One of the greatest aspects of Preserving York is its ability to pull together the extensive knowledge shared by members of the community.
Take for example the Preserving York group on Facebook. In existence for just over one year, this online community has just reached a milestone by adding its 300th member. Besides each of those people being a separate branch of my “history” family, they are valuable for the knowledge they bring to the discussions.
Brett Wisotzkey was one of the newest members of the group – actually, the 300th member – and eagerly shared this great photograph. It was passed on to him and he wondered where it was taken. Not only were the group members able to determine the location – 288 West Market Street in York – but they also offered a number of other details as well:
- The building is now used by a bridal shop and appears to have been combined with 286 West Market Street.
- JoAnne Everhart had a neighbor, Clarence Dubs, who worked at the business.
- Daphne Shaffer-Fuller remembered Peoples Dry Cleaning which was next door at 284 West Market Street.
- Ted Schaefer told us the business was started in 1910. When they celebrated their 50th anniversary his father gave them an engine and other parts from his 1910 Model 10 Buick Roadster to display in their showroom window.
Upon closer inspection of the photograph we see lettering from a property across the street in a reflection, as shown below:
The next mystery was trying to figure out what city store the reflection came from, which was quickly determined by JoAnne. As it turns out, Leinhardt Bros. Furniture was located at 277 – 283 West Market Street.
By the way, if you noticed the woman “peeking” at you on the lower right of this cropped image, I believe that’s actually a window decal.
When Brett joined the Preserving York community I don’t think he realized the enthusiastic response that most postings received. After learning much more about the photo than he had expected, he said:
I didn’t expect to get such a reaction. Thanks for all the info.
Group member Betty Eppard Sipe offers some of the most heartfelt and detailed responses and is eager to share her memories with others. Through our discussions I learned she spent the early years of her life in Stoverstown, which I called home for many years. JoAnne had even lived there many years ago and the information they supplied helped spark my interest for some upcoming stories.
During the group’s conversation about a forgotten cemetery near Saginaw, Betty offered this detailed account of her time living near Brunner Island:
I lived on a farm that over looked Brunner’s Island. We were toward the southern tip of it. They started building PP&L the first year we moved to that farm. I grew up watching them destroy the island below our home. Our landlord farmed much of the land on the southern part of the island for many years, till they put ash pits there. We sat on our front porch and had a beautiful view down river toward a stone railroad bridge crossing the river. We could see the old lime stone quarry on the other side of the river as well. Bainbridge was almost directly across the river from our farm. In the fall we had the beauty of the woods around the farm. It was a beautiful place to grow up. As a kid my parents would sometimes take us fishing down on Brunner’s Island. I walked the fields a bit there looking for arrow heads as well. I moved to the farm when I was nine, in 1958, and was there until I got married in 1970. My parents moved away from there in 1975. It is still home to me.
Preserving York community: Local history “helpdesk”?
I recently read a blog post from several years ago which really got me thinking. A reader was questioning why there wasn’t a central place where people could find answers they need or get pointed in the right direction.
While he didn’t mention a specific area of interest, I truly feel Preserving York is a strong contender when it comes to questions about York County history. While I’ll never personally consider myself an expert, I have over 300 people standing by my side, ready to unconditionally offer their assistance and knowledge whenever asked.
Isn’t that what community is all about.
We’re here for you York County. How can we be of assistance?