*ARCHIVE: Comments*

Comments submitted by readers have not only been encouraging to the blog authors but many have also added additional – and valuable – bits of history to the story of Sharpsville, PA, and the surrounding area.

For reasons only known to WordPress, many past Comments are missing from the posts on “Small Town Memories.” However, they are not lost. All the blogs and their Comments were copied to Google Documents as backups as they were published. The Comments can now be found on *ARCHIVE: Comments.*

Meanwhile, please don’t hesitate to send us your Comments going forward. If appropriate, they too will be added to the Archive list so we won’t miss a one.

*About* (Introduction)

Scott Robison (Robinson) is my gr-gr-grandfather. I love hearing the stories and thank you ever so much for continuing the work of your dear friend about Sharpsville, PA.

The Radford Family is also my own. Jonathan, Arthur, Albert, Frank, Margaret, Mary (Minnie). My great-grandfather is Jonathan Radford (Jr. on the census records, but he was actually the VII). Since Frank died at age 28 by accidental electrocution, my gr-gr-grandfather named his son (my grandfather), Frank Edward Radford and he named my uncle Jonathan Radford VIII. My grandfather worked in metals mfg and then carpentry, following family lines. My gr-grandfather, Jonathan, married Scott Robinson’s daughter, Edna Jane Robinson. I myself worked in Pittsburgh, never realizing how close to my heritage I was. My husband and I lived in Greene County, PA in Graysville. I worked at a Specialty Metal Mfg facility near Graysville. The apples surely do not fall far from the tree!

I am enjoying this and the Sharpsville Heritage site as well. I can’t thank you enough. Debbie Christian of the Radford/Robison (Robinson) family with deep roots in Sharpsville, PA. DEBBIE CHRISTIAN 2018/07/06

I grew up in Kinsman, Ohio. There was a man named Samuel Block who had a clothing store in Sharpsville. He would come around Kinsman, and our house and hock his clothing, shoes, etc. from his clothing store. We called him Sammy. … I come from a big family and he tried to barter and sell to each of us kids. Do you know anything about Sammy and his store in Sharpsville? Thank you in advance. NANCY KWALLEK 2019/5/31

[In Reply to Nancy Kwallek]
I recall a Bloch Brothers store in Sharpsville in the 1950s. An ad for the store appears in my 1958 SHS yearbook stating “SINCE 1907.”

The blog titled “Dr. Bailey’s Sharpsville 1920s Part I” on this site mentions “Bloch Bros., Morris and Jake, in business since 1907.”

So far, I have no other information, but maybe our readers can help. Also, the Sharpsville Area Historical Society may have something on the subject. AAE 2019/12/01

ANGEL’S CASINO: The Early Years (I)

What a wonderful piece. I went many times in the early ’60s and had such great memories. PEGGY FERRINGER DEJULUA, 2016/04/13

[In Reply to Peggy DeJulua]
Thanks so much for your good words. I’m pleased that your memories were good ones. AAE, 2016/04/15

ANGEL’S CASINO: The Record Hops (II)

My name is Pat Pannelle and I grew up in Sharon, PA. Back in the 1950s.

Some of the best times of my teenage years were spent at Angel’s Casino. I still have a pass from the Casino that they gave out to let us re-enter if we left and were planning to return. Out of all the record hops in the valley, I felt that the one at Angel’s Casino was the best. Brings back a lot of memories of good times and good friends. Growing up as a teenager in the 50s in the valley was the best of times. Unless you were there to smell it, it is hard to explain to someone what it was like. I feel that I was fortunate to have been a teenager when rock and roll, DA haircuts, and 57 Chevy’s were the rage. I have been trying to locate a picture of Angel’s Casino without any luck. I would also like to know the history of it. I would be most appreciative if you could help me with any of these. PAT PANNELLE 2016/05/02

[In Reply to Pat Pannelle]
Hello Pat, I was delighted to receive your good memories of Angel’s Casino. I am the daughter of the then owner of the Casino, August Angel, and also remember those fun times.

See “Angel’s Casino: The Early Years” for a photo of the Casino. And there are several other narratives about Angel’s on this website as well. It’s as good a history as I can provide, but I’m hoping that, like you, others will send us their memories. AAE 2016/05/02

I remember you girls sitting at the table at the entrance to the hall and I remember getting our hands stamped. I don’t remember when or how I got the pass that is about two and a half-inch square and printed on it is ANGEL’S CASINO pass-out check re-admit one. It is a light blue-green in color. PAT PANNELLE 2016/11/14

[In Reply to Pat Pannelle]
Pat, I don’t recall the passes you describe, but then I went away to college before the hops ended so I may have missed them. Thanks for writing! Ann. AAE 2016/11/14

I have a snapshot taken in early 1957 of Joe D… and Sugar C… dancing inside Angles Casino. It’s kinda dark but I remember the inside of Angel’s being dark as well. BOB GILLILAND 2018/02/03

[In Reply to Bob Gilliland]
I too recall that the interior of Angel’s Casino was rather dark during record hops. Maybe it was meant to create a certain atmosphere! AAE 2018/02/03

ANGEL’S CASINO: A Place to Party (IV)

I remember the great times we had at Angel’s Casino back in the 1950s. Growing up in the 50s as a teenager was the greatest. One of the highlights was the record hops at the Casino listening to Del Sinchak and his fabulous band. I can still picture him in his turban. I still have the ticket to reenter the dance if we leave and want to return. 

My other highlight was driving to the Casino in 1957 with my new 1957 Chevy BelAir hardtop and parking it outside the front door of the Casino. Great times at a great place in the best era. I am still looking for a picture of Angel’s Casino. I have been for a few years with no success. I believe there is one out there someplace. Angel’s Casino and the birth of Rock and Roll go together. PAT PANNELLE 09/01/2016

[In Reply to Pat Pannelle]
Thanks for sharing your Angel’s memories! Angel’s Casino wasn’t much to look at but it certainly was the place to be on Friday nights! If you can email me a photo of your Casino ticket, I’d love to add it to the Casino page. And if anyone has a photo of Angel’s Casino please email it to me and I’ll post it on the site. AAE 09/02/2016


My family lived in rural Carroll County in 1950 when the Big Snow hit in November. We had four children in the family…all girls. My sister, being the youngest, was only 5 mo. old. We had coal and woodstoves for heat but ran out of milk for the baby. All roads were impassable, so my father and a neighbor, who was a farmer with a team of draft horses, rode the horses about 2 mi. to a little general store to get milk and things. They carried the provisions home in burlap bags. Sherry George 2019/01/20.

[In Reply to Sherry George]
Coal and woodstoves, draft horses, and burlap bags – the past was a different world. We’re planning a story about another big snow for a future blog, so stay tuned. Thank you for writing. AAE 2019/01/20.

BUHL PARK II: Clubs and Library

Very good reading. Brings back lots of memories in the ’50s. MARY JANE BAILEY LISCIO, 2015/06/04

Why was the free golf course called Dum Dum?

