Thursday, December 23, 2010
Shadowy figures have been spotted throughout the bar by numerous patrons and cold spots have been felt all throughout. And all you singles guys better be wary of a flirty woman named Annie. Her spirit has been known to be quite attracted to young bachelors. You have been warned.
Sunday, December 19, 2010
On a chilly Christmas evening in 1776, George Washington may have changed the fate of America forever. After suffering moral defeats in New York City, General Washington needed to regain the morale of his troops. He devised an attack on the Hessian forces in Trenton and Princeton, New Jersey. Washington and his troops set camp at the village of Taylorsville, Pennsylvania, located on the banks of the Delaware River. The town was developed around a ferry crossing owned by Samuel McConkey. Mr. McConkey also owned an inn and tavern, which served as a guard post to keep alert for attacking British Troops. It’s also believed that Washington and his troops dined at McConkey’s Ferry Inn before that treacherous night on the Delaware.
At approximately 6:00 p.m. on Christmas evening, Washington and his troops set out on the Delaware River. The Durham boats Washington specifically asked for seemed to be the perfect fit for all his men plus their heavy gear. The Durham boats were used for hauling iron on the river. This evening they would receive their hardest workout. A classic Pennsylvanian nor’easter was looming on the horizon. The battle through the icy waters of the Delaware was just one of the many to come in those ten crucial days. Sleet, snow and freezing rain fell down on Washington’s troops as they fought through the blustery night. After the crossing, Washington marched his men into Trenton, New Jersey and devised a two prong attack, which would change the Revolution forever.It is thought that more men perished from diseases and sickness along the banks of the Delaware than in the battles that proceeded. The Thompson-Neely house, which still stands, acted as a hospital during the troop’s encampment at Taylorsville. It is unknown exactly how many men perished in this site, and almost all who died are still unknown. While the building of the Delaware Canal was going on, many workers found body remains in the soil outlaying the river.
A soldier’s grave was later made to commemorate all who lost their lives during that cold December in 1776. The tombstones that line the bank only represent a few of the many who lost their lives for our freedoms.
In 1918 the town of Taylorsville was changed to Washington’s Crossing. Today, many of the buildings still stand, allowing us to retrace history and walk the hallowed grounds where many had given blood and life for the many freedoms we so boldly display today.
Monday, December 13, 2010
When driving along the Lincoln Highway near the Hellam exit outside of York, Pennsylvania, you'll pass a home sure to attract your attention. There is no little old woman with too many kids living here, but the kids are sure to love it. The fact it acts as an ice cream shop doesn't hurt either.
The Shoe House was built in 1949 for a gentleman named Mahlon Haines. Haines was quite a savvy businessman and a self-starter. In 1905, upon splitting up with his fiance, Haines traveled from Ohio to York, Pennsylvania... on his bicycle, where he than pawned the engagement ring. He used the money to buy shoes. He sold those immediately and bought as many more pairs as he could with his profits. Soon he was able to open a store in downtown York.
Haines was very creative and was known to use various antics and marketing gimmicks to attract business to his shoe store, including paying people on the street if they knew who he was. One day he had an ingenious idea to build a shoe house. He would use the home to help further promote his shoe business. In the beginning the home's intention was to be used by young newlywed couples. The recently married couples could stay there free of charge, and would have servants to help them during their stay. I'm guessing this was his way of acquiring a customer for life. After all, if someone paid for my honeymoon, I'd be likely to buy shoes from him - for myself and my family - for the rest of my life.
On Outta the Way's visit, we toured the Shoe House, and, for a small fee you can as well. The Shoe House is much bigger on the inside than the outside lets on. The owners of the Shoe House are very friendly and outgoing. They have shoe memorabilia that they have collected, or have had donated to them throughout the rooms of the house. Some of these items are quite rare and rather valuable. Even the windows in the home have shoes painted on them.
While on the tour you'll get a visit to every room, though no photographs are allowed. In our opinion this just helps to add to the mystery and gives you more of a reason to visit.
On the way out, be sure to grab an ice cream cone and check out the shoe-shaped doghouse as well. What dog wouldn't love a giant shoe to sleep and play in!