Small Town Memories

Recording memories of the SHARPSVILLE, PA, area in little stories from the 1940s to the 1970s

Category: Business


While writing about my brother, Mike, and his treehouse, I was reminded of two typical 1950s jobs he had while in high school: paperboys and pinsetters. Traditionally for boys only, those jobs put a little extra change in their pockets and taught them the fundamentals of the working world, whether they liked them or not.


Logo used pending permission from The Herald, Sharon, PA.

PAPERBOYS: “Read all about it!”

In the later half of the 1950s, my brother Mike delivered “The Sharon Herald” daily newspaper door to door in Sharpsville, PA. Our dad described Mike’s work in his memoir, Trivia & Me as follows:

Mike was an industrious and outgoing teenager. Shortly after we moved to Sharpsville [c. 1950], he helped a friend with a 50 to 75-customer Sharon Herald newspaper route, learned all the addresses, and took it over when his friend gave it up for a bigger route. At first, the papers were too heavy to carry in a shoulder bag, so Mike pulled them in a wagon. The Thursday edition was the heaviest because it was often printed on 24 to 36 pages or 48 to 56 pages for special sale editions on Thanksgiving, Christmas, Washington’s Birthday, and the Fourth of July. [The Herald was then an afternoon publication.]

At first, each paper was delivered from the sidewalk to the porch on foot, a time-consuming effort involving much running back and forth. In time, Mike became adept enough to fold the paper into itself and throw it accurately to the porch door.

In the summertime, I often accompanied him on the route. When the weather was pleasant and doors were open we would listen to “Amos ‘n’ Andy” [a weekly situation comedy] and other radio programs uninterrupted as we moved from one house to the other. In wintertime, during the cold and snow, we were only interested in getting the papers delivered as quickly as we could.

sharpsville_pixabay_newsboySaturday was customer pay-up day. Unless a person has ever tried to collect monies for service, he would not believe the number of excuses some customers offered to avoid or delay paying the paperboy his dues. However, Mike was such a good businessman that he encountered only a few non-payers, mostly [those] customers who had moved out-of-town.

Dad was likely very proud of Mike’s newspaper job, remembering his own experience as a young boy in the early 1900s when he peddled papers on a street corner in downtown Cleveland, Ohio. The newspaper, “The Plain Dealer,” which still exists to this day, sold for 3 cents each, of which 1 penny was his. Hopefully, his son Mike brought home a bit more than that!

PINSETTERS: Beware the Flying Pins!

Cartoon Bowling Strike, Designed by

Cartoon Bowling Strike, Designed by

Pinsetting required even more exertion and dexterity than newspaper delivery. Several evenings a week, Mike could be found at the Thornton Hall, working as the pinboy at the receiving end of a bowling lane. When the bowling ball hit the pins, he cleared the fallen pins, and rolled the bowling ball back to the player. At the end of turn player’s turn, he would return all ten pins to their proper places, ready for the next player.

Mike has this incisive memory of his pinboy job:”We were paid 13 cents per line for pin setting. The experience taught me that there must be an easier way to make money.”

One of the pinsetter’s main concerns was to avoid getting smashed by the oncoming bowling ball or flying pins. This was what I remember most from the days that I too reset pins, not as a teenager but as an Allegheny College student taking a women’s physical education course in bowling. The school rented lanes at a local Meadville, PA, bowling alley, and we students were pressed into service as pingirls. In order to set up all the pins for the next player, we used a treadle that we pushed with our foot, causing 10 pins to raise up. We would then set the bowling pins down on the pins, release the treadle, and the pins were in position for the next player. When that bowling ball came roaring toward us, we were sure to jump up and perch on a platform on either side of the lane, out of the way of the collision below.

The introduction of the mechanical bowling pinsetters and their prevalence in bowling alleys by the 1960s did away with the job of pinsetting. In this case, automation was a godsend. Not only did automatic pinsetters allow for faster games, but more importantly, they eliminated the dangers inherent in pinsetting by teenage boys and sometimes girls!

“The Sharon Herald” has been known as “The Herald” since 1970, having dropped “Sharon” from its nameplate to reflect wider distribution in the Shenango Valley, Mercer County, and several adjacent towns. The newspaper, still going strong in print and now online, has been a morning paper since 2002 and is published every day except Christmas Day.

Thornton Hall still stands on the corner of Thornton Street and Hall Avenue, just across the border between Sharpsville and Sharon, PA. According to its Facebook page, Thornton Hall still has a bowling alley. (The drug store and roller-skating rink in the same building that we 1950s-60s teenagers would frequent appear to no longer exist.) Although the alley still hands out paper score sheets on which players do their own scoring, I doubt that it still has human pinsetters. And I’m pretty sure that, if bowling classes were still offered at Allegheny College, pinsetting duty would no longer be required.

Ann Angel Eberhardt (SHS 1958), March 2017, with help from Mike Angel (SHS 1960).
Excerpt from “Trivia & Me,” page 118, an autobiography written by August Angel.


There once was a time when the word “metal” called to mind a chemical element, such as iron, aluminum, or tin, and not the loud, fast-paced music of distorted electric guitars. Here are two stories about the chemical kind of metal that played a part in my memories of 1950s Sharpsville, Pennsylvania. We welcome your additions or corrections.

The Tin Shop

The Tin Man in the "Wizard of Oz." Source: Pixabay.

The Tin Man in the “Wizard of Oz.” Source: Pixabay.

One of my favorite movies is The Wizard of Oz, starring those memorable characters that Dorothy met as she tried to find her way home to Kansas from the Land of Oz. One of those, the Tin Man, would remind me of a tin shop that was located in the alley behind my childhood home in Sharpsville. It’s strange how the mind can connect two entirely different subjects by the presence of one thing in common. In this case, tin.

Between our house on Second Street and the Casino, there was Y-shaped cinder alley where we kids sometimes played baseball. One leg of the alley led to Main Street and the other to North Third Street. The tin shop I remember was a black wooden two-story building among several similar outbuildings, dark and mysterious as to their use, although I recall that one of them had a large sliding door and was used as a garage.

Peering through the shop’s grimy windows we could see cobwebs strung about the machinery and dusty piles of tin things. My brother Mike remembers that “all kinds of items were made there that were outdated such as candle molds. I guess that’s why they went out of business. I only remember one time I saw people working the shop. The rest of the time the place was locked up.”

Angel family dog in back yard with alley buildings in background, May 1954.

Angel family dog in backyard of Second Strreet home; alley buildings in background, May 1954.

