Today my grandson, Sean, asked me to answer several questions about my younger years, like what did I do for fun, how I celebrated my birthdays, where did I live, and how many states have I visited, etc. It was rather fun looking back and remembering how I spent my growing-up years. So here are my responses with some accompanied pictures.
I was born in 1946 in Cortland, New York and lived there until I went to Powelson Business Institute in Syracuse, NY in 1964, where I lived with my sister, Charolotte and husband, Al and family.
I have so many wonderful memories growing up in Cortland. The first house I recall living at was on 197 Port Watson Street Street (a two-story duplex) which is still there. My father passed away while living on Port Watson when I was six month’s old, so I really never did get to know my father. My two oldest sisters, Betty and Doris were already married and having families of their own.
My sister Jane, Me (Gen), and my sister, Shirley.
My sister, Jane, me, and neighbor, Kathy Seymour. Gosh, I love these pics.
How surprized I was when my mother passed away in 1995, that the Seymours were at her funeral service. Good neighbors, I’d say!
Myself (Gen) and neighbor, Ronnie Rosatto. I was most likely about 3 to 4 years old in these pics. My elementary years were spent at Randall School on Randall Avenue.
We moved to South Avenue (formerly Railway Avenue) sometime between 1950 and 1952, It certainly was a multi-cultural neighborhood, with folks from Russia, Portugal, Italy, Holland, Canada, Germany, some with native American backgrounds and so many more ethnic groups than I probably realized. Everyone pretty much knew everyone on the street, respected and cared for one another.
We so enjoyed playing outside from dawn to dusk when not in school. We played hopscotch, kick the can, hide-n-go-seek, experienced hoola-hooping, jump roping, roller skating at the train station, played tennis in box cars (probably shouldn’t have done that), and caught pollywogs in the creek across the street. We formed kids clubs, making membership cards, and having talent shows, meetings in our basement, picnics in the yard, tent making sleep overs on the porch, and trips to Beaudry Park. I joined Girl Scouts just down the street at Owego Street School.
Often we would ride our bikes or walk to Suggett Park on the Northside of town to swim at the pool and partake in the Summer Park Program. One year I won a bike at Suggett Park and so there was no more having to walk the distance to the park. We sure did have plenty to do, and were never bored.
The neighborhood kids at 4 1/2 South Avenue. My brother, Chuck, is in the center back, with me in the front, and some other boys from the hood….no clue to who they are. I’ll post of Facebook and see if I get any responses.
Me (right) and my niece, Barbara in front of the Steel Workers of America Office
on South Avenue. Check out that lovely purse! Barbara was pretty good at
buttoning her coat, wouldn’t you say? Later my best friend, Penny, would move into the apartment above this building with her mother, Polly and brother, George.
Photos of me at 4 1/2 South Avenue the first in 1954, age 8 and the second
in 1955, age 9. Always loved hats! Always wearing a smile…I was a happy kid!
Happy moment for me winning the bike at Suggett Park. I must have been 10 or 11 in this photo, and can remember being pretty fond of waffle-ironed hair.
Fun in the neighborhood at 24 1/2 South Avenue. Not sure who some of these are?
Photo on left: (l to r) My niece, Valerie, ?, Dorothy Bellinger, Kathy Salce, My niece, Dixie, ?.
Picture on right: (l to r) Carol Christmas (I think Leo Christmas’s daughter), Joey Salce, Harriet Bellinger, Kathy Salce, Dorothy Bellinger, and girl in front ?
I can remember spending much of my time with the Salce family. Tina and Guido were like second parents. And can I tell you how much I loved their Italian food and hanging out there watching the Mickey Mouse Club.
Refreshments on the front lawn. (l to r) Terry(?) Straight, Dixie Monty, Valerie Monty, and ?. The house in the background was a former grocery store owned by Russian immigrant, Onufry Pushkar. Samuel Movadvorsky, also a Russian immigrant lived there and worked for Wickwire Co. Mr. Pushkar had a beautiful backyard with a flourishing concord grape vine that made its way into our backyard. He was always kind enough to let us enjoy some of those tasty grapes!
Home Bible Study Group at 24 1/2 South Avenue. Front to back, my sister, Shirley,
myself (Gen), next two, Bible study friends, and in far back, my friend, Lyda from down the street. Cannot remember Lyda’s last name?
How I celebrated birthdays…usually a party with family and friends. (l to r)
First blonde girl ?, my best friend, Penny Button, my niece, Valerie, myself (Gen), my niece, Dixie, Not sure of girl in back of her ?, Terry Straight, Dixie Oliver, and my mother, Dora. And I think that is a baby’s hat in the right front?? My sister, Doris, a professional cake decorator, always made the most beautiful birthday cakes. And look 2 cakes!! We usually played several games and awarded small prizes for winners, and served cake and ice cream and sometimes tea sandwiches and relishes.
I remember going to George’s Grocery store on S. Main Street with my friend, Penny (a Penny and Jenny friendship) and getting ice cream and candy from their penny candy case and charging it to Penny’s mom’s account which was paid weekly. We usually chose ice cream sandwiches and we both loved Mallow Cups. I used to fear that her mother would get after us for charging all these goodies on her account.
Melody Land Pizza was just a short distance away and we frequented their establishment at least once a week for many years. The Diorios were such special folks, and it was like being one of the family. Melodyland Restaurant is still in operation today and my daughter enjoys stopping in for Pizza occasionally.
Another of my favorite stop off’s was Marion Margaret Ice Cream on Huntington Street. Just happened to be right on the way home from school! My favorite was their vanilla ice cream cup topped with maple syrup and a dusting of malt powder, topped with whipped cream and cherry eaten with a wooden spoon! Pretty tasty!
Thankful for the Wonderful Memories,