Sunday, November 29, 2020

"Gallants" and "Flappers" can't walk home "slowly" in Haverford Twp.!!


This is a rare picture of the Oakmont Section of Haverford Twp. from about 1915.   This is West Eagle Rd.      

NOTE; This is a funny one. I have no date on this article from the Chester Times but it is probably the mid 1920's. America was going thru a big change after WW1 as the last of the Victorian Era met the "Roaring 20's". Dancing, short shirts and that all important "walking" you date home!! No kissing in Haverford Twp.!! and please walk fast or you will be arrested!!



     Lovers who stroll down shady lanes in Haverford Township after midnight and are caught at it will probably spend the rest of the night in the police station at Oakmont.                                                                                                         From now on, young men taking girls home from late dances and theatre parties should avoid taking the longest way round and should walk homeward at a brisk, businesslike pace instead of the usual slow, dreamy, strolling gait.

  Such was the advice given yesterday by Chief of Police Scanlin in issuing an order that all persons on the streets after the trolley cars stop running, shortly after midnight, must give an account of themselves to the police.

Should a young gallant be surprised in the act of kissing his little flapper by a coarse, burly policeman, he mustn’t get mad.  Not only must he answer the cop politely, but shades permit the policeman to accompany himself and the flapper to her home.

“The order is not meant only for lovers who let the hours slip past”, declared Scanlin.  “It is meant for everybody.  I figure that few people are there after the cars stop running.  The order is primarily an effort to prevent crime.  If a man halted by a policeman says he has been visiting friends and has missed the last car, he must accompany the officer back to his friends’ house and prove his words.

     Young men and girls on the streets at 1 o’clock in the morning must file an account of themselves.  If they have homes to go to they will be accompanied there by the policeman.  If they give only vague replies, they will spend the night in cells in the police station.  The cells are clean and airy.


Sunday, November 22, 2020

Media Theatre to Open!! 93 years ago

Before the Media Theatre on State St. opened in 1927,  the Past Time Theatre on State St. was the place to go. Any ideas where it stood? The key is the building on the left which is still standing.


Note: Today with  Tv, cell phones, cds and dvds etc. it is hard to imagine a theatre opening as a big deal, but it was 90 years ago. Having a local theatre you could walk to, was a big boost for any community. The Media Theatre opened in 1927.


 Modern Show House to Cost $250,000, Is Well Under Way at Media

          Media shortly is to have one of the finest theatres in Delaware County.  The theatre, which is to be known as the Media, is nearing completion and Paul Brothers, the contractor, expects to turn the building over to Samuel Dembrow, the owner, in the near future.  Mr. Dembrow expects the theatre to be ready for use about the first of September.

          The theatre which is located on State Street, just east of Monroe Street, will have a seating capacity for 1140 persons.  The main floor will provide seats for 940, while a small gallery will accommodate 200 persons.  On the second floor will be located a large reception room, for the comfort of persons waiting between performances and there will also be a small business office on this floor.

          The building when completed, will cost in the neighborhood of $250,000 and some idea may be had of the expense of the theatre when it is considered that the carpeting on the floors of the new playhouse will cost more than the old Pastime building now used by Mr. Dembrow.

          The latest type of furnishings will be used in decorating the building and the lighting system will be of the most modern theatrical type, as will the heating and ventilating system, which is calculated to keep the theatre at a constant temperature of 70 degrees.

          The building will measure 70 by 150 feet over all and will contain beside the main theatre, two stores, one on each side of the main entrance.  The stage will be sufficiently large enough to take care of any average vaudeville or theatrical production, and according to Mr. Dembrow, nothing but first class pictures will be shown and all vaudeville showing at the new theatre will be booked through the Keith circuit.

          The architectural design of the new theatre is considered by experts to be of a very attractive nature, both as to the exterior and the interior.  Mr. Dembrow will install a Wurlitzer organ at an expenditure of $15,000.

          The erection of the new theatre is not the only improvement in the borough but to the contrary there are several projects underway which will add greatly to the appearance and to the business life of Media.  On January 27 of this year, Media was visited by a disastrous fire when the garage and salesroom of the People’s Tire Store was destroyed and from these ruins have risen two beautiful new stores.  Shortly after the fire, the people’s Tire Stores company purchased the lot upon which stood their former store from the Media Title and Trust Company for $27,000 and about one month ago began the erection of the two new stores which are of tapestry brick front with fireproof brick running back to the rear and with the latter bricks composing the rear walls.

