Historic Germantown, Philadelphia
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December 11-31, 2011

John Bruce Schmitt, Jimmy HARRIS left the seminary and became a Philadelphia Police Officer. Jim HARRIS worked for me when I was the Captain of the Narcotics Unit. I knew JIM from Fernhill Park. Played Baseball and Football with him. Jim HARRIS was a outstanding police officer. Jim loved Corvettes. Jim saved up his money purchased his corvette. When I retired in 2003 Jim HARRIS still had his Corvette, Jim HARRIS was a good police officer and a perfect gentlemen.
ORVILLE T. BALLARD, SFA 1956 and NECHS 1960 [12-31-2011]

Happy New Year & A Healthy New Year to all. Marie
Marie Bommentre [12-31-2011]

CMM, you mean Frank Klock did not write that line about the fog coming in on little cats feet? What else has The Hollow Man plagiarized? If he starts talking about the road not taken and miles to go before he sleeps, then I'll know he's a ginger man. By the way, perfect line from Oklahoma!--don't forget the exclamation point! Frank's poetry tends to be declamatory with verbal tricks and typography catches. If he could write about man's suffering while his car is being booted or women's low pay workin' for The Man, he'd be our epic poet--defending the strap hangers and designated drivers at Chickie's and Pete's. Did you ever dance in O! at the Masque or CA? In olden days all Catholic schools put on Rogers and Hammerstein. Now it's Grease, Godspell, Bye, Bye, Birdie, Smokey Joe's Cafe: Repeat. The most amazing transformations happen to kids during their months of practice,as you know. Tears for Fears. Jean Williams is someone you should write about on this Blog; I don't think many here know of her contributions to Germantown and Art and Young Dancers. Her daughter Kim now choreographs the LaSalle shows and I oft remind her that we were once her babysitters. It was Masterpiece Theatre when Jean and Brother Gene Graham co-directed the LaSalle boys in the 70s. What a legacy Jean and Gene left to a generation of kids who maybe never got back on stage again (though Kate McCauley did mother Anne Hathaway--yes, that one.) So, I'll keep ratcheting up the noise for Frank Klock's poetry here (cacophony) and you start a book club in Oz (euphony). And tell us about Jean, will ya' There oughta be a plaque somewhere!
Joe Lynch--I've got a lot of drama goin' on. [12-31-2011]

I want to wish all Germantowners a Prosperous and Healthy 2012 and to remember our departed friends including Al Patrizi. I attended Al Patrizi's Viewing at The Famous Pennsylvania Burial Company on South Broad Street where many Famous and Infamous People began their journey to Heaven. At Al's Viewing,there were many people from Down-Town[South Philly],Business People,and Germantowners including Dancing Tom Cusack,Dapper Pat McIlhinney,and Lou The Arm Pauzano. Al and Lou Pauzano lived in South Philly for many years. I always enjoyed hanging out in South Phily with the great Italian Restaurants and these Down-towners had good rapport with Germantowners. Going to The Viewing, I had to drive through The Old Italian Market and near The Villa Roma where Angelo Bruno,Old Russ Bufalino,and Frank Sheeran would have dinner-what a group.Angelo B. was The Philly Boss and Old Russ was The Scranton Boss and Irish Frank was The Enforcer. Frank Sheeran was The House Painter[Hit-Man] and also The Carpenter and we are not talking about hammering nails on a roof. Jack Brogan thinks that I developed my vocabulary frequenting libraries and museums but I do remember some colloquial vocabulary. Frank Sheeran visited Germantown and Dave Byrne's Grand-father had to ask Big Frank to keep his tools in the trunk of his car. Frank Sheeran whacked a lot of people-possibly Joe Blondie Gallo in Little Italy in NYC and Jimmy Hoffa. I understand that there is a movie coming out on Frank Sheeran's Story. Robert DiNero will play Big Frank and Joe Pesci will play Old Russell Bufalino. At Al Patrizi's Viewing I was talking to a Joe Pesci Look-A Like,Tom Cusack. Tommy C. and Pat McIlhinney are great Irish-American Raconteurs but Lou Pauzano intrigued us with conversation about Thomas Goony Walsh,The Business-arbiter,and Cusack's Cousin,Dr. Jack Flaherty-a very unique physician. Lou Pauzano lived across the street from Lou's Pharmacy where Doc Flaherty was shot and the coward was lucky that Doc's friends were not around. At the viewing, I mentioned to Cusack's Companion,a charming Lady, that you must be a good dancer that you travel with Tom. Harriet,with her pleasant smile and smiley face, indicated to me that Her Tommy was A Special Guy. I enjoyed talking with these Germantown Lads but we will miss Al Patrizi and we all thought that Al was a great guy with a super personality. Joe Lynch! Al Patrizi played basketball for fun but he was a serious football player and when you tackled him-it hurt. He played football at your favorite park-Fernhill in the lower field.
Bruce Schmitt [12-31-2011]

Hi Joe Lynch I saw your message mentioning a few "girls" that we graduated with from SFA. I saw them plus a few others at our 50th reunion in October. It is nice to read these messages and think of all the fun that we had in grade school.Glad that you are doing well. Ronnie Carmody McIntyre
Ronnie Carmody McIntyre, graduated from SFA-1957 Little Flower-1961 [12-31-2011]

Happy, Healthy, New Year to my old friends from the hood Bruce, Ricky and Kenny Schmitt, and your sister Joan and Mother Marguerite. I am sorry that I missed you at Al Patrizis' funeral. I went to the funeral mass . God rest his soul! May his soul pass through Ireland on its way to heaven, and may the devil not know he's dead until he's been in heaven for two days, as my old man used to say. Take care . See you fellows in the spring at the Buck, God willing!
ed burke [12-31-2011]

Jim McKernan: You forgot Buon Natale!
anonymous [12-31-2011]

We went to St. Catherines for mass on Sunday because the Sunday mass was 21 minutes long there. I timed it. You could go to mass and come home for Sunday breakfast with the answer. My mother looked at me suspiciously, "God save us but that was fast. You left after the offertory didn't you? What color were the priest's vestments?" I had the answer. "Green!" The same color as the vestments at St. Francis 48 minute mass. I timed it.
Jack Brogan, Winter's back in Maine. [12-31-2011]

Hey, Joe, I know you know that it was Carl Sandburg, not Frank Klock, who wrote "The fog comes on little cat feet." The rest of Sandburg's poem 'Fog', one of my all-time favorites, goes like this: "It sits looking over harbor and city on silent haunches and then moves on." It has always been one of my favorite poems. The image in the reader's mind's eye is not unlike that evoked by the lyrics to a ballad from the dream sequence in "Oklahoma" that goes, "Out of my dreams and into your arms I long to fly. I will come as evening comes to woo a waiting sky." How good is that!
CMM [12-30-2011]

Jack Brogan: I enjoyed your story. I never realized "How Irish" you and the Lynch's are. The "It's himself" got me. I used to hear my grandmother say that.
John Payne [12-30-2011]

if anyone is going to party New Years Eve without a designated driver AAA has a free service, Tipsy Tow, Membership is not required 1-800-222-4357..party hearty & get home safely.
monk [12-30-2011]

Bob Smith: I enjoyed reading your post about St. Catharine's in West Germantown and your comments really resonated with me. I don't know if St. Catharine's was officially segregated but all the students were African-Americans. Some of these students played ball at Fernhill Park and I remember Joe Palmer and Jimmy Harris who went into the seminary. Jim was a clean-cut guy but Leroy Kelly[NFL] will verify that Jim Harris was very good with his hands-lightening speed. It was interesting that so many kids from St. Francis,St. Bridget's,and St. Vincent's went to Mass on Sunday at St. Catharine's. I connected with a lady after Sunday Mass at St. Catharine's and I took her to a Prep Prom and she compared quite favorably with the ingenues from The Main Line. Two great Germantown Institutions were on Penn Street- St. Catharine's and Germantown Boy's Club-they were both inspirational in our moral development. You talked about Father Bogart,The Pastor of St. Catherine's in your post. Big John Burke,a former blogger on this site, knew Father Bogart well as did my mother. My mother,Marguerite,was married at St. Catharine's by Father Bogart. It was a ecumenical service since my step-father was an Episcopalian who attended church at Calvary-Pulaski&Manheim. Episcopalians were reserved and my step-father never spanked us and I had a sibling or two who could walk on the wild side-fast women and slow horses,a few brews on a hot summer day,and some Irish Whiskey on a cold winter night-being from G-town, you know the drill. However, these lads never went to confession at St. Catharine's and had Father Bogart as a confessor who would always encourage you to try a little harder and it was laudable to dance with clean-cut Catholic Ladies. The neighborhood around St. Catharine's was interesting with cool stores like Hassis's Bakery which you frequented and shoe-shine parlors like Cabbage's on Morris&Queen Lane and Bill The Bootblack in Damore's Barber Shop across from St. Catharine's School on Queen Lane. Cabbage,Ferdinand Eskridge, was an old pug and he had some interesting customers who could get cantankerous when they played the pin-ball and I would tell them,"Brother!It's Only A Game for A little Change". I had good rapport with Cabbage and he knew that I had his back. I always found The Burbs boring,having grown up in G-town. I'm heading home,and I even hangout in your lovely Bucks County. Recently, I had lunch at The Porter House in Lahaska with a few grand-mothers and after a few Malbecs, I almost fell to sleep. Bob! I still miss the days in Germantown,dancing with the pretty ladies on Saturday-night,and going to church on Sunday at St. Catharine's and going to Hassis's for some goodies-those were the days my friend and they had to end.
John Bruce Schmitt [12-30-2011]

Frank Klock: tough news. They just made Sonia Sanchez the poet laureate of Philadelphia. What were they thinking when they passed you over? Professional jealousy, I imagine. I have read your rhymes for two years, and since I am an English teacher, I caught your classical allusions (Styx,Phoebus, Moe's), metaphors (hot dogs chasing donuts through the Lincoln tunnel), labored rhymes(Goo-Goo/Apaloosa),earthy imagery (fog creeping in on little cats feet), iambs (wick-ed pis-sah) and themes of unrequited love (Tristan and Liz Lemon). The Hollow still supports your Muse,let it be said, and you will be getting your annual Support the Arts in Philadelphia check in the mail after the First of the Year. I really thought Marge Tartaglione on City Council had an ear for your poetry. I guess I was wrong; she was too busy with that Dollar Store zoning issue in Chestnut Hill to give your works a fair reading. Anyway, pour forth with your lyrics in The New Year. Sonia Sanchez, I hear, is running dry on rhymes for The Tacony-Palmyra Bridge. Oh, well, you can buy art or you can buy clothes, but you can't buy both.
Joe Lynch--with pen envy [12-29-2011]

Happy New Year to the webmaster & all my friends on this site-God Bless You One & all for the coming year. Lou Giorno
lou giorno, mr g dos [12-29-2011]

