would not like a guy from Loudenslager bogarting[nutting] him. You could not bring a ringer from Ohio[Lebron James] but Larry Rinaldi was one of the best players from The Hollow. Jack Brogan brought a ringer to Fernhill, Ed Kilfeather. Duncan Hubley would bring a semi-ringer Ken Twiford whom you knew from baseball and Loudenslager Post. Most people knew about Ken Twiford from football and baseball[GA] but he had a game in basketball. Since I'm washed up, I would be John Hondo Halvicek and come off the bench and take turns guarding Frank Sharpy Felice. You might have a problem with Sharpy since he would be at Boyd's buying clothes for the game and show up late. The Hollow guys would have difficulty with our offense. Joe Lynch was coached by Goo and we would use Goo's hi-low offense. Joe Lynch and Jack Brogan were smart players and they would make that offense work and dishing off to Ken Twiford and Duncan Hubley working the back-door play along the baseline. Duncan was an Engineer and he should have gone to Princeton where he would have worked the Princeton Back-door. Jim Morrison of The Doors was a back-door man and Duncan was a better player. You and your Hollow guys would also have big trouble with our defense. The Nova players would have a panic-attack when The Hawks would use Jack Ramsay's 3-1-1 Zone Press. We would press you after a shot was made and wear you down. In the front of the Zone, there would be Leroy Kelly,Duncan Hubley and Ken Twiford. All these guys were fast and tenacious. In the back of the zone, there would be Brogan and Lynch who could read what was happening. I would come off the bench and play either the front or the back of the zone-press. Like Hondo of The Celtics, this team would be conditioned and have stamina. Sonny Kennedy would be frustrated because we would keep the ball from him and watch Frank Felice take his 25 ft. jumper and great %-shot-I jest. You and Mike Garvey like the snow, so enjoy The Poconos and Old Grand Dad.
Schmitty: [01-28-2011]

Go on vpike.com and take a trip to Germantown and Price and you will see the store and the sign that was painted over. Its solves the debate.
anonymous [01-28-2011]

I saw the PSFS building on the snow news the other night and I recalled how it was once one of the tallest buildings downtown. You could see downtown from the cliffs (now the Expressway) behind Milne Street, with the right people. It was right above Midvale-Heppenstall, which was sure to be a target in the case of war with the Russians. (Else, why did we have a gun battery ruin our baseball field?) Didn't we all have savings accounts with passbooks at one time at PSFS or was it the Germantown Savings Society. We even had passbooks and it was duly recorded that dime or quarter we managed to saved for the week. We were always bringing in nickels and dimes to ransom pagan babies in China. (I hope they're happy now in Beijing!) Or the March of Dimes or 10 cents for music lessons on Friday afternoon (one precious hour out of the classroom routine) or putting flowers on the altar of the May Queen. Some guys I know (Run for Cover!) would pick flowers on the way to school and present them to Sister Clare Eleanor for that altar. Kids bought milk for recess at SFA and pretzels and Mike and Ikes (4 for a penny). I always thought my father was so smart because he knew what stops to get off in the subway. I can still smell the grease and hear the screeching of the rails on cold winter nights. "There are nights when the wolves are silent and the moon howls."
Joe Lynch: a man, a plan, a canal, Panama [01-28-2011]

Eastsider, you are the one mistaken, I lived their and the Vernon mens shop was at Price st. I think you are confusing it with the boys store. Others that lived in the area know it too.
anonymous [01-28-2011]

Bill Honnen kindly sent me a Google Earth link that showed the lot at Wayne and Seymour where I mentioned that boys played wall ball and half ball. By spinning the image around, I could see the devastation that has been wreaked on the once-beautiful streetscape of the 200 block of W. Seymour St. All the flowering trees that were planted along the sidewalks when I was a kid are gone; nothing left but the metal frames. So sad. I was, however, amazed to see that Lai Cleaners is still at 5001 Wayne Ave. 'Sandy' Lai opened a small hand laundry on the odd side of the 4900 block of Wayne Ave back in the 60s, eventually buying up the old 5 & 10 and opening a laundromat there, a takeaway Chinese restaurant across Wayne Ave, behind Schenks's bakery and finally buying the building at 5001 Wayne Ave, where he opened a dry cleaners and lived upstairs. I used to tutor his son during summer vacations. I am amazed that he is still in business at that location! Where Kodner's was is now a medical center, operated by someone with a name that sounds Indian and the beer distributor site on the SW corner is now a pizza place. I doubt it can hold a candle to the pizzas that Joe Raffaele used to make! Bill says that there are many vacant lots on Tacoma St and on Wayne Ave and that many of the grand homes on Wayne Ave are gone, too. I don't ever want to go back again; I couldn't bear it. And, like others, I also remember the Ye Old Steak and Ale and the Toddle House. The latter had really good hot dogs, cooked on one of those gizmos where the hot dogs go round and round on rollers, so they are cooked evenly. My mouth is watering just thinking of them! Maybe not as good as at the Little Old Dog House next door to the New Lyric Theatre, though.
Banished Blogger [01-27-2011]

Hey JBS, I have come to the conclusion, after reading many blogs on the site from you, that you are really wasting your time. There is a writing career just waiting for you. Think about it.If people read the story of the second story man, from kensington, imagine how many books you could sell with your knowledge of the history of germantown and its many characters thru the years. I am very much impressed that you knew and or remembered that Ron Ebert who played basketball for North Catholic back in the early fifties, married my cousin Nancy Mc Sherry. I,for one would, buy a hard back copy as long as you would give me an signature copy.
ED BURKE [01-27-2011]

Anyone out there who went to Anna lane Lingelbach public school in 60's Teachers were, Mr Boston, Miss Dillon, Mrs Harvey, Mrs Crumlin?, Mrs Courles (she was a first grade teacher)Also remember "play day" this was held in June
anonymous [01-27-2011]

Marie 01/26/2011 I remember Audino's shoe repair. There were times when he was not very nice. Also, the chicken store, I could remember a few of us standing there looking in at what was going on. Hope all is good with you and your family. maryann
maryann gioquindo mcfarland [01-27-2011]

