Looking Back: Franklin County’s history Oct. 3rd

Franklin County’s history

Take a look back at Franklin County’s history through news and photos that appeared in local newspapers 25, 50, and 100 years ago on October 3rd.

25 Years Ago 


“Small Adjustments Really Make a Big Difference for Gontz” 

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Chambersburg – He only made two little adjustments, but they made a world of difference in Torrey Gontz’s golf game.  

After posting a somewhat disappointing 81 at the York Invitational on Sept. 23, Gontz decided to work out the kinks on his swing and putting.  

That little added practice and tuning up helped Gontz turn in a stellar week last week.  

In Chambersburg’s final two regular season tournaments, Gontz fired a 5-under-67 at Gettysburg Country Club on Tuesday, then two days later shot an even-par 71 at the Carlisle Army Barracks course to help the Trojans clinch the Mid Penn II golf championship. 

Gontz is the Public Opinion Athlete of the Week. 

“After the York Invitational, coach (Bill) Burke and I made a few adjustments to my swing,” said Gontz, who ended the regular season with a 74.4 average.  “We just changed my technique a little bit and it helped.”  It must have helped; Gontz sank seven birdies on his 5-under-67 day.  

“I hit a lot of greens that day,” Gontz said.  “I was hitting my irons really well that day and I had a couple putts that I just had to tap in.”  

“Torrey just had an off day at the York Invitational,” Chambersburg coach Bill Burke said.  “After that he decided it was time to work hard and take his game to a higher level and he has since.” 

Gontz’s upgraded play couldn’t have come at a better time.   

The Mid Penn Conference tournament is Thursday at the Hershey Country Club South course and is a qualifier for the District 3 Tournament on Oct. 13-14 at Bri-arwood Country Club, York.   

“We had a practice round today (Monday) and I felt pretty good,” said Gontz, a junior.  He admits he’ll have to keep swinging with accuracy and, most important, get the putting game on track. 

 Gontz said, “Ever since I started playing golf (at 10 years old), I’ve always had trouble putting.  But I’ve been working on my putting technique and hopefully I’ve gotten it straightened out.”   

“This is the time of the year when you have to have your game in tip-top shape.”  Burke said.  “Torrey seems to be playing as well as he has in his previous two years.”  

In past years Chambersburg might have sent only four or five golfers to the Mid Penn tournament, but this year all seven of the Trojans’ top players Gontz, Ben Hann, Andy Mitchell, Ryan Smith, Pat Irwin, Matt Strickler and Austin Kegerreis will be at the conference tournament.  

“It’s going to be nice having the whole team there,” Gontz said.  “And it would be nice to see a lot of us qualify for districts because we all have a good chance.”  

“The whole team is playing really well right now,” Burke said.  “I think we have a shot at getting a couple of them qualified for districts.” 

75 Years Ago 

Oct3, 1970 –Saturday

“John H. Shook Home to Open 

The new, modem facility of the John H. Shook Home for the Aged, 55 S. Second St., will open its doors for public inspection Sunday from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.    

Monday the first guests to occupy the new home will move in from the present home on 161 E. Queen St.  Seventeen guests will make the transfer to the $800,000 facility, designed by Noelker and Hull, architects.  

The John H. Shook Home for the Aged was, founded in 1918 through the bequest of John II. Shook, a banker and civic figure of prominence  in Greencastle, who died December 30, 1916.  

The provision, in Shook’s will bequeathed his entire estate for the founding and maintenance of a home for the aged, specifying that it was to be located in Chambersburg.  

The Shook Home for the Aged was chartered in the county courts following the death of Shook’s wife in 1918. On November 19, 1919, the present site of the home was purchased.  Initial guests at the Shook Home were seven women who had previously been guests at an “old ladies home” which had been founded in 1913 under the direction of John G. Orr, Children’s Aid Society.   

Orr was the first president of the board of directors for the Shook Home and was instrumental in establishing the Home. After official opening of the home’s facilities, the Children’s Aid Society merged its facilities with the Shook Home. 