I ran all the way home through the rain one day in 7th grade, galloping over Logan Street, down Wayne Avenue, and up Abbottsford through sheets of blowing water. I resisted the urge to slap my own rump and create the sound of horse’s hooves along with my soaked sneakers slapping the wet concrete. I would have done that in 5th grade. Up through the Griffith Nursing Home path to Fernhill Road. Finally home and soaked through I yanked open our dilapidated screen door. "Hello, Agnes," I called out to the kitchen and then hopped up the stairs to my room where I changed into dry Khakis and shirt—hand-me-downs from my cousin, Bob Rainey, the star of the family who went to Penn. Some of my shirts and pants would soon be on their way down to the Joe Lynch’s house. I wonder if there is a term for third hand me downs. Using my father’s logic third hand me downs would be even better. “God save us, they’re twice broken in for ya’.” Entering the kitchen I saw Agnes Mary Brogan’s rosy cheeks contrasting with her graying hair (soon to be died red black for life). She didn’t look around at me but stood at the small porcelain stove stirring my lunch. She wore one of the two threadbare house dresses she owned. "What's cookin’, Aggie?" She didn't turn, but I could see her grin from behind, her cheeks a tiny shade rosier. My mother was proud of being American and although she was always a bit shocked when I'd pull something like calling her by her real name, she also liked it. Few sons called their moms by their first names in County Cork, but to my mother that daring seemed to confirm her Americanism somehow. She turned. "Well, if it isn’t himself. Jesus wept but you look like John Rellehan today, God rest his soul." John Rellehan had been a sad old man who lived on the moores outside Skibbereen where my mother was born. Now, he lent his name to anybody who hadn't washed his face or combed his hair. To my sister my mother would say, "God love her, here's Madda Strack with the tide running on her neck!" That meant that my sister had to go back upstairs and wash her dirty neck. From where I sat at our kitchen table I could see, just below her stirring elbow, two round, black chips in the porcelain stove. They stared directly at me. The chips were on each side of the rounded curve of the stove and level with each other. The stove became a crouching ghost, stooping next to my mother for just a moment. "Cremettes Macaroni today, boyo, and you know how you love 'em." My mother reminded me how much I loved whatever was cooking. I loved it more if it was a leftover. Last night's vegetable soup tasted even better the second night, "gives it a chance to settle and blend," she'd say as she glumped it onto my plate. Two day old boiled potatoes and pot roast, resurrected as a sad, mashed mountain on my plate, she'd introduce as, "Shepherds Pie . . . and crunchy brown on top, just like you love it, dear.” I grew up believing boiled cow's tongue was a gourmet item. “That’s what the people in Chestnut Hill eat. It’s brain food, Jackie.” My all time favorite for today was “Cremettes, swimming in pure, whipped butter,” she said as she placed our only flowered soup bowl, the one she chose for me every noon, onto the table. I looked down at the steaming noodles and thought....... "I'm on a safari.......... forced to eat native food .......healthy maggots today." "Eat up, like a good boy, they’re delicious when they’re hot.” said my mother. “We have a new neighbor down the street across from the Durkins.” “The people are named Lavelle. That’s a French name, Jackie. They’re Catholics of course. France is a Catholic country. …so I told Mrs. LaVelle that you would walk her son Robert to school this afternoon. The Lavelle’s have moved here from Scranton, Pennsylvania.” My mother said that like Scranton, Pennsylvania was a far away country. The whole while she spoke to me, I crammed the hot Cremettes into my mouth, now and again grunting a response, like we were having a two-way conversation. “Don’t stuff those down so fast. God save us you’ll choke the life outta’ yourself.” “Anyway, I told the woman that you’d be willing to walk with her son to St. Francis this afternoon. His name is Robert, and he’s to be in 8th grade.” “Sure, sweetheart,” I answered in my 8th grade Bogart voice. Walking a new kid to school might allow me to be late this afternoon, especially since it was pouring down rain. Now I was sure I’d need my galoshes. We’d be splashing the whole eight blocks to St. Francis. Lunch done, I got my kiss and banged out through our screen door and down Fernhill Road to the house across from the Durkin’s. The steady rain continued. “How can a country be Catholic?” I thought to myself as I climbed the front steps and knocked on the screen door. Mrs. Lavelle came to the door. She looked like a powdered jelly doughnut from Schenk’s bakery. Just over her crest I could see Robert. He was in black high water pants instead of khakis. He had a booger vault sticking out of his back pocket. I noticed he wore a new a pair of Converse All Stars, but instead of white sweat socks, his were black with a red and green pattern. Worst of all was his school bag. Instead of an army sack like every kid at St. Francis carried, this kid held a little leather school bag, one of those things that had a handle. The only kid at St. Francis who carried one of those school bags was Susanne Rodenberger for God’s sake. I decided to arrive really late that afternoon for sure, so nobody would see me with him. We strolled down Abbotsford and up Wayne Avenue hitting every puddle. He didn’t know anything about the Phillies or Robin Roberts, the greatest pitcher ever, or even Richie Ashburn, the all-star center fielder. All Robert knew was the friggin’ Scranton Red Sox. He said he played baseball and football, but I knew any kid with high water pants and a little leather school bag couldn’t measure up at St. Francis. To make matters worse, I noticed that he was pigeon toed and sort of rocked left and right as he walked We turned the corner onto Green Street from where I could see the top of St. Francis of Assisi Church. “My father took me to a Red Sox game and this guy playing the outfield shot the umpire with a water pistol,” he said. “They had to take that guy away to the funny farm, but now he plays for the Boston Red Sox.” I thought to myself, who would believe that story, a guy from the loony farm playing for the Boston Red Sox. That was the day my good friend Bobby LaVelle hit St. Francis of Assisi Grammar School. He hit Happy Hollow right after that. He made an big impact on both places.
Jack Brogan, Spring has arrived in Maine. Call Al Gore. [12-29-2011]

The following link shows 13 fascinating and memorable minutes recording the scenes at Willow Grove park in 1960. This refreshed many memories. The only things missing are the Swan, the lake and the rowboats. I must admit that I have ridden much bigger roller coasters since, including all of those at Dorney and Hershey Parks as well as several others. Enjoy! https://www.youtube.com/v/H429zL_pmC8
Dan Hartnett, Former East Germantown [12-29-2011]

Al Patrizi was the worst basketball player born and bred at Fernhill Park. You would never pick him 3 on 3. Maybe 5 on 5,you'd pick him last where he wouldn't have to touch the ball much. He often played while smoking. He had a wave in his hair that he always had to push back. His jump shot was angular and irregular. He waved at defense as his man went by him and he always smiled during the game, seeing our intensity as amusing. After the game, though, there was nobody more fun and friendly. He played touch football the same way, down by where the old Italian men played pinochle. I think he was in the car accident that killed Norm Leinheiser, in 1957 or 1958. He wore a patch on his eye for a while as a result of the accident. By the way,Carole Middleton was Norman's steady at the time. They were always necking on the porch as I came up the steps on Fernhill Road. I never knew if I should say hello or just walk in the house. They were a steady couple, looked serious to me at age 14. Can still see Al at 18, sitting on the back of a park bench, drawing on a cigarette and laughing in his white t-shirt and jeans. "Choose me in!"
Joe Lynch--And I am not in danger, only near to death.--Eliot [12-29-2011]

Vic Benvenuto is in serious condition in the hospital--please pray for him--he is such a good person.Lou Giorno
Lou giorno, mr g dos [12-29-2011]

It is ow past St Stephan;s Day a holy day In my beloved Ireland. So here is a multinational wish to all
Feliz Navidad
God Jul
Nollaig shons dhuit
nadolic llawen
etc etc
love the earth and its people
jim mckernan, professor in america [12-29-2011]

I inhereited Francis Daniels Pastorius' bible with his thoughts in writing in the last pages.
glenda wirz, age - 63 Redlands, CA [12-29-2011]

Donald Rossi: Welcome to the site. There is also a Brickyard site, and that does have pictures posted. I'm not sure if there are any of your dad. He was primarily a Happy Hollow guy, but there could be some there. Your dad was such a fantastic athlete, and by far one of the friendliest human beings I have ever met, so I would not be surprised if he showed up in some groupings from the east side also. Good luck with your search.
John Payne [12-29-2011]

R.I.P. Al Patrizi. Nice person.
John Payne [12-29-2011]

Dominic DiCondina married Mary O'Brien of the large O'Brien family and they had 3 beautiful children and many wonderful grandchildren. All are alive and well.

Mike Deely: It is great to hear such positive comments from An East Germantowner during this Christmas Season. Like you, I enjoy Choral Music. I attended Midnight-Mass at St. Ann's in Lawrenceville which has an outstanding choir-it was crowded. You are stepped in Philadelphia Catholic-Church History. Cardinal John Patrick Foley recently passed away. He graduated from The Prep in 1953,and my father,Urban, taught him. Conseqently, I and many former Preppers attended The Funeral at "The Cathederal and The Choir was ethereal. John Foley was good friends with Jim Bateman[Henry Gibson],the famous actor. Jim Bateman was a Germantowner, and graduated from St. Vincent's and The Prep with Cardinal Foley. You might also know that Cardinal Foley had been The Editor of The Catholic Standard&Times. Your brother,Father John,was affiliated with The Jesuit University in Japan,St. Sophia. Recently, I was having lunch with Lou Pauzano from The Hollow, and we were talking with The President of The Prep,Rev. George Bur,and he was friendly with Rev. Scott Howell S.J. who teaches at St. Sophia. I hope that some of the bloggers on this site who were educated by The Christian Brothers do not take umbrage with the fact that I hang out with individuals who have A Jesuitical Inclination. Some of these individuals have a penchant for nutting which they acquired at that venerable playround at Wayne&Logan-Happy Hollow. There were many great playgrounds in Germantown including Anderson and Belfield in East Germantown. I would conjecture that the lads from St. Benny's,your Alma-Mater, played ball at both playgrounds. Mr. Deely! May 2012 be Bright like The Golden Stars that would shine on our beautiful playgrounds in Germantown.
JBS [12-29-2011]

Greeting to Everone! I want to thank each one of you for your rekindling the nostalgic Germantown Christmas in our neighborhood and families. Heartwarming! I wish everyone and your families many more to come along with a very Happy and Healthy New Year, one filled with many blessings!
Linda Chiarolanza-Raven [12-29-2011]

Merry Christmas to everyone from 'Germantown & our Webmaster.My family enjoyed wonderfully prepared fish -spaghetti-oil-butter & garlic! The love of family & friends is a gift I treasure. Our cousin Joe Gallo died early Christmas morning with dear Helen at his side. Thank you Rosmarie Hite- Malageri for your prayers. John Bruce Schmidt, Thank you for your kind words. Happy New Year to everyone from Germantown! Naomi
Naomi Vitelli [12-29-2011]

Sorry to hear about Al. It is a hard time of the year to lose someone and I hope everyone can think about the good times thay all had together.
John Fowler [12-29-2011]

