The rain held off this morning and even when it came it was just intermittently drizzly.
Soon we almost had enough people to convene a meeting of Retired Riverton School Teachers.
It was great to catch up with RPS alum, Kim Piotrowski, with her mom, Ann Marie.
We enjoyed conversing with browsers who came by the Porch Club during the Garden Tour.
May Hannah brought by a color postcard of Fulton Street, c.1912, for me to scan.
Shown here framed, click here to see the retouched scan I made from it.
In the course of congratulating Tom Shaw on the work he is doing on his house at 301 Main Street the origin story of the famous Duster sailboat came up.
Local lore holds that Owen Merrill designed and built the first Duster there in a room on the 3rd floor. He and some friends lowered the craft from a window, took it down to the river, and christened it a “Duster”. It became a world-class sailboat.
Tom is convinced that he has seen a newspaper photo of that moment – but where? Let’s ask the universe to find it. If a reader can direct me, please help. Tom wants to find an old Duster, seaworthy or not, that he can plant in his garden as a kind of “The Duster was born here” historical marker.
After grazing on a luncheon plate of goodies prepared by the Porch Club women, I also bought two table centerpieces composed of papier mache birds and plants in tiny Dreer’s Nursery terracotta flower pots that were found on the riverbank near the Pompeston Creek.
Bunched together here on my picnic table in Delran they will wind up in the HSR Museum at some point. It is coming together slowly… very slowly.
Oh yeah, we also sold five mugs, too, so the day spent was totally worth it. – JMc
This post is a follow-up to our very successful Riverton Antique and Collectible Fair co-sponsored by the Historical Society of Riverton and Riverview Estates back on March 2.
I just could not seem to get the piece done until today.
As advertised, expert personal property appraiser, Ronald Shaffer, ISA really was witty and informed – extremely well-informed. He not only evaluated heirlooms and offered a Verbal Opinion of Value, he often knew some relevant anecdote about a similar item or offered hints on how to care for the item. A few times he referred the owner to another person with expertise in a specific area, such a furniture repair expert.
Mr. Schaffer informed and entertained as he carefully considered the value of each possession and coaxed from the person what details of provenance they could give. Often the article had come from an ancestor, and the present owner probably would not part with it for any price. Still, good to know.
By all accounts the affair was such a success that we expect to repeat it in the future.
Here is a 3 min., 40 sec. highlight reel of the 2013 antique fair. We have not progressed to the point of streaming video yet, so the best we can offer is for you to download and open the 48.7MB Windows Media file on your computer.
Many thanks to all who came and helped support the work of the Society.
What prized possession would you bring to the next Riverton Antique and Collectible Fair? – John McCormick
The Historical Society of Riverton held its Annual Meeting June 9, 2011, at The Bank on Main, courtesy of the Antonucci Family of Riverton. First constructed for the Cinnaminson Bank & Trust Company in 1928, its new owners have transformed the building’s interior into an attractive venue for business and social events.
In the business portion of the annual meeting members approved a slate of new or returning directors, including Pat Brunker, Donald Dietz, William McDermott, J. Edward Gilmore, Nancy Hall, John McCormick, Phyllis Rodgers, Mary Lou Smith, Michael Spinelli, and Cheryl Smekal. A number of By-Law proposals received approval with one change, suggested by Mr. Paul Schopp. Members approved his motion to change the quorum for a Board meeting to nine. Click here find the full text of the By-Laws to passed June 9, 2011.
The massive original vault remains the focal point of the room. Round linen-covered banquet exhibit tables flanked the carpeted part of the room and chairs arranged in rows on a magnificent marble dance floor in the center of the space faced the vault. The high ceiling, large windows, and sparkling chandelier hanging from the center of a huge, ornately carved medallion that dominates the ceiling all served to create an elegant setting befitting the main portion of the meeting; to celebrate the life of Mrs. Betty B. Hahle, Town Historian, who passed away on April 17, 2011. A large photo collage poster of Mrs. Hahle placed next to the vault represented some of her many accomplishments and provided a backdrop for the remarks and accolades of the speakers.
President of the Historical Society of Riverton, Gerald Weaber, started by reviewing the life of Mrs. Hahle, highlighting her contributions to virtually every Riverton organization and stressing her dedication and commitment to preserving Riverton’s history and character. Her meticulous investigating and record keeping, pursued with passion, earned her a place in Riverton’s history. Mayor Robert Martin then presented a proclamation to the daughters of Mrs. Hahle, Donna Hahle Kirkland and Marilyn R. Hahle.
Several members of the audience shared memories of Betty Hahle by illustrating examples of her generosity in sharing her extensive knowledge of Riverton while others cited her success in raising her three daughters.
A four-part a capella group called Three Good Men smoothly segued into the entertainment part of the meeting by appropriately choosing “Can You Feel the Love Tonight?” as their opening number. They continued the historical theme by serving up an eclectic mix of songs from classic barbershop to Rock & Roll and Doo-Wop, freely seasoned with jokes and puns. The inclusion of “God Bless America” and “The Lion Sleeps Tonight” on the same set list indicates the versatility of this talented quartet. We even learned history trivia; “Chattanooga Choo-Choo” (1942) was the first ever gold record. Clearly, the foursome achieved their website’s description of “the essence of Barbershop” by liberally “ringing chords” off those stately old bank walls for the entire performance.
Even a mid-meeting power outage which left only dimmed emergency lights to illuminate the chamber failed to dampen anyone’s spirit or curtail the marvelous entertainment from our a capella quartet, which fortunately required no electricity. At the conclusion, HSR President Gerald Weaber invited participants to enjoy refreshments. Three Good Men continued their convivial exhibition by harmonizing “Happy Birthday” for two HSR Geminis, Mrs. Linda McCormick and Mrs. Phyllis Rogers and serenading bride-to-be, Keri Antonucci with a song .
We sincerely thank the Antonucci Family for so generously extending to the Historical Society the use of this splendid facility for our Annual Meeting. Find out more about this new multi-purpose banquet hall and event facility at the Antonucci Ventures LLC website.
That was our last meeting for the summer, but check back often for more additions to this website. Our expanded HSR Board will be busy planning for the next 2011-2012 season. Please consider donating items to the Society as you de-clutter or downsize belongings. We also welcome your submissions of recollections, comments, photos, scans, etc. for possible publication in the Gaslight News or on this website. – Co-written and photographed by: Mrs. Susan Dechnik and John McCormick