Friday, October 22, 2010

1722 Peace Treaty

October 22, 1722 - A Peace Treaty was signed between the Assateague & Pocomoke Indians, & Lord Charles Calvert, Governor of Maryland

Thursday, October 21, 2010

1943 Memorial plaque

On Sunday September 12, 1943 the American Legion of Delmar presented the Town of Delmar with a memorial plaque for the 271 men and women from the Delmar area who was serving in the Armed Forces in 1943. As listed in the September 10, 1943 edition of the Bi-State Weekly these are the men and women on the memorial plaque that was available at that date, it is not the total 271 that were presented a week later. I have no idea where the memorial plaque went. Since the war would continue for another two years and more men and women from our area would have joined I assume it was considered outdated and discarded. Roland E. Galusha had a gold star by his name as he was killed in action.

Carlton M. Adkins
Howard L. Adkins
William Lewis Adkins
William L. Atkinson
Mark M. Atkinson
Roy R. Aydelotte
James Bacon
Cecil W. Baker
Lee P. Baker
Raymond J. Baker
Warren W. Baker
Carroll S. Barr, Jr.
William K. Beach
George W. Beasley
Charles Beauchamp
Stanley J. Boyle
Charles H. Brittingham
Doris H. Brittingham
Oscar E. Brown
Harry N. Burrows
Cecil J. Burton
Willis E. Burton
Paul Bramble
Joseph N. Byrd
Samuel L. Byrd
Jack H. Calloway
Marion H. Calloway
Maurice E. Cannon
Everett T. Carey
Richard L. Carey
John P. Caulfield
James T. Caulfield
John E. Collins
Luther C. Collins
Carlton J. Conoway
Edward C. Conoway
Oliver L. Cook, Jr.
Charles H. Crowley
Clayton D. Cugler
Walter G. Cugler
William S. Cugler
Richard E. Cullen
William J. Curdy
Harry B. Cutter
Albert U. Davis
James W. Davis
Paul J. Davis
J. A. Dennis
Mitchell F. Dennis
Olin W. Dennis
Paul H. Deshields
Donald M. Dickerson
Joseph C. Dickerson
Paul L. Dickerson
John M. Disharoom
William R. Draper
George W. Duncan
James R. Dutton
Alvin A. Elliott
Alvin E. Elliott
Calvin J. Elliott
George W. Elliott
William M. Elliott
Jackson P. Ellis
Leslie E. Ellis
Paul K. Ellis
Samuel M. Ellis
William H. Ellis
James deFelice
Sewell R. Fields
Harold W. Figgs
Henry G. Fisher
William H. Fisher
William E. Fitzgerald
David J. Foskey
Guerney G. Gaines
Irving R. Gaines
Robert E. Gaines
Tennyson W. Gaines
William C. Games
Amos C. Galusha
*Roland E. Galusha
Bayard J. Gordy
George J. Gordy
Howard W. Gravenor
Charles A. Green
Oswald W. Green
Lloyd V. Hall
Eugene F. Hammond
Louis M. Hartman
Carlton J. Hastings
Clyde T. Hastings
Clifford L. Hastings
George H. Hastings
Glen T. Hastings
Howard E. Hastings
Louis M. Hastings
Odell M. Hastings
Ralph H. Hastings
Willis D. Hastings
Vaughn E. Hitchens
Robert B. Hayman
Edwin T. Hearn
James Hearn
John W. Lavater Hearn
William E. Hearn
William H. Hearn
William M. Hearn
Omon Higgins
Paul E. Hill
James R. Hitchens
M. L. Hitchens
William W. Hitchens
Alvin T. Hoffman
Joseph S. Holden
George E. Hopkins
Levin J. Horsey
Thomas W. Horsey
Elston G. Hovatter
Paul A. Howard
Thomas O. Hoxter
Marion C. Hudson
George W. Hudson, Jr.
Everett R. Hutchison
James A. Johnson
Robert P. Johnson
C. William Jones
E. G. P. Jones, Jr.
George Kerekesh
Mike Kerekesh
Peter Kerekesh
George W. Kirk
Chester R. Lake
Norman E. Layfield
William Leadbetter
Linwood C. Lecates
Robert W. Lecates
William M. Lecates
James H. Long
Joseph W. Lowe
Edward H. Lynch
William S. Marvel, III
James S. McAlister
Paul H. McAllister
Ralph C. McCain
Clarence L. McCaine
Robert McCain
Brian C. McLaughlin
John T. McLaughlin
Elsie Northam Meyer
Roland L. Mills
Walter T. Mills
Luther W. Mitchell
Milton E. Mitchell
James C. Morris
William A. Morris
William R. Morris
Benjamin H. Mitchell
John H. Martin
Charles W. W. Mitchell
William R. Neff
Robert L. Neill
William W. Neill
Charles S. Nelson
Sylvia B. Nichols
Francis E. Nunvar
George H. Oliphant
William W. Parker
Robert W. Pennewell
John W. Penuel
James A. Penuel
Earl G. Perry
Davis N. Phillips
G. Wright Phillips
Joseph H. Phillips
Luther L. Phillips
William J. Phoebus
Charles Powell
Irving Powell
Robert E. Powell
James R. Powell
Robert O. Pote
William T. Pritchett
Paul A. Pusey
Maurice C. Reddish
Fred I. Rider
Harry P. Ring
Jenn W. Roberts
Charles V. Robertson
Calvin E. Ross
George E. Ross
Henry C. Ryall
Robert H. Ryall
Frank B. Sample
John W. Sample
Kathryn E. Sample
George O. Searcey
John D. Searcey
Lewis S. Selby
Margaret C. Sherwood
Carroll Smith
Joshua J. Smith
Millard C. Smith
Oliver K. Smith
Ross M. Smith
Clarence T. Smithers
Earl L. Smullen
George W. Sparrow
Walter J. Stephens
Robert R. Stewart
Arthur R. Studley, Jr.
Norman G. Sullivan
Norris H. Sullivan
Orville H. Sullivan
Walter G. Sullivan
Joseph L. Superka
Peter Tamburino
Curtis Taylor
Howard F. Taylor
James L. Taylor
Walter E. Teets
Joseph E. Tinley, Jr.
James E. Thompson
James R. Truitt
Louis H. Truitt
Elmer R. Twilley
Levin C. Twilley
Robert J. Vincent
Wilton C. Wailes
George B. Walker
Howard T. Waller
Glen W. Ward
William T. Ward
Earl F. West
Henry P. White, Jr.
John F. Whitley, Jr.
Raymond B. Wilkinson, Jr.
Francis P. Williams
Melvin L. Williams
Howard M. Wilson
Isaac A. Wingate
Samuel B. Wright
Melford L. White