[In Reply to Debbie Worthington]
Interesting question. I did an online search and this is the only explanation I could find: “Affectionately called ‘Dum Dum’ by locals, the moniker is believed to stem from the relatively easy play on the short nine-hole course which has no sand traps.” Source: Herald article titled “”Is free golf at park in jeopardy?” dated December 2, 2001. AAE 2018/06/30.


I spent 6 years at Deeter Ele. and lived just up the street. It was RED. Painted brick. JANET AUCHTER WILLIAMS, 2016-05-06

[In Reply to Janet Auchter Williams]
Thanks, Janet, for your correction, which I will make to the article. I don’t remember why I thought the bricks were yellow. It reminds me that my memory isn’t necessarily accurate, so I do need my readers’ help! AAE, 2016-05-06

Ann, I grew up at 21 South Second. Were you near the tracks? I would have been much younger having grown up in ’70s. GARY CONTI 2016-05-10

[In Reply to Gary Conti]
Did our family live near the tracks?! You bet we did! The building we lived in consisted of an apartment upstairs and my father’s print shop below. Only a narrow yard and a slope separated us for the heavy rattle and vibrations of the steam engines that pulled heavy loads of coal to the blast furnace. By the 1970s, the building became the headquarters of the Cattron Group, known for their remote control applications. That business would have been during your time on Second Street, so maybe you remember it. AAE, 2016-05-11

My aunt cleaned in that building for them. Her son was around your age. His name was Mike Gula. GARY CONTI 2016-05-11

[In Reply to Gary Conti]
I don’t recall the name Mike Gula, but maybe other readers knew him. AAE, 2016-05-11

When did you leave 2nd St? Never forget as a very young child my mother calling police because for days a car with two men would be parked on our hill. One morning my Mother took my sister to school and drove down your part of 2nd to pick up another girl; car followed as she drove through your alley. Police investigation began. Turned out to be the FBI asking, “Was gambling going on in one of the buildings near you?” They thought my Mother was making pickups every morning. Crazy! GARY CONTI 2016-05-11

[In Reply to Gary Conti via Hotmail]
Hi Gary, This is in response to your questions about your memories of the FBI on Second Street. I forwarded your story to my brother, Mike Angel, and this is what he wrote:

“A few years/months? after dad sold the print shop I remember him receiving, in the mail, a news article from someone regarding the new owners of the print shop being arrested on various charges to include counterfeiting, printing gambling paraphernalia and other charges. We were living in Kentucky at the time and I was out of the Marine Corps, so it would have to be after June 1964. I don’t know if the arrest was made by the state or federal authorities and I don’t know of the final disposition.

The above might explain the surveillance as Gary Conti described (which I don’t doubt at all, as I know how such surveillances are conducted).”

My brother and I hope this helps toward resolving this mystery. Thanks for writing!
Ann AAE 2016-05-13

I was born in 63. I was not even Kindergarten age so I am guessing 67? GARY CONTI 2016-05-13

CHRISTMAS EVE In Sharpsville, Pennsylvania

Hi all, Judy is spot on. I remember Santa Claus coming to Woodland Road for many years. Between Nine Street and Tenth Street at least 23 kids enjoyed that special event. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all who lived the American Dream in Sharpsville from 1940 to 1960.
BILL (BUNKY) MUSCARELLA (SHS 1960), Roswell, GA, 2014/12/24

[In Reply to Bill Muscarella]
Hello to Bill. So wonderful to see your name, I remember you so very well, we sat near each other many years with both our last names starting with an M. Trust you are well and happy. With love and fond memories, JUDY MCCRACKEN, 2014/12/24, jmccracken08@att.net

So accurate a description of our every Christmas Eve as children!! Judy, we received this info from Tom on January 2, a memorable day 50 years ago when you were our Maid of Honor in the very church you describe here! I love that you are contributing so much by sharing your writings and preserving so much of our past. We would love to see you again.

Never was a Christmas Eve like a Sharpsville Christmas Eve. I also lived on 2nd St and Christmas Eve with that visit was simply magic as a child! GARY CONTI, 2016/05/13


That would have been Weber TV across the street from the school. GEORGE H. ALLEN, 2015/12/22

[In Reply to George H. Allen]
Yes, now I remember. Thanks! AAE, 2015/12/22

I enjoy your Sharpsville Memories. Keep them coming! Thank you. PATTI, 2015/12/22

[In Reply to George H. Allen]
Thank you, George. I didn’t live there then, but I thought I remembered that from my high school days. “CABBAGEMAMA,” 2015/12/22

How I remember that hill.The amazing shape we all had to be in to climb it didn’t hit me until this past February when a week away from my 53rd birthday did it again. Wow! Remember one Christmas Eve when my uncle Pat Pacifico came out to find his car down your way across Main St. GARY CONTI, 2016/05/13


Thank you so much, Ann, for the memory. I so recall those warm summer days in Sharpsville. As teens, my pals, Jack G. and Rick P. , and I pool together our hard-earned money from lawn mowing jobs in order to go to Cricks Pharmacy to get our coffee stirs. Mmmmmm. So good that we sipped slowly to make our treats last. Then, some really hard decisions to make…Do we go to the Ritz Theater to catch a matinee (complete with movie and newsreels), or go the Buhl Park Pool for a swim? Maybe pick up a comic book from McCracken’s News Stand. Pretty idyllic. I smile when I recall those perfect days. ELLIOT “BUDDY” GORY, Tempe, Arizona 2017/8/20

I remember going there as a kid, I loved it! The coffee stirs were the best! We used to fight over who got to sit at the small table with only 2 chairs, there were 3 of us! Happy Happy memories !!! STACEY SHERMAN 2017/7/22

Coffee Stirs were also available at Greenwood Pharmacy in Hickory (now Hermitage) at the corner of State St and Greenwood Drive. My favorite drink growing up in the area. I learned to make them in the “Lobby Shop” in the ’60s as a Candy Striper at Sharon General Hospital. I agree that those I’ve had when visiting the area over the last few decades don’t taste the same. Thank you for posting the recipe. I may give it a try! KAREN PLATTEBORZE 2017/7/18 

My name is Kim Conger owner of FIREBEAN Espresso 154 E State St Sharon, Pa 16146 330-509-4467

A guest of ours came in today and ask if I know what a coffee stir is I said no and he talked about drinking this drink at your family’s shop he told me to go to this page and read about this famous drink and so I did. The coffee stir sounds amazing and I love how unique this is and would love to discuss with you further of having the pleasure to enter this famous drink here at our coffee shop. Please call me at your convenience. FIREBEAN ESPRESSO, KIM. 2017/7/11

[In Reply to Kim Conger]
Hi Kim, I checked out the Facebook page for FIREBEAN Espresso and was very impressed. What an inviting place! I wish I could visit.

