Friday, April 18, 2014

Leading Cheers At the Old Stadium

Veterans Memorial Stadium before its renovation.
Gimme an "A"
Gimme a "C"
Gimme another "A" ....

Yes, the universal cheer to get everyone excited before the big football game- spelling out the name of the high school. Looks like these cheerleaders at Academy High School have made it to the last letter, "Y," made famous by the Village People song "YMCA." Sign language for the masses. 

This picture was taken around 1961-62 and it shows the old bleachers at Veterans Memorial Stadium before it was renovated.

Find more facts about Erie, Pennsylvania in the local history blog Old Time Erie

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Top 20 Ethnic Clubs in Erie 1952

Listings from the 1952 Club Directory.
There were a number of clubs that catered to the various ethnic groups in Erie in 1952 which are better known by their nicknames. A few that come to mind are the PP Club, the PNA Club and the CYS Club. And let's not forget the Hooksie Dooksie!

Pratola-Peligna Society: The PP Club. 1601 Plum St., Erie, PA. The club had 450 members including social and beneficial. Annual dues were $12 for beneficial and $1 for social members. Officers included John Gamble, Albert DiLoreto, Nick Bianchi, Patsy DiLoreto, Oliver Franz, Louis Semintilli, Louis Benacci and Gino Cargiole.

American Jugo Slav Club. 136 West 17th St., Erie, PA. Officers of the club included Harry Christensen, Philip Marnella and Robert Fischer.

Arbeiters Gesang Verien Club: Arbeiters Club. 324 East 18th St., Erie, PA. The club had six bowling lanes. Annual dues were $1.20. Officers included Joseph L. Nies, Theodore Monahan, Michael Nowak and E. Andrick.

Calabrese Club di Monte Carmelo: Calabrese Club. 509 West 16th St., Erie, PA. Officers of the club were Jack Fatica, Patsy Fratto, Anthony Presogna, Joseph DeFazio, Anthony DeFazio, Nick DeLaura, Dan Presogna, Ted Chimenti, Joseph Pillitieri and Louis DeLaura. The club had eight bowling lanes. Annual dues were $12 for regular and $3 for social members. Activities included bowling leagues and floor shows.

Cesare Battisti Club, 301 German St., Erie, PA. Officers included Paul DeDionisio, Frank Damico, Armand Chimente, Anthony Chimente, Al. DeDionisio, Anthony Mando, Marc Alberico and Edward DeLuca. The club had 200 beneficial members, whose dues were $12 per year, and 300 social members whose dues were $1.20 per year. Initiation fees were $5-10 depending on age.

Circolo Nazionale: National Club.

Community of Young Staroobriadcy: CYS Club. 155 East 2nd St., Erie, PA. Officers included Fred Simon, John Petroff, Fred Orloff, Charles Pancerev and Matt Federoff. The club had 900 members. 

Danish Club, 1114 West 8th St., Erie, PA. Officers included Peter Larsen, Harry Sorensen, Wylie Hansen and Andrew Nielsen. the club had 400 members and annual dues were $1.

Graeco Americus Society. 1511 Peach St., Erie, PA. Officers included Charles Ramandanes and Gus Katos.

Gwardja Huzarow-Karzmierz Pulaskiego i Tad. Kosciuski: Huzars Club. 1120 East 10th St., Erie, PA. Officers included Adolph Prawdzik, Edward Maciukiewicz, Paul Lipiec, Joseph Dworakowski, Edwin Slupski and Joseph Zielonka. Incorporated in 1935. The club had 900 members. Annual dues were $4.20 for beneficial and $1 for social members. Activities included bowling and softball leagues and dancing.

Holy Trinity Portugese Association: Portugese Club. 1043 West 5th St., Erie, PA. Officers included Harold Fratus, John Costa, Anthony Costa, Joseph Viera, Carlo Santo and John Maio.

Lithuanian Alliance of America, Lodge No. 216. 806 Parade St., Erie, PA. Officers included Anthony Matulevick, John McShane, Joseph Zdunski, Catherine Matulevick and Joseph McShane. The club was incorporated in 1946. The club had 1,426 members. Annual dues were $1.

Nuova Aurora Society. 1518 Walnut St., Erie, PA. Officers included Simone Fromzaglia, Elmer Mazzei, M. J. Leone, Anthony DiCorpo, Leon DiCecco, Frank Necci and Dan Carbone. Incorporated in 1907. The club had 2,200 members. Activities included mushball, baseball and bowling leagues.

Polish National Alliance: PNA Club. 557 East 21st St., Erie, PA. Officers included Vincent Chrostowski, Joseph Rogers, Walter Kanonczyk, Joseph Kozlowski and Edmund Cieslak. Incorporated in 1936. The club had 1,500 members. Activities included a drum and bugle corps, bowling, dancing and a slow pitch league.

Polish National Club. 2114 Wallace St., Erie, PA. Officers included Joseph Wisniewski, Edmund Olszewski, Paul Kita, F. Benes and Frank Martyna. Incorporated in 1918. The club had 275 members.

Polish Sharpshooters Club. 650 East 12th St., Erie, PA. Officers included Joseph Lewandowski, John Cleramadzki, Snelly Sandusky and Andy Desser. The club had six bowling lanes.

