Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Profile-Bill Schultz, runner and educator

 Role played in borough: Was seen as a role model for children when he completed a 3,000 mile journey on foot across America in 1990.

Specialized in: Bill was and is still a great advocate for encouraging children to follow their dreams. He particularly specialized in science and geography which he utilized on his journey to teach his students about the science and geography involved in the journey.

History: When Bill retired in June 2011, he had spent over twenty years at Harris Elementary School teaching fifth grade. Being a avid runner, Bill competed with his brother in many competitions in the 1980s. His most memorable experience before his journey across America was a six day competition where he beat the American record for endurance.  While planning his journey, he decided that instead of doing the usual east to west route which he described to his students would be harder to do, he would go west to east. He had two reasons for doing this: 1) the wind would be at his charting weather patterns he deduced that this would be so. 2) he would have the incentive to go home. He also planned with the help of one of the other teachers, affectionately known by teachers and students alike as Miss Pauline to send postcards of his various stops along the way. He started his journey on February 11th and spent 100 nights on the road stopping at various destinations to bed down for the night and/or speak at the local elementary schools. The students at Harris Elementary tracked his progress via a map set up in one of the classrooms and the Wednesday morning phone calls Bill would make to report where he was. It became a sort of game...guessing where Mr. Schultz was...until the next call came in. For some of the students he connected with during his journey, memories still surface as postcards were exchanged and many remained pen pals with other students from different parts of the country. The borough honored him on June 8th 1990 with the key to the borough at what the borough renamed as "Bill Schultz Day."

 Postscript-Where is he now?: Bill is currently planning another journey with his brother biking across country. He still runs marathons regularly, and has once run the Boston Marathon.

Photograph by Anne Neborak-1991

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Past Churches-First Lutheran Church of Collingdale

Founded: September 19, 1920-services were held in the Collingdale Fire Company #1 Fire Hall on Clifton Avenue. This is actually across the street from the Collingdale Fire Company #1 building.
First organization of congregation: February 13, 1921. 29 original members joined.
Church officially recognized by church organization:
October 6, 1921...congregation viable enough to be admitted to Eastern Pennsylvania Synod.
Church charter signed: March 6, 1923, charter signed by church councilmen. May 8, 1923, charter accepted by court and signed by Judge Isaac H. Johnson.
Groundbreaking of land for church: November 16, 1925. Cornerstone laid: May 2, 1926
Building finished and dedicated: November 7, 1926.
A Brief History: As you can imagine it took a lot of time and effort to establish this church. After the church was dedicated, the numbers grew to three hundred. Most were drawn to the church by the activities the church sponsored, such as Vacation Bible Schools. Others were drawn by the beautiful interior of the building. During the Second World War, the basement of the building was utilized as a kind of headquarters for the war effort. Recently it lost membership due to a number of factors. One of the biggest factors was the split services conducted by Reverend Frederic Watson in the late 1980s as an experiment. The experiment failed as even more decided to leave. The last church service was Easter Sunday 2011.
First Lutheran Church of Collingdale, Clifton Avenue with fire trucks out front 1940

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Past Businesses-Sue's Sweet Shop

A brief history: When Campus Sweet Shop opened around 1930, there were only a few restaurants in the area that catered to the young. Most youngsters gravitated towards the drug stores that sold refreshments as part of their business. One of the most popular drug stores was Doc Blecker's who remained famous for their homemade root beer. The Campus Sweet Shop filled a need for sweets and was famous for their ice cream sodas. Once Sue's specialties became known, teenagers patronized and spread the word until Sue's became a popular teenage "hangout." The store moved only once in 1947 from its original location on Sharon Avenue to MacDade Boulevard across from the high school. It reopened in 1948 with a new and complete renovation that catered to the teenagers in the borough. This photograph, courtesy of friend of Sue's Luncheonette, shows the shop in the 1950s when it became a popular spot for both old and young. It officially closed June 6, 1975.

Today the building is occupied by Dave Hanly Fuel Co.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Profile- Educator Margaret B. Harris

Role played in borough:  Margaret was Collingdale's 1st school teacher, starting in 1890 before the town was incorporated.

Area specialized in: Margaret loved art. She drew many pencil sketches of plants and animals and created a love for art in her students.

History: Margaret came to Collingdale with her brother, Enon in the spring of 1886 to settle on a tract of land on Felton Avenue. While there she noticed that the children, including her brother's children, had no place to learn and were sadly lacking an education. She decided to help. At that time female teachers were just becoming less of novelty and more common. She went to school, learned all she could and came back ready to teach all the children of Collingdale in 1890. Although she never married, Margaret treasured and nurtured the children she taught for over 40 years. When she retired in 1937, the Bartram Avenue School was renamed in her honor.

Margaret Brisbane Harris as a young woman

Courtesy of Helen Dick Deyo Moyer