My family did not make the coffee stirs, but we enjoyed them at Crick’s Pharmacy back in the 1950s. The recipe on my blog page is not the original. A recipe that appears to be the original is on the website for the Sharpsville Area Historical Society. You can see it at this address: http://www.sharpsvillehistorical.org/documents/CoffeeStir.pdf

I hope this helps bring back that delicious treat! Thank you for your interest. AAE 2017/7/11

Wonderful article. I am in possession of the Knapp Hotel picture through a Mehler family connection. I have one correction to be made if possible. Emma Knapp married Nicholas Mehler, not Mahaney. I actually got to have a coffee stir a long time ago. Thanks for sharing. ANNETTE BRITTON 2017/2/27

I grew up in Sharpsville on Main Street one block from Zickars pharmacy. This is where I enjoyed the original coffee stirs in the 1950s. Crick’s Pharmacy inherited the recipe sometime in the 60s. The recipe presented here is not the original recipe for coffee stirs. It does not taste the same. The flavor is all in the making of the syrup. They did not use instant coffee, Karo syrup or vanilla flavoring. I was excited to find this article but disappointed in its authenticity. KAM PLATTEBORZE 2017/2/26

[In Reply to Kam Platteborze]
Thank you for writing. Weren’t those Coffee Stirs delicious? My information about Crick’s Pharmacy’s Coffee Stirs came partly from the Sharpsville Area Historical Society’s website (see link in the blog) which provides another Coffee Stir recipe that was handed down through the Knapp descendants. Maybe it more closely represents the one you have in mind.

Also, two ads confirmed my memory of the time that Cricks sold Coffee Stirs: one in my 1956 SHS yearbook and one in the Sharpsville Advertiser, dated 1959. Both ads were for Cricks and mention their “Famous Coffee Stir” and that the pharmacy was the “Home of the Famous Coffee Stir.” 

I do try to ensure that the stories on Small Town Memories are accurate and appreciate corrections I receive from readers. I’ve made a change to the text to indicate more clearly that the recipe, passed on to me by a former Sharpsvillite, is a variation and not the original. Again, thanks for your help in keeping the record straight! AAE 2017/2/27

This is true, the recipe is nothing like above. I made the syrup daily with my grandfather in the basement of the Sharpsville store. (Glass container to store the syrup is essential), eggs, shells and all, and some other secret things. Never at Zickars. We did use vanilla; the recipe came originally from Reinhardt’s Rexall in Farrell. WILLIAM CRICKS 2017/7/19

What a pleasant internet find. You have related many of my most fond youthful memories. Can’t believe someone remembers Stewart’s creek or “jungle” as I and my fellow explorers called it that included the “cave”, i.e., drainage tunnel for the small creek that flowed through the jungle that we explored with railroad flares “borrowed” from Pennsy and Erie RR cabooses. The Ritz Theater account was fantastic; never forget great movie posters such as James Bond’s “Dr. No” poster. Also, Crick’s coffee stir. We also had great fun on “goat’s hill” beside Robinson Elementary school; sledding in the winter and using Gordon Ward discarded cardboard boxes on dried grass in the fall. Also, the little spring at the foot of the hill that was a capture ground exotic garter snakes. Your description of Robinson’s great oaken staircases and the basement restroom and adjacent boiler room are thoughtful remembrances for me too. Interested in hearing more! JERRY BUHI 2014/11/15

There was nothing like them. Others claimed to have them but only one place had the real coffee stirs. I was talking to a lady from Pittsburgh just this week who knew about them. A few years back I was up in New York State and I was shocked to see the same tables and chairs from Cricks! GARY CONTI

[In Reply to Gary Conti]
Gary, Too bad those tables and chairs weren’t donated to the Sharpsville Area Historical Society. Maybe the Society could raise money to buy them back! AAE

CONTI FAMILY: Part II – An Italian Christmas

Gary Conti’s story is wonderful!! Thanks for the memories!! MIKE ANGEL 2018/12/2.

Another great article. I can relate to everything said here. I grew up in the North Flats of Sharon where the majority of the families were Italian and us younger ones always joked that The North Flats was to Sharon as Sicily was to Italy. Maybe because most of our grandparents came from Sicily and Naples. Gary’s closing says it all. There is no better way of putting it. PAT PANNELLE 2018/12/3.

It’s been a pleasure working with Gary Conti on his story. He did a great job! AAE 2018/12/10.

[In Reply to AAE]
This is a great thing you have here Ann. It’s so great to read about The Sharpsville I knew as a kid every month. GARY CONTI 2018/12/16.

I have a cousin that moved to Arizona when I was a teenager. She was my Uncle Sub’s granddaughter who I had not seen or heard from in 40 years. She contacted me after seeing the story and said she had tears from the memories. GARY CONTI 2018/1/6.

CRICK’S PHARMACY and Soda Fountain

Oh, those coffee stirs!!! I remember as a young kid in the late ’60s and 70’s a lady my father had known since childhood named Mrs. Grace worked there and whenever he would say “Let’s go talk to Mrs. Grace”, that was just was code for let’s get a coffee stir. Needless to say, there was nobody I enjoyed talking to more as a kid than Mrs. Grace! GARY CONTI, 2019/6/1.

[In Reply to Gary Conti]
Thanks for the memories, Gary! AAE 2019/6/3


I attended Deeter school in ’64 and ’65, which for me would have been the fifth and sixth grade. Mrs. Grimes was the school’s principal as well as my 5th-grade teacher. Mr. Startzman was my sixth-grade teacher.

Interesting times: Kennedy was assassinated when I was in the 5th grade. Mrs. Grimes brought a radio into the classroom and we listened to the news unfolding. When they announced that Kennedy had died, the radio started playing the “Star-Spangled Banner” and two classmates, Elmer Patterson and Joe Drobney, both stood up with hands over their hearts and tears rolling down their cheeks while it played.

Later, the Beatles came out of nowhere and changed our worlds forever in ways that the Kennedy Assassination had not; politics and death were abstractions to us, music was not. Girls on the playground singing Beatle songs; Brenda Zediker (sp?) wearing her Beatle sweatshirt. Boys started wearing their hair a little longer – or so it seemed at the time; mostly it was just that we started combing our hair down on our foreheads.

The world was changing. We had nothing to compare it to but, instinctively, I think some of us knew. DAVID MARRIE 2015/04/30.

[In Reply to David Marrie] 
Fond memories…I was a classmate of yours at the time and remember you and Bruce were two of the first boys with Beatle haircuts…sad memories of Joey Phillips death…great memories of friendships with so many.

Dances at the canteen, movies at the Ritz, sodas at Cricks, candy from McCrackens, shopping at Ben Franklins and putting a Sharpsville Blue Devils sweatshirt on layaway for 50 cents a week, Pinball at the pizza kitchen…Thanks for posting, David.
JOYCE (REND) WEBB 2017/07/02.