Joe Lynch .. thanks for the fond memories you stirred by your eloguest and nostalgic posts about Christmas in our neighborhood ... you were a class act on the basketball court back in the day and you are still a class act today in your literary skills ... I was an altar boy and I remember serving midnite Mass and the special aura of Christmas Eve and Christmas Day ... fond memories of wonderful priests such as Father Finley, Father Thompson, Father Magee, Father Donahue, Father Cavanaugh, and the legendary (and ominous) Monsignor McGarrity ... I was there in the church the night a Bishop from the Archdiocese announced that by order of the Archbishop, Father McGarrity was now Monsignor McGarrity and the whole church congregation stood and applauded ... a wonderful moment and unforgettable memory. We grew up in special times ... reading this blog reminds me of those times ... Happy Holidays and best wishes to all.
Tom Cusack [12-26-2011]

Sad to learn of Al Patrizi's death. He was a good man and a good neighbour. RIP Al.
Catherine Manning Muir [12-26-2011]

The funeral arrangements for our dear friend, Al Patrizi, are as follows: PATRIZI, ALBERT E. on Dec. 22, 2011. Beloved husband of Eileen (nee Basile); loving father of Dana (Robert) Ravelli; dear brother of Anthony (Elizabeth) Patrizi, Richard (Beverly) Patrizi, and Karen Conway; also survived by loving nieces and nephews. Relatives and friends are invited to his Viewing MONDAY Evening 7:00 to 9:00 and TUESDAY morning 8:30 to 9:30 at The PENNSYLVANIA BURIAL CO., INC., 1327-29 S. Broad St. Funeral Mass TUESDAY 10:00 A.M. Interment Holy Cross Cem.
Tom Cusack [12-26-2011]

i am b.b's son happy hallow he is alive and well living in florida. i wanted to look at some pictures from back in the day, does anyone have any that can put on the site i would love to see some. thank you. this is my first time on this site i think it would be neat if people could post old pictures from the old days thank you
DONALD ROSSI [12-26-2011]

i wish everyone a merry christmas and a happy new year
Rich, Huntingdon Valley PA [12-26-2011]

Herbie, be my friend......Jimmy Kulick
anonymous [12-26-2011]

Merry Christmas to the Webmaster for all that you do and thank you for allowing us to relive and share our memories of our youth no matter what area of Germantown we were raised . Richie SFA 64', NC 68'
Richard Pio, Born and bred in G-town 1950-95, now in Ocala Fl. [12-26-2011]

JOY TO THE WORLD-and especially to all of us who came from that special place that was GERMANTOWN!
vera carey canavan, St. Vincent's 1956--Little Flower 1960 [12-26-2011]

Just want to wish everyone a very Merry and Happy Christmas from the Pio's in Florida. Richie SFA 64', NC68'
Richard Pio, Born and bred in G-town 1950-95, now in Ocala Fl. [12-26-2011]

Joe Lynch: I just received a very sad phone call from Tom Cusack whom you knew from Fernhill Park. Al Patrizi,another great Fernhiller had just passed away. Al Patrizi was liked by everybody since he had a great personality and was quick and witty. All his friends from Saint Francis and Fernhill Park will really miss him. Al came to all The Germantown Reunions at The Buck Hotel. I know that you can't make these reunions since you are still giving a quality education to the young men of Montco. However, you and Cousin Jack Brogan are submitting some great blogs to our Germantown Web-site. I learn a lot from this site. You did not act like any choir boy when you played basketball at Fernhill especially when you competed against Bill Haas. You also intervened when Leroy Kelly[NFL] was going to end Pat McIlhinney's playing career after Pat fouled Mr. Kelly. I was surprised that Jack Brogan depicted Frank Felice as a ferocious player and a great jumper who would confront some very tough characters. Correct me if I am wrong but I always remembered Sharpy Felice as a guy who dressed liked he just came from a tailor shop and he liked to shoot long-range bombers. I would loved to have seen Sharpy Felice complain to Big John Berkery about his clothes when Berkery had his tailor shop across from The Hollow. Back in the day, I took you to an unique and sub-terrean bar in center city but you should have visited Berkery's beautiful Irish Bar[Molly Maguire's] at K&A. I would be the only lad at this establishment who traveled alone-no Smith&Wesson. I would have lunch across the street at Kellis's and Ray McGough would have lunch there and he was packing since he represented The PPD. Cousin Jack probaly knew Ray McGough who was good friends with Bob LaValle of The Hollow. I hope that you find that my blog is disconcerting since it is so difficult to deal with the loss of Al Patrizi-a great and very nice guy from Fernhill.
Bruce Schmitt [12-26-2011]

nollaigh mait duit---merry christmas !
anonymous [12-26-2011]

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all on this site. It's amazing how quickly this passed. "Gather ye rosebuds while ye may; young time she is a flying, and the first flower that blooms today, tomorrow will be dying."
John Payne, Gather Ye Rosebuds while Ye may... [12-26-2011]

Al Patrizi passed away yesterday from an extended illness. He was a good friend of mine for over 55 years and I will miss him dearly. I know many that read this blog from the Ferhill Park, Happy Hollow area knew Al. His funeral preparations will be posted in the Philadelphia Inquirer ... when they are I will post the arrangements in this.
Tom Cusack [12-26-2011]

I wish all of the wonderful people of Germantown a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. My memories of growing up in Germantown are never ending. I love this site! Dottie Wilson Cummings - SFA 60, LF 64
anonymous [12-26-2011]

FRANK KLOCK [12-26-2011]

joe dagastino! i knew stan and your sister qunita .what a nice person she was and he was a great guy . qunita came in to my shop on wayne avenus and also in roslyn . i remember when she left us and also stan . we had a mini st michaels reunion at spring house tavern about 5 year's ago . lou giorno started out wanting to have a get together for about 10 people,but it turned out to be a small st. michaels reunion . we had about 125 people there ! it just exploded !lou and i did a little show ! i did a stand up act and a recall on what st michaels was all about and he did some fond memories of the way it was back in the day ! we had great fun and we had a guy and his wife do the video of the event we gave to all who were there a copy for a keep sake . we tryed a few years back to get a big germantown reunion together,but it got so big like 1,000 people it got over welming . and the price was out of sight ! we had to give up on it because it was to much for us to handel . shame because we were going to have entertainment and had a great plan . but we just got frustrated! and had to walk away from it because it was to much for us now that we are older ! frank .
frank margiotti, lansdale [12-26-2011]

Helen Leone D'Angelo, how wonderful for you to be role model to the younger women by sacredly preserving and carrying on your mother Mary's traditional fare! God Bless all from Germantown this Christmas and may our nation know Peace this new year P.S. remember to turn that turkey upside down!
Jim McKernan, Professor, East Carolina University [12-26-2011]

Al Patrizi passed away on 12/22/11.
Rich Patrizi [12-26-2011]

Helen Leone D'Angelo: your tradition of the Christmas meal of the 7 fishes sounds wonderful. Please tell us about it; what comes first, then what, and so forth. Although it's entirely different in context and culture, your mention of 7 fishes reminded me of my first meal in New Orleans: shrimp 7 ways. It started off with a shrimp gumbo and there was cajun shrimp with red beans and rice and I forget what followed, but I do remember that it was fantastic and that I was full to the brim at the end of it. I want to hear about your tradition. Buon Natale e Felice Anno Nuovo!
Catherine Manning Muir, Outback Oz, 38 C./100.4 F. on Christmas Day [12-26-2011]

Jack Brogan,LaSalle Explorer:I have to tell you that I had a tough time discerning your pithy blog about language,schools,and numerous people and characters. I can not tell whether your blog was facetious or tongue in cheek and I suspect that it was the latter since you were educated by The Christian Brothers and they are not snarky. You are a Hollowite where nutting[busting] was prevalent and I witnessed this practice at a G-town reunion between Paul Borian and John Fowler-they were entertaining. Your last blog was so expansive which I find imperative that I must expatiae on since I am not prone to place a finger in a dyke but your reservoir of comments need some plugging. Your daughter was blessed to have attended such an elite school,Bowdoin,where The esteemed poet,Henry Wadswoth Longfellow attended. At SFA,we read his famous poem,"The Ride Of Paul Revere. Your daughter must have accrued a prodigious vocabuarly with her impressive educational background and career. At The Prep, The Jesuits were great teachers of Latin which does help with vocabulary. My wife, Ludmila,was a Professor of Foreign Languages at Sonny Kennedy's Alma-mater and consequently would have high-level conversation with colleagues about great writers such as Cervantes and Borges. These discussions would be in Spanish and with my Latin background, I was able to discern these words and look them up in English. These words would be profound and I would get the meaning in an English dictionary. You knew that John Berkery was a great entrepreneur and was in the 1948 SFA class with your sister. John Berkery was highly intelligent as were many other students in tha class-Ed Kane,Jack Scanlan, and possibly John Granozio and Dr. Jack Flaherty. John Berkery went to The Prep and left for Mexico-don't curse him out in Spanish. You jest when you mentioned that Sharpy Felice stuffed Leroy Kelly[NFL]. I liked Leroy but one had to be careful with him. I broke up a fight between Leroy and Bill Haas at Fernhill and Cousin Joe Lynch saved Pat McIlhinney's life after Pat fouled Leroy-Pat went to The Prep but he was not thinking straight. Frank Felice only dunked ice cream into Herb Adderly's cone when he came into the drug-store where Sharpy worked-Bor Borian will tell you from personal experience that nobody messed with Herb Adderly-He was The Man. Another Man was Thomas Goony Walsh and Frank Felice was too smart to bang with Mr. Walsh. Your old SFA classmate,Tom Cusack,would tell you that Goony was one tough Son of A Gun. Joe Lynch's neighbor,Dave Byrne, knew Frank Sheeran,and he would be the only lad who could intimidate Mr. Walsh. You talked about a basketball player by the name of Kapschutschenko being Russian-never happen with the ending Enko. There was a battle beween The Ukranians and The Russians at Poltova,and Peter The Great defeated Mazepa of Ukraine and consequently,Ukraine lived under Russian dominance for 300 years. Peter Kapschutschenko,The Renowned Ukrainian Sculptor made a scupture of Mazepa for President Yuschenko of Ukraine. Maestro Peter Kapschutschenko felt empathy for oppressed people including The Irish and he would never diss James Joyce or The Great Irish Ballad-"Danny Boy". During Christmas Season, Let's spread good words about all the wonderful people on this site and the great people that have departed.
JBS [12-26-2011]

Hello MIKE DEELY. My name is Dorothy Westermann BALLARD. My father Bernhard Westermann had the bakeery at Sparks and Ogontz. How are the rest of the family doing? Mike could you e-mail me. Hope to hear from you soon. Dot.
Dorothy Westermann BALLARD, St. Benedicts [12-26-2011]