Joe Lynch--I was in perfect health until I was 70yrs old--I lived a very productive life as school teacher (35yrs)-professional musician -have 3 children & 5 grandkids--this TM came on to me without warning on my 70th birthday 5 yrs ago-I'm coping the best of my ability--Thanks for your concern. Lou Giorno
lou giorno, Lou from burbs [01-27-2011]

to banished blooger next to paint store was logs shoe maker there was a barber shop am pretty sure it was called dockertys on kodners side of the block on the other side between drug store & anastasi was a dry cleaner next down fron anastasi was a radio repair shop then kehans garage siani barber may flower shop next i think it was called kramers candy supply store then kane & brown then glass place the glass place store & property was oned by schenks bakery the s&l was called keystone sam kane was one of the main officers of it bud curran
bud curran [01-27-2011]

Naomi — I loved those lemon sticks. I have NEVER been able to get ones that worked as well. Miss Ginder was an interesting person. She was a Temple graduate — I think phys ed major. She probably graduated around 1920 — quite unusual for a woman at that time. When she no longer could do the steps to the basement, we met in the locker room off the gym. It must have been 110 degrees in there. First Aid was the first badge I earned & I still remember the things Miss Ginder taught us.
denise Duckworth Tumelty [01-27-2011]

To:Tom Jakeman 1/23/2011. Your message interestd me,I worked with your Dad & uncle Willie at Riggs Trucking,I was maybe 10yrs younger than your Dad.I also recall your aunt PAT.I eventually married one of the Riggs girls. I then went to work at Derbyshire Machine on Belfield Ave. I'm still there, around the corner from your aunt.
Don Brady, Born & raised on E. Queen Lane & Bayton St.(75)YRS. [01-27-2011]

Hey Mike Garvey...Long time no see..how have you been?
Sheila [01-27-2011]

Hey Al Paris. How are you doing? How is your brother Paul? Tell him I said hello. Him and I were in the Boy Scouts together way back when. I remember your mom also, she was a real sweetheart. For all of you flower shoppers, a good friend of my dad, Tommy Keane, used to own the flower shop in the School Lane House, though not technically Germantown, it was on Wissahickon Ave just not on the Right side.
Joe DePero, 52, levittown, st mikes [01-27-2011]

Kevin McKernan, Thanks for carrying the coals to Newcastle for the clan & all the world to see that I am now considered an aging Lothario @ 70! Thanks for the kind words on my birthday. I should have taken better care of myself & my portfolio If I knew I was going to outlast the "Turk". My journey has been long & interesting. The difficult times that I made it through were in no small part because you had my back or were by my side. Ginny Griffith of Penn st was my first crush but spring flowers have given way to frosty mornings these days & the pigeon poop like the romance has hardened like week old concrete, albeit the memories. Nice to be sharing the present with you, my great supporter & family today.
Bernard f mc kernan, Annapolis Md. [01-27-2011]

John Payne; in the foreground of the picture from the hill,the kid closest to the camera is MONK.
anon: [01-27-2011]

Joe Lynch: You and your enlightened friend have been submitting profound commentary about The Germantown Legacy for future generations. These comments about legacy also resonated with Dennis McGlinchey. You have added a lot to this site with your comments about legacy,ethnicity, and a historical perspective. I also enjoyed Duncan Hubley's and your posts about Fernhill which was so integral toward your child-development. I never thought that Fernhill Park was a provincial place since many of the folks went to different schools, were of different religions and races. I visited and frequented many playgrounds and parks and Fernhill recieved high grades from me. As you intimated, Fernhill was more than the basketball court. For you, many of your best friends hung out there. You drank a lot of Frank's[soda] at Dave's Drug Store but you did quite a job on sodas at Zonn's on Abbottsford, I learned the name Zonn's from your friend, Duncan Hubley. Joe! I hope that you, The Enlightened Blogger,and FFK,The Poet, keep posting since all of you help us to think about the past and the future.
Bruce Schmitt [01-27-2011]

hey !banished blogger.just to let you know i had a beauty shop next to the savings and loan keystone bank from 1960 t0 1968 called franks hairstyling . i got to know a lot of the people from wayne avenue. i did all of the lady's hair from mrs kramer and marge paris and all of ralph's sister and his mom . also knew all of the manzo girls,includeing loue pauzano mom jean !bill leonardo i did not remember you brother but i went out with a girl on bringhurst st . her name was joan kennedy she came from a big family she had 5 brothers and 2 sisters. al paris i remember your dad joe and your mom marge!what great people they were . we went to fld one year and met5 up with them and had a great time i knew every one on that block .i remember when my good friend john abbmondi bought gabers store on the conner of wayne ave and manhiem st he was there for about 10 years.i loved it on wayne avenue . i moved to roslyn and open up a beauty shop there in 1968 and stayed till 1993 but wayne avenue was where i got my start and those great people helped me learn the business. never will i forget them ! frank .
FRANK MARGIOTTI, north wales [01-27-2011]

I have not posted in some time, but still read this site occasionally. It keeps me in touch with my happy youthful days. When I read Joe Graber's post and the comments made about it, I knew I had to jump into the discussion. I remember Joe very well and his challenge with polio, since we are contemporaries.He was one of the gys in the neighborhood you never remembered meeting. He was always just there. He was a friendly kid who never once complained about his polio, and in fact made light of it many times. He played every sport well and always was a tough kid to guard whether it was a touch football game or full court basketball . He gave his all every single time. He never asked for any breaks, he wanted to be treated just like every other kid. If he even suspected that you were not doing your best against him, he would give you hell. He sought no favors and was just one of the guys. I think his attitude made us look past his disability. You wanted Joe Graber as a teammate and a friend. Joe had a tremendous personality too. He was always greeting you with a smile and spent a fair amount of time encourage us to do our best. I can proudly say that he was an inspiration to me with his never give up attitude and strong character. I am really proud to say I know him and he has always had my utmost respect. Joe Graber is a good person and a good man!
Bob D'Angelo [01-27-2011]

Reverend Lynch, aka Joe> Great post about recording life experiences for posterity.I think that one other component about that secrecy/privacy tendency has to do with the Irish. At least that is an observation that Cherry and I have concluded over the years. I don't know what the roots of that would be, but I'm sure the professor may have some insights in that area.
John Payne [01-27-2011]

Bob — you are correct — it was the Adams clothing shop above Chelton. Sorry anonymous but you are incorrect — The Vernon shop was on the west side of Gtn ave. between Maplewood and Chelton. It was were all the really cool guys like Bob bought their threads.
Bill, Eastsider [01-27-2011]

Happy Birthday Dorian, err, I mean Bernie and many more to come! You do look good for your age so I guess keep doing whatever you're doing man.
HELEN LEONE D'ANGELO [01-27-2011]