          The front part of the building will consist of two stores nineteen by sixty feet each and the rear will comprise a large storage room and repair shop.  The buildings are being erected by Clower and Brosious, of West Chester, at a contract price of $15,000.

Sunday, November 15, 2020

Chester 160 years ago


This is an unknown picture of a Chester Mansion in my collection. Looking for a location, owner, etc.
Thanks Keith

Chester 160 years ago

Note: One of the rarest books in my collection is the 1859/1860 Directory of Chester. It is the first one done. Nearly half of the book is devoted to a history of the borough, and there follows a list of streets, a directory of the people, facts about the churches, public schools, mails, trains, boats, secret societies, with the last twenty pages or more devoted to the advertisements of the business men of the town. At this time, Chester was just a small country town with a population of 4000.

                The population of Chester at that time is given as follows:  White males, 1865; white females, 1927; colored males, 142; colored females, 173; total, 4,107.

                THE BOROUGH GOVERNMENT – The Burgess at that time was Robert Gartside, John Brooks was the treasurer, James Riddle was Town Clerk and the following members were in the Borough Council; James Campbell, Joseph Ladomus, James Bell, John Larkin, Jr., Abram Blakeley, Dr. William Young, Benjamin Gartside, William Lear, Robert R. Dutton.  Council held its meeting on the first Monday in the month.  The tax duplicate for 1859 was $3,594.64 and the debt is $13,000.

                George Weaver was the postmaster in the days of  1859 and the office was open from 7 in the morning until 7 in the evening.  The office was then on James (Third) Street below Market and two mails were received daily from points outside of the county.

                There was one banking house – the Bank of Delaware County, now the Delaware County National Bank and the paid in capital was $200,000.

                The means of travel on the river was good in those days, as there were three steamers to Philadelphia and Wilmington daily in the summer season, two in the fall and spring and one in the winter.  Boats left the wharf at 7:30, 12 and 4.

                The accommodations by railroad were not much to speak of, though the Chesterians thought they were being magnificently served.  Four trains a day each way were all that were needed for the passenger business of the Philadelphia, Wilmington and Baltimore Railroad in those days.

                There were three building associations in the town – the Chester, Penn and the Washington, of which Fred J. Hinkson, Persifor Baker and Samuel H. Stevenson were the respective presidents.

                SOCIETIES AND SCHOOLS – The secret societies comprised the following:  Chester Lodge, No. 236, Ancient York Masons; Chester Lodge, No. 92, Upland Lodge No. 253, Leiperville Lodge, No. 263, and Chester Encampment, No. 89, of the Order of Odd Fellows; Tuscarora Tribe, No. 29, Improved Order of Red Men; Washington Camp, No. 20, Junior Sons of America.

                The pastors of the churches at that time were:  St. Paul’s Episcopal, Rev. Mr. Talbot, supplying the pulpit; Methodist, Rev. John Ruth; St. Michael’s Catholic, Rev. Father Havilland; Fist Presbyterian, Rev. A.W. Sproul.

                The school teachers were:  High School, J.R. Omensetter, teacher of the boys; Miss Thomas, teacher of the girls.  Primary school, Miss C. Boner, Mrs. Harris, Miss Greig, Miss Ulrich; colored school, Nathan S. White.  The number of pupils in all the schools was 641.  The members of the School Board was Fred J. Hinkson, Stephen Cloud, Alexander W. Wright, Dr. John S. Morton, Samuel Shaw, and William Hinkson.

                The Chester Female Seminary was conducted on Broad [now 9th] Street above Upland Street by Rev. George Hood.

                THE BUSINESS MEN – In the advertising pages of the Directory are found these names:  J. Greig, books and stationery; Lewis M. Larkin, dry goods and groceries; John Cochran, real estate agent; J. & C. D. Pennell, coal and lumber; Lewis Miller, machinist; Washington House, J. G. Dyer, proprietor; Ellis Smedley, dry goods and groceries; W.C. Gray, dry goods and groceries; John Brooks, saddle and harness manufacturer; Mrs. Jane Flaville, millinery; Adaline Martin, tin and sheet iron ware; B.F. Dubots, watches and jewelry; John Atkinson, draper and tailor; George Wunderlich, provisions and meats; Stephen Cloud, Jr., shoes; Hinkson & Baker, coal and lumber; George Baker & Company, dry goods and groceries; Edward R. Minshall, groceries and provisions; Thomas W. Bowker, plumber; J. C. & W. G. Price, brick makers; William McDevitt, marble dealer; William R. Flaville, surveyor; Frederick Balduff, confectioner; Dr. W. H. Monroe, dentist; William A. Minhall, undertaker; Israel Oakes, shoes; Christian Krauch, hotel keeper; S. C. & N. Larkin, sash makers; Richard Miller, clothing; Joseph C. Cummings, bookseller; Robert Gartside, gas and steam fitter; John M. Larkin, druggist; J. Wade Price, wall paper; John Hawley, proprietor of the Robin Hood and Little John’s restaurant; William M. Schureman, tin and stove dealer; Mortimer H. Bickley, druggist; Y.S. Walter, publisher of the Republican; N. Parker, photographer.