Wilcher Park

On my walk today I walked thru the Wilcher Park development. Wilcher park is east of Holloway Town and North of Delmar Elementary school. It is best known for the lighting displays the residents have at Christmas time. The development is located on the 200/300 block of Popular Street and Spruce Street outside of Delmar, Maryland. The original 1958 Plat called for 28 houses and I assume Wilcher is some combination of words that had some meaning to the developer J. William Gordy. Most of the homes are the “rancher” style from the 1960’s and in fact most were built in the 1960’s. As was the thing for developments of that era there are not sidewalks in the development, with the exception of those lots bordering Second Street which are in the town limits. The rest of the lots are out of the town limits with the exception of four lots that are split between being part in town and part out of town. The development was owned by J. William Gordy Fuel Co and was developed by J. William Gordy. The lot sizes are generally about a quarter acre (85 ft by 140 ft) . The development has Delmar town water and sewer and since Delmar would be the First responder it also has Delmar police protection.

Living With The Blue Laws

Sunday shopping, in a few hours stores will be opened (some already are) and everyone will rush out to shop on Sunday. WalMart and the Centre at Salisbury, like many retail outlets, is a crowded place on Sunday. It is hard to think that twenty-one years ago the Mall in Salisbury was closed on Sunday and the grocery stores and the lumber yards of the time like Lowes and Moores were also closed, but that was the way life was on Delmarva. Back then Delmarva had what was called “the Blue Laws.”

Blue Laws were laws promulgated to ensure we observed Sunday as a day of worship or rest. They simple said you could not sell anything on Sunday unless it fit a certain narrow classification. As I recall the items you could sell on Sunday were; drugs and medicines, gasoline and oil, tobacco, prepared meals, milk, bread, fruit, confectioneries, newspapers and magazines. It seems strange, today, that tobacco products would be allowed to be sold but not other items like food. Each county could modify these laws to allow the sale of other items or to allow entertainment. I think Wicomico County was one of the more strict counties. The only businesses I remember being open on Sunday were Drug Stores, Restaurants and gas stations.

The general concept of what could be sold on Sunday revolved around Sunday being a day of rest for the family. So items of limited recreational use for a family which might take a Sunday ride into the country and they would need gasoline for the automobile and may wish for a soft drink or fresh fruit or a meal at a restaurant or those who go to the beach may wish ice cream or some other item normally sold there and of course newspapers and drug products should always be available to the public. The Sunday ride was an institution in my family.