Naomi Vitelli I remember those wonderful day too ... it was so much fun ... Rosemarie
rosemarie hite malageri [01-27-2011]

Kevin Mc. HAPPY BIRTHDAY AND MANY MORE! Rosemarie
rosemarie hite malageri [01-27-2011]

D, GBC Alumni: The link, CLICK, is where I got the information that Happy Hollow was the first (oldest) recreation center in Phila. I wasn't aware of that, or that GBC was the first boys club in the city. There may be something at that site about GBC's early days. There are also pics there. The site seems to be some official architectural history. Germantown has some significant contributions to the history of Philadelphia.
John Payne [01-26-2011]

does any body remember the speekeasy on sylvania st the guy had his celler fixedup and sold beer to anybody from 4to40 as long as you payed 1dollor a beer at that time beer was 10cents
anonymous [01-26-2011]

Joe Graber, Thank you for sharing your personal story of challenge and perseverence. Resilience is a great quality to possess but, by definition, a real bitch to acquire. Thanks again for the inspirational post and best of health and happiness in your future.
Mike Buchanan, Kennett Township, Chester County [01-26-2011]

I guess no one new the shoe cobbler on hanies st.Near the chicken store, Also the snow is just wonderful & cozy.Marie
Marie [01-26-2011]

Let it SNOW SNOW SNOW. And thank God you are around to see it.
Mike Garvey [01-26-2011]

The 5000 block of Wayne Ave., betw Seymour and Manheim, had many lovely shops and businesses. Next to Kodner's was a real estate agency; farther up the block was Goetz' laundromat, the S&L, a card shop, the paint store and another drug store. On the other side were the other drug store (didn't sell drugs), Dr. Anastasi, and then Siani's barber shop, the May Flower Shop and Kane & Brown hardware store. What have I left out?
Banished Blogger [01-26-2011]

My brother Dorian Gray, aka Bernie McKernan turns 70! today (Jan 26th). Hard to believe this is the same young boy, before there were taggers, who covered East Germantown in calk graffiti, professing his eternal love for Ginny? Some of his calk hearts still survive under bridges...pigeon poop and Ginny forever... Happy Birthday, brother! It's been a grand ride with you leading the way.
kevin [01-26-2011]

Joe Graber — thanks for the input on polio. It was an insidious disease that we all feared. Good on ya for not letting it make you less than you could be. Anyone looking for ancestral info can go to a US archives & get all kinds of info. I was able to get copies of the ship's manifest for my grandfather & his naturalization papers in his own writing. They also have the census for any year older than 70 (privacy). My husband got his families info from the census. And yes, I agree this blog is about Germantown but it is about our youth, the past and even the future. Welcome all that people have to say. You don't know what doors will be opened.
Denise Duckworth Tumelty [01-26-2011]

I believe the mens store across from Vernon Park may have been Adam's mens clothes store. Anyone have a childhood of sports at Wister Playground ? Anything from baseball — football and basketball were big time sports there. Many great athletes from Germantown and Brickyard played year round.
Bob- Eastsider [01-26-2011]

Doe anyone remember the Vernon Park Days? It was great fun back then...so many tables and all kinds of things to purchase. I used to enjoy the lemons with candy stick and the music playing....those were the days along Germantown Avenue. naomi
Naomi Vitelli [01-26-2011]

Duncan Hubley: You and Joe Lynch are certainly archivists for Fernhill. All the years that I went to the grocery store on Abbottsford Ave. for a soda after a basketball-run, I never knew the name was Zonn's. It was not far from McKean Ave. where you lived. Mrs. Faust whose son Larry was the great basketball player from South Catholic and LaSalle also lived on McKean Ave. Larry was one big guy. You mentioned in your last post that Jack Brogan,The Maine Guy, brought a ringer,Ed Kilfeather,to compete against your guys from Manheim U.[Your corner]. I do recall that Ed Kilfeather was a great ballplayer from The Catholic League during the 50's. Another guy from The Catholic League, played at Fernhill by the name of Ron Ebert. He was All- Catholic from North[1958] and he graduated with Bernie Mckernan who posts on this site. Ron H. married John McSherry's sister and The McSherry Family lived not far from you and Dave Heil on Schuyler St. You and I will get together with Dave Heil in the future. Jim Heil[Dave's brother] also played ball at Fernhill with Bob Schaeffer,Jim Katcavage,Big John West, and Bad Boy Freddy Peck. All these guys played football for either Roman or Roxborough. Bob Schaeffer,an NBA player, was a deadly shooter and passer, many times behind his back. Bob S. would throw up his shot and he did not miss often and when he did, the linemen pounded the boards. Your Manheim U guys were strong including Rich Pomfret but I would give the edge to Bob Schaefer and his big rebounders. It would have been fun to watch Paul Borian from The Hollow, trying to snatch a rebound from Jim Katcavage,a great NFL player for The NY Giants. It is great to read the posts from you and Joe Lynch about Fernhill, one of the great parks in Philadelphia.
Bruce Schmitt [01-26-2011]

JBS > A slight correction on the Jack Nicholson line, he said "You can't HANDLE the truth", not "You can't UNDERSTAND the truth". Speaking of salty marines; in a recent telephone call from Josh, I was telling him about a D.I. I had named Sgt. Wayne Rollings. Wayne, at that time, 1964, held a record for sit ups which was in the 1300 range. Crazy right? Well, while talking to Josh, he said he just punched it up on Google, and that there is a Major General Wayne Rollings who has a record of 40,000 sit ups in a sixteen hour span. Say what?! I thought that must be Sgt. Rolling's son. Wrong again. Wayne finshed his first tour as an enlisted man in 1965, went to college and obtained a BA in history, while remaining in the reserves, then re-activated, and went to OCS at Quantico to become an officer, then went on to become a major general. PS six serious medals along the way, while leading Force Reconnaissance units along the way. Anyone interested, just google wayne rollings, usmc, sit ups. If you wrote this guy's life into a movie script, no one would accept it. they would say it's too over the top.
John Payne [01-26-2011]

Denise> I remember Ms. Ginder. That was a long time ago. early fifties. She also ran an arts and crafts class for pre and early grade schoolers.
John Payne [01-26-2011]

Paul Borian: You arrange the mid-winter classic & I'll buy the 1st 2 rounds after the game.As for reffing, don't know if I'd live with all the elbows throw at me on the way by.
Monk [01-26-2011]