I haven't been on this site for quite a while. I just read Helen D' Angelo's post about the feast of the 7 fish. I started soaking the baccala today in preparation for Christmas Eve. Here in Louisville KY we can't get all the traditional fish (which is OK with me because I don't care for them all). However, with shrimp, crab, salmon, talapia, oysters, scallops, and yes, the baccala, we are able to have 7 "fish". We usually have around 25 to 30 people Christmas Eve (all on my husband's side, none of them Italian) and everyone loves the dinner. Merry Christmas to all!
Barbara Barrella Webb [12-26-2011]

JBS, did you get the answer to who started the soccer program at GA? These are little known facts.
Just the Facts, Please [12-26-2011]

Hello G-towners ! Well, it's almost Christmas and what a wonderful time of year in Germantown. I can still see the big lighted bells hanging from the wires along Chelten and Germantown Aves.. I remember so well, all of the various places to buy your Christmas tree. It seemed as though any empty lot was decorated with bare bulb lights all around the lot as well as a 50 gallon drum with a fire going to keep the lot owner warm. We bought our tree on the corner of Mechanic and Stenton Ave., around the corner from Haines st. I remember well, all the Christmas cards sent to us by just about everybody. We put up a "Santa" mailbag outside our screen door so the mailman wouldn't have to force all those letters into the slot on the main door. My mom used to string all those Christmas cards all along our living room ceiling, tying one end to the bannister going upstairs and the other side tacked into the wall. She must have hung over 150 Christmas cards across that ceiling. One Christmas, I shot down everyone of them with my air rifle, that also shot out plastic darts; try selling something like that today. Of course, my favorite memory at that time was all the Christmas cookies that my mom would make, especially the butter cookies. She had a special cookie dough gun one year that made them a little faster, though it required some maintainence to get them out perfectly. She had a lot of molds that were in the shape of Christmas trees, angels, bells, etc. that she filled up with that wonderful cookie dough. I also remember my aunt Josephine making the anisette cookies and bringing them over to the house. They were coated with an icing that was so so good. It seemed as though the cookie tray never ran out; we had tins and tins of cookies and they were always on hand for company that came over. I can't for the life of me figure out how that tiny house held so many people at Christmas. We had a large family and most of the living room was taken up by my American Flyer train set on a big platform complete with plastic houses that were all lighted and the big tree right in the middle of the platform, complete with artificial grass and snow. Somehow, my mom and dad managed to fit everybody in. I do know that we put furniture upstairs just to accomodate that train set and moved the rest of the furniture around. The mood was always festive when company came; I had some favorite aunts and uncles that made the holiday special, especially when they gave me a little envelop with a couple of dollars in it. All of my cousins seemed to come by for the holidays; of course my closest cousins lived right next door. I do remember one of my favorite cousins, Joe Marrone, stopped by one Christmas and sang a new song that he heard on the radio for the Christmas holidays with my dad. They had had a few cocktails and they started to sing "the Chipmunks Christmas song". It was the biggest hit of the holidays and is still played on radio during this time of year. Oh well, just some favorite memories I thought I would share with all of you, although I think most of you probably have the same kind of memories involving family, friends, and food at Christmas. I want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and I hope your memories of Germantown help make the holidays a little brighter. Take care !
Bill Cupo, Immaculate Grad "65". C.D. "69"- Haines st 1300 Block [12-26-2011]

This weekend coming up is the Birth Of the Christchild. Let us all remember that Jesus is the reason for the season. Happy Holidays to any Jewish people who may post on this site as well. I hope that everyone has a peaceful and blessed Christmas with their families...Respectfully, Linda F>
L.Fontana, Montgomeryville, Pa. [12-26-2011]

Helen Leone D'Angelo, you are pure class and a genuine person. Your husband is a lucky man. The wonderful memories you just shared on this site about your mother and her fine traditions warmed my heart. My mother did those exact same things,and I miss her and my father a lot. May you have a blessed Christmas with your loving family and a very happy, healthy coming New Year 2012.Hugs, from Linda Fontana.
L.Fontana, Montgomeryville,Pa. [12-26-2011]

Helen Leone D'Angelo, you are pure class and warmth as far as women go. Your husband is a lucky man. The wonderful memories you just shared on this site about your mother and her fine traditions warmed my heart. My mother did those exact same things,and I miss her and my father a lot. May you have a blessed Christmas with your loving family and a very Happy
anonymous [12-26-2011]

What became of Dominic DiCondino-i think he worked at that shop with "squeaky"? I think he was related? Glad to hear squeak is kickin. anon
anon [12-26-2011]

I just wanted to comment regarding the posting my cousin, Joe D'Agostino, wrote about his sister Quinta and her husband Stan Forgione. He is totally accurate in his description of these two wonderful people. They were the kindest,gentlest and most generous souls ever. Their house was always filled with relatives and friends, and the coffee pot was always on. We would sit around their table and discuss everything going on in the world, and how to fix it. They lived for their 4 boys and would give up much to see that their Christmas's were happy. I still recall fondly that the boys would rip through their gift toys from Santa Claus and like most kids, would end up playing with the boxes they came in ! But 2 finer people than Stan and Quinta ( and their 4 boys ) do not exist. Holidays still remind me of them and the Germantown I loved.
Bob D'Angelo [12-26-2011]

Joe Lynch - I wanted to comment on your great Christmas tree story posted on December 16th. It was beautifully written and so heartfelt. I remember your parents, since your wonderful sister Kathy was part of the group I knew at Fern Hill Park. She was always such a sweet girl, everyones friend ! Please send her my regards, it has been many years since I last saw her.Regards to your brother Tommy too.I know that you and my brother Joe keep in touch, and I hope you are doing well.
Bob D'Angelo [12-26-2011]

Anonymous: Your friend Squeaky will be happy to hear that reports of his/her demise have been greatly exaggerated. :)
John Payne, Whistling past the graveyard. [12-26-2011]

I dont think anyone said Squeak DiCondina died. They said it was Kaiser (Anthony) who died some years ago, mysteriously.
anonymous [12-26-2011]

Jack Brogan...Your post of 12/21 is "nutting" at it's best.Goo taught you well.....Paul Borian
Paul Borian, The shin bone is a device for finding furniture in the dark. [12-26-2011]

Squeaky DiCondina (Franny) is NOT deceased - he is alive and well.
anonymous [12-21-2011]

My father used to work at Poddell's Drug Store and lived at 6632 N. 21st Street. Not sure of the years but he was born in 1918 and from stories told I assume he may have been 18 around that time. He did drive their truck and a scooter making deliveries as well as work the soda shop. Please feel free to reach out to me if you may remember him or care to share additional stories.
Wm. Scott Marvill, Son of George William "Bill" Marvill [12-21-2011]

In 1964 and 1965 you may have gotten this particular letter from Santa Claus, or your older brothers or sisters may remember it. It was in a 9 1/2 in x 4 1/8 in envelope of which the front was printed in rich deep colors showing Santa in his sled flying over snow covered roof tops. These letters were mailed to the children. The nice thing about the letter, it was personally addressed to you, what you may not have noticed was the address on the back of the letter saying Penny’s on Chelten Ave. in Germantown. Penny’s had a table set up where parents or relatives could fill out the address of a Santa letter to you, so if you still have the letter, check the penmanship to see who sent it. It must have been some other company that came up with the idea because Penny’s wasn’t the only one who did it---it was the only one in Germantown that I knew who did send out these letters. There were also a few of the smaller banks in Phila. that send them as well as the Bazaar of All Nation on highway 611 in Horsham next to the Willow Grove Naval Air Station.
Jack McHugh [12-21-2011]

JBS: I couldn't agree with you more. Both Lynch and McGlinchey are fantastic in their postings..I really appreciated Lynch's note about him and his Choir duties..I had the same feelings on every "special" event at St. Benedict's..Whether it be Confirmation, Mid-Night Mass, Easter, rest assured me and Francis A.Gannon would be responsible for "altar boy" service.(Frank Gannon would be the Uncle of the former NFL QB Rich Gannon (of the Prep and the U. of D.),and brother of my fellow seminarian Rich Gannon up in Penndel[Marist Fathers]Lynch really brought back some great memories..Someone in the "give & take" of the e-mails mentioned "German Baking"..(Cookies, specialties, etc..) While we lived on Ogontz Ave after moving from the 600 block of Stafford, our neighbor across the back alley was named Bernie Westermann.He was a giant of a guy and later contracted "polio".. I'll never forget, the warnings posted on the Westermann's front door...The only reason that I bring up the Westermann name is that his Dad (one of the greatest persons I've ever met owned a Bakery south of our homes by about six blocks. (Almost opposite the Ogontz movie house)..One day I saw what hatred can do..This "gentle man's bakery was almost destroyed...simply because he had a "German-sounding" name...I'll never forget it...Please, Messrs; Lynch and McGlinchy keep posting...Thanks JBS for letting me vent..
Mike Deely, Older than Dirt [12-21-2011]

CONTUMACY? I’ve read all these pithy notes and enjoyed most, but when I read that word, I had to ask my daughter. She’s a cutthroat lawyer, if you know what I mean. A guy who doesn’t pay his child support, doesn’t want Kate on his case. She was National Merit and cum laude at Bowdoin. She said, “I never heard the word contumacy.” I told her it was a pithy Jesuit word and that she would have been able to figure it out if she’d gone to the Prep and had the requisite six years of Latin. A guy who graduated with my sister at St. Francis and who was really knowledgeable about the law, John Berkery, won a half scholarship to the Prep. He became a well know tailor, if you know what I mean. Regardless! I knew a guy from Fishtown named Kapschutschenko. He played for St. Boniface I think. Old Kappy didn’t sculpt, but he had a deadly jumper. Make you think of Frank Felice before he was called Sharpie. I brought him up to Fernhill Park once and he stuffed Leroy Kelly, dunked on Herb Adderly, and beat the heck outta’ Gooney Walsh after the game. He would have played for North Catholic but the coach, Ed Scullen, didn’t like Russians. I bet Kappy took up sculpture right after he got cut.
Jack Brogan, Ho, ho, ho [12-21-2011]

JBS.... Your most recent post brought back some memories ….. St. Catharine’s was actually a segregated parish… founded by Mother Drexel ’s Order, it was to service Native Americans and Blacks. The folks at St. Vincent’s did like us to go to Mass there because it degraded the Sunday collection significantly; I understood this was ditto for St Bridget’s as well. I remember Father Bogart was the pastor, my family was pretty close to him [he performed the Funeral Service for my Grandmother, and married several of my aunts and uncles]. When you speak of great German bakeries… Hassis certainly comes to mind… A typical Sunday morning was 9AM Mass at St. Catharine’s and a stop at Hassis for cinnamon and crumb buns and of course their great Danish. I have never had Danish quite like them…. The closest I have even had was at a place outside of Doylestown called Tabora Farms. On Christmas, in my late teen years, I remember going St. Catharine’s for midnight mass. Walking down Morris to Penn just a few blocks really; but when you had a few beers, and everyone in the neighborhood was walking to the same destination it seemed like miles. It was a lot of fun…. And there seems to be nothing like this experience today. Thanks Bob Smith
Bob Smith, 5534 Moirris Street... now in Erwinna PA [12-21-2011]

I am begining preparations for the Christmas Eve dinner of the 7 fishes just as my mom, Mary did those many years ago in our little house on Stafford St. near St. Vincents Church. She would begin days ahead soaking the baccala (cod fish) to take the salt out and shop endlessly for the perfect greens and succulent shrimp and finest olive oil. I now walk in her footsteps with my sister and daughters to keep the tradition alive along with her beautiful memory.

