1991: Book heaven

Friends of EMPL 1991 book sale

Book sale on Main Street

When this photo was snapped, Regina Treanor of the Bronx, New York, a regular library patron, was browsing the offerings of the 1991 annual book sale at the Eastern Monroe Public Library.

At the time, the library was housed in the venerable home at 913 Main St., Stroudsburg, where it had been since 1954.

In 1996, the library was moved to its present location at 1002 North Ninth St., the former Stroud’s Jewelers and Distributors building.

The Main Street site now houses the Monroe County Bar Association.


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1847: Easton and Milford stagecoach

In 1847, passengers traveling on the Easton and Milford Mail Line from Easton could catch the stagecoach at Joseph Hagenbuch’s Inn every Monday, Wednesday or Friday for the trip north.

The header from a June 1, 1847, ad in the Jeffersonian Republican

After leaving Easton, the stage would stop at Richmond, Centreville, Williamsburg, Dill’s Ferry, Delaware Water Gap, Dutotsburg, Stroudsburg, Bushkill and Dingmans Ferry, before arriving in Milford on the same day.

The distance traveled was 60 miles.

Passengers catching the return trip could board the stage at Samuel Dimmick’s Hotel in Milford every Tuesday, Thursday or Saturday and arrive in Eastern the same day.

The cost of the fare from Easton to Stroudsubrg was $1.25; from Easton to Milford $2.87.

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Check out a page from the June 1, 1847, Jeffersonian Republican, a Stroudsburg, Pa., newspaper, on which an advertisement for the Easton and Milford Mail Line appears.


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1850: Cheap stoves at Cheap Store

During the 1800s, Stroudsburg merchant George Malven operated a shop in the borough, selling an assortment of parlour and cooking  stoves. In addition to selling stoves, Malven had a side business, a tin shop.

Ad for the "Cheap Store" published in The Jeffersonian

One unique aspect of the stove/tin-shop business was that it was often referred to as the Cheap Store. Presumably, Malven offered his wares at low prices.

In September 1850, Malven received a shipment of stoves, which he advertised for sale in the Jeffersonian Republican, a Stroudsburg newspaper of the time:

Just received for sale at the cheap Store of G. Malven, in Stroudsburg, Monroe county, Pa., the largest, cheapest and best assortment of STOVES  in the County, which he will sell as low as can be bought this side of New York.

He has also connected with his store, a TIN-SHOP, and keeps constantly on hand a complete assortment of Tin Ware. All kinds of work in that line done at short notice and reasonable price.


Read a page from the Jeffersonian Republican on which the ad originally appeared.

Courtesy of Library of Congress’ Chronicling America.




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1976: Catching some rest

ESU freshman Susan Savage


A warm summer day

Susan Savage, a freshman at East Stroudsburg State College, known now as East Stroudsburg University, played softball with gusto in July 1976, but when she took a breather, she treated the sun with kid gloves

The photo, snapped by a Pocono Record photographer, illustrated that warm days of summer had indeed returned to the Poconos.


 Another 1976 photo:

Yesterdays Photo No. 858

Former paperboy Heinz Rother recognized the youngsters shown in this old photograph. “That is me and twin brother Herman,” he wrote.

When the photo was taken in 1976, Herman, left, and Heinz, both 15, had just been named The Pocono Record’s Professional Carriers for the Month of June.

Heinz started as a paper carrier on April 30, 1973, with 48 subscribers. Seven months later, he took over a larger route of 63 subscribers.

His twin brother, Herman, began Nov. 5, 1973, with 44 subscribers, adding a second route a year later to deliver to 91 subscribers.

Both twins now live in Saylorsburg.

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1955: First shovelful for Ronson

On Sept. 21, 1955, the first shovelful of ground for the new $1 million lighter-production plant of the Ronson Corp. was turned by Louis Aronson, president of the corporation. When completed, the new plant in Delaware Water Gap would face Route 611′s approach to the Delaware River Joint Toll Bridge.