Anyone up for a dance?? See below




Sunday, November 8, 2020

Some early Criminal Trials in Penna. AKA Delco


This picture from the 1850's shows the Chester 1724 Courthouse. Built in 1724 it is the oldest courthouse in the U.S.

Note: A little flashback to early crimes in Penna. aka Delco. Yes they did have crimes back then


The first criminal trial which occurs in our annals was at Tinicum, and arose from circumstances which happened in the winter of 1645-6.  It was a charge of arson.  The inhabitants of the Swedish Colony, over which Col. John Printz acted as governor at that time did not in all number two hundred souls.  On the evening of November 25, 1645, between the hours of 10 and 11 o’clock, Fort Guttenburg was discovered to be on fire.  The flames spread so rapidly that the sleeping garrison and the people gathered within that structure of “groaner” logs, which Governor Printz had completed only two years before, had barely time to escape “naked and destitute” from the conflagration, which consumed everything in the form of buildings connected with the fort, excepting the dairy.  The winter had set in early with unusual severity, the cold was intense and the streams were frozen, while the drifting ice in the river prevented all communication with the main land by boats.

            The situation of these people, who were planting the seeds of empire on the Delaware was most distressing, for the report of Governor Printz informs us that “the sharpness of the winter lasted until the middle of March, so that if some rye and corn had not been unthrashed, I, myself, and all the people with e on the island, would have starved to death.  But God maintained us with small quantities of provisions until the next harvest.”

            No wonder was it that the public mind was highly inflamed against Swen Wass, the gunner, who had set fire to the fort, although the act was accidental and the result of intoxication on the part of the accused.  He was tried for the crime, but the nature of the tribunal before which he was arraigned is unknown as is also the procedure that was used on that occasion.  We have no further information as to the case save that which appears in Governor Printz’s report dated February 20, 1647, and that day forward by the Golden Shark to Sweden.  He states that “the above mentioned incendiary, Swen Wass, I have caused to be brought to court and to be tried and sentenced; so I have sent him home in irons with the vessel, accompanied by the whole record concerning him, submissively committing and referring the execution of the verdict to the pleasure of Her Royal Majesty and Right Honorable Company.”

            UNDER HOLLAND’S RULE – When the next important criminal trial, which has been presented to us in official documents, presents itself, the flag of Sweden had been supplanted by the standard of their High Mightiness of Holland and while the case did not in its incidents come within the present commonwealth of Pennsylvania, yet the criminal proceedings were held within the territory which was subsequently known as Pena’s three lower counties.

            In 1661 Alexander D’Hinojassa was acting governor of that portion of the present state of Delaware extending from the southern bank of the Cristiana River to Cape Henlopen, he asserting that the City of Amsterdam, by reason of its purchase from the Dutch West Indies Company, had acquired absolute jurisdiction over the territory before designated, hence he stoutly refused to recognize the authority of Governor Stuyvesant in anywise within those boundaries.  D’Hinojassa was a rash, impetuous, headstrong man and in would brook no interference on the part of any one with his prerogatives, the particular case to which I am now referring are unusually interesting.  A vessel had been wrecked on the coast near the present breakwater and one of the sailors, a Turk, reached the shore where he was taken prisoner by a party of Indians, who sold their captive to Peter Alrichs.  Peter among other things was a slave dealer and was chiefly instrumental in fitting out the ship Glide which brought the first cargo of slaves from Africa to the shores of the Delaware.

            The unfortunate Turk was sold by Peter to an English planter in Maryland.  Subsequently the Turk and four other slaves escaped to Delaware, but, were pursued and captured.  While they were being conveyed in a boat to New Castle, when near Bombay Hook, the Turk made a desperate fight for Liberty and during the struggle and before he could be subdued he wounded two Englishmen seriously and a third slightly. 

            In the confusion which followed, he sprang overboard and succeeded in reaching the shore but he was shortly recaptured and taken to New Castle where he was heavily ironed and imprisoned.  D’Hinojassa refused when the application was made to him to deliver the prisoner to the English claimant but declared that as the Turk had committed a crime within the jurisdiction of the City Colony, he must be held on that charge.  He thereupon ordered him to be arraigned before Van Sweeringham, who sat as the judge at the trial.