[In Reply to Joyce (Rend) Webb] 
I had to look to remember what I might have written. It was a while ago. You captured it all nicely. We grew up in a time of innocence, though the Kennedy assassination was perhaps a sign of darker times to come, but the Beatles navigated us through a lot of it by opening our ears and minds to a world beyond our little “neck of the woods.” Thank you for your comment! DAVID MARRIE 2017/07/02.


Dr. Bailey treated me and my siblings in the early to late ’40s and my mother and my aunts in the ’20s and ’30s. He was a wonderful person. I also remember caddying for him in the early ’50s at The Sharon Country Club. Bob Gilliland 2018/08/01

[In Reply to Bob Gilliland]
Thanks for writing, Bob. I’ve added a 1979 Herald article that describes an interview with Dr. Bailey. It’s an insightful portrait of the good doctor. Just click on “DR. BAILEY’S HORSE-AND-BUGGY DAYS” in the menu above to see an image of the clipping and its transcription. (Many thanks to Ralph Mehler who sent the clipping to me from the Sharpsville Area Historical Society.) AAE 2018/08/02

[In Reply to AAE]
Thanks Ann. I’ve passed the “Horse-and-buggy days” on to my about to be 90-year-old aunt, formerly from Sharpsville. She will enjoy reading about her former doctor.

I still stay in touch with Penny and Carol Crosier and just had dinner with Jackie Stevenson from Sharpsville. You may remember those names. Bob Gilliland 2018/08/02

[In Reply to Bob Gilliland]
Bob, I don’t recall the Crosiers and Jackie but I asked my brother Mike Angel if he knew them, as they may be from his SHS class of 1960. I’ll let you know if he does. Ann
AAE 2018/08/15


Wow, Eric, what a wonderful article. I went to Snyder middle school in the early 70s (I was an S)! I loved Mr. Tallarico. He was part of one of the more memorable moments of my life. My Grandfather was the janitor at the middle school and, while setting up the cafeteria on February 19, 1970, had a massive heart attack and died on the spot. I was in Mrs. Rogers homeroom and saw our nurse run down the hall. Little did I know what it was for. Mr. T came and took me to his office…and told me my Grandpa had passed. Such compassion. He also drove to our house to let my Mom know. (They went to school together too). She always said that when she saw Gerry’s face at the door, it wouldn’t be good news. Such a wonderful man. ROBERT TRICE 2019/4/1


I loved those skyscraper cones and MY mother liked the White House ice cream which I too disdained, tho I loved coffee!! We also went over and bought ice cream for my crippled aunt who adored it but it had to then be put into an ice cream tray to keep it!!! Mary Lou McCracken, 2015/01/05

[In Reply to Mary Lou McCracken]
Did your aunt use an ice-cube tray because there wasn’t room in the freezer? I recall that, in the 1950s, the freezer compartment in a refrigerator consisted of a small metal box located at the top of the fridge interior. It had with two shelves, one for two ice-cube trays and the other for any other item that would fit and needed to be frozen. A white layer of frost would gradually accumulate on the outside and inside of the box and its contents to the point where it was so thick it had to be removed by defrosting the fridge. This was done by turning off the refrigerator and using trays of hot water to melt the ice and a putty knife to chip at the ice. It was a messy job a housewife had to do every several weeks.

However, an electric refrigerator was far more reliable than the previous non-mechanical ice-box that our family had — an insulated wooden chest with two hinged doors. Its top shelf held a block of ice (delivered by an iceman) which slowly melted into a drip pan. The drip pan had to be emptied each day until the ice was gone (in a week’s time, maybe?) and had to be replaced. AAE, 2015/01/05

[in Reply to Ann Angel Eberhardt]
Yes, my aunt had the top one. Another aunt had the one below which I thought was much older. Mary Lou McCracken, 2015/01/06

Hi Folks; The Isaly Dairy store was indeed owned by a relative of the Shannon family. Peter Joyce bought it from my grandmother Bertha McKnight Porter Stewart. My grandmother had 4 children, the 2nd daughter Mary Jane, married William Shannon. (I know that Bill and Frank were related but not sure how, right now. The Stewart market was owned by my grandmother’s second husband, Robert Stewart, who was married to my grandmother’s sister, before she passed away.)

I was looking for information on when the store burned down. Which I always thought was so odd, since the fire station was next door! Lol

I would love to correspond with the editor of the article. I am the granddaughter of Bertha McKnight Porter Stewart. Thank you for your time and attention to this letter. God bless. 

P.S. The first owner was Frank Porter because back then women could not own or operate a business. It had to go in the husband’s name. Frank Porter (not Shannon) was the father-in-law to William Shannon, relative to Frank Shannon. Toni E. Nackino 2016/02/07

I remember the day the store burned as a very young kid. My guess is either 67 or 68 the year it burned. Gary Conti 2018/08/07


I began to ready for a trip in Italy where my family came from in 2006 by contacting a man in the town of Pofi. Little did I know that the email would lead to more knowledge on Italians in Sharpsville than I ever dreamed. I found that even though there were Italians here from other places in Italy, the overwhelming number come from the bordering towns of Pofi, Castro Dei Volsci, Ceccano, Ceprano and Felvaterra, Italy. These towns are south of Rome. When I went into the Comune in Pofi to look at records, I was told to look for a book on the wall that may be family records of Sharpsville people which had surnames on outside of the book. When the man came back about 20 minutes later and asked if I found one, he was stunned when my reply was every single book was a Sharpsville surname! When I asked his, he replied Campoli!!! If anybody needs help in finding their roots in these towns I can help and would be glad to. GARY CONTI 2018/10/01.

[In Reply to Gary Conti]
Gary, It’s exciting to make those discoveries! I have done so with both sides of my family. I continue to find bits of information about my mother’s Kentucky family through my work on “Pine Mountain Settlement School Collections,” a website that I have been co-editing for many years. And my brothers and I have visited Romania to meet with long-lost relatives on my father’s side. Thanks for your offer to help with the genealogy of Sharpsville’s Italian-Americans! Searching for family roots is like going on a treasure hunt. AAE 2018/10/01.

[In Reply to Ann Angel Eberhardt]
It is exciting. Thanks for writing this. The part of the bridge falling was something I never heard. I would love to find those names. GARY CONTI 2018/10/01.

I also have a photo of my Grandmother’s funeral in 1937 with my family and other Italians around the casket as you stated. I was thinking of putting it on but, because today this is a bit of a shock, have not. The Italian Home in Sharpsville also had the uniforms that were worn in the area of the towns I listed and the children wore them in special events at the club. There is also a statue of St. Olivia in St. Barthlomew Church that was brought here across the ocean from Castro Dei Volsci many, many years ago. GARY CONTI 2018/10/01.
After reading the story of the raging water wiping out the bridge by the Feed Mill I may have some news. No names, but they mentioned that the Italian men killed were wearing sandals. As I mentioned most Italians from Sharpsville come from a group of towns in Lazio region known as Ciociaria. It was an area of farming and sheepherders that wore a strange type of sandal shoe and it sounds like these victims may have been wearing them. GARY CONTI 2018/10/01.