(Mike has a much keener mind than I do about our past. He also recalls another tin shop “down from Crick’s Drug Store, I think that was on Pierce Avenue. That shop was well known for making the long spouted oil cans used to reach oil fittings on locomotives.” )

The existence of the tin shop in the alley was further confirmed by Donna DeJulia: “I lived directly across the street from the tin shop on 27 North Third Street. Mom said that tin shop used to be a livery stable at one time….”

Donna submitted a photo of the tin shop to the familyoldphotos website and wrote that the tin shop was owned by a Mr. Clark. “His son was in the Breed motorcycle club [which] taught my older brother to throw knives.” It was eventually torn down by the owner of Cattron Communications, a company that, in the 1970s, had its home office in what was once the Angel family home and printshop on Second Street.

Google Maps Street View shows that the space is now cleared of most of the old buildings and houses and completely paved over. The place looks tidy now but lacks the character it had in the old days. Maybe the tin shop still sticks in my imagination so many years later because it was a silent relic of an even more distant past. Or maybe because the Tin Man would have been at home in that place during its heyday.

– Ann Angel Eberhardt (SHS 1958), Goodyear, AZ
– Mike Angel (SHS 1960), London, KY
Donna DeJulia (SHS 1960)

Collecting Scrap Metal



Scrap yards or junkyards of old now have the more respectable name of “recycling centers,” but they achieve the same useful purpose of providing a place to properly dispose of unwanted metal material, such as cars, household appliances, and other products, large and small. Some of us kids would go about town collecting smaller metal items with the goal of turning our finds into the local scrap yard for some spending money.

It was like a treasure hunt as we searched for metal items in fields, along roads, or in neighbors’ trashbins. With Dad’s help, we would then load up the family’s 1949 Ford pick-up truck with our collection, mostly cans, tubing, wires, and an assortment of unidentified pieces of metal. We’d pull into the yard and onto a scale that weighed the truck and its contents. After the truck was emptied it was driven onto the scale again to determine the weight of the metal. Then the best part came when the employee would pay us in cash for our delivery. According to my brother Mike,

Magnet souvenir from J.r. Goldberg Scrap Yard., Sharon, PA, c. 1950s.

Magnet souvenir from J.r. Goldberg Scrap Yard., Sharon, PA, c. 1950s.

[S]crap metal collecting was one of my ways of making extra money. Every time I found a piece of metal I would add it to my stash until the pile was big enough to take to the scrap yard, usually J. B. Goldberg Co. in Sharon. Usually, Dad would drive me there. Incidentally, in front of me as I’m typing this e-mail is a magnet the company gave out as advertising items. The engraving on the magnet depicts, “J.B. Goldberg Co. Sharon, PA -Diamond 7-7390 – Scrap Iron & Metal.” I’ve had the magnet about 60 years now.

Irene Caldwell O’Neill also recalls that “Jack [my brother] and I used to save every piece of scrap metal we could find and take it in our wagon to the scrap yard where it was weighed and we collected our cash.”

The junkyards, then and now, use the scrap metal to re-make metal – a process which is more cost-effective than producing new metals. In the 1950s we kids didn’t think about this aspect of junkyards or that they benefited the environment in the long run. We just enjoyed the treasure hunt and the little bit of money we earned for our efforts.

– Ann Angel Eberhardt (SHS 1958), Goodyear, AZ
– Mike Angel (SHS 1960), London, KY

– Irene Caldwell O’Neill (SHS 1960), Escondido, CA – April 2012


For this month’s blog, let’s go to the movies again! When the request went out for remembrances of Sharpsville, PA, in the 1950s-60s, three stories about the Ritz Theater were submitted, evidently a popular memory for us old-timers. And no wonder! What glamor, high jinks and an array of adventures awaited us on that silver screen!


Many years have passed since the curtains closed on the stage of the Ritz Theater in Sharpsville for the last time after an afternoon or evening of entertainment, but the memories live on.

sharpsville_movie-reel-popcorn-3dAlthough the Hollywood films shown by this little theater were mostly low-budget, they were so much a part of our lives during the 1950s and 1960s that they likely formed some of the values we hold today. Of course, we had other choices of motion picture venues nearby, such as the Reynolds Drive-In Theater in rural Transfer, PA, and the several larger and fancier downtown Sharon, PA, theaters which ran premieres and first-run movies. However, the Ritz was just around the corner from our house and much cheaper to attend.

The Original Owners

Charles E. Gable (1859-1945) was said to be the original owner of the Ritz. According to the 1920 U.S. Census, Charles, age 60, and his wife Florence Archer Gable (1861-1932), lived in the “Hotel Gable” on Railroad Street, Sharon, PA, and his occupation was theater owner. The theater at that time may have been the Gable Theater located in either Sharon or Farrell, PA. (Charles and Florence Gable graves are in Oakwood Cemetery, the same place where Julia and Frank Buhl are buried, near Thornton Hall in Sharon.)

Charles E. Gable (1859-1945)

Irene Caldwell O’Neill (SHS 1960) submitted this newspaper clipping, from The Sharon Herald, 07 August 1942:

Birthdays Today: Charles E. Gable

Usually active at the age of 83 is Mr. Gable, proprietor of the Ritz Theater, Sharpsville, whose birthday is on this date. A Herald photographer caught him in a hearty laugh on his anniversary. Mr. Gable is one of the best known men in the county, having been actively identified with the growth of the Shenango Valley. For many years he operated the Gable Hotel, which had a national reputation for the excellence of its meals.

The year that the Ritz Theater was established is unknown but the theater was considered “new” in 1936, according to an excerpt of a speech given by Peter Joyce (owner of the former Isaly’s Dairy located on Third and Main streets) to the Sharpsville Service Club in 1979. In honor of Dr. Nelson Bailey, Mr. Joyce reminisced about Sharpsville:

 …[L]et’s wander back 56 years and look at the Sharpsville of that time and some of the people who have gone to their reward, whom Dr. Bailey first met. …Then, on down to First Street to the new Ritz Theatre with Charles Gable and his diamond rings and a powerful hoarse voice which we heard later in his famous nephew, Clark Gable….

The following blurb in the September-December 1936 issue of The Film Daily (Vol. 70) also mentions “C.E. Gable” in connection with the Ritz in Sharpsville (and states a different relationship with Clark):

Sharpsville, Pa.— C. E. Gable, operator of the Ritz Theater here and nephew of Clark Gable, is leaving for Florida next week on his annual winter vacation.

