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Ah, nostalgia (of the
mid-'40s to mid-'50s)

Letter No. 101 | April 24, 1999        

OK you old timers from the mid-'40s-mid-'50s

Remember

The dreaded initiation when a young man passed from 8th grade to the 9th

The Teen Canteen beneath the firehall

The company garage across from the company store

The dances at the Polish Hall

The carnivals

The medicine shows

Sledriding down Roberts Street at night

Mitchells

Swimming at the strip mines

The old Cottage

Baseball at Finntown and "two in the bucket"

And Joe Frata

Hey Sonny, I know you do

Tom Dongilla

Webmaster's note: About the only one on the list I can give a 100 percent "yes" to is "Mitchell's." Well, I remember some of the carnivals (does "Robin" ring any bells?) and a medicine show or two. And some revivals (does anyone remember a team called "The Joneses"—they wrote the familiar gospel song, "My Anchor Holds," and performed it in Nanty Glo). What strip mines? I remember some in northern Cambria County, none in Blacklick Valley. I vaguely remember "the old Cottage" but remember Merlo's pizza better. Blacklick Township High School had freshman initiations into the '60's, but they always included the girls as well as boys, so far as I know. And considering I was the Journal's teen columnist from 1957 on, it's surprising that I don't remember the teen canteen under the Firehall (did I ever know the Firehall has a basement?).

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