I would like to wish all the wonderful people who post here a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy, Healthy, New Year. I have such happy memories of growing up in Germantown and many of the posts jog things I would have forgotten about. I love reading these. I also send loving greetings out to my brother John J. Holt and any family members he may have, wherever he may be. I think of John every day and miss him and wish him peace on this earth or in the hereafter. Merry Christmas to all, Jane Holt Rauscher
Jane Holt Rauscher, SFA 60, LF 64-Bell, Fl [12-21-2011]

Good health and God's blessings to all the good people who remember fondly our Christmases past of Germantown days that we will carry in our hearts forever. Buon Natale

Lou P.- Over 50 years ago, you and I played pinochle with 2 wonderful SFA Ladies-Eileen Mc and Jean M. I always knew that they were very talented basketball players- Jean even had a jump-shot before it was cool. I just learned from you in your last post that they were good pinochle players. I did not want to bring up the fact that we lost miserably against The Hollow Ladies in those card games. Back in the day, I played in Pinochle Tournaments and was involved in heavy-duty games at The Continental. In our games, you were always naming Trump and we would go up. I attempted to counter act your bids and our bids were always too high. I thought at the time that you were being a nice guy and wanted them to win. Those 2 Little Flower Ladies beat us badly because they played good defense and I was embarassed that our pinochle game was so bad. Lou! I'll see you in Fairmount and I'll try to forget that lousy card playing that took place many years ago-I drink Malbec.
Bruce Schmitt [12-21-2011]

Dennis Crowley: Your post about "Happy Hollow" really resonated with me and I could almost hear Goo Guarinello's sonorous voice reverberating from The Hollow Rocks as he looks down at us from Heaven. Robert Goo Guarinello was your basketball coach at SFA and the legendary iconic Hollow Guy. You mentioned in your post that the esteemed E.W. Clark,the famous Germantown Philanthropist, gave his quarry to Philadelphia for the playground. The Clark Family had beautiful mansions along Wissahickon Avenue. If you had attended The Germantown Reunion on Thanksgiving Eve at The Continental, you would have been imbibing at an old mansion that that abutted the former Clark Mansion and The Germantown Cricket Club. Your old SFA classmate,Bill Haas, and I played baseball in both Clark and Cricket Club fields. You and Bill Haas were coached by Goo Guarinello at SFA but I only can tell you that he was a sensational hitter. There was another Clark Mansion at Wissahickon&School House Lane and this property was donated to Philadelphia for Clark Park. This Germantown Web-site emanates from The Germantown Historical Society and your historical perspective on Happy Hollow really enhanced the character and fabric of this outstanding Web-site. Dennis! Keep Posting,enjoy The Jersey Shore,and have a Merry Christmas and a healthy and productive 2012.
Schmitty [12-21-2011]

Lou Giorno: Thanks for thinking of my Brother--Law Stan Forgione. Stan was a very devoted father and husband to my Sister, Qunita D’Agostino Forgione. During this time of year I think back to Christmas Eves that I would spend with my sister and Stan’s home . As you know they had four wonderful boys. Stanley, Anthony, Michael and Marc (in that order). I can remember Stan and I driving all over the city trying to get one of the boys “That Special Gift.” Lou, my sister was a very special person and she married a special guy in Stan. Christmas Eve is now spent at my nephew Anthony’s home, and I always tell them how lucky they were to have such wonderful and caring parents. We all shed a few tears and remember the good times we all had. For those on this site who did not know Stan and Qunita Forgione, I offer my condolences, for you all missed something very beautiful.Although Stan lived many years after my sister, he died the day she did. God bless you for your thoughts and everyone on this site. GOD BLESS AMERICA and MERRY CHRISTMAS!
Joe DAgostino [12-21-2011]

Does anyone out there remember a comic book character named PLASTIC MAN? He had a sidekick named WOOZIE or ZOOZIE-I'm not sure if that was the sidekicks name. I could fill up my car for $5.oo-does anyone remember that?? Lou Giorno
Lou Giorno, Mr G dos [12-19-2011]

Bruce: Besides being good athletically, Eileen and Jean were good card players. Forget the cash gifts to the Prep, large checks are also acceptable. George said it was his treat on Wednesday. See you then.
Louis F Pauzano, 70yrs, South Phila [12-19-2011]

Me too Lou! :)
John Giorno Payne [12-19-2011]

Dennis McGlinchey: You and Joe Lynch have really ratcheted up the conversation on this site with your positive and laudable commentary about Christmas experiences and goodies. You mentioned the famous German Stollen cookies which only great German bakeries make. My German-American aunt made other great German cookies such as Lebkuchen und Springerle for Christmas. For an Irish Lad, you also like Sicilian cookies-Cannoli. In past years, I went to Little Italy in NYC,and I would always get a Cannoli or a Biscoti. If it wern't for gyms, many of us would be 3oo pounds. You and Joe Lynch also talked about being in the choir during Christmas. I was not a capricious kid and I attempted to avoid contumacy but I did not have good rapport with the choir-director at SFA and consequently, I never sang in the choir during Christmas. I do enjoy choral music and especially at Christmas-Time-Adeste Fidelis. I heard The Mormon Tabernacle Choir in Salt Lake City. On Friday, I attended The Funeral Mass of Cardinal John Patrick Foley since my Father,Urban, taught him at The Prep and The Cathederal Choir was extraordinary. You were in the choir at Immaculate and I found The Choir at St. Catharine's on West Penn St.,excellent. St. Catharine's was a small church and the great voices of the choir really resonated. Dennis! I found The Christmas Blogs of you and Joe Lynch, so edifying.
John Bruce Schmitt [12-19-2011]

I'm glad to see that certain people that used my last name as their middle name are off this site.Many postings about my family were greatly distorted to suit their own egos.Louis F.Giorno
Lou Giorno, mr g dos [12-18-2011]

Happy holidays to the WEBMASTER & to all my GTN. friends.Lou Giorno
Lou Giorno, Mr G dos [12-18-2011]

Thank you, Lou. Happy Holidays to all!

Found this on a Facebook search for "Happy Hollow Playground" --- "Happy Hollow Playground is the city of Philadelphia’s oldest, opened April 29, 1911. It was paid for and donated to the city by Mr.& Mrs. E.W. Clark a prominent family in the area. Mr. Clark acquired the land, a former quarry with the intention of making it a playground after a young child drowned. Mr. Clark hired George T. Pearson a well-known architect in Philadelphia to design the main building, known originally as the Quarry Playground House. It is still in use today. Mrs. E.W. Clark named the playground Happy Hollow." There's a great old photo of the playground on the Facebook entry.
Dennis Crowley [12-18-2011]

Bud Ballard,SFA: I was intrigued by your post to Lou Pauzano of The Hollow where you thought that he might have been a SFA Guy. Lou informed you that he was a St. Mike Guy and there are many St. Mike Bloggers on this site. I know Lou from The Prep but I met him in 1955 at The Hollow. It was a lazy summer day at The Hollow and I had been shooting some hoops. I walked down to the fountain from The Court and the old-heads were playing cards in the sand box and Lou was playing pinochle with 2 of my pretty classmates from SFA-Eileen and Jean. I was asked to join the game and we have been friends ever since. Months later, these lovely ladies joined us at a Prep Dance at John McShane's Hotel,The Barclay,on Rittenhouse Square. Lou mentioned that he was educated by The Jesuit Fathers. I will be having lunch with Mr. Pauzano and his Jesuit friend,The President of The Prep. Lou will be springing but don't think Brutus[JBS] will be getting a free lunch-there's never a free lunch in life. I will be making a donation to The Prep since Lou The Arm is a fund raiser for he Prep. He does not want to see what happened at North and CD, take place at 17th&Girard. This is going to an expensive lunch since Lou does not want to see Grant or Franklin but only Clevland and the bank does not not carry too many of them. A famous Prepper,Cardinal John Patrick Foley,passed away and The Funeral Mass was celebrated at The Cathederal. Tom McIntyre's son,Bishop McIntyre gave me Communion. It is always great to see Tom McIntyre at The Germantown Reunion that you organize so well. Bud! Have a wonderful Christmas in charming old Hatboro and possibly we might see you at LaFontana's in the future.
JBS [12-18-2011]

Mr. Kevin Chadwick: You are so fortunate to live in horse-country in Northern Virginia and own a sculpture of The Renowned Sculptor,Peter Kapschutschenko. Like you, I am a collector of Maestro Peter Kapschutschenko who was one of the great sculptors of The 20th century. Kapschutschenko and Archipenko were 2 of the most famous Ukrainian Diaspora Sculptors in the world. I recently read that a bronze sculpture of The Ukrainian Robin Hood by Kapschutschenko, was given to The Historical and Renowned Ostroh University in Ukraine. I would conjecture that you have an equestrian figure since you live near Middleburg Virginia where Paul Mellon owned a horse farm and was one of the great art-collectors in the world. In my past life, I spent some time in Middleburg Va. and Harpers Ferry, West Virginia which is not a great distance from the race track in Charlestown W VA. I am trying to age gracefully and if I recall, there was a beautiful old INN,The Red Fox Inn, located in Middleburg and they had beautiful equestrian paintings. If I were you, I would keep A Kapschutschenko Sculpture and luxuriate in God's country in Northern Virginia.
John Bruce Schmitt [12-18-2011]

Is anyone in contact with the Colman family that had the plumbing company on Wayne Avenue? They remodeled our kitchen in the 1950's.
Del Conner [12-18-2011]

Growing up on Erringer Place, I was a choir boy at SFA 1960 ­ 64 with Sister Rose Emmanuel and remember the midnight mass and the special outfit with the big bows that we wore on that night. It was a bit much and always felt a little uncomfortable in it. My father would be one of those that would put up the tree for mom to decorate while he put up the Lionel trains, put out the presents all in one night then be up at the crack of dawn with the kids. I remember one evening going with dad to Kane & Browns who would be open late on Christmas eve for those who needed lights, extension cords, track points, etc.
Del Conner, Physick House, Society Hill [12-18-2011]