Because a Drug Store could sell medicine on Sunday the Blue Laws created the modern Drugstore as we know it in America. The reason they carry all those items beside drugs was because they could stay open on Sunday and they had no competition, now they legally were not allowed to sell most of the items they had in the store but some drugstores did, others didn’t. Reads, Central, Gordy’s, and Salisbury drugs are the main drug stores I can think of in the 1950’s and 1960’s. Later Dart drugs and the rest of the chain drugstores would come to town. I can remember going in to Salisbury Drugs on a Sunday and seeing most of the aisle marked off with rope preventing Sunday sales of those items. Come Monday the ropes were removed and business was normal. Sometimes there was simply a poster that said these are the items we can not sell on Sunday. I read somewhere that the Ice Cream Sunday was created due to the Blue Laws that prevented selling “soda water” on Sunday. I asked Dick Dykes about the drug stores at the time and he said “ I remember the Peoples Drug Store always sold anything on Sunday and then suddenly they weren't allowed to by law! I think the downtown merchants in Salisbury were responsible for this. They were a pretty powerful bunch in town then you know. The Benjamins, The Hess's, The Powells and a few others.”

Maryland has always been known as a corrupt state where favors can be purchased, so it was no surprise that lobby efforts were made to have products moved into one of the exempt from Sunday Blue Laws classes. The medical supply classification was popular as was the the other strange exempt class of novelties and souvenirs . Items such as shampoo, body soaps, tampons, toothpaste ( I have second thoughts on toothpaste, I think toothpaste may have been an item they couldn't sell on Sunday - I just don't remember) etc were available on Sunday. As time moved on into the 1970’s even more exceptions and exemptions were made to the Sunday Blue Laws.

Along a similar line the Blue Laws created today’s convenience store. Since Gasoline Stations could stay open on Sunday they started selling Bread, Milk and newspapers and evolved into today’s convenience store. Certainly in the 1950’s Bank’s Cash Market on College Avenue and Division Street in Salisbury was a busy place because of that. The Banks Market would form the center of a chain of Banks Convenience stores later, and in turn, they would be bought by the Shore Stop Chain of convenience stores. Others market stores of these type were; the Tony Tank Market, Campbell’s Market, Bob’s Cash Market on Baker street and Price’s Pickup Store on Alabama Avenue.

Back in the 1950’s there was a limited number of chain stores. As I have said in previous posts Woolworth, Wards, Sears and Penneys were the main ones in Salisbury with Safeway, Colonial, A&P, and Giant being the chain grocery stores. The rest of the stores were Mom and Pop operations and I think they must have liked the blue laws as they worked six days a week in their store and the only way they could get a day off was by way of the blue laws. They knew if they were closed, the chain grocery stores such as Safeway, Colonial Store, and Giant Food would also have to be closed thusly the chain stores would not have an unfair competitive advantage over them by staying open on Sunday. It was also a time when you were known by your reputation and a store owner had to pretty much be in church on Sunday otherwise he would get a reputation as a heathen who didn’t believe in God and no one would come to his store.

As for entertainment some places (bowling alleys) could be open from 2 P.M. to 7 P.M. it was assumed you would be in Church before that time and after that time. If you lived in Wicomico County and wanted to see a movie you went to Delmar, Delaware because Delaware allowed movies to be shown on Sunday - if they were in the corporate limits of a town. Because of this Blue Law, Delmar Delaware added an odd town limit boundary line. When the Drive In wanted to open in Delmar they requested they be put in the town limits due to the Blue Laws. So Delmar annexed a narrow ten foot wide strip of land by the railroad tracks and ran it North to the Drive-in movie where it was extended to their land creating a hatchet head effect on the town limits. Later Wicomico County relaxed the laws on entertainment and movies etc could be shown after 2 PM until midnight.

Living under the Blue Laws was like everything else - you adjusted to them. You had to plan ahead for what ever items you would need on Sunday. It may have been lumber for a home repair project or food for the Sunday Dinner or car parts for a home car repair project – you had to buy it Saturday. If you did need some item on Sunday and didn’t have it you had to find someone who did have it so you could buy it or borrow it until Monday (dare we say the blackmarket). The image of the housewife running next door to borrow a cup of flour came about in part from the Blue Laws. In the case of alcoholic beverages there was none sold on Sunday but there was always the local bootlegger. In this case bootlegger didn’t mean moonshine but simply pint bottles and half pint bottles of regular liquor that the person sold on Sunday or after liquor store hours. They would also make home deliveries the same as the milk man. I understand there was a bootlegger that hung out at Reuben Holden Pool Hall in Delmar.