According to my brother, Mike Angel, “I believe a Mr. Belonax owned, or at least managed, the theater during our time period [1950s]. Cost for a Saturday matinee was 20 cents and if you didn’t have enough money Mr. Belonax would let you in anyway.” [Helen Belonax owned and operated a beauty salon a few doors down from the theater.]

If Mr. Belonax did indeed purchase the Ritz, he may have done so by responding to this classified ad “for Business Opportunities” in The Pittsburgh Press, April 16, 1950:

Ritz Theater, Sharpsville, Pa.
370 seats, drawing population 10 to 12 thousand, no competition, always a money maker.
Reason for selling: To settle Estate. Address: Trustee, 919 Koppers Bldg. Pittsburgh 19, Pa.

Exterior of the Ritz Theater

The Ritz, located in a one-story flat-top brick building on the corner of First and Main streets was one of many neighborhood movie theaters that once existed in towns and cities across the United States. Only a few have managed to still be in operation, such as another Ritz Theater, also on Main Street, that I attended while living in Muncy, PA, in the early 1980s.

We kids enjoyed several evening and matinee movies a week at our little neighborhood movie theater. And we did so without adult supervision. At the time I didn’t wonder why our parents would let us attend so often, but now I think it may have been a convenient, sure, and safe way to get us out of their hair for a few hours.

I believe there was a red neon sign, indicating “RITZ,” above the front of the theater that was lit up when the theater was open for business. Decorating the facade of the Ritz’s portico were colorful posters promoting current and upcoming feature films and about eight stills of the movie that was currently playing. The ticket booth with its glass window was inside the east wall of the portico to the right of the doors.


Entering the Ritz Theater

After purchasing a ticket, we walked through the entrance doors and, if we had an extra nickel, we would make a stop at the candy machine in the foyer and select our favorite candy, such as a box of Raisinets, JujyFruits, Good & Plenty, Mike & Ike, Milk Duds, Sugar Babies, or Dots. Or maybe a 5th Avenue or Butterfinger candy bar. Popcorn must have been available as well, perhaps at the ticket window, because to this day the odor of popcorn reminds me of the cozy dark interior of the Ritz.

The Ritz Theater featured a narrow inner lobby which ran behind the auditorium seats. The wall that separated the inner lobby and the seating area was short enough in height to allow a patron to see the screen and available seats before entering the auditorium. There were two aisles dividing the three seating sections on a slightly inclined floor, a stage with curtains, and emergency exits on either side. The Ritz did not have a balcony but I vaguely remember box seats above the main seating area on each side of the stage. If they did exist, they were likely for decoration only, as I don’t recall that the box seats were ever used by patrons.

The Ritz Theater Staff

There were two brothers who worked as ushers. Their duties included leading us to our seats with a flashlight if the movie had already begun, monitoring the projection quality of the film, and making sure the audience behaved.

Irene Caldwell O’Neill wrote, “I have the name of the man who was employed as the projectionist/manager and some people think he may have been the purchaser when Mr. Gable died. The projectionist’s name was Andrew P. Semon, who lived on Ridge Avenue. His daughter helped him at the theater in the later years.”

Movies at the Ritz

At the start of the movie, the curtains would dramatically part from the middle, probably another job for the ushers. Then we were treated to several “shorts,” such as a cartoon, travelogue, an installment of the latest adventure serial (with a “cliffhanger” ending), a newsreel, and/or a comedy. I remember how embarrassed we girls were as boys hooted and hollered whenever a jungle travel film showed bare-breasted “native” women. Jame A. FitzPatrick’s Traveltalk Film travelogues, which served to open our eyes to the world, always ended with a sunset and the narrator’s voice intoning this goodbye: “And as the sun sinks slowly in the west, we bid a reluctant farewell to…” whatever land the film was covering.

Finally, it was time for the main feature, which always began with what seemed to be an interminable list of all the credits. At first, the Hollywood films featured old-fashioned middle-class conformity and character idealization in the form of westerns, musicals, detective stories, and comedies. I dutifully listed in my 1950s diaries each film I saw, and still recall my favorites, such as the comedy series starring the Bowery Boys, as well as “Destination Moon,” “Son of Paleface,” “King Solomon’s Mines,” “Snows of Kilimanjaro,” and the re-release of “Gone with the Wind.” Also, many of the movies were now in the saturated hues of Technicolor, instead of the all black-and-white films of earlier years.

By the latter part of the 1950s, Hollywood began realizing that the younger generation was interested in more realistic representations of their lives. Gradually we were treated to the exciting and sexy actions of anti-heroes such as Marlon Brando and James Dean and anti-heroines such as Bette Davis, Kim Novak, and Marilyn Monroe. My friend was a big fan of James Dean, filling a scrapbook with his pictures, and mourning, along with many other teenage fans, his untimely death in an automobile accident. The first movie to feature rock ‘n’ roll music, “Blackboard Jungle,” with its energizing “Rock Around the Clock” theme song, was a sort of awakening to me that kids my age were a group to be reckoned with.

At the finish of each film or short subject, two large words on the center of the screen informed us that the film had reached “The End.” Once outside again, I would enjoy studying the publicity stills to see if I recognized the scenes depicted.

Ritz Theater Advertising Card

The Sharpsville Area Historical Society Newsletter, dated July 2016 (Vol. V, No. 2), displays the image of a Ritz Theater advertising card. It lists the titles and stars of movies scheduled to be shown for the month of February 1952.

Four of the 18 films were in Technicolor, the others were in black-and-white, and all were second-run, having been released the year before. The titles changed every two days, except on Saturday when they were one-day-only. There were double features on one of the Saturdays and in a Thursday-Friday show. This was the type of schedule that was in place during my Ritz days in the early 1950s, but I don’t remember advertising cards. They certainly would have been handy!

Other Ritz Memories

Mike recalls:

Between the theater and the beauty salon was a 2′ x 3′ grate over the sidewalk that covered an access to the basement or crawl space beneath the building. While waiting for the next movie, kids would play around the grate with money in hand to buy popcorn or candy and accidentally drop coins in the grate. Joe Wasley and I would always look through the grate’s iron bars to see if there was any change in the void. The grate had a lock on it and we couldn’t open it to retrieve the lost change, so Joe and I would put chewing gum on a end of a long stick and spear the coins through the iron bars. The coins would stick to the gum. There was always loose change to be had.

I remember the Christmas parties put on by some civic organization. They would give you a popcorn ball and a big bag of hardtack candy. Santa was always there. What a great time!!!

On one of my movie visits, there was a short fundraising film for the March of Dimes foundation’s fight against polio, a dreaded and widespread disease before the Salk vaccine was developed. At the end of the film, the lights were turned on and the ushers passed around collection cans for small donations from the patrons. Meanwhile, the song, “You’ll Never Walk Alone,” played which seemed to me a moving but perhaps an unfortunate choice.

