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 April 2nd.
25 Years Ago
April 2, 1995 – Sunday
“Former Outhouse is Destroyed by Blast”
GREENCASTLE — It was once home to a litter of wild kittens. Before that it kept straw dry for Satch, a golden retriever. Many years ago, before indoor plumbing, it was an outhouse.
With a loud blast that shook the home of David and Ellen Freeman, 11682 Grant Shook Road, Greencastle, the building was turned into splintered wood scattered across their property.
“I thought that somebody ran into the house,” Ellen said of the 12:30 a.m. blast. “I was expecting to come down stairs and see a vehicle sitting in my living room.”
Pennsylvania State Police are investigating the explosion that destroyed the small wooden structure, blew a hole through a refrigerator door and that shattered three windows on a nearby garage.
The Freemans and Brian Freeman, David’s brother, were awakened by the blast. Their 16-month-old son, D.J., slept through it.
Ellen went outside to see what happened, but it was dark and raining and she couldn’t see a thing.
They didn’t discover the damage until dawn.
Their house, about 30 feet from the outhouse, was not damaged in the explosion.Ellen said large lilac bushes may have blocked the debris.
Police will conduct chemical tests to determine what type of explosive was used. They told the Freemans a fiberglass portable toilet was blown up on Williamsport Pike a few weeks ago.
“Maybe it was like an April Fool’s joke, or kids just having fun,” she said. The damage is estimated at $1,900.
50 Years Ago
April 2, 1970 – Thursday
“Conservation Units Votes to Save Park”
CHAMBERSBURG — Retention of the Park of the Valiant as a park of natural beauty was advocated in a resolution passed by a new environmental conservation organization Wednesday night.
The group, which has adopted the official name, Environmental Conservation Organization, or ECO for short, acted after learning the small park on North Second Street was threatened by a Sears Roebuck Co. expansion plan in the urban renewal area.
Plans of the group’s program and projects committee for a Falling Spring Conococheague clean-up within the borough was approved by the membership. The clean-up will be held Saturday, April 25.
Joseph Crider, chairman of the committee, said volunteers to help in the clean-up are sought. Individuals or organizations wishing to participate are asked to call Crider at 263-3549, or Mrs. Ed Piper Sr., 263-3602.
On-site headquarters for the clean-up will be the parking lot behind Palmer’s on the Square. Volunteer workers are asked to provide their own gloves and to bring any boots, waders, rakes, or hoes they have to use on the job.
Promises of assistance have been received from the Jaycees, the Izaak Walton League, the Youth Against Pollution, Scouting organizations and a group of students from Wilson College.
The program and projects committee will meet Wednesday, April 8, to divide the streams into clean-up sections, discuss section leaders, who in many instances will be leaders of volunteer participating, and plan details for having food available.
The clean-up is planned on Falling Spring from the Fifth Street bridge to its juncture with the Conococheague, and on Conococheague from the dam at Wolf Lake to the borough farm south of town. The borough will provide two trucks and drivers from 12 noon until 4 p.m. to collect the debris and remove it to the landfill area.
100 Years Ago
April 2, 1920 – Friday
“Dedicates a home on April 25”
Chambersburg – Commandant Price of the Salvation Army announced yesterday that the formal dedication of the new quarters of the Chambersburg corps will be held on April 25. Brigadier Escott of the south-eastern province, of which Chambersburg is a part, will officiate at the dedication ceremonies..
Work on preparing the new quarters of 107 – 111 North Main street for the army’s use was begun yesterday. The upper stories will be used by Commandant Price as a dwelling, with an office In the extreme northern end. The room recently occupied by Mrs. M. Manning’s millinery shop will be used as an assembly hall. The ladies furnish stores conducted by Miss May Sierer in the building will be continued for the present.
The plans of the building were formally accepted by the Salvation Army headquarters on Tuesday. The structure was purchased from Carl Stouffer of New York formerly of town, for $9,000 of which amount $5,000 was paid in cash. The purchase money was contributed in the drive made last year in Franklin county In recognition of the Salvation Army’s services during the world war. Since purchasing the building Commandant Price has been offered $11,000 for it, but declined because it Is ideally situated for the work of the Salvation Army. Theannual drive for funds this year Is planned for May 10 to 20.
Another movement that is now receiving the attention of Commandant Price is the organization of the Girl’s Guards. A dozen or more girls are enrolled and it is anticipated that a larger organization will be formed.