Russian American Club. 262 East 3rd Street, Erie, PA. Officers included John Mickol, Alex Puchinsky, Stanley Lata, Nick Maly and Daniel Zuk. The club had 750 members.

Slovak National Club. 902 Hess Avenue, Erie, PA. Officers included William Galla, Michael Bules, John Krkoska, John Bebko and Stephen Duska. 

Slovak Social Club. 902 Pennsylvania Avenue, Erie, PA. Officers included Anthony Samol, Francis Palkovic and John Duska. Incorporated in 1942. The club had 500 members. 

Societa Dimutuo Soccorso di Pennapiedimonte: Penn Club.

Societa Nazionale Dimutuo Soccorso Dimontenero Valcocchiaro Club: Monty Club.

Thadeus Kosciuszko Branch No. 610: Polish Falcons Club. 602 East 19th St., Erie, PA. Officers included Joseph Walczak, Leo Hokaj, Ed Zasada and Joseph (Gardner) Ogrowczyk. The club had six bowling lanes. Annual dues were $3.

Ulpia Traiana Society: Roumanian Club1133 Pennsylvania Avenue, Erie, PA. Officers included Florian Hada, George Romocea, John Gaspar, Thomas Radu, Tom Jackson, Jacob Luca and Charles Dumbravo. Incorporated in 1906. The club two bowling lanes and 450 members.  

If you have more information about these clubs circa 1952, or know of any ethnic clubs that I have forgotten to list, please send me an e-mail. Surely one of you has old membership cards tucked away somewhere.

Find more historic photos and and a fun Erie history blog at: Old Time Erie

Saturday, April 12, 2014

145th PA Volunteers Deserters List

Descriptive List of Deserters courtesy of Pennsylvania State University. 
I debated writing about the deserters of the 145th Pennsylvania Volunteers. The purpose is not to tarnish the names of any families, but to point you to a seldom used source for genealogical research. The example shown above is from the Descriptive List of Deserters from the 145th Regiment of Pennsylvania State Volunteers, which I have included because it lists a number of men from Erie Co. 

Many researchers are aware of Samuel P. Bates' History of the Pennsylvania Volunteers, 1861-65, which lists name, rank, regiment, company and the date the person mustered in and out of the service. This series also tells if he was wounded or died of wounds or sickness while on active duty. The Descriptive List of Deserters gives some additional biographical information, including a physical description (age, height, complexion and color of eyes and hair), place of birth, residence at enlistment and occupation, place of enlistment or enrollment and the name of the officer who enrolled said person.

Surprisingly, deserters were not limited to privates; there were plenty of men of rank, including corporals and sergeants. In the photo shown above, Edwin M. Kelsey, a private in Co. K, 145th PA Vol., age 50, was 5'4.5", had a dark complexion, black eyes and black hair. He was born in Erie County, PA and was a seaman. Edwin resided in Erie Co. when he was assigned to this regiment on August 8, 1862 by Capt. Walker. He deserted on August 31, 1863 from the U.S. General Hospital.

The 111 men on the descriptive list held a variety of jobs prior to joining the 145th, including a butcher, a blacksmith, a carpenter, a cooper, a bar tender, a farmer, a shoemaker, a fisherman and a liquor dealer, to name a few. Ages ranged from 18 to 50 years old.

Click here to view the list of 111 deserters from the 145th PA Volunteer Infantry.

Find more historical sources and facts about Erie, PA at Old Time Erie.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Plymouth Manufactured a Car In Erie

Champion ad in Erie Daily Times, Aug. 23, 1935.
The Times Publishing Co. is located on 12th and
Sassafras St., near the old Plymouth dealership.
Can't make it to Detroit to tour the automobile factories? No problem. Plymouth hooked up a trailer and traveled around the U.S., stopping in Erie, PA on August 24, 1935, to show off the: 

"World's Greatest Miniature Manufacturing Exhibit."

The country was in the midst of the Great Depression, but that did not stop Plymouth from promoting its brand. This enticing free show was held at Champion Auto Sales Co., the local Plymouth dealership, at 12th and Sassafras St., near the other car dealers. 

It's like a trip to Detroit!

"See how the railroad cars bring in the various materials for the automobile, and then the various steps of manufacture that take place in the building of the car. At one end of the assembly line- the bare frames; at the other end of the line- finished automobiles ready for the road. And here is a duplicate of the amazing 18-mile long conveyor lines of the great Plymouth factory."                
Come and see it! 

"It's one of the most elaborate mechanical exhibits of modern industry...It is the marvel of modern industry. Come tomorrow and see this operating miniature factory at our salesroom. The public is cordially invited. The display is for one day only. Don't miss it."

There is one thing I would like to know. Since this was a miniature manufacturing exhibit, did Plymouth make a miniature car in Erie?

As a sidebar, when I saw an illustration of the old Plymouth plant on Lynch Road in Detroit, Michigan I did a double take. At first glance I thought it was a drawing of Central Tech High School / Tech Memorial High School in Erie, Pennsylvania.  

Find more fun facts about the old days in Erie, PA at Old Time Erie