Riverside Park

16-year-old Helena Muffly wrote exactly 100 years ago today: 

Saturday, May 27, 1911: Went to Watsontown this morning, and up to McEwensville this afternoon. Oh the countless errands I have to perform keeps me rather busy. Ruth went to Riverside park.

Source of old Riverside Park postcards: Milton Historical Society

Her middle-aged granddaughter’s comments 100 years later:

A hundred years ago today, it sounds as if Grandma’s sister Ruth had all the fun—and Grandma had all of the work. I wonder if Ruth got home in time to help milk the cows—or if Grandma had to do it by herself.

Riverside Park

When Grandma was young, Riverside Park was the center of the summer social scene.

A trolley ran between Watsontown and Milton. According to Robert Swope, Jr.”

The line passed through a popular recreational park called Riverside Park just south of Watsontown. The park had amusements, swimming, boating and romantic scenery.

 Robert Swope, Jr. in Watsontown, McEwensville, and Delaware Township: A Real Photo Postcard History

The park was only open during the summer months—and probably had just opened for the season. An article in the Watsontown Star and Record from three years later describes the park opening.

Watsontown Star and Record, May 15, 1914 (Source: Montgomery House Library)

Riverside Park was located near the current location of Fort Boone Campsites.

Running Errands

When I was growing up on a farm, after I got my driver’s license,  I remember clearly how farm machinery broke with maddening frequency—and how I’d be sent on errands to buy the needed parts. In Grandma’s day, farm machinery wouldn’t have been nearly as mechanized, but maybe repairs still needed to be purchased—or maybe the errands were totally unrelated to machinery repairs. . .

2 thoughts on “Riverside Park

  1. Small world. I ran into Paul Swope a few weeks ago, at the Lutheran Church in Chicago Heights that Kim and I belonged to in the 80’s. Paul’s lived in the Heights since the 40’s, but he’s from Turbotville.

    1. It’s a small world. . . I bet Paul’s father was one of the photographers who made real photo post cards with pictures of Turbotville, McEwensville and the surrounding area in the early 20th century. Robert Swope, in his postcard history, writes about the photographers in the introduction. One of them was James Bannon Swope. It says that James gave up photography and went to seminary. He then became the pastor of Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church in Chicago Heights Illinois.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s