John Payne: You just made me very hungry, with your mention of creamed dried beef/over broccoli rabe.Yummy.Thanks, & keep in touch,Linda
L.Fontana [01-26-2011]

The Vernon mens shop was located at the corner of Germantown ave and Price st. That is the location, none other. It was below Chris Vandenbergs Jewelry store who was one of the 6 Gemologists located in Phila.
anonymous [01-26-2011]

Mary Alice & Rosemarie --thanks for your responses--this malady, transverse myelitis,has no cure in sight but a lot of research going on to find a cure. I get mobile with a walker. Thanks again for your thoughts. Lou Giorno
lou giorno, lou from burbs [01-26-2011]

Joe Graber and Lou Giorno you've done more in your lives with the scourge of disease than anyone I know. I wish I knew you when you were growing up. Funny, we should meet here! But, that's the way it was in the 1950s--if someone was just a little different, he/she was hidden away, isolated. I had a cousin with a mental disorder and never knew about her. Was it embarrassment? We were just unenlightened then, and still, I think, an immigrant population, mistrustful of anyone outside the immediate family. But, THAT's the question, isn't it? Why are some afflicted so terribly, yet some prosper and lead long and healthy lives? Write you story for your kids, for us, so we might know the whole truth! Take the time now to sort it out, to assess, to evaluate. Academy Award motion pictures and best-sellers are made out of lives like yours. Hell, writing about yourself is easy (OK, maybe not so)and cathartic. Or videotape yourself, not hard. All of us should do one or the other for posterity. "To write about one's life is to live it twice, and the second is both spiritual and historical. . . (Sorry about the preaching.)
Joe Lynch, 6th man on Paul Borian's Quintet [01-26-2011]

speaking of flower shops in gtn there was one on armat st named London's
anonymous [01-26-2011]

Joe Graber — thanks for sharing your story. You certainly educated me on polio and its effects. Thanks.
Dennis McGlinchey, Born & raised in East Germantown [01-26-2011]

Banished Blogger, good advice to write down the stories and history of you and your family. I researched my maternal side a few years ago while my Mom and Aunt were still alive. I could only go back so far. I'm working on my paternal side now. Unfortunately, my Dad and his siblings died in 1996, so the opportunity to get from them is missed by about 15 years. But, I'm getting what I can and as I see it, what I can uncover now, as little as it is, is more than there would be had I not made the effort, and will be of help to future generations. I agree, it is the future generations that will take an interest and I'm hoping maybe I'll be leaving somewhat of a trail for them. BTW, your posting name is misleading. No one is banished from this blog. People choose to leave on their own, but that's not banishment....
Dennis McGlinchey, Born & raised in East Germantown [01-25-2011]

Interesting — the Happy Hollow I remember from the '50s had not changed much from the original 1911 design. I really did not do much at HH except go to Brownies & Girl Scouts. Our troop was Troop 1 — the first troop north of the Mason-Dixon line & east of the Mississippi. — although it was founded at Star Garden Recreation Center not HH. It now has the name of our leader A. Edwina Ginder. it is one of 2 troops in the US with a name attached to it. the other is in Atlanta, Georgia. It is named with Julliette Lowe — the founder of Girl Scouts. Did you know that the first Girl Scout cookies were made & sold in Philadelphia. They are on sale now — Remember, this is the only time of year you can get them but they freeze well :-)
Denise Duckworth Tumelty [01-25-2011]

Mid Winter Happy Hollow Classic....How about a basketball game between the guys from Fernhill Park vs Happy Hollow?Playing for Fernhill is Jack(no pass)Brogan,Joe Lynch,John(washed up)Schmitt,Duncan Hubley,and Leroy Kelly.The Hollow will be represented by playmaker Paul Borian,Gunner Frank Felice,Rebounder Sonny Kennedy,Poet Frank Flock,and Ringer Lebron James.Monk McCauley will referee.Are you guys up to the challenge?All medical costs to be paid for by the losers.....Paul Borian
Paul Borian, My last field goal was 42 years ago [01-25-2011]

Annon. There were two Paris brothers Al and Paul. Paul was the older and was a police officer / detective who went to work for a private investigative firm when he retired. Al was the younger who I think was a highway patrol officer. You are correct on the location of the flower shop. Working up Wayne Ave was a store at Wayne and seymore, then Kane and brown hardware, then what kramer's wholesale, Paris flowers then siani barbershop.. Hope this helps. Lou
Louis F Pauzano Sr., South Phila [01-25-2011]

Lou Giorno, I just read up on this terrible disease that you are afflicted with and i have never heard of it before today. I can only say that i pray that the treatments you are receiving are successful in helping you. We never know what is around that corner do we. Rosemarie
rosemarie hite malageri [01-25-2011]

Cowtown is located off Chelten Ave.. up Morton Street to Church Lane/Befield Down Bayton Street back to Chelten Ave My father told me it was called Cowtown because before the houses were built is was a cow pasture.. Erda
Erda (Armstrong) Graham, From the Westside [01-25-2011]

Bill H, nice post of memories. I wasn't from that part of Germantown and didn't know the people or places you mentioned, but I enjoyed it nonethe less. Great detail and descriptions to those memories....
Dennis McGlinchey, Born & raised in East germantown [01-25-2011]

Casey Fox, here is a photo of your parents' Potter Camera Shop on Maplewood Avenue. Taken in 1963, it is part of the PhillyHistory photo collection, with this photo being on the FriendsofImmaculate.com website.... CLICK
Dennis McGlinchey, Born & raised in East Germantown [01-25-2011]

Bob-Eastsider. Believe the men's store across from Vernon park was Becker's, agree the Vernon shop was on G-town below Chelten.
Geo. Chatburn [01-25-2011]

I just visited the Happy Hollow site. Wonderful photos! I was surprised to see that the wading pool I used to splash around in was part of the original facilities. Amazing! I'd like to see a photo of the place when it was a quarry; can't imagine how that was. Such a big hill but so flat on the Wayne Ave frontage. I'm curious how it would have looked when it was a working quarry.
Banished Blogger [01-25-2011]