Carol Forst...I lost contact with Russ LaGreca after graduating from GHS.I believe his father worked as a custodian at the school.Richard came after me,and I did not know him.Like his brother,he was a very good athlete.A mutual friend Ed Kennedy advised me of Richard's passing in Florida.Ed,who lives in Atlanta,attended the funeral of his good friend Richard.Both Richard and Ed attended their 50th Germantown High School reunion.Being close friends,Ed knew the LaGreca family(but mostly Richard.They kept in touch and visited frequently right up to the time of Richard's passing....................... Joe Lynch...I believe that fantastic Christmas snowstorm occured in 1966,the year I married Fran.We were living in an apartment in Roxborough and were forced to stay there;thus,away from our families for the first time.However,our neighbor in the apartment complex,Gil Pierce and his newly wed wife Eve,kept us company that Christmas eve.Gil graduated with me at GHS in 1956.Being a snow lover(still am),that gift from mother nature was a great Christmas present.I don't know about you,but I am saddened by this very mild and snowless December.I hope my prayers will be answered,and mother nature will bless us again with another Christmas snowstorm(not on the roads)just like she did 45 years ago....Merry Christmas and a Happy,Healthy,and Prosperous New Year to one and all.And remember,THINK SNOW !.....Paul Borian (I'm no fool)
Paul Borian, Someone who thinks logically provides a nice contrast to the real world. [12-18-2011]

Joe Lynch, I enjoyed your article, "The Story Of The Christmas Tree". It brought back a flood of memories as I could relate to the storm, the snow, the tree, and mostly to the dad side of your story. My dad worked two jobs. He would finish up the first job (about 4:00 p.m.); arrive home (mom would have dinner on the table); leave for the 2nd job; arrive home later in the evening. This schedule allowed him little time for Christmas shopping; so he would delegate me to do the present buying for my mom. However, on Christmas Eve, my dad would leave the house & proceed to venture out into the world of "last minute shoppers". He always managed to surprise us with a gift we had been hoping for but had not truly expected to receive. When he returned home from his expedition on Christmas Eve, the smile on his face indicated that his excursion had been a successful one & that "mission impossible" had been accomplished. Once again, on Christmas morning, magic would happen in our home on Haines Street. Thanks for the memories, Merry Christmas, Happy New Year!
Lorraine (Cupo) Kelly, fl; ic '55' cdhs '59 [12-18-2011]

Anonymous, yes, Squeak's brother Kaiser did pass away some years back and yes they used to have some hot cars in there. I drove down Greene street today and forgot to look back his driveway, but I did I remember to look in my rear view mirror, however, I didn't see his old blue inspection sign hanging there. Next time I'm in the area I'll try to get a look back there and I'll post it. Joe
Joe DePero, 54, st mikes 70, levittown [12-16-2011]

I heard that Richard LaGreca passed away. I grew up in Germantown and Russel was my high school sweethart. Paul, will you send me some information on the family. Carol Frost nee Bostock
Carol Forst [12-16-2011]

The Story of the Christmas Tree: It never snowed on Christmas but once it did. I think it was 1966 or 1967, a blizzard blew up from the South (Maybe you remember it?) and dumped about a foot of snow on the corner of Wayne Avenue and Seymour Street, right below Kane and Brown but right above the Italian shoemaker (who never understood a word I said to him). My sister Kathy and I had to go out into this storm, on foot, (Who had a car?) and find a Christmas tree, lug it home and trim it with tinsel. This was usually my father's job but he worked so hard on Christmas Eve, delivering flowers on the Main Line, that he could not make it home in time, so we decided to surprise him. We found that scrawny tree under a snow drift (It didn't look so bad--all white and eager to please.)We paid the guy 4 bucks, buckled our knees and trod up Seymour St. to Pulaski Ave, then the dark stretch of Abbottsford Ave. next to the nursing home (spooky!)and finally down Fernhill Road. It was the happiest night of my life. Kids had sleds under their arms, the 5 and 10 was still open as was Kodner's Drug Store,I remember. Wayne Avenue was aglow with sparkling white diamonds everywhere. Even the 53 trolley slowed its zoom (You remember the sound.)as if in respect to this once in a lifetime event. People were joyous on the street in the snow--perhaps you were one of them or, at least, you remember that errant storm. At home,in those days we placed "the bad side of the tree" to the wall, larded it up with tinsel, found a string of bulbs in the basement next to the coal bin and hoped at least some of them would twinkle. Our little tree tried hard that Christmas to stand tall and proud until the Epiphany on January 6th. Did we forget the candy canes? (Of course) Is it straight up? (Kinda) Will it dry out and cause a fire? The fire was my father's favorite worry. (He used to pull the plug on the toaster and the television set whenever he left the house--always sure that electricity was going to jump out at us from some unattended appliance.)We stood agog at our little friend the tree and tried not to notice its bare spots or the burned-out bulbs. Slapping on an angel, a pure design in cotton--something we had made in school years before--gave our little friend a certain dignity it deserved. When he walked through the cellar door, my father was surely going to be pleased with what his children had done for him. He came into the house cold and tired from driving in the snow all day, and we knew, perhaps, for the first time, his exhaustion. That year, we didn't let our Father down. And our friend The Christmas Tree didn't let us down. (He didn't start a fire!) That winter, a terribly thin, crooked-spine, spindly pine tree with blinking bulbs and a half-cocked angel was the Christmas gift to our Father who had just come in from the darkness. Years later I recall the storm, the tree and a man grateful to have such children.
Joe Lynch--The hopes and fears of all the years are met in Thee tonight. [12-16-2011]

I've been researching the artist Kapschutschenko and your Germantown site keeps coming up. I own a sculpture of his and would like to find out it's value and I was hoping a reader of yours can help me out. Thank you so much and happy holidays to one and all.
Kevin Chadwick, Upperville, VA [12-16-2011]

Re 4938 Wayne Avenue (Chinese Takeaway): a Phila PD YouTube video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W3numjnZjUU depicts an aggravated assault by 5 or 6 men inside the restaurant on Sept 1, 2011 (although the captions on the video put it in March 2000!). Sandy Lai, who owned (still owns?) the dry cleaners at Wayne & Seymour and several other businesses in the immediate vicinity, opened that restaurant back in the late 60s and it served really good Cantonese food. Looks entirely different now. What a shame.
CMM [12-16-2011]

To all Germantowners i wish a Merry Christmas, and a Healthy Happy New Year and to those who donot celebrate Christmas i hope whichever Holiday you celebrate it is a blessed and happy one. Rosemarie
rosemarie hite malageri [12-16-2011]

I spoke to Jack Walsh by phone the other day-he was happy to hear from me.I reminded him that he was a guest at my 16th birthday party 60yrs ago--Jack had a severe stroke about 8yrs ago that has him severely paralyzed & he is difficult to understand (poor speech)-Say a prayer for him-he was such a nice person. Lou Giorno
Lou Giorno, Mr G DOS [12-16-2011]

On my last post,I forgot to mention two friends from GTN,who are no longer with us--Ralph Siani & Stan Forgione-may they rest in peace. Lou Giorno
Lou Giorno, Mr G dos [12-16-2011]

Does anyone know who started the soccer program at Germantown Academy?
Mr. Trivia, G-town [12-16-2011]

Naomi Vitelli: I want to offer you my condolences for the loss of a loved one, everything in life pales next to the loss of a loved one. It will be especially difficult during Christmas Time and prayer and family is so important during this time of grieving. On another note,it was great to hear John Granozio's fond remarks about Germantown. I was friends with his classmate from LaSalle-Dom D'Amico. Dandy Don[Dom] thought John. G. was an outstanding athlete and both of these gentlemen also attended Temple. Dr. D'Amico was a football player but at LaSalle, I surmised that John Granozio also had talent in football although he was a sensational baseball player,playing on LaSalle's Championship Baseball Team. John G. knew Wayne Hardin,The Famous Temple and Navy Coach, from Temple and Manufacturer's Country Club where they both played golf. John G. was a great athlete but he had some tough competition at Manny's where he had to compete with Wayne Hardin Sr.,his sons, George May,the outstanding Nova basketball player,Biff Keidel,and my good friend from SFA,Bob Campbell. Golf can be an expensive game especially when wagering takes place. I would conjecture that John G. is enjoying the golf courses in sunny Florida. I wonder if John remembers me from The Jarretttown Hotel where I was the reserved brother with the rugged features since I broke up a few fights in my time and caught a few wayward punches-there can be consequences for being a nice guy. Frank Crawford,his old neighbor,and I would like to meet him in the future. Frankie C has done well in life and he does not mine throwing money on the mahogany just as he would throw a lot of quarters on the pin-ball machine back in the day. Naomi! Hang in there and we might see you at LaFontana's in Hatboro.
John Bruce Schmitt [12-16-2011]

Joe Lynch ­ another nice post of Christmas in Germantown and at SFA. I was an altar boy at IC. I tried out for the choir and they even accepted me even though I couldn’t carry a tune, then or now. My rationale for wanting to join the choir was that I wanted to be up in the choir loft. But my Mom had an expectation for all of her sons, and that was that we would be altar boys, not choir boys. So, I dropped out and became an altar boy. Those Midnight Masses at IC were special. We would process through the church in our white cassocks, red bibs and red sashes (I long forget what their formal name was). The pomp and pageantry and all the decorations, especially the lifesize nativity scene that they had there. . IC is a huge church, the 2nd largest in the archdiocese. The church would be packed with every pew filled and some folks having to stand. I suppose there were a few there that over-celebrated with Christmas cheer, but I don’t recall seeing that myself. With IC, at least through the 1940s and probably into the 1950s, their solemn Christmas Mass was at 5:00am and not the Midnight Mass. So, the same scenario I remember that played out at the Midnight Masses during my time was at 5:00am in earlier times. Can’t even imagine that at that hour today….. Like with you, it was a joy to stay up that late as a kid. Hard to find a Midnight Mass these days. A few churches keep up that tradition, but not many in the Philly archdiocese.
Dennis McGlinchey, Born & raised in East Germantown [12-16-2011]

Naomi Vitelli, My thoughts and prayers are with you, your family, and especially Joe. I know my family who was very close to him when they were very young will be saddened by this news and will pray for all of you during this difficult time ... Rosemarie
rosemarie hite malageri [12-15-2011]

Bud Ballard: I attended Fitler School until the 5th grade and then transferred to St. Michael's from which I graduated in 1955. I then went to the Prep and joined our friend JBS for four years with the good Jesuit fathers.
Louis F Pauzano, 70yrs, South Phila [12-15-2011]

Hello Bruce Schmidt & Lou Giorno- As luck would have it- I spoke with John Granozio this afternoon. He is spending some time where the climate is warmer. He too remembers fondly "The good old days in Germantown!" naomi
Naomi Vitelli [12-15-2011]

Joe Lynch - Your eloquent Midnight Mass/Christmas remembrance felt like a back rub by a crackling fire. The memories came flooding back. Unfortunately, the choir at IC was not a part of my history. When I tried out for choir, the sister in charge asked me in a rather non-diplomatic manner: "...Mr. Anderson - have you ever considered being an altar boy...?" I did so and was privileged to an altar boy st St. Vincent's Seminary from 3rd to 8th grade. Thanks so much for the wonderful blog and I will look forward to reading more in the future. Best wishes for a Merry Christmas. Andy
Andy Anderson, Longwood, FL USA - IC '58 CD '62 [12-15-2011]