            The prisoner, practically ignorant of the language in which he was called to make his defense was convicted of having resisted and wounded his captors.  Although the laws of Holland applicable to the colonies provided that in criminal cases where the punishment was capital five judges must actually preside at the trial, the miserable Turk notwithstanding that violation of law was sentenced to be hanged.

            On Sunday, October 19, 1662, the sentence was carried into execution.  The Turk was hanged at Lewes, his head being afterwards “cut off and placed on a post or stake at Hare Mill.”  This incident is also memorable because it is the first case of capital punishment in the Delaware River settlements.   

            THE LONG FINN – The next case to which I shall call attention is that of the “Long Finn.”  At that time the red crossed banner of St. George had supplanted the colors of Holland, as the symbol of soverenty in the Delaware River colonies.  This was a charge of treason against the government of His Majesty – King Charles II of England, and the chief actor was Marcus Jacobson, alias John Brinckson, etc., but better known as the “Long Finn,” because of his lofty stature.

            The arrogance of the Englishmen in authority, had aroused a spirit of restlessness among the Swedish settlers, hence when the “Long Finn” toward the middle of the year 1669 began to whisper among those people, a project looking to the overthrow of English authority in the colony, he found little difficulty in imposing on the credulity of his hearers.  By birth he was a Swede, who had found his way to England, where, for some crime committed by him there, he had been convicted and sentenced to transportation to the Maryland plantations, where he was sold for a term of years.

            Escaping from servitude he made his way, it is believed to Upland, now Chester, and located in the town or its neighborhood.  Here he represented himself as the son of Count Konnigsmack, a noted general of Sweden, and in interviews with the Swedish settlers, he informed them that a fleet of Swedish vessels of war had already been dispatched to the Delaware and were actually then lying in the bay, under instructions at the proper time to wrest the province from the British crown.  He had, he also told them, been commissioned to go among the Swedish people and encourage them to aid in the effort to shake off the foreign yoke, to rise in arms and stay the hated English as soon as the Swedish armed vessels made their appearance in the river.

            PLOTTING A REBELLION – Among those he enlisted to his proposed rebellion was Henry Coleman, a wealthy Finn, who it is conjectured, resided in the neighborhood of Marcus Hook.  He also persuaded Armgard Papagoya, the daughter of Governor Printz, who then resided at Printzdorp, facing Chester Creek and the river, an estate she subsequently sold to Robert Wade, in whose house Penn made his first stop in this Province of Pennsylvania, to look with approval on his project.  Rev. Lawrence Lack the former Swedish chaplain, then resided in the old house which his heirs subsequently sold to David Lloyd.  The original building was destroyed by fire on a first day, while Lloyd and his wife were in attendance at meeting, compelling the Chief Justice to erect, in 1721, the dwelling known to us a the Porter mansion, which was destroyed by an explosion on Friday, February 17, 1882, accompanied with a frightful loss of life.  The Rev. Lack was the ancient document tells us, designated to play, “the trumpeter to the disorder.”

            Powder, shot and other munitions of war were procured for the outbreak and then a supper was announced to which most of the Swedes within reach were invited.  After the guests had eaten their fill and liquor had done its part, the “long Finn” made an address to the men recalling the injustices that had been practiced upon them by the English; how partly by force and partly by fraud large tracts of land had been illegally taken from the Swedish owners, ending finally by demanding whether under those conditions, their allegiance was due to the Swedish or the English crown.

            Peter Kock, who subsequently figured prominently in our annals, saw through the design of the demagogue and declared that inasmuch as the King of Sweden had surrendered the province to the English monarch he proposed to hold allegiance to the latter’s rule.  Thereupon Kock hurriedly opened the door of the house, there seems to have been only one, went out, and closed it, holding it firmly shut, while he called for assistance to arrest the Long Finn.  The latter from within vainly strove to pull or push the door open and succeeded in forcing his hand between the door and the jamb.  Knock, knowing that the strength of his opponent would succeed ultimately, unless he was made to let go his hold, with his knife hacked the fingers of the Long Finn until the latter was compelled to relinquish his grip.  A moment after, however, with a sudden burst the Long Finn forced the door open and succeeded in making his escape for the time being.  Subsequently he was apprehended and by order of Governor Lovelace he has heavily ironed and imprisoned at New Castle.