JL: Yes, by all means, tell your children your stories but also record them, write them down and get them into the public record. As we've seen on 'Faces of America', it's not the next generation that seeks its roots but the ones farther down the track, 5 or more generations later. I started researching my grandfather at the main library and, although he had a very common Irish surname, I was able to find him in the city directories, which gave the man's name (almost always only men), address and occupation. Because he was an electrician and worked for the electric company, I found him fairly easily. Then I went to the manuscript censuses, on microfiche, and found the rest of his family. I was profoundly disappointed to find it recorded next to his parents' names that the were born in 'Ireland (English)", meaning they came from Northern Ireland. They were, however, Catholic, so their story would be very interesting, if only there were some record. Next time I am in Philadelphia, I will try to discover when they arrived and on what ship and I hope to find out where in Ireland they came from, so I can go there myself. I always knew I had an Irish heritage and it was driven home to me when I read Leon Uris' 'Trinity'. Any Irishman who hasn't read that book should do so. So, folks, walk your kids through your photo albums, take them on tours of Germantown and tell them what used to be where, write your stories down and get them out there so researchers years from now will be able to share them when we're not around to blog.
Banished Blogger [01-25-2011]

Hard to believe our Happy Hollow playground is 100 years old.The picture of the original playground with a wading pool and pagoda brings back many fond memories of that site in the 50's and 60's.It was our Casino! Poker games were going on non-stop.Sometimes two or three games were played simultaneously.I can still hear Mike Masterson saying,"I'm in." Trout(R.I.P.)was always in.His standard line was,"I'll call you and raise you a quarter."I was always trying to bluff,and once in awhile it worked.On a good day,I would go to Moe's and buy a half pint of Vanilla and orange ice ice cream for a quarter.Then go to Sal's and order a cheese steak with sauce and onions with pickles on the side,and a cherry coke.Then go back to the site and play some more.Just about everyone in our crowd played cards.If gambling were legal at that time,the Hollow would have been the Vegas of the East.We would have had a step up on Atlantic City.....Paul Borian
Paul Borian, No longer bluffing [01-25-2011]

There I go with the brain..pauses again. The "anonymous" about flower shops is mine.
John Payne [01-25-2011]

To my best friend Buddy Curran, Hello let's talk
Al Paris, I am one of the Paris brothers. Our family owned the May Flower Shop on Wayne Ave. I now live in Arizona [01-25-2011]

to all go to GTN THEATERS has pictures and all info.about all movie theaters in gtn this subject comes up at least once every six months bud curran
bud curran [01-25-2011]

The Unity Frankford store at the corner of Tacoma & Manheim streets was owned by Michael & Anna Fox not Harold. My bad. Sorry for the mix up.
Bill H [01-25-2011]

Frank Klock&Kevin McKernan: The two of you really stepped up on the intellectual ladder with your recent blogs. Frank presented us with his poignant poem and Kevin enlightened us with philosophical principles. Frank K. and I attended The Jesuit College in Philadelphia and we connected with Kevin's philosophical blog since we had many courses in philosophy including Logic,Metaphysics,and Epistemology. My Jesuit-mentors introduced me to Philosopher-Theologians with names,Hans Kuhn,Balthasar,Karl Rahner,and Karl Barth. In the 60's, I was so impressed with Hans Kuhn that I attended his lecture and bought his book,"Does God Exist?" He was later muzzled by the church from speaking on Religious-doctrine. Balthasar,A Intellectua-Giant had left The Jesuit-Order and Ignatius,The Founder of The Jesuits, was crying from heaven. Karl Rahner,another Intellectual-Giant led a very complex life. He had a romantic involvement with a German writer. She and Karl Rahner did not consider this affair sinful since this was not a physical relationship and it was simply Platonic and Spiritual. They were not concerned with matters of The Flesh but focused on Intellectual Elements. Karl Barth,The Swiss Theologian and Philosopher, had a very convoluted life. He lived in the same house with his wife and girl-friend who inspired him. Luke said,"Judge Not and Be Not Judged." Being disillusioned,I listened to "The Rolling Stones" who sang,"You Can't Always Get What You Want". In life,We can not always get what we want or like but we should always do the right thing which is my simple philosophy of life. On this site,we should opt for truth,morality and civility. My wife,Ludmila, was a Borgesian-Scholar and Borges did not think that an individual could process truth with an unwilling mind. Joe Lynch,the teacher,knows that students can not learn with an unwilling mind. On this site, we should espouse truth. Jack Nicholson said,"You Can't Understand The Truth". When one is hit with the truth, do not get a headache.
John Bruce Schmitt [01-25-2011]

I'm not sure about Happy Hollow, but I do know that the Germantown Boys Club is the oldest Boys Club in America.
D., GBC Alumni [01-25-2011]

About Transverse Myelitis CLICK Lou Giorno, So sorry to hear of your medical condition. Above is a site if anyone is interested in the disorder. Lou, I hope that you are having a full and speedy recovery.
Maryalice Armstrong Brennan [01-25-2011]

I think the reason that this site is so popular is not that it is about Germanown, or The Hollow, or Brickyard. I think it is just that it is about our youth. What I find interesting is the similarity of experiences, regardless of specific location.
anonymous [01-25-2011]

kevin McKernan: [like a lot of the young Italian boys back then--a man-child. For some genetic reason, these Italian gentlemen were several years ahead of us Irish blokes in physical maturity. But God being just, we caught up.] How true! Remember Jules Petrone? He was in my freshman class, and on the first day, most of us thought he was a teacher. I ran into him many years later when he was a cop in Germantown, and he looked exactly the same. I introduced myself, and he didn't recognize me. He told me that quite a few ex-classmates would recognize him and say hello, but he didn't really remember anyone, because, in his words, "back then we were all "little kids" and now we were all grown up", and yes I was bigger then him. Another guy you might remember, that was from Germantown, was Sal Rescigno. He was on the football team, not that big, but muscular, and as tough as nails. There was a game I think with Bishop Neumann in the driving rain. With CD winning by a small margin, with minutes to play, we kicked off to Neumann, and the runner broke tackles and was on his way to scoring a touchdown, until he ran into Sal on the 50yd line. Sal single-handedly nailed him, with a tackle that would have made Chuck Bednarik proud! I got to ride back on the team bus, next to the coach, Frank Banas, and he couldn't stop talking and complimenting Sal about his tackle.
John Fleming, Tampa Bay, Florida CD'62 [01-25-2011]

I remember getting a sugar cube polio "vaccine"at fitler school
anonymous [01-25-2011]

Hey Bob, I remember the Vernon Men's shop on Germantown ave. One of the salesman there was Horace Striano, Greg's older brother. I think there was a Vernon Boy's shop also. I also remember the Toddle House. Just talked about it last weekend with one of my Germantown friends. We also talked about Ye Beef & Ale House. Do you remember that one? Had some great times, back in the day.
anthonyg [01-25-2011]