It is wonderful that you take time to recapture the spirit of Sharpsville in words; it is even nicer that you do it so very well. Thank you. DAVID MARRIE, 2018/01/01.

[In Reply to David Marrie]
David, Thank you for your kind words. And I think it’s wonderful that readers like you appreciate these bits of Sharpsville history. AAE 2018/01/01

Ann, I can somewhat amplify your recollection of the “piano teacher” you mentioned above. His first name was Leo but I can’t recall his last name at the moment either. I graduated with your brother, Mike (class of ‘60), and lived at 20 First Street, 2nd house up the hill from the Ritz. When I knew I would be majoring in music at College late in my HS senior year, I took piano lessons from Leo also for about 6 months. I was primarily a trombonist, started and inspired by Paul Cerbus (SHS) in the 7th grade. Leo further inspired me by playing pieces on the piano, telling me wonderful musical anecdotes from his past (Boston Conservatory, I believe), and gently nurtured me into using the piano as a tool for my music studies to come. He even let me enter his house whenever I wanted to, to practice his piano (we did not have one at home). He never locked his door; there was no need to back in those days.

I went on to 3 degrees in music including a Bachelor’s in Music Ed, then a Master’s in Music (Indiana University) and a Doctorate of Musical Arts from the University of Northern Colorado. I became a tenured Professor of Music at Washington State University and later was a free-lance performing musician in Seattle and Portland. In my early 50s I finally started to seriously practice the piano and now at age 75, I have actually made myself into a decent jazz pianist!! Yes, I still play professionally on both instruments. I will be relocating to Chicago soon to be near family (my daughter is an established professional singer there).

Thank you so much for compiling these memories. I’m enjoying them immensely. Irene Caldwell and I were trading old hometown stories for a couple of years through emails before she died. I probably should have commented and contributed to your work earlier. Perhaps we could email back & forth a bit. I knew all of the Deeter kids from that era and experienced that side of town pretty thoroughly too !!

PS: My mother worked at Walders in the kitchen and made those wonderful steak sandwiches !! MIKE OLSHAVSKY, 2018/01/01

[In Reply to Mike Olshavsky]
Mike, I’m so happy that there is someone else who remembers “Leo,” the piano teacher. If Leo knew the great deal you have achieved in music studies since then, he would certainly be proud of you.

I remember Paul Cerbus, the music instructor at Sharpsville High School. He led the A Cappella Choir which I belonged to in 1957. (I still fondly recall the songs we sang and wish to this day that I had stayed with it.)

I sent a copy of your Comment to my brothers Pat Angel (who attended Deeter) & Mike Angel. I know they will appreciate reading it. (It is possible that I could find the piano teacher’s full name If I read through my diaries of 1952-1958, but that would be many hours of searching!) Yes, let’s exchange emails on how you might contribute more of your memories if you so desire. I look forward to working with you. Ann. AAE 2018/01/02.

Ann, I have been racking my brain for the name of the piano teacher. I think it was Mr. O’Brian. Leo O’Brian. Does that ring a bell? I particularly enjoyed the message from Mike Olshavsky. I remember him as a real good friend. He might remember if the last name was O’Brian.

Also, I don’t know if you knew that Joe Wasley passed away during the 1980s of a heart attack. I was devastated.

Some of the other businesses on Main Street was Palo Florist, DeSantis beer distributors, Wade D. Mertz & Son, Welch Club, Italian Club, Plazzo’s store on the corner of 7th and Main, William’s Cafe (great pizza) across the street. Also, I’m sure you remember the Italian restaurant across the street from Shenango Furnace on south 6th St. where Dad insisted you play the piano.

I believe the Welch House was between 4th and 5th on the south side. It was a historical landmark, being there for many years. I think it burned down during the ’50s. You probably could write something on your blog about it. I’m sure there is something on the internet about it. I remember it because I delivered newspapers there

There was a barbershop at the south corner of 7th and Main. I believe Augie DelFratte, a class member of yours, was the barber. The Italian restaurant was Erma’s or Ermie’s, not sure. There were a couple of beer joints in close proximity to the entry of Shenango Furnace. I don’t remember the names.

The Welch house was across Main Street from Bob Guilt’s house close to Wade D. Mertz which sold hardware and lumber.

Weldon Electric was owned by Bill Weldon. I think he was a war hero who lost his legs in battle. His son Tim Weldon ended up as Chief of Police. Do you remember Walter Karsonovich the chief? When I was a punk I really respected him. He was a good officer/chief. MIKE ANGEL, 2018/01/09.


Great article. Reminds me of my first two jobs. Delivering The Sharon Herald in Sharon and setting pins at Caldwels Bowling Lanes on South Water St. in Sharon and at the Boy’s Buhl Club and the Girls Buhl Club. 

Caldwels had lanes downstairs and upstairs in their building. We got 11 cents per line. My good friend Bob Brest shared a paper route and we both carried double bags. We would pick the papers up at the Herald building after school. Our route was River St., Penn Ave., Shenango St., Vine Ave., and Reno St. starting from State St. to the ends of all the streets mentioned above. You were right about collection day on Saturdays. Great memories in a great time. I was blessed to have been a teenager in the 50s. PAT PANNELLE, 2017/03/02

[In Reply to Pat Pannelle]
Thanks for your memories! You have reminded me of another bowling alley of my youth: the one at the Girls’ Buhl Club. I don’t recall the pinboys, but I’m sure they were used. I do remember that the pins and ball were smaller than usual. And the ball didn’t have finger holes. You just rolled the ball from your open hand onto the lane. I think it was called duckpin bowling.

You carried double bags of newspapers on your route?! I hope that resulted in a strong back and not a lifetime of backaches! AAE, 2017/03/04

[In Reply to AAE]
The Girls Buhl Club had two alleys. They were not in use all the time. When they did use them they would call over to the Boys Buhl Club and they would send one of the pinsetters over to help out. They were Duck Pins with the ball being about the size of a softball. 

When the bowling alley was taken out of the Boys Buhl Club I kept some of the pins which I still have today. The ducks were a lot harder to bowl than the ten pins. PAT PANNELLE, 2017/03/05

I thoroughly enjoyed this article!! Keep posting such great memories! BOB TRICE, 2017/03/02

[In Reply to Bob Trice]
Thanks, Bob. It’s great to receive positive reinforcement! I’ll keep going as long as there are memories to share. AAE, 2017/03/04

I remember neighbor kids telling me about pin spotting but never tried it because I didn’t have the transportation from our country home on Hawn (gravel) road in South Pymatuning Township. But brother Jim and I did hitchhike about 4 miles into the Sharon Country Club to caddy. The minimum fee for 18 holes was $1.85, but the golfers usually tipped by about $.50. We would usually get in a couple of rounds in a full day. Between rounds, we would hang out at the caddy shed across the road from the country club building. It was a way to earn enough money to buy some school shirts for the following school year. I always felt proud that we were earning money for our school clothes and that Mom and Dad didn’t have to bite into their budget so much. Every element of these days was an adventure. I don’t recall ever being bored. Just good country life in the hills of Western Pennsylvania. BILL WILSON, 2017/03/11

[In Reply to Bill Wilson]
Thank you for your memories of another type of job available to young boys in those days. How responsible you and your brothers were to help out with family expenses! 