So why put up with them? In 1960 a case was bought before the Supreme Court against Maryland Blue Laws. The case was known as McGowan vs Maryland, in it the
“Appellants, employees of a large department store on a highway in Anne Arundel County, Md., were convicted and fined in a Maryland State Court for selling on Sunday a loose-leaf binder, a can of floor wax, a stapler, staples and a toy, in violation of Md.Ann.Code, Art. 27, § 521, which generally prohibits the sale on Sunday of all merchandise except the retail sale of tobacco products, confectioneries, milk, bread, fruit, gasoline, oils, greases, drugs, medicines, newspapers and periodicals.”
The end result of the case, in 1961, was the Supreme Court decided in favor of Maryland and held .

“Art. 27, § 521 does not violate the Equal Protection or Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment or constitute a law respecting an establishment of religion, within the meaning of the First Amendment, which is made applicable to the States by the Fourteenth Amendment.”.
“The present purpose and effect of most of our Sunday Closing Laws is to provide a uniform day of rest for all citizens, and the fact that this day is Sunday, a day of particular significance for the dominant Christian sects, does not bar the State from achieving its secular goals.”

So the courts said the Blue Laws were fine and legal.

The reasons why the Blue Laws went away are many; shopping pressure from the wife in the family taking a job, the divorce rate going up so there was only one adult per family, and the replacement of Mom and Pop Stores with chain stores. I think I can say when the chain stores replaced the small stores, shopping became more convenient but family values eroded. No law can be enforced by government if the majority of the people are not in favor of it. As long as Wicomico County remained isolated, the prevailing powers could enforce the Blue Laws. Once the “outsiders”, in this case, Chain stores, started moving into the county, Wicomico County was no longer able to control the enforcement of Blue Laws. No longer was there a “day of rest” in which all family members were home at the same time. I think in the last election there was some talk of a “Day of Rest” once a week by Obama and Clinton, were they talking about a return to the Blue Laws?

In July of 1987, the State of Maryland repealed the Blue Laws everywhere in the State except Washington, Allegany and Wicomico countries. So on Sunday, July 5th the Malls were open, there was an extra day of shopping and an extra day of work for some people in all of Maryland except for those three countries. As I recall shortly after this, maybe in the fall of 1987, Giant Food told Wicomico County they had had enough of the Blue Laws and starting on Sunday they intended to sell everything in their store the same as they would any other day. There was no legal action taken against Giant Food and the enforcement of the Blue Laws collapsed in Wicomico County which ended most of the Blue Laws.

Today; you can still see the effect of the Blue Laws more in tradition than actual law. Banks, the Post Office, Government offices, Chick-fil-a and other stores, are closed on Sunday or have hours that are after Church. In some cases it is law as in Car Sales, the signing of contracts, the hours and dates you can hunt wildlife, etc. look around you, you can see some Blue Laws and the aftermath of the Blue Laws still.

Heart Sunday

One of those random memories of the 1950’s and 60’s happened to have crossed my mind this past Sunday. Back in that time period, the last Sunday of the month would be “Heart Sunday.” I think today the American Heart Association still has a campaign in February for donations. In February on top of Heart Sunday there was also March of Dimes and the United Way, everywhere you went someone had their hand out. Heart Sunday was an involved campaign and the actual logistics of it was quite involved with pre-training sessions for the Heart Fund volunteers and a packet of instructions with donation sheet to each volunteer. In Delmar, Mrs. William Gordy was very active. It would start at the being of February with collection containers in the shape of red plastic hearts being put in stores and businesses everywhere in town for donations. On "Heart Sunday", women volunteers would have a street assigned to them and they would go house-to-house knocking on doors asking for donations. This was usually in the afternoon (after church) when they would take to the streets. Other towns and counties would use a different approach to the Heart Fund collections but as I recall Wicomico County always went with “Heart Sunday.”

In looking at a 1960 Bi-State Weekly some of the Delmar, Maryland people assigned on “Heart Sunday” were;
Spruce Street, Mrs. Lawrence Disharoon
S. Second Street, Mrs. Charles Holloway
Pine Street, Mrs. Darrell Stearns, Mrs. Evelyn Williams and Miss Sandra Perry
Chesnut Street, Mrs. J. William Gordy, Mrs. Otis Mitchell, Mrs. Smiley Hastings and Mrs. Eugene Ross
Elizabeth Street, Mrs. Clifford Sturgis, Miss Barbara Hudson, Mrs. Leslie Smith, Mrs. Vogel Moore and Mrs. James Banks
East Street, Mrs. Mary LeCates, Mrs. Walter Fisher, Mrs. Carlton Hastings, Mrs. Claude LeCompte and Mrs. Edward Shedaker
Maryland Avenue, Mrs. Louis Truitt,
West of Railroad, Mrs. Lamont Williams and Mrs. Joseph Triglia
State Street, Mrs. Allison Webster, Mrs. Howard Hastings, Miss Virginia Brittingham and Mrs.Woodrow Moore
Woodlawn, Mrs. Weslena Furr

Today some of the Maryland neighborhoods are so rough even Jehovah Witnesses don’t go into them. Perhaps that is the reason some streets had multiple people assigned to them instead of one – safer in numbers.