            Henry Coleman, the wealthy Finn, who appears to have contributed largely to the proposed rebellion, when he learned that a warrant had been issued for his arrest, abandoned all his holdings on the Delaware and fled for protection to the Indiana, with whom he was very friendly and influential and was never heard from more.

            Governor Lovelace appointed commissioners to try the case, who sat at New Castle, December 6, 1669, and, as expected, the jury rendered a verdict of guilty as against Jacobson the Long Finn.  The sentence, which was prepared by Governor Lovelace before the case was brought to trial reads as follows:

            THE FINN’S SENTENCE – ‘Long Finn deserves to die for the same, yet in regard that many involved be in the same premunitee, if the vigor of the law should be extended, and amongst them divers simple and ignorant people it is thought fit and ordered that the said Long Finn shall be publicly and severely whipped and stigmatized or branded in the face with the letter R. with an inscription written in great letters and put upon his breast; that he receive the punishment for attempted rebellion, after which he be secured until he can be sent and sold to the Barbados or some other remote plantations.”

            On January 25, 1670, the Long Finn was put on board the ship Fort Albany for transportation to the West Indies after which all record of him, so far as we now have information, ceased.  His accomplices were sentenced to forfeit to the king one-half of all their goods and chattels, while a small fine was imposed on those of lesser note who had taken active part in the proposed insurrection.  The case of the Long Finn will always be of interest for therein is the first recorded trial of a criminal charge under English procedure on the Delaware, in which a prisoner was formally indicted, arraigned and a jury of twelve men empaneled, subject to challenge by the prisoner, and charged to render a verdict in accordance with the evidence.

Sunday, November 1, 2020

Delco Post Office Names how many do you know??? Take the test


This greenhouse/ florist was in Yeadon Boro. Looking for a location and current address. Thanks Keith

Name origins of Delco Post Offices

     I was surprised at the interest in Delaware County Townships names and their origins. Many towns in Delco have names that came from odd circumstances and some very simple. Below is a list of Delco Post Offices in south central Delco and how they got their name. See how many you can figure out. I will post the answers later.

What town is named for a lake?

What town is named for a girl’s school?

What town is named for the “pretty leafy fields?

What town is named for a hill?

A man named a town for the pretty land and the maiden name of the grandmother who raised him?

What town is named for the home of George Fox in England?

What town was named by the post master who named the town after himself?

What town is named for a best selling book about an actor?

 What town is named for a U.S. Presidents wife? Her maiden name?

All of the above towns are post offices today, how many can you name?

I posted this Greenhouse last week and a number of people identified it as Manoa Rd. in Haverford Twp. I'm looking for an EXACT location not just an intersection. Looking for an address and what is there now. With old pictures you need to be exact so future generations understand exactly where it was. Thanks 

Sunday, October 25, 2020

Delaware County Township names and where they came from


Need some help with this picture, it is a 1880's stereo-view of Media. I tried looking at several maps on my site but was not sure where the road and house are. You can see the caption on the left. A view of the valley, looking west from the home of Dr. A. Vernon. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks Keith


          Delaware County became a separate political division on September 26, 1789, by an Act of the State Legislature which provided for cutting off the eastern part of Chester County, to create the new county consisting of 21 townships, with Chester as the county seat.  The earliest settlements in Pennsylvania were made in the part which is now Delaware County, but they were not organized as townships until William Penn took over the government of his Province.

          Before Penn received his grant of land, Upland Court had jurisdiction over all of the land from Christina River to the Falls of Trenton.  This was called Upland County, a name which was changed to Chester by William Penn in 1682, probably because many of the settlers there had come from Cheshire in England.  At first Chester was the name of one of the three original counties laid out by Penn.  Later, the name was also given to a township, the first one organized under Penn’s government, and finally to Chester Borough in 1701.

          Many of Penn’s followers had bought land before leaving England, intending to pick out their tracts after they arrived in America.  Some settled near the river, but many went into the country back from the river and built homes in the wilderness.  Ne plantations were laid out as fast as surveyors could mark boundaries.  Emigrants who knew each other or had the same religious beliefs, stayed together if they could.  In time, a name was chosen for a community by the whole group of families, or by someone looked up to as a leader.

          A township was officially recognized when the people living in the area elected a constable or a tax collector, or presented a petition for official action or approval in such matters as laying out a road or building a dam.

          Some township and village names were chosen because they reminded the settlers of their old homes.  For instance, Darby was named for Derbyshire; Edgmont, also written England, was named by Joseph Baker, an early settler, for the town in Shropshire from which he came; Birmingham, originally spelled Birmingham , was the English home of William Brinton, the first settler in the township.

