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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 Nov. 14th.

25 Years Ago

Nov 14, 1994

“WANTED:  Half a Million Bucks –  Soccer group set to begin fundraising”


They have the land. 

They have the plans. 

Now, all they need is the money. 

Members of the new Chambersburg Youth Soccer Association must raise at least $500,000 to realize their dream of building Franklin County’s largest sports complex. 

The $1.3 million multisport park could open on 19 acres of land in the borough’s west end as early as next fall, a year later than was once expected. 

“There’s an obvious need for more soccer fields because the youth soccer programs are just exploding,” said Ed Gotwals, association president. 

“Obviously, anything you’re doing for kids is a worthy project.” Since 1986, the number of soccer teams playing in the Chambersburg area has increased from five to 91. That includes 64 elementary school teams. 

In March, the association likely will launch a major fund-raising drive, asking businesses and individuals to provide money and services. 

Larry Stenger, an advisory director with the youth soccer group, will head that effort. 

“It’s always been a sport that I’ve thought is phenomenal,” Stenger said. “It’s good for everybody, and you can play for a long time.” 

Originally, the Chambersburg Soccer Club was in charge of raising money for and building the park. 

But the Internal Revenue Service denied the group tax-exempt status because it sponsored programs for adults. 

So, Gotwals and other members formed the youth association to handle children’s programs and fund-raising for the park. 

In October, the new association gained non-profit status, an important designation for groups trying to raise a lot of money. Such status makes donations tax-deductible. 

Since the association gained the status, local developer Tanya Nitterhouse donated 19 acres near the Franklin County Housing Authority, and the Chambersburg Rotary Foundation donated $25,000. 

Chambersburg Borough also leased, free of charge, five acres of adjacent property for parking and a main entrance off Washington Street. 

“I hope to God it gives the kids some kind of structured recreation,” Nitter house said. “We always complain that we don’t want kids anywhere, but we don’t give them a place to be.” 

She donated land that has been in her family since 1942. She wouldn’t say how much it’s worth, only that offering property for recreation is important in any community. 

“I’m giving away my back yard,” she said. “If it’s not used as recreation, it comes back to me. We’re bringing back the idea of all the family together in one place recreating together.” 

Nitterhouse, owner of Sunny Hill Development Corp., also agreed to donate another 10 acres for future development, provided the association follows through1 with its plans to build the complex. 

It will be called the Nellie and T.K. Nitterhouse Memorial Park, named after Tanya’s parents. The complex will be next to Franklin County Housing Authority public housing. Included in the first phase: • B -The Bill and Maybelle Shrader soccer stadium. Shrader was a longtime Rotary Club member and supporter of youth programs. • B One regulation soccer field and two smaller fields. • B   A rugby field for the Chambersburg Turtleheads Rugby Club that may be converted into two smaller soccer fields.  A permanent building for rest-rooms, concessions and maintenance equipment.• A nature trail ‘and jogging / walking track.

50 Years Ago

November 14, 1969  –Friday

“Launch Successful, Astronauts Moonbound”

America’s Apollo 12 astronauts rode a Saturn 5 rocket into earth orbit through a thunder storm today, successfully completing the first step in man’s second moon landing expedition.

The world’s most powerful rocket thundered away at 11:11 a.m. (EST) to start Charles “Pete” Conrad Jr., Richard F. Gordon Jr. and Alan L. Bean toward a hoped-for pinpoint landing in the Ocean of Storms to begin the first detailed exploration of the moon.

The weather conditions were the worst for any American space launching. The storm moved into the area about an hour before the liftoff and for a while threatened to delay the launch. But officials decided the conditions were satisfactory and gave the go ahead.

Conrad agreed with the decision, saying, “Sounds good to me.”

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100 Years Ago

November 14, 1919 -Friday         


O. A. Rock, the well known painter, yesterday received a telegram from headquarters of the American. Red Cross in Washington, telling that his son, Mark G. Rock, had died on November 8, at St. Nazaire, France, according to a cablegram received on November 10. No details were given as to the cause of death. 

Mr. Rock was much shocked, as the last letter he had received from his son, mailed on Oct, 7, told that he was in the best of health and was enjoying the Red Cross work and would probably be engaged in it until next February. 

Mark entered the Army service here on July 26, 1918, going to Camp Lee, and to France on September 15, with a medical detachment. On July 27 of this year he was discharged from the army and he answered the call in France for Red Cross workers.

He was engaged in one of the organization’s medical supply depots and was interested In the work of helping to alleviate Europe’s physical woes. 

Mark Rock was one of four brothers in the army service during the war. He was 25 years old and worked In several local business places, the last before entering the service being at Hotel Wallace as a clerk. 

He was a member of the Jr. O. U. A. M. and Eagles and is survived by two children, Charles and Emma Jane, his father, and these brothers:  Floyd of Philadelphia, Paul of Wilkinsburg, Clyde of Sunbury, Ray, Herbert and Layton, all of town.

Local History

Franklin County’s history June 25th

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 June 25th.
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