This picture has nothing to do with the article. I'm sure some of my readers remember when there Ford Motor Co. had a plant in Chester.
Note: The original County Fairgrounds were in Middletown Twp. and in 1913 the county purchased property in Chester Twp. where the Toby Farms development is today. In it's heyday the fairgrounds had farm shows, craft shows displays, exhibits etc. Maybe some readers have pictures of the grounds?
NEW COUNTY FAIR GROUNDS –
Maddock Farm in Western Section of City Purchased
For This Purpose and Plans Under Way
This city is in a fair way to have all up-to-date fair grounds, with all the accessories which make fair grounds so popular all over the country. It is the intention to make the affair a county-wide organization with the grounds located largely in this city. Philadelphia capitalists have purchased the Maddock farm in the lower part of the city and in Chester Township. The farm contains 67 acres, with the old farm house, and is within easy access to the trolleys and trains on the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad. It was the intention of the new owners of the land to develop it into building sites, but matters have shaped themselves so that the projectors, after talking with many influential, financial business men and farmers of the city and county, think the land will prove an ideal spot for a fair grounds.
A representative of the owners of the land has been in this city every day for almost two weeks past, and has received assurances enough to say now that the project will be a success. The bankers and others holding large interests in the city, to whom the plans have been explained, it has met with general favor and expressions on all sides are to the effect that the proposed play grounds and place of recreation cannot fail but be a success from its incipiency.
It is the purpose to give everybody a chance to become interested by purchasing shares of stock. It has been suggested that the organization be made a close corporation, but this is not the idea of the gentlemen who have put their money up for this valuable farm land. It is their intention to give everybody a chance to become interested, on the assumption that the more people directly interested, the greater the success of the undertaking.
AMUSEMENTS OF ALL KINDS – The idea is to make the fairgrounds an amusement place, a place for all kinds of amusements, having attractions of a different character that will keep the thing going from the time the blue birds begin to chirp in the spring until the leaves begin to fall in the falloff the year. It has been figured that at least one hundred thousand persons could be attracted to this fair ground during the season, which would assure the project an income of about $75,000, at the start, to say nothing of what the shows and other events arranged for within the grounds would realize.
In addition to having a real old-time country fair, with its good horse racing, exhibits of fine cattle, farming implements, handiwork of the farmers’ wives and daughters, the products of the farm, it is proposed to have its midway with up-to-date, clean shows, something that will prove interesting and entertaining, yet of a class that can be visited by everyone.
In addition to the fair it is proposed to use the grounds for an “old home week” each year. This will be profitable to the merchants if the present plans are carried doubt. It is proposed to give the merchants space free for their booths and stalls so that they can sell their goods and at the same time show to the people what they have to sell. The money is to be derived for the running of the home week from those who pay to enter the fair grounds. For them there will be shows of every character: horse racing, jumping contests, athletic events and all kinds of sports to suit the tastes of the populace.
The again, it is the intention of the promoters to make the grounds so that they can be used for any public event the city or county may wish to hold. To have attractions at the grounds on every holiday of the year. To make it a place where people can go of an evening and on Saturday afternoons during the summer months without having to go to Philadelphia, Wilmington, or some other place to find healthful and pleasing recreation.
WILL COST $100,000 – The thing has been worked out to a nicety on paper and it can be started for $100,000 which will include the land and the builders. It is the purpose to turn the old mansion into a first-class clubhouse for the use of the members of the association. Nothing of the kind has ever before been attempted or conceived in this county. The Maddock farm, which has been purchased, is only a half block from the trolley cars which run along Ninth Street through that section of the city, between Chester and Wilmington. It is only two blocks from the Felton Station on the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad.
It is the purpose, if the project is carried out, to erect a high iron fence about the fair grounds and to make all the buildings of fireproof construction. Those to whom the plans have been explained are convinced that it will be one of the greatest inducements in the history of the city to bring people to Chester and to permit the merchants to show what the stores of this city have to offer in the way of bargains as a business center.