          Thornbury was named by George Pearce for his wife’s old in Gloucestershire; Aston or Ashton, was at first called Northley, then Aston by Edward Carter, an early settler, for the town in Oxfordshire from which he came.  Radnor and Harford, or Haverford, in the Welsh Tract were names brought from Wales by the settlers.  Haverford means “confluence of two streams.”  Newtown, though not in the Welsh Tract, had many Welsh settlers and may have been named for a Welsh town of the same name, or from the townstead in the center.

          Ridley was the name given by John Simcock in 1682 to his large tract of land north of Amosland, to honor his home town in Cheshire.  When the township was organized, it was named Ridley, Springfield, at first called Ridley-in-the-Woods, was named from a fine spring on the farm of George Maris, an early settler.  In Marple, the early settlers were English and the township may have been named for the English parish Mar Poole, but it is not verified.

          Chichester, the name of an English town, was the name given by William Penn, at the request of some of the residents, to the settlement called Marcus Hook, when he granted a charter in 1701.  The township was organized as Chichester but the townspeople continued to call it Marcus Hook.

          Middletown was so named because it was supposed to be the central township in old Chester County.  This was a mistake, but it is well-named for Delaware County.  Tinicum, too, is well-named.  The name is derived from Tennakonog, an Indian word meaning island.

          Bethel and Concord were known as Concord Liberty until the two townships were organized.  Concord was a name chosen to denote the feeling of good will among the settlers there.  Bethel means House of God.  It was chosen to show the holy purpose of the settlers.  The name Providence was given to express gratitude for a safe journey.

          These 21 townships, all settled and organized before 1688 constituted the whole territory of the county when it was first made a separate county.  They will exist as municipal districts but their area has been reduced by the formation of Chester City and 27 boroughs.

Sunday, October 18, 2020

The Delaware County Home in Lima, 100 years ago.


The 1920 Delaware County Home in Lima. This was the same location as it is today.

Note: The original county home was in Media, in the area of the elementary school on State St. When Media Boro was created in 1850, the county moved the home to it's current location in Lima.

The Delaware County Home in Lima 100 years ago.

The visit to the home was interesting, and the writer found many things of interest about the place, and he also conversed with the inmates, most all of them being happy under the circumstances, though some were found not so happy, but this was because they were ill,  or were unable to leave their cots.                After a careful observation of the buildings, the farm and the manner in which the institution is managed, the writer had an interview with Mrs. W. Irwin Cheyney, James J. Skelly, director of the poor, and J. D. Pierson, the steward.

                It did not take long to ascertain that the time had arrived when old time methods of conducting a county home are obsolete; that the conditions of today demand more careful attention than ever; and that a constructive policy must be established, which will insure as near complete happiness and health for those who must spend their last days at the home, and that the present directors are doing this.  The county home has two properties; the one on which the home and its buildings are situated, consisting of one hundred acres, and the Crooks’ farm of fifty acres which cost $18,000.  The directors settled for this property on Wednesday.  The purchase of the Crooks’ property was a fine piece of business strategy on the part of the directors.  The home will need more land in the near future and the land values are continually increasing, but aside from this reason, the property is needed for a very important necessity which will be referred to in this article.

                The main building of the county home, a stone structure was erected in 1856.  Originally the county home was located where the present beautiful high school building of Media is situated but when Media was incorporated as a borough in 1849, Media could no longer be the county home site.

                Aside from the main building there is another building built in 1873.  This was the insane department, but it appears that there was some sort of trouble at the home a few years after the insane department was in operation, and this department was dispensed with, and since that time, the county has been sending its insane to either Norristown or to Wernersville asylums.                In the two buildings referred to, are the directors’ and stewards’ office, quarters for the steward and his family, store rooms, bakery, kitchen, dining rooms for men and women, and sleeping rooms for men and women, as well as a heating plant.

                The barn and other buildings are also an important adjunct to the place.  At present about 80 acres of the land is under production and the crops are growing fine and the stock is in splendid condition. This year, Howard Hatton, the farmer, has produced an abundance of crops including a variety of vegetables which are being used to feed the inmates. Despite the fact that the present directors are making, and have made some big improvements to the exterior and interior of the main buildings, there are conditions which the directors must face and here is where the purchase of the Crooks farm fits in the problem.  For a long time there has been a need at the home for the psychopathic treatment of persons who are often picked up on the streets by the police or are brought to the institution suffering from mental disorder.  For instance it will be remembered how a beautiful young girl was picked up by the police at Boothwyn, taken to the county jail where she was detained until finally located by her family.  This girl, it will be remembered, was not a subject for prison but for a place where her mental and physical condition could be observed.