The End of the Ritz

As more and more families bought television sets, Hollywood tried to beat out TV’s competition with technical innovations such as wide screens, 3-D movies, and CinemaScope. In 1952, my family drove to Pittsburgh to see “This is Cinerama,” a travelogue with a thrilling roller coaster ride that was projected on screens that seemed to surround the viewer. Even at the Ritz, we watched CinemaScope movies, such as “Prince Valiant,” and donned cardboard-and-plastic eyeglasses to watch “Charge at Feather River” and other 3-D movies. By June 1954, the entrance price had increased to 50 cents to keep up with rising costs.

However, changes in film distribution and the growing popularity of television were factors that led to the eventual decline of the Ritz and hundreds of other small movie theaters.

Irene O’Neill quotes her cousin from Sharon, who said, “the roof on the Ritz collapsed in and that may have been why it closed in the early sixties.”

Sadly, a vacant lot now exists where this once lively showplace stood, but we movie-goers of the ’50s and ’60s can still see those images and performers, hear their words and songs, and smell the popcorn, as they play out in our fond recollections of the Ritz Theater.


– Ann Angel Eberhardt (SHS 1958), Goodyear, AZ, with contributions from Michael Angel (SHS 1960), London, KY, Irene Caldwell O’Neill, Escondido, CA (SHS 1960), and Judy Caldwell Nelson (SHS 1958), Shoreline, WA; April 2012

For additional stories about the Ritz Theater, click here and here.

ANGEL’S CASINO: A Place to Party

This is the last installment of my memories of the Casino. Next week, we’ll take a look at a new subject and author. Keep those comments and submissions coming! What events do you remember attending at “Angel’s”?

Record hops and wedding celebrations weren’t the only types of gatherings at Angel’s Casino. In his memoir, Dad wrote:

Utilization of the former livery stable under my ownership evolved slowly and unevenly…. Soon after purchase, the building was rented for roller-skating on the fine maple floor, mostly for kids’ private birthday parties – at first to give some semblance of occupancy. This activity lasted only a short while, because rentals by adult groups such as wedding parties, civic and fraternal groups, and clubs were more in demand.

…[E]very evening of the week, except Sunday, the hall was used for some function or other. There were only two activities promoted by yours truly – a regular weekly dinner for the Kiwanis Club serving 15 to 20 members and Friday night dances. The rest of the rentals were privately sponsored.

Besides birthday parties and Kiwanis Club dinners, the hall was used for many other functions, such as square dancing by the Masons, a style show by the Foster Shoppe, card parties by the Women’s Auxiliary, a fur coat show by the Women’s Club, and banquets for the Degree of Honor Society, Sharpsville Service Club, and the Sharpsville Patrol boys. There were also skating parties for a variety of groups, including the Sharon Herald newspaper employees, Girl Scouts, and Shenango Furnace Company employees. An entry in my 1954 diary describes the day when we kids watched wide-eyed as Paige Palmer, the hostess of one of the earliest televised fitness-oriented television shows, “The Paige Palmer Show,” stepped from a luxurious black car to speak before a Women’s Club meeting.

Click on image to enlarge.

My hard-working mother, Susie Hall Angel, was in charge of preparing the meals served at club meetings and was often praised by the guests for her tasty home-style cooking. A typical plate would consist of a meat, a starch, and a vegetable, such as baked chicken, creamed potatoes, and green beans. The dinner would end with a simple dessert, such as ice cream or fresh-baked cake or cookies.

Dad would recruit family members and friends to assist my mother in the kitchen and with the other chores required to run a community meeting place. Dad paid us something like 50 cents an hour to sell tickets and pop at record hops, wait on tables, and help clean up after these events. As I wrote in my 1956 diary, “There must have been a million dishes to wash.” But earning some spending money usually offset any reluctance I had to do these chores.

After leaving Sharpsville, I was distracted by college, marriage, and career, and lost track of the hall activities. After my parents retired and relocated to my mother’s home state of Kentucky, they sold the hall to Donaldson’s Funeral Home located on the corner of North Second and West Main streets.

In 1992, I returned to visit the hometown of my youth, only to find the Casino, having apparently run its course, was razed and replaced by a parking lot for the funeral home. What an inauspicious ending for “Angel’s Casino,” a place that enabled numerous community gatherings, and thus held so many fond memories for those of us who lived in the Sharpsville area in the 1950s and ’60s!

— Ann Angel Eberhardt (SHS 1958), Goodyear, Arizona, April 2013.
— Excerpts are from “Trivia & Me,” (1996) by August D. Angel.

See Also:
ANGEL’S CASINO: The Early Years
ANGEL’S CASINO: Here Came the Bride
ANGEL’S CASINO: The Record Hops

ANGEL’S CASINO: Here Came the Bride

After two weeks of visiting family in Kentucky and North Carolina, I’m back at the keyboard with another Sharpsville story. This post is the third of 4 installments covering my memories of Angel’s Casino, the dance hall that my family owned and operated in Sharpsville, PA, during the 1950s and 1960s.

Angel’s Casino became so frequent a venue for wedding receptions that all that revelry was wearing us out. To possibly discourage some prospective renters, Dad eventually raised the hall rental cost to $500 a day. The renter was responsible for decorations, food, refreshments, and music.

But, oh those celebrations! Much of Sharpsville’s population consisted of people of Eastern European descent, and they knew how to throw a party. According to my dad:

Wedding celebrations and dances were strictly Saturday affairs at Angel’s and booked months in advance. The hall was rented for 24 hours, 6 am Saturday to 6 am Sunday for Polish, Italian, or Greek wedding festivities, each with its own germane flavor. An “American” wedding paled in comparison to the joyous celebrations of these ethnic counterparts.

By late afternoon of the wedding day, we children would watch eagerly for the bride, bridesmaids, groom, and others of the wedding party to arrive at the reception. When the bride stepped out of a fancy car wearing a billowing white gown and veil and holding her bouquet of flowers, we gasped in awe.

Angel's Casino: Here Came the BrideSometimes the neighborhood kids would put on their good Sunday clothes and attend the wedding, invited or not, to pick up a little tulle bag of almonds coated in pastel-colored candy or have a bit of the wedding cake. Mike recalls, “I smoked my first cigar that was for the taking at the wedding reception tables. I also ate a lot of the candy-covered almonds.”

