Only in York County

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Ask Joan: It’s snowing? edition

Not a fan of snow. Nope nope nope nope nope nope nope.

But that’s what it’s doing right now in West Manchester Township, so I’m a little grouchy.

What’s inside

1. Where to find older pictures
2. St. Francis Academy in Spring Grove
3. Seeking former YESCO building’s history

1. I am looking for old pictures of the property we just bought in Stoverstown. I am specifically looking for any pictures from the mid to late 1950s of 60+ residents who showed up on the day of ground breaking with picks and shovels and proceeded to hand dig the trenches for the footers.
– Willa Lefever

Willa and her family, well known as the owners of Sonnewald Natural Foods and active in the Stoverstown area of North Codorus Township, have undertaken a project to create a Stoverstown community center at the former North Codorus Township Community Building (old fire hall), the building she was looking for a photo of.

I told Willa that our best suggestion for photos would be the Heritage Trust archives – we don’t have any photos digitized before the mid-1990s, and anything earlier than that would just be printouts from microfilm, and really only useful if there was a particular date.

The Trust is usually our personal first stop, as well as any township history groups – in the Stoverstown area I wonder if that might not be the Codorus Valley Area Historical Society – they have a newsletter, the Codorus Valley Chronicles, and are an active group, though I unfortunately don’t have any contact info on record for them.

But I wanted to share her question here because I regularly get requests for photos, and thought it might be helpful.

I also want to invite anyone interested in learning more about the Stoverstown Community Center project to email or to leave a message for Willa at 717-225-3825.

2. I graduated from Eichelberger High School in 1951. Do you know if the St. Francis Academy still exists in Spring Grove?
– Gayle Thrush Haines

Gayle, thanks for asking! According to the Saint Francis Prep alumni site, that school in Spring Grove was open from 1946 to 1989, and the main building was partially burned and the property sold in 1989.

In addition to a large collection of photos on that website, on the alumni group’s Facebook page, you can see somewhat recent photos of the building as well.

I hope you’ll check them out!

3. As a firefighter, we go into buildings to check out the lay out of the hallways and what the building is built with. In North York they’re building apartments in the old YESCO Electrical building. The apartments are called City View. Can anyone tell me what was in this building before YESCO? In one part of the building is an exposed, at one time, outside wall with writing on.
– Greg Moul

Greg contacted me via Facebook about this, and I said I’d be glad to see what we could find out for him! I haven’t turned up any news on that property in our archives, which is actually a little surprising, but I’d be glad to know more as well, so please let us know if you have details.

Got any questions? Ask Joan using the form at right. I’ll attempt to answer them in a future “Ask Joan” column on this blog. I get a large volume, but I will feature three each week and answer as many as possible!

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