Home Demonstration Clubs

“To fashion from simple everyday materials a house of comfort and cheer, to create through tolerance and wholesome interests a home of peace and pleasure; to inspire respect for the lowly duties of daily life; and to kindle love and understanding of people and all expressions of beauty – this I would do.” Homemakers Creed by Mrs Clarence Melson

What could be more representative of social life for women in Sussex County in the 1930’s, 1940’s and 1950’s than Home Demonstration Clubs. Home Demonstration Clubs taught good farm and homemaking practices to the women of Sussex County. Using 1954 as an example there were 91 clubs in Delaware with 3,500 members. Since this was mostly a white woman’s club and the population of Delaware in 1954 was only about 325,000 this was a fairly high percentage of the population for this type of club. Most clubs had a membership of about twenty members. The clubs usually would meet once a month and the Home Demonstration agents would try to attend as many meeting as possible. With 91 clubs they were busy people.

The Home Demonstration Clubs served many purposes, they served as a class in which homemaking practices were taught, they were a clearing house for women expressing their common interests and problems, and they were social gatherings. They were not designed to be a community civic club, although they did do many community and social projects.

They were among the first groups that the federal government experimented with by giving direction under the disguise of education. Food production, conservation nutrition, civil defense, salvage and rural health were all programs directed by the Federal Government and taught at Home Demonstration Clubs via the Extension Service.

The University of Delaware Extension offices would offer educational training courses on home making topics. Each club would send one to two members to the courses, referred to as short courses, the members would returned to their clubs and teach that subject to the other members.

So how did this outreach of the University Of Delaware come in to being? The Cooperative Extension Service developed out a system of Federal Acts. The 1862 Morrill Act established land grant agricultural colleges. In the act, the purpose is stated in the following words:

. . . the endowment, support, and maintenance of at least one college where the leading object shall be, without excluding other scientific and classical studies, and including military tactics, to teach such branches of learning as are related to agriculture and the mechanic arts, in such manner as the legislatures of the states may respectively prescribe, in order to promote the liberal and practical education of the industrial classes in the several pursuits and professions in life.

Besides agriculture you will note it also included military education. Since this act was passed during the civil war the United States needed officers in the military so they included this catch line in the act they passed. The Morrill Act was one of the first steps of the Federal Government telling the states what they would teach in college. They did this by giving money to the colleges by way of passing on the income the federal government obtained from public lands to the colleges. Each Representative and Senator was to receive the income from 30,000 acres of federal land for these colleges. Because the income came from public lands these colleges became known as land grant colleges. Each state was to have at least one land grant college. Most have two because in 1890 they also established a Negro land grant college in each state also. In Delaware the University of Delaware and Delaware State University are land grant colleges. In Maryland the University of Maryland is a land grant college (Maryland State College in Princess Anne was the Negro land grant College in Maryland but it was swallowed into the University of Maryland College system).

The Hatch act of 1887 created the agricultural experiment station program for these colleges. To spread the word about the research information obtained from the experiment research stations the Smith-Lever Act of 1914 created the agricultural extension service (later in the 1960’s it became the Cooperative extension service). Each county ended up with an extension office. This office usually consisted of a basic staff of three people; a county agent, a 4-H club agent, and a home demonstration agent. The Home Demonstration Agent assisted with creating and educating the Home Demonstration clubs.

The early 1900’s was a period of great change in rural America. The use of motor vehicles came into wide spread use. The increase in better constructed roads allowed the farmer to a wider range for the sale of his products. Rural electrification was made available to the farms and with that came lights, refrigeration, radios, telephones, electric irons and fans. The Home Demonstration Agent was there to inform women on gardening practices, poultry raising, Civil Defense, the use of the pressure cooker to preserve meats, fruits, and vegetables, preparation of nutritious meals, sewing clothing, and household sanitation.

The first Sussex County Home Demonstration club was started in 1915. In 1936 there were 51 home demonstration clubs in Delaware with 1,373 women as members. They continued to grow, reaching their peak in the 1950’s, by the 1960’s they had started their decline and today there is only one Home Demonstration Club in each county. In Sussex County the last club is the Harberson Home Demonstration Club. Today the Sussex County Home Demonstration Agent from the extension service is referred to as a Family and Consumer Science Educator and her name is Anne Camasso.