We loved to watch the attendees as they danced the polka, waltz, or jitterbug to a live band that usually included an accordion and a saxophone. I don’t recall whether full-sized dinners were served, but there were plenty of desserts, and alcoholic drinks flowed freely for the adults.

When the wedding was traditionally Italian, the bride and the bride’s father would dance first, followed by the bride and groom. As the newlyweds twirled about the dance floor, a hat or bag was passed among the onlookers who were expected to fill it with money. And then the intoxicating music of the Tarantella was played as guests dance-stepped together in a circle, some waving handkerchiefs above their heads. After many glasses of wine, guests would repeatedly cheer phrases in their native tongue, wishing the newlyweds good luck and happiness, accompanied by enthusiastic applause and much laughter.

Meanwhile, several young guys would often stand on the landing at the side entrance and engage each other in the Italian hand game of Morra. Players would extend their arms to display a certain number of fingers while simultaneously shouting in Italian the total number of fingers they estimated would be presented by both players. If no one guessed the correct sum or the players guessed the same number, the game continued until there was a clear winner, based on a point system. On many a Saturday night I tried unsuccessfully to fall asleep to the sounds of their exuberant bets backed up by lively dance music just below my bedroom window. According to my brother Mike:

I always referred to it as “Motto”; at least that’s what it sounded like. All the young men and boys in Sharpsville and Shenango Valley knew how to play. I was good at it! A lot of money was won and lost betting on the game.

The bride and groom usually left at midnight, but guests continued their merrymaking for several hours. By that time, I was desperately wanting to sleep and counting the hours until they finally went home.

Years later, “The Deer Hunter”, a 1978 movie about the Vietnam War, opened with scenes from a wedding reception located in western Pennsylvania. The Russian-American traditions the film portrayed reminded me of those wedding receptions at Angel’s Casino.

On the day following a large event such as this, our family and friends met at the hall to bring things back down to earth. We removed the decorations from the walls and ceiling and scrubbed down the kitchen, bar, and restrooms. Then we sprinkled the floor with saved-up dampened coffee grounds to keep the dust down as we began sweeping. To clean such a wide expanse of dance floor, we would form a sort of brigade, each holding a hog-bristle push-broom and sweeping in unison, side by side, from one end of the hall to the other. But the beer must have soaked permanently into the walls and floor, as no amount of cleaning would rid the place entirely of its odor.

Cleanup after these raucous events was such a chore for us I promised myself that my future wedding reception would be restrained, polite, and non-alcoholic. And it occurred just as I had planned, but I’ll have to admit that it wasn’t nearly as much fun.

— Ann Angel Eberhardt (SHS 1958), Goodyear, Arizona, April 2013.
Excerpts from Michael Angel (SHS 1960), London, Kentucky,
and “Trivia & Me,” (1996) by August D. Angel.

See Also:
ANGEL’S CASINO: The Early Years
ANGEL’S CASINO: The Record Hops
ANGEL’S CASINO: A Place to Party

ANGEL’S CASINO: The Record Hops

sharpsville_dancing_pixabay-2In the late 1950s the rock-and-roll singing quartet,”Danny & the Juniors,” urged everyone to go to the hop and that is exactly what many teenagers did in those days. While the Korean War and the Cold War were occupying the adults of our country, we oblivious teens were at the record hop, doing the stroll, the stomp, a regional style of jitterbug, slow dancing, and the twist. All this was inspired by the persistent backbeat of rock and roll music, presented live or played on vinyl records by a disc jockey.  In his memoir, my dad wrote:

It all started in a modest way. One day I was contacted by the disc jockey (DJ) from the Sharon radio station. He advanced the idea of a dance, which he would promote during his radio program, and I agreed to give it a try. We would split the door entrance fees down the middle. Due to radio advertising and word of mouth, attendance at each dance progressively increased. For music, the DJ played records that were also heard on his radio show. [From “Trivia & Me” by August Angel, 1996]

Fred Cole was probably that first DJ who proposed a record hop deal with Dad. Another DJ who emceed the dances was Marc Howard of WPIC, who went on to become a television news anchor at a variety of stations from 2003 until he retired in 2007: WFMJ-TV in Youngstown, Ohio, New York City’s WPIX, 26 years with WPVI in Philadelphia, and finally with KYW-TV, Philadelphia. Lew Russell was also an announcer at the hops at that time, according to an entry in my 1955 diary.

The Angel’s record hops would sometimes feature up-and-coming stars. My brother, Mike Angel, remembers two guest performers from the Pittsburgh area: Bobby Vinton, whose songs “Blue Velvet”and “Roses are Red (My Love)” became #1 hits in the early 1960s, and the Skyliners, a doo-wop singing group, best known for their 1959 hit “Since I Don’t Have You.” My 1956 diary records a guest visit by Billy Merman, well-known for his song, “900 Miles,” to an “Angel’s” record hop that was raising funds for cancer research.

sharpsville_angel_stampThese teen dances began in July 1954 with a crowd count of around 200 and an entrance fee of a mere 30 cents per attendee. When students returned to school the following September, the hops were moved to Friday nights from 7:00 to 11:00 until the next spring. By then, the number of attendees grew to an average of 500 teens and occasionally topped out at 700. Eventually, the ticket price rose to 50 cents. My friends and I spent many an evening seated at a table near the entrance selling tickets to the dancers. As a receipt, each customer’s left hand was stamped in red ink with the word “Angel” in cursive lettering and surrounded by a circle. Later, technology improved and hands were stamped with an invisible ink that showed up under a blacklight.

If we weren’t working at the entrance, we could be found standing behind the bar at the other end of the vast dance floor, selling potato chips and cold soft drinks, such as Coke or the fruit-flavored Nehi “pop” to the thirsty dancers. The hall became the choice place for teenagers, not only to dance but also to meet new friends and greet old ones, to see and be seen.

However, a new problem developed, as my dad described:

[T]he playing of records at a public dance drew the ire of musicians and bands. The DJ and I were confronted by members of the Pittsburgh Musicians’ Union, who said the dance would be picketed unless live music was played in addition to records. Also, if recorded songs were played between rest periods of live music, the dance would not be liable for plagiarism. We listened and quickly agreed to bring in a local union band starting with the next dance.

When the DJ advertised the addition of live music to the Friday night dance, teenagers were thrilled. Dancers from as far away as Pittsburgh invaded the hall, filling it to capacity each week. Extra duty police were assigned to control the traffic jams and milling youth, and were paid as a dance expense.