                The big Colonial house on the Crooks farm will be converted into a small hospital for the mental observation of indigent patients and also for the treatment of indigent inmates who cannot get the hospital care at the home.  This colonial house will also have an addition built to it, and the plans for this important piece of improvement will be made by architects almost any time.  It is estimated by the directors that the cost for making the alteration and addition to the Crooks house, will cost approximately $25,000.

                When the hospital is built, Mrs. Cheyney and Mr. Skelly said, the County Home would then be in a position to treat its own indigent sick, place mental cases under observation in the psychopathic department which will be established, and in this way, not only would the sufferers get better treatment, but Delaware County will be saving thousands of dollars annually.

                Mrs. Cheyney and Mr. Skelly both, declared that the county is forced to pay to Philadelphia County annually thousands of dollars for indigent sick who receive treatment in the Philadelphia General Hospital at the rate of 73 cents per patient per day.At the present time and for many years, those who are ill in the home have been treated by a physician who calls occasionally and who is often called to the home to visit the sick.  At the present time Dr. E. Marshall Harvey, the county physician, looks after the physical welfare of the inmates, but Dr. Harvey is unable to give the medical are to those more seriously ill because of the lack of facilities.  However, this condition will be temporarily remedied, because one of the large rooms at the home has been converted into a neat infirmary.  The room will hold four beds at least, and has been painted white and a sanitary mineral floor laid.  The room will be equipped for service by the early part of next week, and this infirmary will suffice until the larger infirmary has been built on the Crooks place. here has also been installed at the home a temporary infirmary for older men.  This little ward is in charge of the wife of one of the inmates.  She is giving her service gratis in order that she might be near her husband, who is an invalid.

                NEW DINING ROOM – A new dining room has been finished for the younger women at the home, and their sitting room has also been improved by having the walls scrapped of the hundreds of coats of whitewash and painted in a bright color.  The lounging room for men, several dining rooms and other rooms in the home, which have been brightened with a few coats of whitewash, a few days before the visit of the Grand Jury, have all been painted.   It is said when the caked whitewash was scrapped off, vermin came with the scrapings. The old crude way of inmates to bathe their faces and hands by use of a wash basin has also been abolished.  Stationary washstands have been installed in the different departments for both men and women.  Some of the inmates who cannot help themselves are attended to by the nurses.  The directors are not at all pleased with the present sleeping quarters for the men.  So far as the women’s quarters are concerned, they are bright and clean and splendidly ventilated.  But the men occupy rooms where one, two or four beds are located.  The ventilation in these rooms is very bad, and the directors decided to make changes by adding large dormitories which will be light and ventilated.  To do this, Director Skelly said, the directors plan to Alter the present sleeping quarters of the men which can be done without very great cost.

                A SPLENDID FARM – The directors have a very fine farmer in the person of Howard Hatton.  The farm is under heavy product ion, the old dairy has been disposed of, and a dairy of pure-bred Holstein heifers and a registered pure-bred Holstein sire are now on the place.  The poultry is in fine condition as are the pigs and a very large crop of potatoes have also been raised for the year.

                J. D. Pierson, the steward said that during the months of July and August, three quarters of the food product consumed by the inmates was produced on the farm.  This included vegetables, milk, eggs, etc.   Both Mrs. Cheyney and Mr. Skelly are very optimistic as to what the farm will produce next year.  These two officials declare that with the extra fifty acres recently purchased, they hope to produce sufficient food products on the place to feed the inmates at the home during the year.  Of course this does not include tea, coffee, flour, rice and meals.

                INMATES WELL CARED FOR – There is no doubt that the inmates are being well fed.  One only has to pass through the wards and loot them over to be satisfied.  The representative of this paper went through the home unaccompanied and inquired of the inmates about their condition and how they were fed.  Walking up to one man well advanced in years who was reclining in a rolling chair, he was asked if he got enough to eat.  “Eat,” exclaimed the man, “I guess we all get plenty.  I have been here for twelve years, but say mister, the eats here since the first of the year are the best we have ever had.”  He also said the inmates get plenty of vegetables, meat occasionally and eggs, and remarked, “don’t forget, we even get  better. Several other groups of men were visited and said that the food at the home was the best ever.  The women inmates were also interviewed and they also declared that the institution was getting to be more homelike every day.  They said that the food was better and more of it than ever, and they were certainly pleased with Mrs. Pierson, the matron, whom several old ladies declared was so motherly. “Yes,” chirped an elderly lady who was knitting.  “Mrs. Cheyney is also a mighty fine lady.  She often comes in and talks to us and makes us cheerful.  Then Mr. Skelly,” continued the old lady, “he is really sunshine to us people.  He always comes in with a smile and he makes us smile whether we want to or not.  And so does Mr. Martin.".  In another department were more women, and these were also contented and happy, and they did not forget to talk lots about the directors and Mr. Pierson.  One old lady said she had been in the home for fifteen years, but that she is always happy if she only has a minute to talk with Mr. Martin, Mrs. Cheyney, or Mr. Skelly.  This woman declared that the directors, all of them, are so sympathetic.   On the trip through the home the reporter found a number of men, women and one boy who need medical attention.  Some of them are incurables, and they are receiving the best care possible under the circumstances.  Therefore, the directors are certainly showing progress in the right way by building a permanent infirmary where these particular unfortunates may be properly cared for from a medical standpoint.  There are at present one hundred and thirty inmates in the home, which shows that it is a problem to give the care which they are entitled to.