I recall that most young people working behind counters, such as at Isaly’s or Crick’s, were boys. As far as girls’ employment, my girlfriends and I were recruited by my dad to work in Angel’s Casino, taking entrance fees at the door or selling soda pop at the record hops, cleaning up after events or waiting tables at the service clubs’ dinners. We earned fifty cents an hour if I remember correctly.

According to a Google search, the Sharon Country Club was sold in 2006 to Ron Klingle, which he added to his Avalon Golf and Country Club enterprise. The 100+-year-old golf course & its handsome clubhouse lives on and is looking good. AAE, 2017/03/11


The street that led up to Pebly was named Hittle Ave. I believe. “The Path” which used to be just that, a gravel and dirt path that led through the patch of woods from the track and the football field up to Pebly, is now a paved road that was named Blue Devil Way. “Pebly” no longer exists as a stand-alone school but is still there physically. They built the new, much larger Sharpsville Elementary School building around it. If you go inside you can still see what used to be the Pebly school. I attended elementary school there 1969 to 1972 (2nd through 5th Grades). I had Mrs. Myers, Mrs. Anderson, Mrs. Rocco, and Mrs. Petrini respectively. ED (BONZ?) 2015/03/29.

[In Reply to Ed]
Thanks, Ed, for providing the names of the streets and the current location of the Pebly school building…inside another building! My brother Pat Angel just wrote this: “Yes, I remember the path – I walked it almost every day from grade 2 through grade 8.” AAE 2015/03/29.

[In Reply to Ed]
The same class as Ed it seems, and I’m guessing M-Z. The woods along The Path was perhaps more overgrown or just seemed so back then. The rumor, in second or third grade, was that an escaped convict lived in those woods. So, we were wary–probably it was in second grade. I’m thinking we would have wised up by third grade.

I remember my second day of first grade distinctly. The first day went off without a hitch. But living on Victory Dr. at the time, I entered with the neighborhood kids at the back entrance (the one facing the high school). Somehow, on the second day of school, I exited at the end of the day at the front entrance, completely lost, and walked down Hittle to the corner of Fourth where a Safety Patrol Officer (which just means a fifth-grader) helped reunite me with the neighborhood kids who walked me back home. (They were all a year older and probably had stern warnings not to lose me.)

I remember Mrs. Myers as my best teacher ever. (I also remember her weeping upon hearing of the shootings at Kent State.) Mrs. Rocco was an inspiring teacher, and Mrs. Petrini was also quite a good teacher. I think in 5th grade we switched to the A-L teacher Mr.s Taylor for half the day. I recall her having us do the now-famous blue eyes- brown-eyes race experiment. I remember her also breaking down once or twice as one of her children was suffering from leukemia. 

While I believed I learned a lot in third grade, my main memory of Mrs. Anderson was that if we had to go to the bathroom outside of the prescribed bathroom breaks, we had to stay an extra 5 minutes after school. I thought it very unfair.

Mr. Brest was the janitor and very kindly. We would have to go down to him to have the erasers vacuumed of chalk. (What a strangely specific machine that was.) During that wonderful year when the Pirates won the Series, if we were walking by he would have us come into his cubby and watch a few minutes of the game he had playing on the TV. (This was back when some World Series games were day-games.)

Lunches consisted of incessant talking, accompanied by Mrs. Karsonovich pounding a piece of wood wrapped in brown paper against the milk cooler. She was trying to keep us quiet, but I’m not sure what the point was. If you go to a restaurant, are adults eating in stony silence? On the other hand, when the principal, Stan Schubel, on infrequent occasion, would come into the cafeteria, we would all turn silent. In later dealings, I would find him to be a soft-spoken, gentle man–much in contrast to the awesome power of the Pebly principal I once feared. During Apollo missions, they had a TV showing the launch set up in the cafeteria. RALPH C. MEHLER II 2018/09/18.

[In Reply to Ralph C. Mehler II]
What vivid delightful memories! Thank you for sharing them. AAE 2018/09/20.


Another great article. Every one brings back good memories. Keep them coming. PAT PANNELLE, 2017/11/01.

[In Reply to Pat Pannelle]
Thanks, Pat. The stories will keep coming as long as the ideas do! Ann. AAE 2017/11/02.

[In Reply to AAE]
Stay young Ann, as long as you do they will keep rolling in. PAT PANNELLE 2017/11/02.


Great description of a true natural jewel just a walk from most homes in Sharpsville. I, too, include Pine Hollow among my fondest memories of another time. I believe there was a rock outcropping just above the creek referred to as “eagles rock.”Camped out many summer evenings along the Hollow with friends. [Although] railroad overpass/tunnel destroyed a good part of the charm of the Hollow, it was a pleasant hike to the river. I do remember small fish in the creek along with the ever-present crawfish. We were so lucky to live in such a fine little community with Buhl Park at one end of town and Pine Hollow at the other end. Thanks for a great nostalgic memory. Jerry JERRY BUHI, 2015/08/17

[In Reply to Jerry Buhi]
Thanks for writing, Jerry, and for helping to confirm that that magical place, Pine Hollow, really did exist! I miss the beauty of Pennsylvania’s green countryside even more in the last few years since I moved to the southern Arizona desert. AAE, 2015/08/1


Another great article. When I was a teenager in the middle 50s the drive-in theaters were at the top of our list on what to do on the weekend next to the record hop. Sometime in the late 1950s, maybe 1959, the drive-in theaters came out with a plugin heater for use in the winter. You could rent it at the concession stand. They had a plug at the speaker stand that you plugged it in to. We would place it on the front floor of the car. It was only about 12 to 14 inches long. It saved from starting the car every so often to run the heater. PAT PANNELLE, 2017/09/02

[In Reply to Pat Pannelle]
Thanks, Pat, for your support and the added detail about heaters. Now that you remind me, I do remember those heaters. Does that mean the drive-in was open beyond the summer season, maybe into fall? In any case, it’s great to have your input. AAE, 2017/09/03 


It would be great if a photograph of the Ritz Theatre could be found. Lots of good memories of going to the Ritz, the highlight being A Hard Days Night! DAVID MARRIE 2015/05/04.