One of those groups was the Del Sinchak Band from Youngstown, Ohio. The group started out as a polka band called Del Saint and the Devils, but switched in the 1950s to rock ‘n’ roll. Besides playing at Angel’s dances, they recorded their own singles and backed popular recordings of the day, such as the Edsels’ Rama Lama Ding Dong in 1958 (with Del tapping a cowbell), and songs by Chuck Berry and Conway Twitty. Sinchak, whose parents were Slovakian immigrants, later returned to his polka heritage. He still leads the band (which includes two of the original musicians) to this day and has won many awards, including the Lifetime Achievement Award and induction into the Cleveland Polka Hall of Fame in 2009. More information can be found on the band’s website.

Dad concluded his memories of the record hop days by writing:

Success of the Friday night dances was an incentive for others to try. Several miles from Angel’s, Thornton Hall started Thursday night dances on their floor normally used for roller-skating. They were fairly successful but no competition to Angel’s. News came that several other “hops” were launched in nearby towns, but Sharpsville’s dances were “tops” in the field.

 Linda (Addicott) Marrie (SHS 1960),  wrote the following concerning Angel’s Casino:

Angel’s Casino…Nothing stirs the memories of my youth like the thought of Angel’s Casino. It will always be the highlight of my days in Sharpsville. There was nothing better than being there on a Friday night, dancing and enjoying the music and our friends. I often wonder if Mr. Angel knew how much we appreciated him giving us some of the best times of our lives. I doubt if we ever told him but I hope he knew. 

I really feel sorry for anyone who didn’t grow up in the 50’s as we did. It was absolutely the best of times.

 — Ann Angel Eberhardt (SHS 1958), Goodyear, AZ,
with help from Linda (Addicott) Marrie (SHS 1960)
and August Angel’s memoir “Trivia & Me”, 1996.

See Also:
ANGEL’S CASINO: The Early Years
ANGEL’S CASINO: Here Came the Bride
ANGEL’S CASINO: A Place to Party

ANGEL’S CASINO: The Early Years

sharpsville_image_casino_adThe lively music of a polka or lingering smell of stale beer still can bring to mind the dance hall my father, August Angel, owned from 1953 until 1964. Located at 19 North Second Street, the building was directly across the narrow alley from our family’s apartment and my dad’s printing business. Quite large in size and covered in beige and black faux-brick asphalt sheet siding, it wasn’t the most attractive structure in town. But in spite of its unassuming appearance, this building was a highly popular community center for over a decade.

In the 1940s, the building had been a popular skating rink complete with rental skates and organ music. It was owned and operated by Mr. Hanlon, who lived in an apartment above the hall and also owned several other properties in the area, including Shady Grove on the Sharpsville-Greenville road and land in Hickory Township (now Hermitage) that he eventually sold to DeBartolo Corporation, a builder of shopping malls.

It took only a year after our family moved to Sharpsville for Dad, always the entrepreneur, to see potential in such a building and decide to purchase it from Mr. Hanlon in December 1953. According to my dad’s memoir:

Before the turn of the century, it housed the town’s livery stable. When automobiles became an affordable, convenient, and fashionable mode of travel, the “hay burners” were abandoned…. Likewise, the need for a livery stable ended and the building was used for other purposes.

Since I could afford it, I bought the Sharpsville building, although it was on an impulse. I had no immediate plans for what I would do with it.

My parents immediately went about cleaning up the hall, and over the first several years, gradually remodeled the structure. The restrooms were modernized, an annex containing a commercial kitchen was added, a bar area was built at the far end of the dance floor, the windows were replaced, and, in 1954, a neon sign was installed when the name of the hall was changed from “Hanlon’s Hall” to “Angel’s Casino.” Also, during the revamping, my father added a green canvas canopy that stretched from the front door to the sidewalk. In my young eyes, this was a very swanky touch.

At first, my dad had concerns about his purchase:

The Casino had many initial faults — it was an old building on a short side street in the center of town and lacked parking space. Also, the name, “Angel’s Casino,” may have been inappropriate. Perhaps it should have been christened the more fitting name of “The Commons.”

For years the community had misgivings as to whether it was good or bad for Sharpsville. Two of the most vociferous complaints were about the traffic jams the social gatherings created and the influx of strangers, especially youth, into the previously close-knit community.

However, traffic and parking problems were brought under control and the neighborhood became accustomed to strangers. My rental business created ripple effects in the form of substantial profit increases for businesses and more jobs for residents – especially as extra duty security personnel. Also, the Casino was in a central location that large groups of people could easily access, unlike meetings in church basements, school lunch rooms, or auditoriums. And in time the dubious name “Casino” was seldom used and “Angel’s” was the catchword for the building.

sharpsville_jukebox_pixabaySome of the building’s decor was left over from its skating rink days, such as the rows of fading crepe paper fringe that hung from each rafter overhead, an old upright piano, and a Wurlitzer jukebox full of 45 rpm records of 1940s music. When in operation, its frame of neon columns would light up in dazzling orange, yellow, and green. My favorite item was the mirrored ball suspended from the ceiling in the middle of the dance floor. Confetti-like bits of color would reflect on the guests and floor, creating a magical and romantic mood when a ballad was playing and the lights were turned down low.

Msharpsville_mirrorball_pixabayy parents often supplied the hall with second-hand items they had purchased from other establishments that were selling off their equipment. The wooden folding chairs came from Woody Wooddell, a locally well-known “hillbilly” singer and disc jockey on Sharon’s WPIC and other radio stations in the area. A stove, working table, french fryer, and other items were purchased from the owners of the former Welch House Hotel on Fourth and Main streets, that had burned down a year before.

Most of the dishes, silverware, and cooking utensils in the kitchen were obtained at a bargain price when the Reynolds Army German Prison Camp, located midway between Sharpsville and Greenville, was closed after WWII. I was intrigued by the thought of hapless German prisoners eating from the same plates we now owned.

For several years a family of four rented an apartment in the front half of the upper level of the building. The older of the two little boys often joined the gang of kids who played hide-and-go-seek, baseball, or cowboys and Indians on North Second Street. On Sunday afternoons, their mother would sit on the porch at the top of the stairs to their apartment and watch us play while she listened to a radio program of Croatian folk music. Her washing would hang on a clothesline that stretched across the alley from their upstairs porch to ours, operated by use of a pulley. After several years the family relocated to a house on Ridge Avenue and the hall’s upstairs rooms and kitchen were reconfigured to provide small dinners for local civic groups.

The other half of the hall’s second floor consisted of a large attic-like storage area. I sometimes poked around in that dusty, cobwebby space because it held odds and ends from the past, such as piles of rusted skates with moldy leather uppers, old 78 rpm vinyl records (mostly organ music), storage trunks, and an old-fashioned sleigh.