Wonderful old pictures of Happy Hollow Playground- thanks for posting them.
HELEN LEONE D'ANGELO [01-25-2011]

to anonymous the flower shop on wayne ave was called the may flower shop it was next to siani barber shop paul paris younger brother was al paris i grew up with him we hung at wayne and seymore up from the hollow bud curran
bud curran [01-25-2011]

Anon: I was one of the unfortunate ones who contracted polio. I was 2 and it was 1948. Long before my hero, Dr Jonas Salk came up with the vaccine. I contracted polio playing in a tide pool down on LBI, where we had a home that was used during the summer, by my family. Although I was too young to remember, my mother told me that I spent 6 months in an Iron Lung. I do though, recall the Polio Hospital Wards where the nurses all worn mask's over their faces. For years I wasn't allowed to play with other children in my neighborhood as their parents were afraid their children might contract polio from me. I was isolated until I was 6 years old. And a slight correction on your timetable with the polio vaccine. It was 1955 in April. According to a 2009 PBS documentary, "Apart from the atomic bomb, America's greatest fear was polio." (Wikopedia) At first I wore a hip=down brace on both legs. (Poster child? Remember the poster's and signs along the side of the highways? March of DIMES?) Over time, I regained strength in my hips and right leg and was left with an atrophied left leg 4 inches shorter than my right leg. After many Medical Proceedures and years in and out of Hopsitals I was able to throw my brace in Frankford Creek one day after seeing a trollyful of GIRLS comming from Frankford HS on my way home from school at NECHS. LOL Boy was my mother mad at me when she asked where my brace was. But I was a teen and my testosterone was flowing wild. TODAY: Post Polio Syndrome has beset most of us survivors. The muscles, I was left with, were overworked trying to compansate and therefore are aging faster than normal. Some of my current symptoms prevent me from having the same mobility I was so accustomed to growing up. I strove to be normal and overachieve. I worked as hard as possible to be seen a normal child. I was a fair athlete as a teen and when I could no longer compete, I was driven to coach since I was always on a ballfielded of some kind. As a teen growing up, GTN and the people who lived there, accepted me and helped me in many ways. They would allow me to have a pinch runner in baseball, I played soccer at the GBC. Eventually I moved to the Beach house in Ship Bottom NJ and not only became a lifeguard for 3 years but also placed 5th in the East Coast Sufing Championship in it's innagural year. It was held in NJ. I bought Ron Jon's 3rd surfboard ever sold. As I age, polio continues to rear it's ugly head. Im loosing mobility quickly. I can no longer go bowling, coach basketball, football soccer or wrestling and I bless the HP tags on my vehicle. Im not trying to blow my own horn here. I just would like everyone to see and understand that there are still 3 million people in the US who are also polio survivors. Most are overachievers by nature. Polio was and is a terrible desease and could be erradicated from the face of the earth sometime soon. I just hope this message sends a warning to all Poppop's, Granny's, Nana's, to make sure their kid's, kids,,,get their polio shots.
Joe Graber, Polio Survivor [01-25-2011]

Bob-Eastsider. I remember the Vernon Shops. I think there were two, one on the south side of Germantown avenue down from Chelten and one across from the Park. I think it was called Vernon Park, where the library was.
Bob McCreight, 57 Havertown [01-23-2011]

Wow! I just went to the site that Bud Curran mentioned, http://www.phila.gov/recreation/facilities/HAPPY__HOLLOW_HISTOR.html. Great old picture of the Hollow from the field. Also, I never knew it was the oldest playground in Philadelphia. Great bit of trivia. Thanks Bud.
anonymous [01-23-2011]

Hmm, the only flower shop I remember belonged to the Parris family. Paul Parris used to hang out with some of my brothers, and he had a younger brother, but I'm blank on his name. That shop was (I think) between Kane and Brown Hardware, and Siani's barber shop. I could be a little off on the location. Strange thing; flower shops in general give me the creeps. It's the smell. It reminds me of wakes. Flowers are beautiful, but en masse, the aroma is overwhelming, and conjures up memories of wakes and funeral parlors. On the other hand, I went to the Philadelphia Flower Show one year, and that was pretty cool. I think the larger venue was able to absorb the aroma from the large volume of flowers; that and there were no corpses.
anonymous [01-23-2011]

Jack McHugh: Interesting story about Mr. Solar not selling you the penknife. I had a similar incident with none other than Ben Wise. I wanted to purchase a small piece of leather from him; when he asked me what size, with a hand gesture, I indicated about a two inch square. Ben found a piece and offered it to me for nothing. I asked Ben if he could punch a small hole in either side of the leather patch. When he inquired as to the holes, I explained that I was making a sling shot. Ben withdrew the patch, and in a midly disapproving manner told me that I should not fool with those things, that someone could get hurt. I guess Ben was part of Hillary's village. He did a good thing. I'm sure I didn't think so at the time.
John Payne [01-23-2011]

Bob (Eastsider): I remember both the Vernon Shop and the Toddle House. No stories abot the Vernon Shop, but the Toddle House became a late night, (very late, as in the bars just closed), haunt for something to eat and coffee. I remember being in there one time with Ollie Powers. He was home on a visit from Florida where he had moved to and became a police officer. There was quite a transient crowd in there at that time of the morning. I'm sure several short stories could be written about the characters that frequented that place.
John Payne [01-23-2011]

present park to city jan.1 1914 phila.pa.what is regarded as one of the most substantial siets for a park purpose was received by the city and accepted by the fairmount park comm.of a track of land 10 and half acres from the heirs of thomas & elizabeth warton mckean family fernhill park is the name to be given to this track of land it was one of a few gifts including 26,500 to improve this site bud curran
bud curran [01-23-2011]

I can't get over that we can write anything here and people will read it. Those links we all have to Germantown with various characters and settings, events and memories are gold, and I'm just wondering when the vein will finally be mined and we won't have anything else to say to each other. Let's tell the stories to our children so they can continue the blog after we're gone.
Joe Lynch, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance [01-23-2011]

Casey Fox--I was a customer at your parents camera shop -late 40s early 50s-they were very helpful--they even loaded the camera for you.lou giorno
lou giorno, lou from burbs [01-23-2011]

