Saturday, October 25, 2014
     

Friday Feature

Friday, September 5, 2014
DONALD R. SERFASS/TIMES NEWS "Sniper" Zach Langley, Fleetwood, waits for shuttle cars filled with passengers to emerge from the No. 9 Mine on Sunday as part of a mock train heist that afforded guests plenty of photo opportunities.

Hidden by tall evergreens next to the old wash shanty, sniper Zach Langley crouched on the ground and aimed the barrel of his cold, steel rifle with the accuracy of a laser beam.

His innocent prey didn't have clue.

It was a chilling sight on a warm, muggy Sunday. But it was all in fun.

Langley, of Fleetwood, was part of a re-enactment in which everybody had a chance to take part. It was like reality TV. But much more realistic.

Friday, August 29, 2014
DONALD R. SERFASS/TIMES NEWS Members of American Hose Company #1, Tamaqua, march down Center Street in Pottsville Saturday on their way to first place as best appearing fire company marching unit with music.

They're the unsung heroes of our communities.

The volunteer firefighter, the man or woman who puts a life on the line in service to others, is a special breed.

Each is an individual story of courage and sacrifice.

Each day he or she accepts responsibility for the noble cause of protecting life and property no matter the risk.

It takes a spirit above the norm and unending devotion to always be at the ready, to live a life devoted to the call of duty.

Friday, August 22, 2014
Jeremy Wo, vice president of the Shawee Preservation Society, said it monitors streams, gathers historic facts, preserves buildings, and brings people together to celebrate this beautiful valley. He signed the treaty.

The signing of a Treaty of Friendship was held in the River Sanctuary Pavilion at Shawnee Inn on Aug. 12.

A sign in the pavilion read: "The Indians considered this valley a sanctuary to which they returned each year. While here, they were peaceful and reverent. The Great Spirit had provided such beauty and abundance."

At 4 p.m. an Indian song, "Gotcha," floated down the Delaware River ahead of the canoes and kayaks that were bringing the Lenape to Shawnee. The singer was Dan Reese, a professional singer with a drum (musical group) in New York.

Friday, August 15, 2014
DONALD R. SERFASS/TIMES NEWS Restoration of the 1874 Tamaqua train station took ten years and $1.5 million.

Ten years ago, a spirited group of volunteers showed what can be done when a community decides to build rather then destroy.

The Tamaqua Save Our Station committee set their sights on the town's 1874 train station with a promise to return it to glory as hub of the community.

The never-say-die band of rail fans made sure the 1874 Philadelphia and Reading Passenger Depot would re-emerge as the shining jewel of Schuylkill County's largest borough.

Friday, August 8, 2014
ELSA KERSCHNER/TIMES NEWS A "chimney" is used to pre-heat the charcoal.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints held a summer picnic near Lehighton in conjunction with its annual Pioneer Day.

Carrying out the pioneer theme, which celebrates the move to Utah when the Mormons were persecuted in Illinois, cooking was done in Dutch ovens.

The event also celebrated the 35th anniversary of the branch (church).

Gary Schoenberger, who was taking a turn cooking the hot dogs and hamburgers over an open fire, said heat can be controlled in the Dutch ovens by how many pieces of charcoal are used both under and on top of the oven.

Friday, August 1, 2014
ROY ACKERMAN PHOTO 1954: Rush Township Police Chief William Klotz, right, demonstrates a two-way radio with Tamaqua patrolman Harry Dornblaser. The historic image was taken on Aug. 1, 1954, on West Rowe Street near the Tamaqua police station.

How does a cop arrest a culprit if there's no place to lock him up?

The answer is to find a nearby police station that has a jail.

But how does an officer do that when his access to communications is limited?

These were some of the questions facing William B. Klotz, Rush Township's first policeman and advocate for two-way police radios.

It's hard to imagine, but there was a time when police had no easy way to communicate between patrol cars and police headquarters.

Friday, July 25, 2014
ARCHIVES/DONALD R. SERFASS Sister Bernard Agnes, IHM, principal, Marian High School, is flanked by Ralph Cipko, left, and brother Daniel on June 1, 2001, on occasion of a Cipko donation, one of many.

They were rich and mysterious.

Caring and kindhearted.

And without question, eccentric.

In fact, on an eccentricity scale of one to 10, they scored a 20.

Daniel and Ralph, the brothers Cipko, were Carbon County's dynamic duo of donations.

Some believe they gave away the lion's share of $10 million, or maybe more.

In the process, the black-garbed pair became a media sensation. The men were subject to intense scrutiny, even controversy. At one point, they spawned a fan club which had its own newsletter filled with Cipko trivia.

Friday, July 18, 2014
LINDA KOEHLER/TIMES NEWS Carol Sue and Kerry Gougher of Palmerton sit at a table made from a willow tree trunk that was on neighbor Terry Eckhart's property. Frank Hagar wanted to make a table out of it and encouraged Kerry to do the same. Kerry made this table and benches and one other with four tree stump chairs for their backyard paradise.

When Carol Sue and Kerry Gougher sit on their backyard porch, they can view a 10-year labor of love.

What they have created is a stunningly beautiful natural oasis. It's almost like visiting a botanical garden.

Friday, July 11, 2014
Coal cars, left, wait to be hoisted from the foot of the Mahanoy Plane in this 1890s image.

In 1868, the most powerful engines in the world were located 16 miles west of Tamaqua.

The power was necessary to hoist coal up a mountainside, coal that helped to build the country.

The engines were part of an amazing coal-car inclined railroad known as the Mahanoy Plane, an engineering marvel that boosted coal cars from the valley town of Mahanoy Plane, part of Gilberton, up a mountainside some 2,460 feet to Frackville.

The inclined plane railroad spanned two points separated by a rise of 524 feet.

Friday, June 27, 2014
Tamaqua's Amos Moser Whetstone, who died 120 years ago, is remembered as a civilian accidentally shot on the Fourth of July during the Battle of Gettysburg.

Tamaqua's Amos Moser Whetstone was in the wrong place at the wrong time, and because of it, earned a place in American history.

It was the summer of 1863, and Whetstone was standing on a second-floor porch in Gettysburg when he called out to a neighbor to be careful crossing the street.

The Battle of Gettysburg was underway and bullets were flying everywhere.

The woman crossed safely, but then, in an instant, it was Whetstone who took a hit.

He survived, but the wound may have haunted him for the rest of his life and possibly contributed to his death.