Joe Lynch - I too made that march up the center aisle to stand on the alter steps and sing carols. I was in the choir at SFA around 1964 and I remember we carried these electric candles and they turned off the lights in the church as we sang. Our eyes were clued to the choir loft as Sister Rose Emanual directed us and Mrs. Tracy played the organ. The only other member of the choir I remember was my grade school buddy Mooskie Beerley. Joe - I really enjoyed your post - It brought back great memories.Thanks.
Cooter in NC [12-15-2011]

Duncan Hubley: Recently,I had a dialogue with Frank Margiotti about a couple of athletes from GBC who went to GA-John Granozio and Jim Frazer. I mentioned Ted Sloan who went to Norwood Academy and GA. You are also an alumus of GA,a great Educational Institution in Germantown during our youth. Joe Lynch from Fernhill went to LaSalle and your friends,Rich and Ned Pomfret also attended that great Catholic High School. Two other great schools in Germantown were Penn Charter and Germantown Friends. At Fernhill Park,there were many kids from North,CD,Roman,The Prep,and Gratz. You and Bill Haas represented GA at Fernhill and you were an outstanding soccer player and Bill H. was an exceptional baseball player but both of you had a good game in basketball. In the 50's, GA had good athletes and coaches. You would come up to Fernhill with some of your friends including Ken Twiford,the great 3-star athlete from GA. Ken Twiford had a rep for football and baseball but what a drive that he had in basketball-explosive. My niece and nephew went to Germantown Lutheran Academy after GA moved to that beautiful campus in Fort Washington. My nephew,Peter, teaches at GA and you played ball with his father at Fernhill-Doc. You were always connected with GA and I wonder if you have crossed paths with some of those great GA athletes from the 50's-John Granozio,Jim Fraser,Ted Sloan,and Ken Twiford. I hung out in Crane's on Queen Lane and it was always a madhouse after the Penn Charter-GA football game. Tom Crane,one of the owners, was a GA guy and over the years, I met many GA guys but you were the first GA guy that I knew and you were always a class-act but tough under the boards and you had to pump iron . Duncan! Have A Merry Christmas and Keep Kicking.
Bruce Schmitt [12-15-2011]

JBS - you mentioned the German bakeries, Haasis and Schenk's. I never knew of them except for their being mentioned often here on this blog. I would bet they made a wonderful Stollen at Christmas. They are not German, but the Flourtown Bakery on Bethlehem Pike makes a wonderful Stollen. Schneider's Bakery was a longtime German bakery on the east side, on Chelten Ave. I never had their Stollen but, if it was like their other delicacies, it too would have been excellent. You just cannot beat those ethnic bakeries, German, Italian, French and such. All this discussion about bakeries, now I'm hankering for a cannoli from Termini's as well as a Stollen.....
Dennis McGlinchey, Born & raised in East Germantown [12-15-2011]

Being a choirboy I had to get to church, St. Francis of Assisi, at ll o'clock on Christmas Eve.We lived at the end of the parish next to Fernhill Park, so it was a long walk with the cassock and surplice--red, but kind of jazzy. Of course there was a big bow and I hoped none of my friends--Fries, McElroy, especially my big cousin Brogan, the girls--Carmody, Scampton, Kiely, Botta, McHugh would not see me dressed like a fruitcake. The Church filled quickly with part-time Catholics (It was Christmas, after all.) overdressed for the occasion. Around 11:30, we marched up the aisle, assembled in loose formation and waited for the organ:"It came upon a midnight clear, that glorious song of old. . ." After 20 minutes of every Adeste Fidelis and O Holy Night, we trundled to the loft to sing the Latin for the Mass--the Kyrie, the Gloria, the Credo and the now defunct Et cum spiritu tuo. It was a night of revelry for a small boy. It was a drama, a concert, a time of wishes and a colorful diorama of pointsettias and incense from the back of the Church. When the parishoners left after the Mass, we, in the loft, standing on chairs, tried to pick out our friends and tell them to wait for us outside in the cold night air. None did. To stay up after midnight was fabulous and we dawdled on the way home, up Wyneva, past the Hollow, down Wayne Ave. to Abbotsford Rd. and the Crowleys, the Paynes, the Kennedys, the Burns, then through the dark nursing home on Pulaski Ave. On the way home at 12:30 Christmas morning I could see homes with lights-on and trees-lit, and of course fathers putting Lionel train sets together. It might be a long night for those handymen but, as we all know, Santa does not bring toys that do not work! It would be a time of night I would get to know intimately later in life with my own children. When I passed the Brogans and Quinns on Fernhill I knew I was home, chilled to the bone. Just a few hours more and I would be opening mom and dad's presents that would be simple and heartfelt. Christmas was/is, after all, never about the presents. My family of Tom and Kathy, Maurice and Kathleen would awaken that morning and I prepared myself to go back to Church with my cassock and surplice for the 9 o'clock Mass. This time I would get it right and hit all (OK, most)of the notes: "O Little Town of Bethlehem, how still we see thee lie. . ." At home we would have to wait for snow that would surely come the next Christmas.
Joe Lynch--Explore the things the mind already knows. [12-14-2011]

Dear Friends from Germantown, I want to let you know that my cousin, Joe Gallo is now in Hospice care at his home in Florida. Some of you shared that you knew Joe when he was a hairstylist in Philly. Your thoughts and prayers are appreciated Thank you. Naomi
Naomi Vitelli [12-14-2011]

Joe Lynch - A Childs Christmas in Wales by Dylan Thomas is a book I take out every Christmas and enjoy. I also give the little blue book with the charming wood cuts to special people I know will ejoy it. Merry Christmas

Thinking of all my friends from GTN.& GBC who are no longer with us-Fred Loffredo-Alex Daniele--Norm Baker-Bunny Crawford-Gerry McColgan-John Gessleman-Vince McGuire-Harry Nesbitt-Dan Goffredo-Frank Goffredo-MAY THEY REST IN PEACE !Their friend Louis F. Giorno
Lou Giorno, Mr G Dos [12-14-2011]

Mr Lynch, I admire your many blogs describing life as a child in Germantown. It was rare for sure. My own mum would make "Snow Pudding" a very obsure Irish recipe involving whites of eggs-a whole lot of women beating such,lemon juice and i cannot tell whatever next-it was all put into the fridge the day before and exited like this delightfully refreshing cold crunchy pudding served with a warm lemon/orange sauce. I would die for it today! BTW yes CMM is correct all Brits and most Ersemen enjoy Christmas brandy pudding. I miss it. But a final comment-Dylan Thomas was a brilliant writer and he was killed by his love for drink. I once sat-in the roped chair-where he was last drinking, at the White Horse Bar in the Village-he is said to have remarked "I have drunk 48 whiskeys today and that must be some sort of record". The wonderful man Dylan Thomas, collapsed and died. Junglejim
Jim McKernan, Professor, NC [12-14-2011]

Joe Lynch: I and many other bloggers on this site, appreciate your edifying post about Christmas and the delectable food that you had and devoured for The Xmas Holiday. My ethnic-background is German and Irish. The French and Italians are known for their cooking but The Irish and German can bring a lot to The Christmas Feast. Germans are known for their bakeries and baked goods- Schenk's near The Hollow and Haasis's on West Queen Lane. After Christmas Dinner, I would suggest some German Xmas cookies,Hazelnut or Almonds,with some Irish Coffee- I prefer Bailey's Irish Cream. You and Dennis McGlinchey mentioned various Xmas Books in your post. One of the greatest Christmas Books was " A Christmas Carol" by Charles Dickens. The main character was "Scrooge" and this book motivates us never to scrooge anybody during Xmas-whether materially or emotionally. You and Paul Borian are getting so profound as you age gracefully and you even used the Latin word lux or light. We should luxuriate during Christmas and see the light and feel the Grace of Christ. Lou Pauzano and I studied Latin at The Prep and Christmas is all about "Rex Christus",Christ The King,and not simply about how many gifts are under the tree. You, Frank Klock and CMM have probaly read Les Miserables by Victor Hugo. To quote from that book in Latin,"Christus Nos Liberavit",which translates,Christ frees us, and we should not forget that fact at Christmas time. Cardinal John Foley,Prep 53,just passed away and he translated Latin into English for The Vatican. Joe! At Christmas Mass, Remember Cardinal John Foley and all The Germantowners who have departed.
Bruce Schmitt [12-14-2011]

attention louis f. pauzano did you go to saint francis of assisi? were you in the class of 1956? my name is orville (bud) ballard. i lived at 4603 germantown avenue.
ORVILLE T. BALLARD, sfa class 1956 & nechs class 1960 [12-14-2011]

George Schurr - thank you for pointing me in the direction of the 8/22/2011 post. She was the lady I sent those photos to years ago of her old home and grandfathers' store at 4938 Wayne Avenue. As like much of Germantown today, she said it was sad seeing those photos of her old home. Like so many of us, she has a love of Germantown and many fond memories. We had a nice exchange. Thank you again.....
Dennis McGlinchey, Born & raised in East Germantown [12-14-2011]

joihn bruce schmitt ! thanks for your kind words. i did know lots of people in germantown . maybe because i had the shop on wayne ave ?i started there in 1960 and was there for those 8 years and had a chance to see and talk first hand to lots of people . hair was the big thing in those days women were in to change . we had a peroid when women had a different hair style every year! teased hair at that time was the big thing ! every year different styles were intruduced to the public. i had a good run for about 25 years lucky me ! i knew lots of people and there familys.i kind of had 2 lives ! one as a child growing up and the other as adult . gave me a different out look on germantown . i saw the change developeing befor my eyes. when we talk about wayne avenue i was in tune to evry thing going on at that time 1960 to 1968. when i left i focust more on the new place (roslyn ) and worked hard to make that work for me ! as i said before i was a very lucky guy . some people forgot or don't remember street's and areas in the 50 hundred block of wayne avenu, but not me it is locked in to my mind like it was yesterday . as far as sports figures i all so new some real great players in all areas of sports ! there were so manny great players who like i said before never had the chance to make it big because of the way it was in those days . going to work early in life to help out at home . not to be long on words here but i had stoped at tony malettos house the other day to wish him happy hollidays.he is 86 and still had all his brains ! from brick yard and man when i ask him any questions about germantown he remembers and can whip out any thing i need to know about good old brick yard . i am just not a good writer and speller but if i could type and spell good i would tell you so much more of good old germantown . i think i could write a book ! thanks again ! frank margiotti.
frank margiotti, lansdale pa [12-13-2011]

For a nice trip down memory lane, check out this list of videos: http://www.friendsofimmaculate.com/video.htm. There are videos there of the original Wannamaker's Christmas Light Show, the Enchanted Colonial Village and the Dickens Village walk-thru, all Philly Christmas traditions. There is also the marionettes "The Spirit of Christmas" and "The Night Before Christmas" that was produced by the Bell Telephone Company and we grew up with. What stands out with the marionette videos is its sheer simplicity compared to what we are used to seeing today. There are some other great videos there as well.
Dennis McGlinchey, Born & raised in East Germantown [12-13-2011]

