YorksPast

Part of the USA Today Network

All Posts Archives

Aviation in Springettsbury is the topic for the inaugural History Night in Springettsbury Township. It is being held Wednesday July 14, 2021, at 7:00 PM in the Township Administration Building Board Room. Even though construction fences are up; the functions in the 1501 Mt. Zion Road building are continuing through the end of July; after which temporary offices will be utilized.

The “Steak & Ale” became the popular “Talk of the Town Restaurant,” and was followed by: “Penrod’s Bar & Grill,” “al Dente! Italian Restaurant,” and presently “Arooga’s Grille House & Sports Bar.” Stretching from 1979 to the present, all five businesses were housed in various incarnations of the building situated south of the Burger King in Springettsbury Township; at 1211 Haines Road.

Dan Trimmer inquired about a story often shared by an uncle; who, while working at the York Motor Company in 1929, claimed to have repaired a flat tire on the car of Henry Ford. Newspaper reports do place Henry Ford in York County, Pennsylvania, on June 7, 1929; where he visited several places, including the York Motor Company. In June of 1929, Henry Ford was on an automobile journey across Pennsylvania; from east to west, primarily on the Lincoln Highway.

Within the collections of the York County History Center are a few photos and a much larger group of negatives of a previously unidentified product of the S. Morgan Smith Company. The introductory photo is one component of that unidentified product; it shows S. Morgan Smith Company machinists inspecting a large rotor core being finished on their 42-foot boring mill. This post provides the sources that identify the overall product as a massive axial-flow air compressor; a key component in a Supersonic Wind Tunnel, which was one of NASA’s earliest development facilities.

Thirty years before President Ronald Reagan visited the Harley-Davidson Motorcycle plant in Springettsbury Township, York County, PA, he visited the General Electric plant in York, PA; then as director-producer-and host of the “General Electric Theater” television program and President of the Screen Actors Guild.

Lottie Hull submitted her story of growing up on a farm in Windsor Township during the 1950s and early 1960s. The weekly highlight was going along with her mother on shopping trips to the Country Folk Shop, located in a Locust Grove area barn; then continued along East Prospect Road to Seitz’s Food Market in Longstown.

The S. Morgan Smith Company, in York, Pennsylvania, was a prime contractor for manufacturing hydraulic-pneumatic catapults for launching Navy planes from the decks of aircraft carriers during World War 2. The catapult model, they produced, was capable of reliably launching 9,500-pound airplanes in 73-feet to a speed of 61 knots. Praise for manufacturing the catapult very much dominated the presentation of the Army-Navy “E” Award this company received on August 19, 1944.

Innovations of the S. Morgan Smith Company focuses on technological advances coupled with the history of the company and its successors during the Twentieth Century. As a companion to the excellent book “Re-Inventing The Wheel. The Incredible Story of S. Morgan Smith, Minister, Inventor, Industrialist,” by Stephen Nicholas, with Terry Downs, this Innovations Lecture shares stories and facts about the S. Morgan Smith Company that are not common knowledge.