To Germantown HS Grad's and friends of Richard LaGreca: Yesterday, my dear friend and bus. partner, Richard LaGreca (Class of '58) passed, from a battle with cancer. I was fortunite to be with Richard and his family this week ... Some of you may remember, Richard was the "COOLEST" guy in school & was captain of the baseball and football varsity teams at GHS in late 50's. Last year, we attended our GHS, 50th re-union together, played golf and had a blast!...Richard will be missed.. If anyone needs home address or funeral information, which will be late next week in West Palm Beach, Fla., feel free to contact me at my e-mail address or cell at 404-431-6584. Ed. (Sonny) Kennedy
Edward (Sonny) Kennedy, Happy Hollow guy/GHS [01-23-2011]

The Vernon shop was a good mens store with the latest styles. The tall black man who worked their was supposed to be a terrific basketball player. He was always helpful and made good conversation.
anonymous [01-23-2011]

Hey Bill H., lived at 5011 Tacoma Street, until 1963, when my parents decided to move closer to my dads work.We moved to Oaks, PA What is your last name?
Joe Melchiorre, 63 years young Phoenixville, PA [01-23-2011]

Sam Kane, who owned the hardware store at Wayne & Seymour, has a niece who owns a jewelry store in Phoenixville, PA. She & her husband bought it many years ago. It is called Wolfberg Jewelers, on Bridge st. Nice people to do business with. Her name is Bobbie, his is harry.
Joe Melchiorre, 63 years young Phoenixville, PA [01-23-2011]

Bill Leonardo-my aunt pat [wood] still lives on e.ashmead st.in my grandmothers house.you might remember her or brothers and sister-Franny-Betty-Jimmy.they would have been all around your age.my dad worked on bringhurst st.for yrs at Riggs trucking[John Jakeman]him and all his brothers and sisters grew up on wakefield st
Tom [01-23-2011]

Mr Andy Anderson: I certainly enjoyed your anecdote concerning brother Prozillo at second base. I sure hope you "had a talk" with your catcher for his throw that left you in such a vulnerable position. I know all about the brother's 55 lb. legs. He was a classmate of mine at CD; a good guy, and like a lot of the young Italian boys back then--a man-child. For some genetic reason, these Italian gentlemen were several years ahead of us Irish blokes in physical maturity. But God being just, we caught up. I, too, have heard of his health issues and hope the brother is now well. Go Cardinals!
kevin McKernan, Santa Barbara, Calif., St Vincent's '58, CD '62 [01-23-2011]

POI- Cowtown was in East Germantown, around Chelten & Ardleigh. Also the Blacksmith shop at Kaiser & Logan was owned by Sal Rose.
G-towner [01-23-2011]

We feared polio in the 1950s. We were lucky not to get it when we went to the "Air-Cooled" New Lyric Theatre Matinees on Saturday (10 cents), or swimming at Gustine Lake by the Schuylkill River (some murky water, there), or Hunting Park pool (not so clean, either) or up the Roosevelt Blvd to their pool. It wasn't until the vaccine in 1956 that parents would rest easily. (And didn't Roosevelt Pool have some racial problems about that time, too? Seems some black families were denied admission and took exception, this being America.)Anyway, I have friends who weren't so lucky and got polio and somehow lived happy, productive lives. Heroes, all. I got my vaccine (sugar cube) at the Gtn. Hospital and a great burden was lifted from all parents that year of the Salk vaccine, 1956. We went back swimming naked unashamedly at the Germantown Boys Club (10 cents in the morning, 15 cents in the afternoon). God, were we lucky.
anonymous [01-23-2011]

Has anyone out there ever heard of Transverse Myelitis??? 1.5 in a million get this condition-I can't hit the lottery but I got this 5yrs ago. If your interested as to exactly what this condition entails and the symptoms, click on to Transverse Myelitis to get all the info. Lou Giorno
lou giorno, lou from burbs [01-23-2011]

L FONTANA,Thank you for your input on Karen Bishop,but I know where she lives with her family here at the beach,we bumped into each other by chance about twenty years ago,it was very nice.
Joe DiPasquale [01-22-2011]

Does anyone remember Potter Camera Shop on Maplewood Ave? It was around the block from the Orpheum Theater on Chelten Ave. My parents owned it, but it went out of business when I was about 10 years old.
Casey Fox, Wilkes-Barre [01-22-2011]

Anyone remember the Vernon Shop on Germantown Ave ? Also how about the Toddle House up on Wayne Ave?
Bob — Eastsider [01-22-2011]

The name of the Grocery store across from Fernhill park was called Zonn's. They had huge 6 cent ice cream cones back then, which was three bottles for return. I used this for lunch so I wouldn't have to go home and miss any basketball games. It was called Manheim U who ruled until Jack Brogan brought his buddy Ed Kilfeather up to play on Sundays.
Duncan Hubley, McKean Avenue, below Manheim Street.. [01-22-2011]

Frank M If you remember the Panullo's then maybe you remember my brother Mike Giovinozzo they both lived on E. Ashmead St. I am 82 Get back to me Frank,also I lived at E.Bringhurst St.in late thirtys and up till Jan.1946 Bill Leo
Bill Leonardo [01-22-2011]

Waterview had a pretty decent hill to go sledding. There was a factory across the way that sold those wavy fiberglass awnings, we would us them as sleds. Lightning speed!
Ed, Chester, VA [01-22-2011]

There was a flower show at Wayne Juction on Gtn Ave called Kulps flowers. I worked for him as a teen.
Joe Graber, A rose in January [01-22-2011]

Rosemarie Hite Malegeri: I remember the name "cowtown" but not where it was, or the boundaries.
anonymous [01-22-2011]

You could put your ear to any of the metal poles to hear if a trolley was coming. This helped when you had be standing on the corner for what seemed like forever. I remember when Norman Lienhauser died & going to his wake. We all grew up a little more then. I remember that his dad owned a GULF gas station at the corner of Wissahickon & Manheim. Every time we went past, my brother or I would say, "That's Norman Lienhauser's father's gas station." I still think that. Frankie Dougherty drowned at Mermaid Lake about the same time. Tough early lessons. On a brighter note — how many remember the blacksmith shop at the corner of Logan & Kaiser? It was across from a garage which eventually was used as a polling place and diagonal from "the Italian bakery." It was my job to go for the bread every time my mom made stew or vegetable soup. We still enjoy that meal. I used to walk up the alley behind our houses to Knox St ( try that now — it is all overgrown with weeds) and then over Logan. I always thought it was fascinating that I actually saw a REAL blacksmith shop. blacsmith
denise Duckworth Tumelty [01-22-2011]

