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Mail call: Memories of Mac’s Hardware, Camp Ganoga, one-room schools and more

Hello everyone! I recently returned from an almost two-week vacation in Arizona, and re-acclimating to the cooler weather has not been fun.

What I hope will be fun is a chance to sample some random reader memories from the mailbag today. I have interesting memories and photos of one-room schools, Mac’s Hardware, Camp Ganoga, Mailman’s department store and more.

Mac’s Hardware

In response to an earlier post about Mac’s Hardware, which was at 713 Arsenal Road in York, reader Erik commented, “I remember Mac’s Hardware very well – Mac was my grandfather… My dad, Bruce, ran the store for a while when I would be in the back dusting off the paint cans or finding other things to do while Dad was working. I’ve not seen the store since I was a young boy in the ’70s but have fond memories of time spent there. Glad I finally found an address – thanks for that!”

Camp Ganoga

Reader Gloria Ranker shared some photos quite a while ago, noting, “I hope these… are of interest to you and your readers.”

This photo was taken at Camp Canoga, a former Boy Scout camp along the Conewago Creek in Newberry Township that last operated in 1945.


Here’s what was written on the back of the photo:


Alert fellow blogger Stephen Smith saw this and noted something I hadn’t thought to remark on – these are almost certainly CCC (Civilian Conservation Corps) workers at the camp, not Boy Scouts, based on their age. Stephen, thanks for that great note!

One-room schools

Reader Donna Skaggs noted that she had read many previous columns about one-room schoolhouses in York County. She writes, “My mother, Nedra (Henninger) Kuhns, was a music teacher at seven of these during 1941 and 1942, but I don’t know which ones in particular. I know she traveled through the southern end of the county during those two years. She got the job right out of West Chester University because she had won a car and was able to travel from one school to another. I don’t have a lot of info as it took place before any of us were born, but I thought maybe some of your readers would remember this period.”

I would certainly love to hear more about anyone who remembers their music lessons in the county’s one-room schools!

Meanwhile, Gloria Ranker, who had also shared the Camp Ganoga photos, also shared this one from the former Jefferson School in York:


Here’s what was written on the back of this one:


Mailman’s and more

Longtime reader Keith Collier of Dallastown wondered, “Have you ever had an in-depth discussion of Stanley Mailman, and his retail endeavors? They included Mailman’s department store, a founding anchor of the Queensgate Shopping Center, and before that, Masters’ department store at the strip center on Edgar Street, where WellSpan now has a large group of health offices and clinics.”

Keith wrote, “At the time the Queensgate store closed (late 1980s, I think?) there was an article in the Daily Record, which had some interviews with Mr. Mailman and some of the employees and customers regarding their experiences at the store. I’d also seen or heard (and maybe it was in that article) that when the store closed, Mailman made certain every one of his creditors were paid in full, as opposed to many stores who run into tremendous debt, and then close and declare bankruptcy. I was a regular customer there, and the variety of merchandise (at fair prices!) was always a marvel to me! Looking back, I’ve told people in talking about the place, that if you couldn’t find it at Mailman’s, you probably didn’t really need it anyway!”

He concluded, “Masters’ closed just before Mailman’s opened, and I was about 5 to 7 years old then, but I do recall being along with my dad several times when he shopped there. It would be interesting to know more history about it, and other folks’ experiences there.”

I would certainly love to hear more about both Mailman’s and Masters’, so please do share any info you have!

Have questions or memories to share? Email me at or write to Ask Joan, York Daily Record/Sunday News, 1891 Loucks Road, York PA 17408. We cannot accept any phone calls with questions or information.