Funds left after initial expenditures, purchase of site and equipping of Home facilities, were invested in prime securities, with earnings used for annual maintenance of the home.  The Chambersburg Trust Company served as trustee and treasurer for the Home.  

In 1945 the Shook Home for the Aged had 21 elderly women in residence with a waiting list of 27.  The Home drew its guests almost exclusively from Franklin County.  A requirement of the Home at this time stipulated that women 70 years of age or older would pay an entrance fee of at least $300 and must be in fairly good health at time of admission. 

 Because of the long waiting list in 1945, the board would not consider admitting anyone under the age of 65 years.  Upon admission to the home, all the future need of the guests were taken care of by the home.  The home provided, in addition to all necessary living facilities, complete medical care and even funeral expenses.  

In 1952 the Shook Home was bequeathed $10,000 under the will of Rose Pauline Plough, Chambersburg, or one-sixth of the residuary estate.  The Home, previous to this, had received several smaller bequests.  The Home and the Children’s Aid Society were named residual beneficiaries in the estate of Matilda J. Mohler, Chambersburg, in 1963.   

The property at 55 South Second Street, where the new facility stands, was purchased in 1964 as an outlet for the facility and for future expansion.  The Home received additional funds under the will of a retired tailor, U.S. Grant Svigert,.in 1965.  

In September 1965, the board of directors of the home authorized preparation of plans for an expansion of the building on recommendation of a preliminary study committee appointed to determine the needs of the home.   

The board of directors in March, 1968, disclosed plans for a new facility to be erected on South Second Street.  Preliminary architectural drawings were prepared by Noelker and Hull, architects.  

Plans envisioned a two-and-one-half story building to hold approximately 70 guests, including men, women, and couples.  A chapel, therapy room, recreation room, dining room, and individual rooms, with a plan of suites for couples were included in the new home.   

A professionally conducted fund-raising campaign was tentatively scheduled in March of 1968 and was underway by the summer of 1968.  The drive officially got a send-off July 22, 1968, when staff members of Kirby-Smith Associates arrived in Chambersburg to initiate the fund drive for the proposed building program.   

The Shook Home was issued demolition permits for three buildings to make way for the new home in August, 1968.  A total pf $201,276.04 had been pledged locally for the proposed Shook Home by that time.  In October, 1968, $302,218.33 had been realized, in cash and pledges.  

In December, 1968, the Shook Home and Chamber of Commerce jointly purchased an additional property on South Second Street to make way for the home.  The building of the property was scheduled for demolition prior to construction of the home.  The building fund at this time recorded $342,000 with $600,000 as the expected goal.   

Bids for construction of the Shook Home, opened in April, 1969, were below construction estimates. Plans called for the start of construction immediately following awarding of contracts.  Lanehart Company of Greencastle submitted the low-bid of $607,804.  Others bidding were R. A. Hill and Carlisle Builders.  

Mr. and Mrs. M. B. Wyse assumed supervisory capacities in the Shook Heme on January 1, 1970.  Wyse will act as supervisor and his wife as matron in the new Home when it officially accepts guests Monday.   

Paul H. Kunkle, president of the Shook Home Board, spoke for the Board when he commented, “We’re gratified that we are finally able to open the home.”  Kunkle added that he was “appreciative of the response of the community, although we still need considerable funds.” 

100 Years Ago 

Oct3, 1920Sunday

“Specials at the Wolf Employees Store Co., today”  

The public is invited to trade at the Wolf employees’ grocery, 69 Lincoln Way West, and the following specials will be offered today to you:   Employees and public. 

 Rice, 10c a lb.: sugar. 16c a lb.: country sausage, 2oc a lb.; pudding, 25 c a lb.; flour, 73c a sack; country butter, 63o a lb., creamery butter, 23c ja lb.; lard, 21c a lb.; dried beef, 65e a. lb.   —  (Advertisement) 


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