Using 1957, as an example of the number of Home Demonstration Clubs, we find there were 24 clubs in Sussex County. They were; The Atlanta Club, The Bacons Club, The Broad Creek Club, The Columbia Club, The County Seat Club, The Delmar Club, The Ellendale Club, The Georgetown Club, The Greenwood Club, The Hollymount Club, The Indian River Club, The Merry Homemakers Club, The Millsboro Club, The Mt. Pleasant Club, The Nanticoke Club, The Nassau Club, The Omar Club, The Piney Grove Club, The Rehoboth Beach Club, The Reliance Club, The Shawnee Club, The Shawnee Evening Club, The Slaughter Neck Club, and the Wesley-Cannon Club. The one Home Demonstration agent for Sussex County was a busy person with 24 clubs.

Those were of course, in that time period, the white Home Demonstration clubs. The Negro Home Demonstration Clubs are less known and didn’t seem to start until the early 1950’s. They also seemed to be handled on a statewide basis instead of by county. Some Negro Home Demonstration Clubs were; Owen’s Corner, Harrington, Milton, Trinity Community, Bridgeville, Greenwood, Cheswold, and Milford.

Let’s look at three Home Demonstration Clubs in the Delmar area; Delmar, Bacons and Columbia. If you are a native of this area you may notice in the member names that the Delmar, Bacons, and the Columbia home demonstration clubs were made up of members that were related to one another. Most of the information came from newspapers of the 1950’s and 1960’s time period. Since this was still a time when married women didn’t have first names but went by their husband first name (Mrs. Paul Dickerson) some members may be repeated.

The Delmar Home Demonstration Club would meet on Tuesday afternoon usually at the American Legion home, or a member’s home. The Home Demonstration Agent attended the meeting usually every other month.

Some member names of this club, I picked up from newspapers of the 1950’s period were; Mrs. Elin Sullivan, Mrs. Dora Layfield, Mrs. Marie Adkins, Mrs. Sallie Baker, Mrs. Dallas Gordy, Mrs, Ella Nichols, Mrs. Frances Arbogast, Mrs. Beulah Littleton, Mrs. Elnora Whaley, Mrs. Elsie Parsons, Mrs. Lillian Phoebus, Mrs. Helen Sullivan, Mrs. Isabell White, Mrs. Annabel Cordrey, Mrs. Charlotte Acker, Mrs. Rose Baker, Mrs. Marie Collins, Mrs. Dallas Hitchens, Mrs. Erma Beauchamp, Mrs. Metha Hastings, Mrs. Buelah Littleton, Mrs. Lucille Alsop, Mrs. Annabelle Sahre, Mrs. Ethel Gordy, Mrs. Anna West, Mrs. Sallie White, Mrs. Mamie Gordy, Mrs. Josephine Jackson, Mrs. Emma German, Mrs. Myrtle White, Mrs. Nora Bailey, Mrs. Lizzie Littleton, Mrs. Blom West, Mrs. Grace Whitley, Mrs. Mazie Hudson, and Mrs. Pearl Brumble.

In 1962 The Delmar Home Demonstration Club elected as their president, Mrs. Carlton Adkins, Vice-President Mrs. Floyd Hastings, Secretary Mrs. Medford White, and Treasurer Mrs. William Layfield.

A smattering of topics taught would be; Planned Recreation for Teenagers, Stool Making, Interior Decorating, Use of Patterns and the Care of New Fabrics, Wrapping and Preparing of Food to be Frozen, Gourmet Cooking, Civil Defense, and Picture Framing and Hanging.

The Bacons Home Demonstration Club was formed in 1947 and would meet on Thursday afternoon usually at the St. George’s Community Hall. In looking at newspapers from the 1950’s some of the members that were in the Bacons Club were; Mrs. Mildred Gould, Mrs. Bernice Brittingham, Mrs. Paul Dickerson, Mrs. Alan Culver, Mrs. Charlotte Gould, Mrs. Margaret Ann Nicholson, Mrs. Lottie Masten, Mrs. Helen Elliott, Mrs. Beatrice Ralph, Mrs. Maggie James, Mrs. Joyce Culver, Mrs. Lillian Messick, Mrs. Ethel Workman, Mrs. Carlos Elliott, Mrs. Ruth Hearn, Mrs. Ethel Elliott, Mrs. Elsie Brittingham, Mrs. Bernice Brittingham, Mrs. Ethel Foskey, Mrs. Sarah Jones, Mrs. Alma Smith, Mrs. Grace Nichols, Mrs. Minnie Jackson, Mrs. Mabel Elliott, Mrs. Pauline James, Mrs. Elizabeth Workman, Mrs. Carmelia Porter, Mrs. Susie Wilson, Mrs. Lorence Campbell, Mrs. Irene Culver, Mrs. Irene Adams, and Mrs. Alice Tull.