[In Reply to David Marrie]
Yes, I agree! If anyone can share a photo of the Ritz, please consider doing so. Send the scanned photo as an attachment to bissella9@hotmail.com and I’ll upload it to this site. AAE 2015/05/04

[In Reply to David Marrie]
We have found a photo of the Ritz! Go to the website for the Sharpsville Area Historical Society and check it out in the March 2017 Newsletter: http://www.sharpsvillehistorical.org The photo is from the Mahaney Family Collection and courtesy of Gail Nitch Hanes, SHS1964, (shsdevils64@yahoo.com). There will be more about this photo in an upcoming post. AAE 2017/06/18

Really enjoyed remembering about the Ritz. Thank you. SANDRA COLUNDJIA 2015/05/03

[In Reply to Sandra Colundjia]
Thank you, too, for writing. It’s fun to share good memories. AAE 2015/05/03

It is so nice to read about Sharpsville memories. I worked at the Ritz Theater for four years while in high school as an usher and projectionist. Andy Semon was the owner and his daughter Pauline ran the ticket booth. It was a great job and I had a great time working there. The popcorn machine was located in the ticket booth but was not fresh-popped. It was purchased already popped in large bags which were kept in the office area. Mr. Semon worked full time at Shenango Furnace and operated the Ritz. He taught me to operate the projectors so he could have some time off work. Great experience. JIM JOVENALL 2015/05/09

[In Reply to Jim Jovenall]
Jim, the details you’ve provided help make this a richer historical account. Thanks so much. I remembered that you were an usher but wasn’t sure I could use your name. AAE 2015/05/09

[In Reply to AAE]
Enjoy reading your comments and others about their memories of growing up in Sharpsville. We had some great experiences. I also worked for your father for a short while selling ads for the Sharpsville Advertiser. All good memories. JIM JOVENALL 2015/05/17

[In Reply to Jim Jovenall]
I’m pleased to know that ad-running for my dad’s newspaper was one of your good memories. I also held that job for a summer during college years, probably in 1963. I walked all over Sharpsville’s business district, visiting owners of banks, restaurants, dry cleaners, funeral homes, pharmacies, insurance agencies, bars, and various other small shops, asking them if they would buy or renew their ads, and if so, the size and information they wished to display. It wasn’t the easiest job for the timid person that I was and I particularly felt uncomfortable entering those dark, smoky, males-only bars looking for the owner. But, yes, it’s a fond memory now because all those I met with were kind polite and cooperative. AAE 2015/05/19

[In Reply to Jim Jovenall]
I remember you and Andy well back in the day. 10 cents to get in and you monitoring us rowdies. I think Andy had also owned the Gable Theater in Sharon as well. F. MARRIE 2018/06/02


Ah yes, I remember the Ritz, I worked there grades 9-12, 7 days a week. Used to fill the candy machine, load the projector, sweep the floor, clean the restroom. Slide down 2nd Street from the high school on freezing winter days. Those truly were the good old days. It was certainly a good place to grow up. JOHN KUKUDA 2014/8/18

Reply to John Kukuda

Love to hear those details about the Ritz! Do you remember what kind of “Ritz” sign displayed on the front of the building? Was it neon? If so, what color?

We had to climb Second Street hill to get to high school every day. On icy days, we’d often slide back down the street whether we wanted to or not! AAE 2014/8/18

ROBISON SCHOOL Class of 1960 (Part II)

What a pleasant internet find. You have related many of my most fond youthful memories. Can’t believe someone remembers Stewart’s creek or “jungle” as I and my fellow explorers called it that included the “cave”, i.e., drainage tunnel for the small creek that flowed through the jungle that we explored with railroad flares “borrowed” from Pennsy and Erie RR cabooses.

The Ritz Theater account was fantastic; never forget great movie posters such as James Bond’s “Dr. No” poster. Also, Crick’s coffee stir. We also had great fun on “goat’s hill” beside Robison Elementary School; sledding in the winter and using Gordon Ward discarded cardboard boxes on dried grass in the fall. Also, the little spring at the foot of the hill that was a capture ground exotic garter snakes. Your description of Robison’s great oaken staircases and the basement restroom and adjacent boiler room are thoughtful remembrances for me too. Interested in hearing more! JERRY BUHI, 2014/11/15

Bill Muscarella (Bunky); I remember Xmas at Robison Grade School, it was wonderful. We would line the two stairs and the main floor and sing songs and light the Xmas tree.

Also, we would play kickball on the red sand beside the school and watch the Billy goats on the hill. Such a treasure, life was good-clean-fun. BILL MUSCARELLA 2014/10/08


Yep, I skated Thornton and Swirl Arena early 1950s. Dad played organ at Swirl Arena. DAVID W. DIFFENDERFER, 2015/12/21

[In Reply to David W. Diffenderfer]
Live organ music at the roller skating rink! Classy! Thornton Hall I remember, but not Swirl Arena. Where was it located? Thanks for writing. Ann. AAE 2015/12/21

[In Reply to AAE]
Swirl was about halfway to Mercer on Rt. 62. They tore it down last year. I believe dad played at Thornton hall also. DAVID W. DIFFENDERFER, 2015/12/21

I skated at Thornton Hall also, probably 1958 to whenever it was closed to expand the grocery store. I met my soul mate there although we never married because of the Vietnam war. I had great times and many fond memories of the skating rink at Thornton Hall. DAVID G. SWARTZ 2019/02/13

[In Reply to David G. Swartz]
I’m sure you weren’t the only one with romantic memories of skating at Thornton Hall. Thank you for sharing! AAE 2019/02/13


Hello All, Here is an old clipping of the stage crew, Bill.Muscarellabillm1021@yahoo.com
BILL MUSCARELLA, 2016/08/03.


My brother Pat Angel sent this memory about the distribution of the newspaper:

I have first-hand knowledge of how the first edition was distributed. Dad had me recruit as many of my friends as possible and we hand-delivered a copy to each and every home in Sharpsville. He used that big silver van that he had to transport us all around. Mike and his friends might have been in on that as well. After that first edition, I’m sure that the paper was mailed to his subscribers. AAE 2019/03/05.

Here’s more from my brother Mike Angel:

After the initial publication, the paper was distributed by hand to all homes in Sharpsville for a few issues, then mailed to subscribers. I don’t know what the circulation numbers were, but It seems it was more than 300. I know a lot was also mailed out of town and state.

Concerning how the articles were gathered or who gathered them: Information was sent in by the various civic groups regarding meetings, etc., he wrote some himself, had journalism students from the high school writing some, and Sharpsville news extracted from the Sharon Herald daily and other papers. AAE 2019/03/05.

Another great job Angel. I am always looking forward to your articles. They do keep the memories alive. The 50s and 60s were the best of times in our valley. PAT PANNELLE 2019/03/04.

[In Reply To Pat Pannelle]
Thanks once again, Pat. Your positive comments help keep this blog alive! AAE 2019/03/05.

