Sunday, August 28, 2016

Tear that school down - 2000

A few photos of the High School being torn down in 2000

Friday, August 26, 2016

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

A Look At an 1874 Description of Delmar

From the Delaware State Gazetteer 1874-1875

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Saturday, August 20, 2016

The Federal Transient Bureau

In 1934 my uncle at 18 years of age and who was born in the Delmar-Laurel area decided to join the thousands of other unemployed young men and hit the road in search of a job and a little adventure.  As he traveled south thru Tennessee to New Orleans he mentioned he would register with the Federal Transient Bureau in those towns on the route to New Orleans.

The Federal Transient Bureau was a program that was part of the Federal Emergency Recovery Act (Roosevelt Administration).  Leading up to 1934 the nation had thousands of wandering young men and families seeking work.  The local governments and local relief organizations were over whelmed and begin to implement residency requirements before people could apply for help from them.  This left thousands unable to apply because they had left their homes in another state and were traveling thru that area.  Enter the federal government and their Federal Transient Bureau.  The Bureaus had at least one office/camp in every state.  The more agricultural states and states that required men power had many of them.  The Bureau had no residency requirement so those who could not get local relief could find help from the Bureau.  They had camps and frequently worked with the YMCA to house men (we are talking 200 to 800 men at a camp). 

The men would work 24 hours a week and were paid a small sum but got housing and meals. They had to live by the bureau's philosophy: "Give no handouts, they all have to work."  They were also offer help in joining the CCC.  They acted as a job clearing house for local jobs and they also acted as an early uber taxi service setting up rides with people traveling to different places that could give some else a lift there.

Because they were transient not all were honest and even the honest ones carried weapons to protect themselves from the others.  Numerous newspapers items appear in that time period of unauthorized police raids on the camps and arrest of criminals. The movie "Grapes of Wrath" portrayed the Transient Bureau program when the Joad family, on their last legs, come upon a camp which is shown as an island of safety in a hostile environment. Local law enforcement was allowed entry only with warrants and this tension becomes a very clearly drawn part of the plot, as local officers are portrayed as creatures of the local power dynamics (city, county, business owners) with the federal camps protecting the downtrodden.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

The Delmar Whale Wallow

Up and Down the Atlantic coast line are oval and elliptical depressions that are usually called Carolina Bays or Delaware Bays or whale wallows.  In Delaware they are mostly found in the Eastern side of Delaware, but some are scatter about in the western half.  No one knows how they were created so speculation goes from sinkholes, to meteor impact, to ancient whales wallowing in the sand as the water receded leaving them stranded.  Extra-terrestrial landing pads is my theory.  They frequently are oriented to a NW - SE axis.  Anyway, to the West of Delmar on Old Racetrack road is one.  It is the yellow circle labeled QCD.  You can't see it from the road due to trees around it but it is shown on the Delaware Geological Survey Map Number 22, for which there is a link below

If you actually go to the link you will see there is another one out by the corner of the Maryland Delaware state line.  There are also a number of ancient sand dunes shown on the map.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Oscar Phillips 1941

DELMAR May 28 - Oscar Phillips was painfully injured yesterday while working at the steam saw-mill owned by Frank M. Lynch when a machine belt slipped from its pulleys, struck him on the shoulder and knocked him down.  Phillips was rushed to the office of Dr. Howard Lynch, where he was treated for fractured ribs and a dislocated shoulder and thumb.

Above from Morning News (Wilmington DE) 29 May 1941

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Gordy and Hearns of Delmar 1919

SWARTHMORE, PA. --…Miss Sarah E. Selby of 323 Brighton Ave. is visiting her sister Mrs. Rosa Gordy, of Delmar, Del.  Mrs Rosa Maddox has returned to her home after visiting relatives in Fairmont, Md.  Mr. and Mrs. A. E. Selby gave a dinner in honor of Mr. and Mrs. Andrew Hearn of Berwyn, Pa. last Sunday, among those present were; Mr. Wm. Hearn. Mr. John Hearn of Delmar, Del, Miss Mazie Hughes of Whitehaven, Md. Mr. Harry Ingram, Mr. Robert Williams of Philadelphia.
Above from the Afro American Oct 24 1919

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Bryan and Brittingham 1968 Fire

In November of 1968 the Bryan and Brittingham building was struck by fire due to a faulty heating system.  About 100 fireman from six different companies battled the flames at 3 in the morning for three hours.  The loss was put at $30,000.  (allowing for inflation in 2015 this would be $200,000).  As I recall the George Sparrow building is what is today the Old Mill, originally it had been a mill