                HOSPITAL TOO COSTLY – The directors were asked if they thought it a good plan for the county to build an asylum.  Both Mr. Skelly and Mrs. Cheyney declared it would not be economy for the county to have its own hospital, providing the State continues the present rate for keeping patients from Delaware County.  These two directors pointed out that there are about 330 patients from Delaware County in Norristown and Wernersville hospitals, and that the county is paying about $45,000 per annum for their maintenance.  These two directors also pointed out that to build a hospital and maintain such an institution by the county would entail a very heavy toll on the taxpayers.

                The old system of giving outside relief by the individual directors has been abolished.  The new system is where a case of outside relief comes to the attention of a director, Mrs. Sarah Kerlin, the field worker, makes a thorough investigation.  She reports back to the board of directors and the necessary action is then taken.  This method does away with giving relief on the outside to undeserving and unscrupulous persons.

                The directors at this time are doing more than giving outside relief.  Of course this kind of relief is more sought in winter months when it is hard to get employment.  The directors are doing real constructive relief work.  For instance, they are constantly in touch with manufacturers and employees of labor.  They get employment for many who need relief.

                In one case where a widow was receiving relief, her son, who was making but $6.00 per week, was found another position by the directors and it also helped the boy to forge his way ahead.

                Another important thing which the present directors are doing is a new method of handling insane cases.  The practice is to have every case of insanity investigated by the county physician and two other physicians.  In each case, the residence off the patient is first established.  If the patient is a charge of Delaware County, then this county cares for the patient.  If the patient is a resident outside of this county, the patient is then turned over to the proper jurisdiction, thus relieving this county from paying for some other jurisdiction’s insane.

                At the present time the directors are investigating twenty-five cases of persons who are in two State insane asylums from this County. These are cases where the directors believe this county should not pay for their maintenance because they believe that the patients are from other jurisdictions they will be deported.

                Recently the directors caused to be deported from Norristown a young woman who was actually a charge of Camden County, N. J.  This was a case where a woman had been an inmate in the Blackwood Asylum for the Insane in Camden County.  This girl eloped with a man from the institution to New York ended traveled with him for two years.  The man left the girl in Chester during the war.  She was then committed to Norristown.  The directors made an investigation and found that the girl was not a charge of this county.  Camden County refused to accept her, but the matter was put up to the Attorney General of this State, whose opinion proved that Delaware County was not responsible for her and the girl was deported to Camden. There is not the slightest doubt as to the progress the present poor directors are making; the county home in the next two years will not be looked upon as a poor house, because the word poor house leaves a stigma which does not easily efface itself from the minds of unfortunates who are forced to live at the county’s expense. The present board of poor directors, the steward and others employed at the county home deserve commendation for the able manner in which the home is being conducted, and to the directors especially because they are using the keenest business judgment in the management of the home.

                To be a poor director today one must have business judgment and be abreast with the conditions of today; a person who is kind, gentle and sympathetic, who has at heart the interest and welfare of those unfortunate persons who are forced to spend their declining days at the home.

                In the present directors, Arthur Martin, the president of the board; James J. Skelly and Mrs. W. Irwin Cheyney, Delaware County has three directors who are thoroughly conversant with the needs at the County Home, and they are deserving of the commendation of the taxpayers for the interest they take in their work. In Jesse D. Pierson, the steward, the home has an able manager who has done much to bring the home up to the present high standard.  Mrs. Pierson, the matron; Miss Cora Smith, the seamstress; Mrs. Sarah Kerlin, bookkeeper and field worker; Miss Bertha Gill and William Butler, nurses, also are efficient employees.