Ann, if you remember a couple years ago I emailed you about the FBI raid. I can say without a doubt that, at age 4, I was the reason the local police became involved. For days as I looked out the window, I kept seeing a car with two men sitting in it below our house at 21 South 2nd. I told my mother who at first did not think much of it until, while taking my sister to school and picking up a friend across Main Street, she went between the buildings and through the alley. When she did this the agents followed her all the way to the school, thinking she was picking up the gambling slips. She saw this in her rearview mirror and came right home and phoned the police.

Rocky Delfratte came and took the information. When he was there the agents pulled back up. He went and knocked on the window of their car and asked what was happening. I can remember for a long time after that my mother made sure, while my father was at work, the doors were locked!!! GARY CONTI 3/31/2019

[In Reply to Gary Conti]
Yes, now that you mention it, I recall your email. Thanks for sharing this experience. You were a perceptive little 4-year-old! 4/2/2019 AAE

[In Reply to AAE]
I can remember it like it was last week. 4/3/2019 GARY CONTI



My father, Leo Haspel, was a Santa driver for years. Our house was always one of his Santa stops. I can remember Santa at the front door, holding Christmas presents, while my father was behind him winking at me, my brother, and my sister. That was a wonderful service to the Sharpsville community! DARLA J. COOKSON, 2016/05/02

[In Reply to Darla J. Cookson]
I agree, Darla. Those were happy times. AAE, 2016/05/02 


Great stuff. There was a reason the ice rink was taken down and sold. A reason I believe some people who were on the board of Buhl Farm at that time would not want the reason to be known. PAT PANNELLE, 2017/06/02.


Another wonderful entry! I am enjoying your efforts so much! GEORGANNE ACHENBACH TIMMERMAN, 2015/03/05.

[In Reply to Georganne Achenbach Timmerman]
Thanks, Georganne and Mary Jane. I’m pleased to know that you appreciate the site. Kind comments from readers make the effort all the more worthwhile. AAE, 2015/03/05.

Enjoyed this story. Thanks for the memories. MARY JANE BAILEY LISCIO, 2015/03/05.

I really enjoyed this article by Bill Parcetic. I am one of the classmates mentioned in the article and vividly remember riding my bike down the lane to Bill’s house. When we were of cub scout age, Bill’s Mother was our den leader. In high school, Bill, Betty King, and I were in the band. Our parents often carpooled us to and from band practice. I can remember the night that the Clarksville school caught fire, I was out riding my bike and saw the smoke and then went home to tell my Dad as our church was in the same block as the school. RODNEY HOUCK, 2015/07/05.

[In Reply to Rodney Houck]
It’s great to hear from you. As said in The Wonder Years TV show: “Memory is a way of holding onto the things you love, the things you are, the things you never want to lose.” AAE, 2015/07/05.


Hello Ann, I’ve been reading your posts for almost two years. They are heartwarming, informative and bring back so many memories. I was in the 1960 graduating class along with Mike and a few others in the tree-house picture and story. Dave Nelson sent my first “Small Town Memories” to me and I really appreciate it a lot. My older brother Bill, class of 1959, and his wife live in Georgia. If he doesn’t already receive your posts, I expect he’ll want to get them in the future. Thank you for Small Town Memories and making all of those great posts available. I look forward to all of the next ones. Thanks again, JIM WILSON, 2017/02/01.

Great story about Mike, one of my best buddies in high school. I still try to visit Mike annually on my trips back north from our present home in The Villages, Florida. I’m hoping to get Mike & Fredi down to Florida for a visit this winter. What do you say Mike? Let’s set a date. DAVE NELSON, 2017/02/01.

[In Reply to Dave Nelson and Jim Wilson]
Wow! Thanks to both of you, Jim and Dave, for your kind words. I’m pleased and encouraged that you’re enjoying “Small Town Memories.” AAE, 2017/02/01.

WALNUT STREET: Early Businesses (I)

Thanks for the memories. Keep it up. I remember a gun shop across from McCrackens. JOHN KUKUDA, September 29, 2014.

[In Reply To John Kukuda]
That’s one I don’t recall. The street seemed so short to hold so many businesses! AAE, September 30, 2014.

Here’s a comment from my brother, Mike Angel:
Regarding the gun store on Walnut Street across from McCrackens’ newsstand; It was Goral’s Gun store. I believe it was run by Sonny Goral’s father. I think Sonny was a couple of years older than you. They lived on the hill across the tracks from our home on Second Street. I remember John Kukuda. MIKE ANGEL, September 30, 2014.

Art Neeley’s Dad had a small motorcycle business for a while in the middle of that block during the mid-fifties. I remember he had a big “Indian” bike for show and sale. Art and I were friends in grade school at Deeter. MIKE OLSAVSKY, October 2, 2014.


I also remember a small bar and next to it a lumber yard. I think it was called Mertz Supply. Down near Walnut and Third streets. JOHN KUKUDA, October 7, 2014.

I remember Wade D Mertz Supply between 4th & 5th streets, I also remember the original Chevy dealership as Snyder & Freeman and this building still stands today. BOB SCOTT, October 7, 2014.


Wonderful article. I am in possession of the Knapp Hotel picture through a Mehler family connection. I have one correction to be made if possible. Emma Knapp married Nicholas Mehler, not Mahaney. I actually got to have a coffee stir a long time ago. Thanks for sharing. ANNETTE BRITAIN, 2017/02/27.

[In Reply to Annette Britain]
I’m very pleased that you appreciated the story about Walnut Street. And thanks so much for the correction, which I’ve added to the text. Your photo of the Knapp Hotel would add an important visual (and historical) element to the story. If you’d like to share it, you can send a scanned copy of the photo as an attachment to an email.


Ann, you should be proud of the work you have done with this blog. I look forward to it. JOHN KUKUDA, 2016/09/01.

[In Reply to John Kukuda]
Thanks, John, for your good words about the site. I enjoy recording and sharing these memories. Positive feedback such as your comment keeps me going! AAE 2016/09/02


That stone step you referred to in front of Kitsy’s house was still there throughout the 60s and into the 70s. Interestingly enough, I think it was still there in 1985 when we were checking out the tornado damage shortly after it struck….

And as far as the little store you were talking about, it may have been Stanton’s. It was located on First Street near Church. Apparently, it had been there a while before I came along. It was there at least into the mid-’60s and sold penny candy (stale penny candy as my grandfather described it). I don’t remember specifically when it finally closed, but I think it was gone by the late 60s. THOMAS HOOVLER 2016/11/15

WHEATLAND FLATS III: Grade School & Pony Pictures

I have to tell you that I am greatly enjoying your stories from our childhood in Sharpsville and the “Valley.” I am a classmate of your brother and also Irene Caldwell, and lived at 20 1st Street since 1947, went to Deeter, and graduated from SHS in 1960. I don’t get back very often, except for reunions, but I too have many memories of those years. Thanks so much for your efforts. My regards to Mike. MIKE OLSAVSKY, 2016/11/03.

[In Reply to Mike Olsavsky]
Thanks, Mike, for your encouraging words. I know that my brother Mike will also be pleased that you wrote. 2016/11/03 AAE