When my father purchased the hall,  gave it a new name, began to develop a new identity for it, he could not have imagined how well-known it would become due to the major new genre in popular music.

— Ann Angel Eberhardt (SHS 1958), Goodyear, Arizona, April 2013.
Excerpts from “Trivia & Me,” (1996) by August D. Angel.

sharpsville_image_mike in alley

Mike Angel, age 12, stands in alley between Angel’s Casino (left) and our home and printing business. Sharpsville, PA, 1954


Angel’s Casino, Sharpsville, PA. Photo by Pat Angel, c. 1976.


ANGEL’S CASINO: The Record Hops
ANGEL’S CASINO: A Place to Party
ANGEL’S CASINO: Here Came the Bride


The Knapp Hotel/Mahaney’s Building

The stately three-story brick building on the corner of Walnut and Main streets seemed to be the anchor for the other buildings on the block. It was known in the 1950s as  Mahaney’s Clothing Store, but it began as a hotel over a hundred years ago. Ralph Mehler, grandson of the owner of Ralph C. Mehler Insurance Agency, provides this history of the building beginning with the hotel built by his great-great-grandfather Michael Knapp.

The Knapp Hotel was built in 1903 by Michael Knapp on the northwest corner of Walnut & Main. Michael had previously managed another hotel in Sharpsville, the Pierce House (which later was part of the Parkway Apartments).

While Sharpsville was perhaps more of a bustling little town than it is today, letting rooms was only part of a hotel’s business then. At the time, the granting of liquor licenses were severely restricted with only hotels eligible in some years. Michael died right before the hotel opened, leaving a wife and three daughters at home. (Previously, one other daughter died at age 4 and a son at age 24.) Four other daughters were married at the time, including Katherine who had married George Mahaney, Sr., a month before Michael’s death. Collectively, they were widely known as the “Knapp girls.”

While he left a handsome new building, he also left an almost insurmountable amount of debt. (His widow, Anna, was eligible for widow’s pension since Michael was a veteran of the Civil War. Because a widow had to show she was without means of support she had to document to a skeptical War Department that it was a money-losing proposition.)

Ultimately, [Anna Knapp’s] son-in-law George Mahaney took over the building and business in exchange for paying off the debts. He later opened his haberdashery there. The upstairs hotel rooms were eventually converted into apartments.

Mahaney's, a men's clothing store on the corner of Main and Walnut streets. Torn down in the early 1970s. Source: Donna DeJulia.

Mahaney’s, a men’s clothing store on the corner of Main and Walnut streets. Torn down in the early 1970s. Source: Donna DeJulia.

From about the early 1940s, part of the Walnut Street-facing first floor was rented to Mehler Insurance Agency. Ralph C. “Dutch” Mehler was [George Mahaney’s] nephew. His mother, Emma Knapp, who married Nicholas Mehler, was one of the Knapp girls and sister to George’s wife (Another Knapp girl, Gert, married Frederick “Skip” Reichard, who originated the coffee stir.) Dutch started selling insurance in 1925 out of his barbershop which was on the east side of Walnut near the railroad tracks. Eventually, he laid down his clippers and started selling insurance full-time.

When the building was razed for urban renewal about 1973, my family was in hopes of at least saving the large stone with the name “Knapp” carved in it on the building’s Main Street-facing cornice. Unfortunately, the stone was dropped and smashed when the workmen were attempting to remove it.

– Ralph Mehler, Sharpsville, PA, October 5, 2014

The End of the Early Walnut Street Businesses

I suppose that the shopping malls that sprang up in the 1960s spelled the end of stores on Walnut Street as we knew them, along with many small businesses across the nation. Cheap gasoline, as well as the malls’ lower prices, mass advertising, discount department and chain stores, and easy parking were no match for the mom-and-pop stores.

Although many of Walnut Street’s neighborhood businesses are gone, and the buildings they occupied may no longer exist, they are not lost to the memories of those who lived in Sharpsville in the 1950s through 1970s.

– Ann Angel Eberhardt (SHS 1958), Goodyear, AZ, October 13, 2014

If this post sparks a related memory that you would like to share, feel free to do so using the Comment form below.
Please include your name, name of high school and years attended, and current city and state.


A look at ads in publications such as the Sharpsville High School yearbook, The Devil’s Log, (1956-1958), a 1955 directory, and The Sharpsville Advertiser (a small weekly newspaper published by August Angel) inspired the following list of old-time Sharpsville stores. Please feel free to enter any additional memories or corrections you may have in the Comment form at the end of this blog.

Typical store front on Walnut Street in the early 1900s through 1950s.

Typical store front on Walnut Street in the early 1900s through 1950s.

Lee Supply Company: Donna DeJulia remembers “…the old stores especially Lee’s Supply [with its] creaky hardwood floors and the three rooms: one was housewares, one was hardware and the last, my favorite, was toys and coloring books!”

McFarland Pharmacy, Prescriptions, Fountain Service, Hospital Supplies, 5 West Main Street.

Dr. Theophil Tyran, 121 West Main Street.

Burke’s Dairy (“Hurley’s”), corner of Main and Walnut streets, owned by Dick Hurley; One of the town’s few red lights was located at the conjunction of these cross streets.

Johnson’s Market, on the corner of Main and Walnut streets.

C. A. Shannon Hardware, Plumbing and Heating Supplies, 2 East Main Street (corner of Main and Walnut streets), owned by Clair A. Shannon.

Mahaney’s Clothing Store, men’s wear, 5 North Walnut, owned by George D. Mahaney (1878-1966). The building was razed in 1971 and replaced by a car dealership, Jason Black Chevrolet Inc., later known as (M.Bruce) Hofius & (James) Black Chevrolet Inc.

[Click HERE to read memories of George D. Mahaney and his haberdashery, written by his granddaughter, Mary Claire Mahaney.]

Dentist. According to Irene Caldwell O’Neill: “I know we saw a dentist on Walnut Street, upstairs above one of the shops on the same side as Mahaney’s building, but can’t remember his name.”

Ralph C. Mehler Insurance, 5 Walnut Street (still in operation and located at Sharpsville Plaza).

Phil’s Luncheonette, 7 North Walnut Street.

Foster Shoppe, 8 North Walnut (women’s wear); My 1955 diary mentions that Mrs. Foster presented a couple of style shows of clothing at Angel’s Casino. My four-year-old brother Patrick Angel and his younger pal were among those who modeled children’s outfits.