In 1957 the club President was Mrs. Albert Brittingham, the Vice-President was Mrs. Elijah Elliott, The secretary was Mrs. Arba Culver, and the treasurer was Mrs. Joseph Elliott.

Topics talked about were; International Relations, Table Linens and Table Settings, Pruning Shrubbery, Proper way to brush hair, Sharpening knives, Easy Ironing, How to Iron, Quick Sandwiches, Dressings for salads, and Civil Defense.

The Columbia Home Demonstration club would meet on Wednesday afternoon at the Columbia Grange Hall or the Mt. Hermon Community House.

Some of the members in the club mentioned in 1950’s and 1960’s newspapers were;
Mrs. Ralph Ellis, Mrs. Paul Kenney, Mrs. George Moore, Mrs. Everett Calloway, Mrs. Frank Collins, Mrs. Edgar Hastings, Mrs. Doris Twilley, Mrs. George White, Mrs. Nema Beach, Mrs. Althea Kennedy, Mrs. Ruth Rider, Mrs. Erma Rider, Mrs. Helen Owens, Mrs. Harry Beach, Mrs. Charles Smithy, Mrs. Elva LeCates, Mrs. Victor Beach, Mrs. Mac Dickerson, Mrs. Florence Stephens, Mrs. Marilyn Cooper, Mrs. Isabel Wright, Mrs. Dorothea Ellis, Mrs. Ruth Phillips, Mrs. Agnes Johnson, Mrs. Anna Tomlinson, Mrs. Myrtle Wilkinson, and Mrs. Anna Hudson,

In 1961 the Columbia Club president was Mrs. Levin Twilley, the Vice-President was Mrs. Holland Twilley, the Secretary was Mrs. Marvin Bradley and the Treasurer was Mrs. Paul Kenney.

Some of the topics taught at the Columbia Club were; Care of the Skin, Color in the Home, Picture Framing, Selection and use of patterns, New Trends in Frozen Foods, How To Cook the cheaper cuts of meat.

Some Sussex County Home Demonstration agents were; in 1940 Miss Gertrude Holloway, in the 1950’s Nancy (Nan) E. Ratliff Shelton, in the 1960’s Miss Frances Shoffner, and today, Anne Camasso.

In the 1960’s the decline of the Home demonstration Clubs started. The decline can be seen in the newspaper columns written by the Home demonstration agent. In the 1950’s Nan Ratliff Shelton wrote a weekly newspaper column. In the column there were household hints and discussions of activities of the individual Home Demonstration Clubs and state activities. In the 1960’s when Miss Frances Shoffner wrote the column there was no mention of individual clubs. Today there is no column written at all. I think the home extension service itself helped with the decline in clubs by not giving them the support and publicity they had in the 1950’s. As the membership in the clubs decreased they would merge with other clubs, sometimes this created conflicts and more members dropped out. The wife instead of staying home went to work and didn’t have time for afternoon clubs. There was less emphasis in Sussex County on farming and more on the modern office job. There was also a social outlook in the 1950’s that farming was very uncool. The end result is there is one Home Demonstration Club in Sussex County today.

The information in this post came from newspapers of the period and help from Anne Camasso – University of Delaware, Lisa Dennis and Dan Tabler – University of Maryland.

The Year Without A Senior Class

Back, what seems like a long time ago, there were two school systems in Delmar. One on the Delaware side of town and one on the Maryland side of town. Many people are saying that is what the present school system is aiming to go back to, but that is a story for another post. This post is about one of the two schools, the Maryland High School. Up until 1949, the Maryland High School only required eleven years of school to graduate. Like wise for the Delaware High School but Delaware didn't increase the years of schooling until much later. In 1949 the State of Maryland required 12 years of school for a high school diploma. 1949 was the first year in which the 12 years of schooling took effect and because of this the tenth grade (juniors) of 1948 which should have became Seniors in the 11th grade in 1949, remained Juniors because they had another year to go to make it to the 12th grade. So the Delmar Maryland High School had no senior class nor a graduating class in 1949.

Now the above is based on what I read in some of the Bi State Weekly newspapers in 1949. I called the Wicomico County Board of Education and asked if this was true of all schools in Wicomico County, seems to me like it would be. I got the usual Board of Ed response of "we will get back to you." I am still waiting. Assuming a great deal, I guess you could project this out and say there was no graduating high school class in the state of Maryland in 1949, but I don't really know that.