Dylan Thomas has a short autobiographical story called "A Child's Christmas in Wales" that I try to read every year. Not a Christmas Story (the movie), it nevertheless captures a time, a place, the winter, childhood and all the festivities we remember, except the chimney fire that causes quite a commotion. There is a paperback for a few bucks that has some very expressive woodcuts. A blue cover, quality paper make it a nice gift. If you have a bookstore near you, "A Child's Christmas in Wales" ought to be on your coffee table, next to Kramer's book on, of all things, coffee tables.
Joe Lynch--Lux ex libris [12-13-2011]

Anonymous...I believe Russsell LaGrecca is deceased.His brother Richard LaGrecca passed away in Florida in 2010.I played football with Russ at GHS.He was an outstanding football player,playing tight end.I was told that he turned down a football scholarship at the University of Colorado.I remember Russ as a quality guy with a great sense of humor.....Paul Borian
Paul Borian, Experience is a wonderful thing.It enables you to recognize a mistake when you make it again. [12-13-2011]

Frank: I remember Colman Plumbing vert well. It was located between Shelart Electric and Riggall Paint. Prior to becoming Coleman's it was a shack of sorts Coleman bought it and made it some sort of showroom. He also bought the house next to ours at 5033 from the Kiefers and coverted it to two apartments at about the time the area was in a downward trend. The second floor of the showroom was rented to janitorial company.
Louis F Pauzano,Sr, 70yrs, South Phila. [12-13-2011]

JBS: Thanks for the info in re the "bakeries"...Mikw Deely
mike deely, No longer applicable [12-13-2011]

JDP, I think Squeaks brother Anthony (Kaiser) died a few years ago. Is he working the business alone? If I remember they had a few hot cars in that shop.
anonymous [12-13-2011]

Frank Crawford: It was great to receive an e-mail from my old SFA classmate and inform me that you were John Granozio's neighbor in Oreland. It resonated with me that both of you frequented the Jarrettown Hotel which was owned by my family. Your old friend, Tom Cueball Cusack, posts on this site. Tom C. was given that nickname by Jerry McKewon who was also an old friend. Dom Raffaele, your classmate from SFA and North posts on this site-especially about Hollow issues. Last week,I had lunch with Mike Smith of SFA and Norwood who lived at Greene&Logan. I remember being in the candy-store at Greene&Logan and you started to play the pin-ball machine. You went through $10 and that was 1955 when that could have bought some nice shoes at Flagg Brothers at Gtn.& Chelten. A lot of the guys in the 5200 block of Morris St. where you lived, liked fast cars. You have to remember the bad ride,Al Patrizi had with Fank Welch who lived across the street from you. You probaly remember Bob Colsten, the wild and crazy biker who lived around the corner from you on Hansberry St.- he checked out early but not before I had a hard and ugly ride with him. Dave Heil passed away and he and Frank Felice worked at The Queen lane Pharmacy near you. Carmen Volpe's parents had a grocery store across from Queen Lane Pharmacy and my older brother was a good friend of Carmen who was a very strong guy. However, he had a hookout with Herb Adderly[NFL] and that was not a smart move. Reflecting on our youth in Germantown, we knew a bunch of characters. Only God could have created, Edward Biff Halloran, The Concrete King, and our old classmate,Rowland Mole Adomoli. I remember playing football with you and Mole in Logan Park and the lot across from your grandmother at Manheim&Greene. I also remember playing basketball with you at The Cage at GBC and how you would get so excited after putting the b-ball into the hoop. Frank! Where did all the years go? In your neighborhood, I like The Springhouse-make it happen,Captain.
J. Bruce Schmitt [12-13-2011]

Frank Margiotti is the oldest living person that had a business on Wayne Ave. His posts are accurate as his business was a success--a beauty shop is a place for gossip-& and he heard & saw quite a bit during his 8yrs at that venue--he is a walking encyclopedia-he has photographic mind.Frank is 76yrs old & still going strong (works everyday)-He is a great friend & person. HIS PAISANO-Lou Giorno.
Lou Giorno, Mr G dos [12-12-2011]

Anybody know Tony Parlante?
CMM [12-12-2011]

Frank Margiotti: You are a true Germantowner,knowing folks and great athletes on both sides of The Great Avenue[Gtn.]. You are still friends with Lou Giorno, one of the great hitters from GBC who went 5 for 5 and this event even hit The Germantown Courier-pardon the pun. You also remember Rocky Raffaele of The Hollow who had great talent in baseball. You also knew John Granozio from GBC,a Hall of Famer for Temple,and one of their greatest hitters and 3rd Baseman. Recently, an old classmate from SFA,Frank Crawford e-mailed me about his former neighbor,,John Granozio. These 2 former Germantowners lived off the golf course at Manufacturer's Country Club-Frankie C. off the 18th hole and If I recall, John G. might have lived off the 6th hole. Obviously, these two Germantowners were into The American Dream. I only hope that the future generation can experience The American Dream. Frank! You also mentioned that Jim Frazer was a great soccer player at GBC and a super athlete. I am familiar with Jim Frazer when he was a great athlete at GA. I played ball at Fernhill Park with Duncan Hubley who was the legendary soccer player and coach at GA. Duncan and I knew 3 outstanding baseball players at Fernhill- Leroy KellyNFL] and Harold Pat Kelly[Orioles] and Bill Haas was also a professional player for The Mets. Duncan H. would probaly know Jim Frazer as one of the greatest football players for GA-he also played for The AFL. At GA,Jim F. played football with Ted Sloan who was All-Inter-AC but Ted's best sport was baseball and he was a professional player. Recently, I was hanging out with Mike Smith, from Greene& Logan and he went to Norwood Academy where Ted Sloan and Bob Sloan attended. We have bloggers on this site who attended CD where Bob S. was an outstanding running back. I have not talked to John Granozio in many years and he has a connection with Jim Fraser and Ted Sloan fron GA. I was friendly with Tom Crane who owned Crane's and he went to LaSalle and GA and all these lads knew one another. My old classmate,Frankie C lived near Crane's in Germantown and Ambler and his sister,Nancy, married Emmett Harkins who worked at Crane's on Queen Lane in G-town. It would be great if these old Germantowners could get together in a central location like The Spring House Tavern in Springhouse. It is amazing the people that you and Lou know from G-town. Frankie C e- mailed me about a guy from NYC and Germantown and he was "The Concrete King"-Ed Biff Halloran and he might be in concrete. We did learn from Naomi Vitelli that Big John Granozio is alive and probaly kicking butt on the goldf course.
John Bruce Schmitt [12-12-2011]

Joe, that Christmas pudding is a staple of the British Christmas meal, extended throughout its former colonies, including Australia. Ladies start assembling the puddings before Halloween, wrapping them in muslin, to be hung for the 2 months before being boiled on Christmas Day and served with the cream--heavily laced with brandy--that you remember so fondly. It is a major fund-raiser for many, many charitable organizations, churches etc and zillions are sold each year. The supermarkets carry mass-produced puddings but the best ones are the ones handmade with love by old ladies at a working bee. A video detailing the process is at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ih5mTrE3iCk
CMM [12-12-2011]

Joe Lynch, Thank You !
Teri Evans Ireland [12-12-2011]

Anthony...I know exactly who you are now. I am so sorry to hear about Tina.
Teri Evans Ireland [12-12-2011]

Hi Linda Beard, I lived at 632 E. Stafford St from 1958-68. My family moved from around 1976. There was a great mix of Italian, Irish & German neighbors when we lived there. naomi
NAOMI VITELLI [12-12-2011]

Arlene...Tommy Joe Murphy??Sounds more like a guy from some small town in Texas rather than Happy Hollow.BaBa Murphy is more like it.I seem to recall a previous post on this site awhile back that BaBa and Rocky Raffaele,his long time buddy,were sharing an apartment in Florida.If so,I'm assuming that he passed away in Florida?Does anyone know if Rocky is still with us?....Paul Borian(I ain't from Texas neither)
Paul Borian, Old age is when broadness of the mind and narrowness of the waist change places. [12-12-2011]

does anybody know the where-abouts of Russell LaGreca?
anonymous [12-12-2011]

Dennis McGlinchey,re.your posting 12/1/11 concerninga women who lived at 4938 Wayne Ave.If you look at a posting dated 8/22/11,I think you will find answers to many of your questions.My sister Joann Schurr was very friendly with Pearl in the 1940's.We lived at 203 Clapier 1940-1952.The back of our house was on the same alley.Pearl[Carman]Plavin is her name.I think she lives in Warminster.George Schurr
anonymous [12-12-2011]

Vera Canavan, I know several Canavans from Derry area of N Ireland-where did your kin emigrate from? The quiz game is splendid as a challenge. I like it very much. Happy Hols.
Jim McKernan, North Carolina, Professor [12-12-2011]

Northeast Resident-many thanks! he will be scouting out the area tomorrow&tuesday.
Jim McKernan, Greenville NC [12-12-2011]

Dan Hartnett, both places you mention do not accept dogs. Ross brought his Irish dog "Charley" with him-so no joy there! Thanks a million.
Jim McKernan, Greenville NC [12-12-2011]

I used to babysit for a Granozio Family on Reger St near Wade, just wondering if the John Granozio that people are talking about is the same family.
Jim Coleman, Manheim St [12-12-2011]

Joe Lynch, very nice memories of Christmas Past in Germantown. Thanks for sharing that. Too many of those wonderful old recipes died with our parents, grandparents, etc. But often too they were in their head and knew how to make it to perfection, but couldn't express exact measurements other then a little this, a pinch of that, etc. My mother-in-law was born in Ireland. Her Irish soda bread is wonderful, but could never write it down because she she makes it how she was taught, the old way and mostly by instinct
Dennis McGlinchey, Born & raised in East Germantown [12-12-2011]

to cmm! 5022 was not mary gutz place . 5022 was franks hairstyling ! i know because i am still here and that was my place from 1960 to 1968 . still have a couple of bussiness cards with my old address whitch is 5022 wayne ave. i am still here and belive me it was 5022 wayne ave . marys place was about 3 house down going south .i do know that my old place is now a pizza place.not trying to dipute you but i was at 5022 wayne ave for 8 years .by the way dose any one remember colemans plumpers store that was up the street toward lows drug store ?frank margiotti
frank margiotti, lansdale pa [12-12-2011]

Mike Deely, Lawrenceville is a charming village in Central Jersey and the home of Lawrenceville Prep. Across from The Prep School near the corner of Gordon&206 is the "Village Bakery", which is known for it's breads and pastries-The owner is a European Baker. If your son likes bagels, Maidenhead is also across from The Prep School on 206. In Lambertville,across from New Hope,there are some good coffee shops but I do not know about bakeries. Your son is moving to beautiful Bucks County where many bloggers on this site reside including the great slugger from The Hollow,Paul Borian, and the great gymnast from GHS,Dan Hartnett.
John Bruce Schmitt [12-12-2011]

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