House of Time, 9 North Walnut Street, Fidelity First Lady Diamonds, Watches and Jewelry, Repair Work; owned by S. Pushcar.

C. D. Shaner Jewelry, 12 North Walnut Street, owned by Clinton D. Shaner; where many Sharpsville High School graduating students bought their class rings.

Ben Franklin Store, 14 North Walnut Street; Irene Caldwell O’Neill remembered “…its squeaky wooden floors.”

Gorel’s Gunshop, Hunting and Fishing supplies; Buy, Sell Trade; 18 North Walnut Street (Thanks to comments by John Kukuda and Mike Angel in the last post for this addition to the list.)

Charles L. McCracken News Agency, 21 North Walnut Street.

Varsity Barber Shop, 34 North Walnut Street.

Motorcycle shop, owned by Mr. Neeley. (Thanks to a comment from Mike Olsavsky in the last post for this addition to the list.)

The Sharpsville Advertiser printshop, owned by August Angel, was located at 8 North Walnut Street c. 1949-1950 before it was moved to 29 North Second Street.

Other Shopping Venues

For bigger shopping excursions, we would take a car trip to the more urban Youngstown, Ohio, just across the state line. And for most of our clothing, we visited downtown Sharon, the center of which was State Street, lined on both sides with many stores, including an upscale department store, the Sharon Store. I remember that we kids, if it was night time and my dad was driving past State Street on Irving Avenue, would beg him to slow down so that we could take in the glorious colors of the neon signs on the stores. As we got older, we often walked to Sharon or took a bus. (Then, as teenagers, State Street was the place to “see and be seen,” on weekend nights, but that’s another story.)

However, any of the stores in Sharpsville were only blocks away from home and were usually sufficient for our needs. And because we could walk wherever we wanted to in our small town of Sharpsville, we were probably the healthier for it.

— Ann Angel Eberhardt (SHS 1958), Goodyear, AZ

"Walnut Street," a detail from the Sharpsville centennial plate (currently listed on eBay).

“Walnut Street,” and other sites depicted on a souvenir plate celebrating Sharpsville’s centennial 1874-1974. (Currently listed on Ebay.)

[Stay tuned for more memories of Walnut Street]

WALNUT STREET: Early Businesses

Years ago, the borough of Sharpsville, Pennsylvania, population approximately 5,000, had its own little “downtown,” a place I knew well in the 1950s and 1960s. It consisted of a row of businesses on either side of a block-long two-lane paved stretch known as North Walnut Street. Side-by-side, in buildings possibly constructed in the late 1800s, were stores offering a variety of goods and services, such as hardware, men’s or women’s wear, insurance, jewelry, newspapers and magazines, barber services, groceries, lunch, or miscellaneous items in a five-and-ten-cent store.

The Sharpsville Advertiser Printshop

Around 1950, my father, August Angel, began his printshop business in a storefront on that street while our family was still living in nearby Wheatland. The following is an excerpt from his memoir, Trivia and Me:

One day, as I leafed through the classified section of The Sharon Herald, I saw a three-line ad for the sale of a print shop in nearby Sharpsville. For further details, I drove from Wheatland to Sharpsville and was greeted by Mr. Cubbison, who was seated behind the counter. A young high school boy was operating a 10 x 15 C&P [Chandler and Price Co.] hand-fed press in the back of the room. I scanned the shop quickly and asked the sale price. Both shop and price were favorable because I realized the shop’s potential as a moneymaker.

Mr. Cubbison must have been startled when I told him to write a receipt of $700, and I would take over the shop as soon as he could let it go. He said I could start the next morning if I wanted to, so I gave him the cash and we shook hands. Mr. Cubbison came out from behind the counter, seated in a wheelchair and aided by his young helper. As he beamed over the unusual and spontaneous sale, I asked for his good wishes. He remarked that I made a good deal and would find the shop profitable, then wished me the best of luck.

We shook hands again and he was wheeled to his car for his last commute to Youngstown, Ohio, where he lived. He was glad and relieved to give up the shop and eliminate a long daily drive to work. I was happy and proud to be the owner of my first print shop. Though I hated to lose the income from the steady work at the Sharon Steel [as a draftsman], I was enthusiastic about the new adventure and gave Sharon Steel notice of my departure. The purchase of the shop changed the direction and goal of my life.

My brother, Mike Angel, and I would both accompany our dad in his Model A Ford panel truck to the shop on weekends. While Dad printed flyers, booklets, letterhead stationery, programs, receipts, etc., on his hand-fed presses, Mike and I would pretend we were office-workers as we played with the assortment of rubber stamps and scrap paper. We have never forgotten the distinct smell of printer’s ink and the solvents Dad used to clean the presses.

Memories of Other Walnut Street Stores

More about Walnut Street in the 1950s and 1960s from Mike:

I spent a lot of time on Walnut Street (most of it was doing useless things): Lee Supply and Company, Chuck McCracken’s News Stand, the pool hall, where I spent many unproductive, but wonderful hours learning how to be a punk, Five & Dime (the lady working there would not take old money, only shiny new coins and crisp bills).

Next to an apartment building sat Mahaney’s Clothing Store. When Mahaney’s store closed, I remember they either auctioned or sold vintage items such as button shoes and knicker trousers. The owner, George Mahaney, was the mayor when we moved to Sharpsville.

[Click HERE to read memories of George D. Mahaney and the Sharpsville Dam, written by his granddaughter, Mary Claire Mahaney.]

Across Main Street from Mahaney’s was the drug store and the grocery store. Underneath that row of buildings was a tunnel where the creek ran. We would walk through the tunnel for the entire length from Mahaney’s Store to the railroad tracks.

A crowd gathered at “Hurley’s” on North Walnut Street to bid farewell to several of the town’s young men as they boarded a bus for the U.S. Marine Corps base in South Carolina, 1960. Photo courtesy of the Angel Family.

On the corner of Main and Walnut was Hurley’s [also known as Burke’s Dairy]. Most every Sharpsville male of our age knows of Dick Hurley and the good times we had hanging out at his place. I don’t remember that very many girls hung out there.
Next door to Hurley’s was where an older man and wife had some kind of business. I remember buying certain year pennies from him for my coin collection. The same building was where the Cubbison Printing Company was when Dad purchased the business. 

I can’t remember the other businesses on that side of the street except that another 5 & 10 cent store was established after the one (only shiny new coins accepted) across the street went out of business.

— Mike Angel (SHS 1960), London, KY,
Ann Angel Eberhardt (SHS 1958), Goodyear, AZ,
and excerpts from August Angel’s memoir, “Trivia & Me”, 1996.

To be continued…