I also have been told that Delaware High School graduates with only eleven years of schooling compared to the Maryland twelve years of schooling had difficulty finding jobs in Maryland because they were not viewed as having a High School education.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Delmar Drive In Movie - 1950

The entrance to the Delmar Drive-In
The Delmar Drive-In was built in 1950. In 1950, the Drive-In had as competition; The "Avenue" in Delmar, the "Waller" in Laurel, and in Salisbury the "New" theater, "Ulman's", and the "Boulevard" theater. The drive-in charged 50 cents a person on Friday and Saturday and thru the rest of the week $1.00 a carload. After a couple months of operation the owner, Nat Rosen, requested the Drive-In be annexed into the Town of Delmar, Delaware. At that time there were "blue" laws on the book that prevented a movie theater that was not in a town limits to show movies on Sunday and he wanted the Sunday revenue. After a heated debate, and a referendum vote on July 1, 1950 the drive-in and a 300 foot wide strip from Francis Lane running north by the railroad tracks about 3,000 foot to the drive-in was made part of the town. Prior to the referendum vote, Councilman A. E. Hantwerker expressed concerns that the idea was not a good one as the town could not support the annexed land by providing services (water, sewer, police protection). This has been a continuing concern of many people to this day. We have had an inquiry from the owner of the property in 2005 for the availability of water and sewer. The Delmar Drive-In spend it last remaining days showing X rated movies in the town limits of Delmar.

This photo is of the snack bar that is on the property. Well, it is hard to see due to the height of the weeds and shrubs. In the weeds you can see the white speaker posts are still there. When my parents use to take us kids to the Delmar drive-in it had a playground and pony rides. It was quite an event.

This is the road leading thru the Drive-in.

Delmar's First Drive In Movie Theatre

As you may have noticed I have been posting a number of ads from the 1940 to 1944 time period. This is because I have been trying to research Delmar's First Drive In Movie Theatre, which was in that time period. I have not been that successful in my research. Neither the State Register newspaper in Laurel, nor the Bi-State Weekly in Delmar had much to say about it other than running the ads for the drive-in. What little I have been able to determine is it seems to have been in business from July 1941 thru 1943. In Various ads it shows the location of one mile north of Delmar on (Old) RT13, some ads show it to be two miles north of Delmar. If the town limits in 1941 were close to what they are today this would place the drive-in at the feedmill and Allen Mill Road. If it was two miles north it would where the used furniture store is (Mr. T's Furniture).

Advertising was interesting as they said in some ads the movie was free but parking was 30 cents.

Like the Delmar Drive-In that would come along in the 1950's this one had live shows also. Acts such as Vince Arvey and his Ramblers, Bill Dove and His Maryland Yodelers, and of course, Susabelle and Hessie Robinson.

The only reference I came across to the Drive-In was in the July 4, 1941 Bi-State Weekly.

An Open air movie park has been opened on US Route 13, one mile north of here.

The park is similar to that near other eastern cities and motion pictures are viewed from the car.

Now this was in a time when the local newspapers would write reviews of current movies showing and list upcoming movies with photos of the stars (Free advertising) plus run the ad for the local theatre. The above ad did not sound like the town was wild about the concept of a Drive-In Movie coming to town. There was nothing mentioned in the Laurel paper.

My guess is what killed the drive-in movie theatre was gas rationing in WWII. But it may have been it just was not popular and didn't financially panout.

Anyway I have more of a collection of ads and article from that time period that I will post.

Whitman's Chocolate - 1941

Even Whayland Drug Store in Delmar was into the Whitman's Chocolate promotion

"A Touch of Home in a Box That's Known"

House To Rent - 1941

Click To enlarge

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Delmar Bakery and R-B Baking Co - 1940's

The Delmar Bakery was built in 1939 and in January of 1940 The Delmar Bakery opened for business. Described as being located on North State Street, it took the place of the old bakery building at North Second and Grove street where the bakery had been operating for over 25 years. It employed 16 people and had six delivery trucks to cover the Sussex area. Alfred Goetz was manager of the firm and the bakery supplied bread, rolls, cakes, pies and pastries.

At some point in 1941 however the Delmar Bakery was sold and the new company was R-B Baking Co. They however had the same operation as the original Delmar Bakery. Their line of baked goods were label "Gingham Girl".

The building cost $50,000 to build. This "new" building had a storage room capable of holding 12 carloads of flour, an office, a makeup room, a boiler room, a loading platform and an apartment on the second floor. It could bake 1,800 loafs of bread an hour. The bakery was acquired by G. D. Rugeriis of Philadelphia from Carroll Elliott of Delmar. The bakery later was acquired by the William Freihofer Baking company. It ceased operations I believe in the 1960's. William Freihofer Baking Company sold "Hollywood" Bread

The William Freihofer Bakery at 500 North BiState

Delmar Theatre Ad - 1941

Yes, a reshowing of "Gone With The Wind"