In the front row with the spade-wielding Ronson president Louis Aronson are Emerson Stanton, machinist union business agent; Charles Clapper, union president; Milton Phol, local manager of Ronson; Jack Sherill, contractor; George Albach, vice president of contractors; Harry Tepper, general counsel, and Benjamin Zuckerman, director of Ronson, William Davlin, State Secretary of Commerce. In the background are B.B. Bond, vice president of Ronson, Richard Fuller, Ray Noonan, contractor; Ted Lowey, industrial engineer; Samuel L. Cohen, secretary; John Roth, treasurer and Walter Mikos, plant superintendent of Ronson.

During the ceremony, Ronson’s president paused to read a telegram from then-Pennsylvania Gov. George Leader, who praised the decision to proceed with the new plant:

“Your action is a vote of confidence in an area where the citizens have shown the courage of recovery from disaster (referring to the massive flooding throughout the area just one month earlier). Your decision is the best you could possibly make because it is an area which has proven it will never succumb to defeat. ”

Twenty years after the groundbreaking celebration for the most-modern lighter-manufacture plant in the world, the “new” Ronson plant was closed.

Although the end of Ronson caused some 200 employees to lose their jobs, the company had long history in Monroe County, employing numerous local residents throughout its years.

Ronson was first located in East Stroudsburg when it entered Monroe County in 1941. Thirteen years later, the company’s Newark, N.J., operation was consolidated with the East Stroudsburg plant. Two more sites were added later, both located in the borough.  Ronson’s final home was in Delaware Water Gap.

Ronson went through a five-month strike in 1970 and was to open talks on new a contract in June 1976.  Since labor-management relations had been smooth, no difficulties had been anticipated. But, before the contract could be negotiated, a portion of the work force was laid off in June 1975.

An eight-week general closing was called on Nov. 12, 1975, while year-end inventories were taken. Then, two weeks later, the plant permanently closed.

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Check out this Pocono memories photo of Ronson Corp.

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1976: Musical reflections

Russel Speicher



Russel Speicher, mirrored in the bell of his baritone, leads the band from Pocono Mountain High School in Swiftwater through some German music at the close of the three-day Blakeslee Community Center Craft Show.

The 1976 event featured sign making, paintings, food and music – of course.

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1965: Zabriskie and L’Hommedieu

East Stroudsburg landmark demolished

Spectators watch as the old decaying City Coal Co. building in East Stroudsburg is demolished.

In 1965, the empty Zabriskie and L’Hommedieu City Coal Co. building at 270 S. Courtland St., East Stroudsburg, was demolished to make way for urban renewal. With the razing of the old building, a landmark that had stood for decades became just a memory.

The roof of the City Coal building collapses with help from the tugging lines attached to a bulldozer.

Within months of the demolition, the Monroe County Redevelopment Authority purchased the property. Urban renewal had officially taken hold in East Stroudsburg.

The interior of the former coal company, long past its heyday.

The City Coal property was massive, extending from the old St. Matthew’s Cemetery to 266 South Courtland St. and from the cemetery to 245 Crystal St.

Under the renewal plan, an Acme Market would be built on the 4.5-acre block slated for redevelopment.

In addition to the supermarket, the East Stroudsburg Post Office would be constructed on the site.

Although the post office is still in use, the Acme building now houses a CVS pharmacy and the Pocono Health System Professional Center.

Before the decline in the use of coal, City Coal was a thriving business with its roots in the small East Stroudsburg  business of R.R. Coolbaugh, which Abram J. Zabriskie and William “Bill” L’Hommedieu bought in 1903.

The partners would later incorporate their business in 1923.

L’Hommedieu died in 1932. “He smoked to much,” Zabriskie said about his partner during an interview in 1964. Zabriskie would die the year following the interview.


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1947: Whirldry Washers

Easy to carry, easy to store

In 1947, when the sale of washing machines increased at the Wyckoff’s store in Stroudsburg, a new laundry aid, the portable Whirldry Washer, was added to the store’s line up.

An 1947 ad for Whirldry Washer published in The Daily Record.

Already available at stores in some parts of the country, the sale of the Whirldrys at Wyckoff’s was the first time the machines were being offer in Pennsylvania.