Very nice man, old man Solar, when I was about 12 years old I wanted to buy a small pen knife there, he had me get a letter from one of my parents before he would sell it to me---even then I felt it was a great thing he was making me do in order to get the knife.
Jack McHugh [01-22-2011]

Naomi Vitelli: Jim Stabilito had a brother John who recently passed away. He went to Penn Charter when the great Hollow baseball pitcher,Ollie Powers, also went there. Ollie Powers was the cousin of Bobby Goo Guarinello who is often cited on this site since many Hollow folks post here. I met Jim Stabilito at The Prep and he liked to dance and listen to good music. We frequently took our dates to dances with Big-Band Music such as Sunnybrook with Maynard Ferguson. Being Italian,he still likes Opera. The Italian Community was such an integral part of life in Germantown.
JBS [01-22-2011]

Denise (D.T.)You'll have to introduce CAFFETTE to Creamed Dried Beef over Broccoli Rabe. :)
John Payne, If you cook it, they will come. [01-22-2011]

information on happy hollow phila pa click 100yrs.of HH COOL PICTURES BUD CURRAN
bud curran [01-22-2011]

To Bill:Spences was on Gtn Ave south of Seymour St. Yes,I remember Youmg's -around the corner from GBC--they served great tasting jce cream-anyone remember Bargs butcher shop & grocery store?? Bargs was 2or3 doors south of Spences on Gtn Ave--they had 2 children Bobby& Claire--they were playmates of mine.Lou giorno
lou giorno, lou from burbs [01-22-2011]

Bill, the name of the hardware store at Wayne & Seymore was Kane & Brown.Sam Kane operated it along with his wife and several employees.
Louis F Pauzano, Sr, 69, South Phila [01-22-2011]

Hello Banished Blogger, great recollections! I’m still trying to picture you from Tacoma Street. I lived there form 1950 to 1973. I’ll need to check out FB. Here’s a little fill in. One of my first jobs was working for Jake Kodner sweeping up the store after closing three days a week, got 15 cents a day for about a half hours work. He was tough on the outside and didn’t take any crap from anyone but just the opposite once you really got to know him. He took a liking to me and taught me the fine art of being a soda jerk. Spent a lot of time getting the mixes correct before he’d let me actually make them for paying customers. He had the best hand dipped ice cream too. The one thing he hated more than anything else was “kids” banging on the large tin sign that hung on the Seymour Street side of the building. When school let out he’d position himself at the rear door to deter the bangers. He was a little upset when I decided to leave but he couldn’t/wouldn’t compete with a $1.10 per hour job I got as a pinsetter. The beer distributor at Wayne & Seymour was Rudy Alessandro, he was a really nice guy, he used to give out bottles of soda at Halloween. I wasn’ t old enough then to get anything else from there. The corner store at Manheim & Tacoma was first owned by Harold Fox and his wife, then I believe the Weston’s bought it and then Hans und Karoline Deuter. As a child I can remember going into Fox’s store. They had a huge polished brass, crank operated, cash register. Behind the counter sat a large red and brass coffee grinder with the large wheels on either side. I never did see them use that. I always came away from the store with a hug from Mrs. Fox and a pretzel from the large tin near the counter. Don’t get customer service like that any more or see bulk pretzels and potato chips either. The Deuter’s were great people too. Some of you may remember Chef Tell, they helped give him his start here in Philly. They were from the same area in Germany. I was learning German in high school and any time I went into the store they would only speak to me in German and I of course, had to reply likewise or I didn’t get what I wanted. The Deuter’s retired in the mid 70’s and moved to Olney. Abbott’s and Bruennger’s were to two dairy’s that made home delivery in the area. I can still remember Abbott’s being delivered by horse drawn cart. Then there was Ragman Hayes and his horse drawn cart, one of the first recyclers, the Fuller brush man, the lamplighter and the guy who sold everything from shoelaces to dish towels from two old medical bags and Bert the popsicle man. It is hard to imagine now but it sure holds great memories.
Bill H. [01-22-2011]

Bud Ballard: I enjoyed your post about your days being a car-guy,riding Bikes[Hogs?] and your friendship with Wayne Armstrong who has passed away. I learned that Wayne Armstrong passed away from this site. His cousin Erda posts on this site. Like you, I remembered Wayne tinkering with cars,especially in the garages at King&Laurens in West Germantown. He also liked to ride his big Bike and roar up Queen Lane beginning at Laurens. Another biker lived next-door to your buddy,Ed Burke,on Hansberry St. This biker was one wild and crazy guy by the name of Bill Colsten. Literally,he died on death-highway while he was racing another biker. Wayne A. was much more reserved than Bill C. and as you know he was a nice guy. I had some issues with bikers and he gave me some help dealing with them. Like Wayne,I was a reserved guy and some bikers could be cantankerous. I understand that Wayne did well in life but he died too young. I find it so ironic that you moved to Hatboro which was The Cruising Capital of The Delaware Valley. Bud! It is never too old to old to cruise in your automobile. I have buddies who own hot-rods and they attend car-shows in Del-Mar which happens to be the famous race-track in California. I trust that your home is now shaped up and we will be meeting The SFA guys in the future.
JBS [01-22-2011]

Joe Lynch, You are jogging my memory! As I was shovelling the driveway the thoughts of doing the same on the basketball court at Fernhill with Neil, Tom, Fries and Bobby Domanski were going thru my head. After clearing the court we would shoot baskets and go home with black shirts etc. from the surface of the asphalt. If I had a buck for every hour spent on that court I could have retired ten years ago! Those cream cheese and jelly were good for sure.
Dave Byrne [01-22-2011]

Andy Anderson: Good story. Isn't it amazing how some of those moments from days long gone are frozen in our memories, including the smallest details?
John Payne [01-22-2011]

Return to Your Thoughts page | Achives Index

HOME | UPPER GERMANTOWN | LOWER GERMANTOWN
HISTORIC PEOPLE | YOUR THOUGHTS | LINKS

ushistory.org
ushistory.org homepage

Interested in using a picture? Some text? click here.
To contact the webmaster, click here

Show full list of ushistory.org sites

Copyright ©2000-2013 by the Independence Hall Association,
electronically publishing as ushistory.org.
The IHA is a nonprofit organization in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, founded in 1942.
On the Internet since July 4, 1995.