Artwork by Cliff Satterthwaite completes Freysville Trilogy
Cliff Satterthwaite showed me an unfinished watercolor of a rural intersection. I immediately recognized it as Freysville and thought others would also. Then I noticed the name Cliff placed on the mailbox in 1972; Barshinger, my Mother’s maiden name.
Barshinger has several Freysville tie-ins, besides the Barshinger families still living in that area. Roughly 90% of all the Barshingers in the United States descend from Henry Barshinger, who is buried in Freysville Cemetery. Barshinger Reunions are held annually in June and September at Shady Grove Park, the church grove of Emmanuel U.C.C. of Freysville.
Cliff insisted on adding the foliage to the unfinished artwork; as the buildings and lower portion of the watercolor had been virtually completed on-site in 1972. He had a photo to use as a guide. We discussed the ugly stop signs. I thought if they were left out, the completed artwork could easily represent Freysville of 100 years ago. It is easy to visualize horses pulling wagons along these roads in the scene Cliff has so masterfully created.
Thus the artwork by Cliff Satterthwaite completes the Freysville trilogy, along with his 1972 photo and my 2015 photo of this crossroads. You’ll see those photos later in this post. I’ve noted the viewpoint of the artwork and photos on this side-by-side 1971 and 2015 aerial photos of the Freysville crossroads. Note that the house, on the southeast corner of the crossroads, was replaced, quite a few years ago, by a parking lot.
Conrad Fry (Frey), from whom the community gets its name, owned 163-acres in the area. He established Burying Grounds on this land as early as 1748. In 1771, Conrad deeded 1.5-acres to Lutheran and German Reformed Congregations in the area to build a Union Church. Records indicate that first church building was about 200-yards from the Freysville crossroads; however the exact location of this earliest church is unknown. A foundation has never been discovered. Also, there may have been a second church building; that no longer exists.
The cornerstone for what was the second, or possibly third, Union Church was laid in 1851; this is now Emmanuel United Church of Christ at 1625 Windsor Road. The union arrangement was dissolved in 1909, at which time the Reformed Congregation purchased the 1851 church property. On the opposite corner of the crossroads, the Lutheran Congregation laid the cornerstone for their church in 1909; this is now Emanuel Lutheran Church at 2650 Freysville Road. The third congregation in Freysville is Methodist; their church is Zion United Methodist Church at 2595 Freysville Road. For such a small community, Freysville is well-known, because they have these three churches.
Daniel Anstine built the large building on the northwest corner of the crossroads. He built it as a hotel, however soon discovered that he could not operate this establishment with a tavern; since it was located to close to the church to legally sell alcoholic beverages. The building became a boarding house and then simply a residence. Daniel Anstine instead went into the cigar business and became one of the prominent cigar manufacturers in the Freysville area.
At one time, Freysville had its own post office. The Freysville, York County, Pennsylvania, post office was established May 2, 1898, with Andrew L. Miller as postmaster. However this post office was short lived; it was discontinued on May 14, 1906.
This 1972 photo, taken by Cliff Satterthwaite, illustrates the second part of the Freysville trilogy. That photo is immediately followed by a view of the intersection, as it looks today.
When the traffic light was installed at this crossroads a number of years ago, the intersection was widened with turning lanes. Sidewalks were also added. This required the removal of virtually all the trees that once filled the area and the removal of the distinctive stonewalls fronting the churches. Fortunately these stonewalls were rebuilt in the same style, closer to the churches, as part of the intersection improvements; retaining at least one of the distinctive characteristics of this crossroads.
I do miss driving through Freysville in the fall, when the leaves are changing. The Satterthwaite artwork does conjure up memories of this charming crossroads in all its glory.
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