Touted as “a great little all-purpose washer that was small enough for an apartment kitchen,” the Whirldrys were large enough to handle “hearty” loads, according to an advertisement published in The Daily Record, the local newspaper of Monroe County.

A typical-sized load that could be washed in a Whirldry equaled three child-size play suites, four dish towels, eight hankies and one pair of slacks.

These revolutionary “miracle” washers not only washed laundry, but thoroughly rise the loads with the help of a self-emptying tub, drained by gravity.

The cost for a Monroe County homemaker to own a brand-new Whirldry was $49.95.

Whirldrys were produced by the Easy Washing Machine Co. in Syracuse, N.Y., which also made Easy Washers and Irons.

“Easy” was first used in the company’s name in 1932. Previously, the business’ identifier reflected its location – Syracuse Washing Machine Corp.

More than 30 years later, production of Easy Washer appliances ceased.


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Read about the Easy Washing Machine Co. in the May/June 2001 Gas Engine Magazine.

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1958: “Dr. Bill,” area medical pioneer, dies

Dr. Eugene Levering, brother to Dr. William Levering, started practicing medicine in Snydersville in 1895. A true country doctor, he and his wife would make house calls in a horse-drawn buggy.

The family legacy

When Dr. William Roger Levering, 78, a Stroudsburg physician, died on April 22, 1958, it was the first time in 150 years that Monroe County was without a family doctor named Levering.

He had been the last Levering in the family chain to practice medicine. A chain that could trace its history back to the early 1800s.

Dr. William Levering

Dr. Levering, who was known to his patients as “Dr. Bill” was the son of Dr. Rogers J. and Sarah Ann (Keller) Levering of Sciota.

Receiving his early schooling at Fairvew Academy in Brodheadsville, he continue his education, studying medicine. He went on to graduate from the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy in 1904 and the Medico-Chirurgical College of Philadelphia in 1908.

He began practicing medicine in Stroudsburg with his brother, Dr. Eugene Levering, in 1908, and, according to the 1920 “Pennsylvania Medical Journal,” at an office at 805 Main St.

During those early years, Dr. Bill made house calls using a horse and buggy, eventually trading that mode of transportation for an automobile.

He was known for his kind and understanding manner in which he cared for his patients, and, although he had not specialized in obstetrics, he became well known for his skill in delivering babies – many who were named William Roger after the physician who delivered them.

William along with his brother were among the founders of the Monroe County Hospital. When the hospital merged with Monroe County General, he became its first radiologist.

Eugene, also a prominent physician in the county, died Feb. 10, 1932. Although nearly 64 years of age, he would have only celebrated his 16th birthday anniversary on Feb. 29., having been born on that date during a leap year.

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Read Dr. William Levering’s obituary April 23, 1958, Daily Record.

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On the air with WHAB

Jesse Weiss adjusts the transmitters at WVOP radio station.

Note: This late 1940s photo was published on Oct. 1, 2000, in the Pocono Record’s Old-Tyme Photo section, a predecessor to Yesterdays Photo.

The Old-Tyme feature – similar to its modern-day version – was a weekly offering of old newspaper photos, which readers were asked to identify or had already identified.

Here is what some of the readers had to said about the photo in 2000:

Lydia Getz Berger of Kunkletown, who had worked for the radio station in Stroudsburg for a number of years, was sure the man was a young Jesse Weiss. At the time, Weiss was an engineer for the 250-watt daytime station, which was then known as WHAB.

WHAB took its name from owner and manager Harold B. Newman (HArold B). Today, the station is known as WVOP – Voice of the Poconos. The call letters were changed in 1948 when the Ottaway family bought the station. (The Ottaways also owned The Daily Record, now the Pocono Record.)

Jesse Weiss of Stroudsburg, who is shown adjusting the transmitter, was surprise to see the photo in the newspaper. “I didn’t know this picture existed,” he wrote in an email.

Judging from the settings on the transmitter, the station  was “on the air” when the photo was taken, Weiss wrote. “Sure brings back memories.”

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View a collection of Yesterdays/Old-Tyme photos.


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