Ernie McCall; from “Made in York” McCall’s Hosiery Shop to his North Pole Drive-Ins
A reader commented to my post on a Photo Comparison of Weigelstown’s North Pole Drive-In. Susan noted:
I remember Ernie’s wife as Ethel and definitely not Mary Jane! Are you confusing hosiery knitter Ernest McCall with Ernie McCall of North Pole Drive-In fame?
I encourage readers to comment to my posts; especially when they disagree! Although it is not the case this time, I strive to correct any inaccuracies in my posts.
Ernest, the hosiery knitter, and Ernie of the North Pole Drive-Ins are one in the same person. This is based upon a little family history research and personal experience. Ernest McCall married Mary Jane Dellinger in 1938; they divorced in 1947. The second marriage of Ernest McCall was to Ethel M. Hoover in 1955. Ernie’s first wife, Mary Jane, later married Hilton Murray; they were our neighbors for many years along Witmer Road in Springettsbury Township.
I’m going to tweak an Ernie McCall post that was already written for this coming Friday and post it a few days earlier; likely on Tuesday.
In the 1930 and 1940 United States Census records, Ernest E. McCall lists his occupation as a hosiery mill knitter. That hosiery mill was E. Sutro & Son Company; located at Pine Street and Boundary Avenue in York, PA.
Ernie McCall’s first, of many, business ventures, is the hosiery shop that he opens months after marrying Mary Jane. The ad in the March 23rd, 1938, issue of The Gazette and Daily suggests McCall’s Hosiery Shop at 46 North George Street opened a short time prior to this “Getting Acquainted” ad. The text from the ad reads as follows:
Hundreds of York women have become acquainted in a short time with the folks at McCall’s Hoisery Shop, shown above, next to the Strand Theatre. They sell the smart and lovely Sutro’s hose, made in York. Ernest McCall—who knows hosiery as only a knitter can know it—opened the shop because York women wanted the “Sutrite” line. Prices from 59¢ to $1.15. Also two-pair and three-pair prices. All sizes and shades. And a special oh-so comfortable s-t-r-e-t-c-h type if you need it. Spring shades are glamorously new, full of “life.” Sutro hosiery is noted for its long wear—to prove it yourself, try a pair.
Note the large “MADE IN YORK” on the wall of the shop. Ernie McCall was definitely proud of selling a product Made in York. Related posts include:
Continue reading for a compilation of Ernie McCall’s business ventures.
This compilation of Ernie McCall’s business ventures comes from information in the Collection of York Directories at the York County Heritage Trust, records at the Office of York County Recorder of Deeds, and records at the York County Archives.
1938-1955 … McCall’s Hosiery Shop, 46 North George Street. Ernest E. McCall is listed as the owner and Mrs. Mary J. McCall is listed as the manager. About 1945, the shop moves to 121 South George Street. Following their divorce on September 9th, 1947, Mary Jane McCall owns the majority interest in the shop. The shop continues to be called Jane McCall’s even after Mary Jane married Hilton Murray in 1949. When Mary Jane Murray decided to leave the business in 1953, Ernie buys her out and takes full ownership. Ernie McCall moved the shop and operated it as McCall’s Hosiery Shop, 11 West Philadelphia Street, for a final two years before closing the business in 1955.
1945-1946 … McCall’s, a confectionery shop, 57 North Newberry Street. Ernest McCall is listed as the owner.
1947-1951 … McCall’s Delicatessen, 44 North Beaver Street. Ernie also held a market stand, right across the street, in Central Market. The following Classified Ad in the September 4th, 1947 issue of The Gazette and Daily, is probably his earliest submarine sandwich advertising; to which Ernie McCall lays claim to being The ORIGINAL SUBMARINE SANDWICH MAN of York. The York City directories continue to list the address of Ernie’s deli at 44 North Beaver Street until he moves to the 7 West Philadelphia Street location in 1951.
1951-1953 … McCall’s Delicatessen, 7 West Philadelphia Street. Ernie continued to hold a delicatessen market stand in Central Market.
1953-1959 … McCall’s Sub Bar, 7 West Philadelphia Street. Charles M. McCall is operating this restaurant, although it appears to be a continuation of McCall’s Delicatessen; this may have been a partnership between Ernie and Charles McCall. Charles M. McCall was the five-year younger brother of Ernie.
1954-1954 … North Pole Candy & Nut Shop, 9 West Philadelphia Street. Ernest E. McCall is listed as the owner.
1954-1969 … North Pole Drive-In, 1225 North Sherman Street (Southeast corner of North Sherman Street and Whiteford Road in Springettsbury Township). Ernest McCall is listed as the owner. Polk’s 1954 Directory for York, PA contains both North Pole businesses, as shown in the following clipping. North Pole Candy & Nut Shop probably came first, maybe even starting in 1953; however it did not last long, only appearing in the 1954 directory. The North Pole Drive-In at the corner of North Sherman Street and Whiteford Road operated until 1969. The construction of the 4-lane Route 30 resulted in the demolition of the Drive-In.
1956-1967? … North Pole Drive-In, 2820 Carlisle Road (Southeast corner of Emig Mill Road and Carlisle Road in Weigelstown). Ernest and Ethel McCall are listed as the owners. The least details are known about this North Pole Drive-In location. I did see that Ernie’s brother Charles M. McCall, who resided at 8 East Canal Street in Dover, died in 1969. What was Charles McCall’s connection with the Carlisle Road location? Please comment if you can help; I’m especially interested in seeing a photo of the Weigelstown North Pole Drive-In.
1961-1969 … The Florida Room, 1225 North Sherman Street (Southeast corner of North Sherman Street and Whiteford Road in Springettsbury Township; The Florida Room was located more on the Whiteford Road side). Ernest and Ethel McCall are the owners and the following listing in the 1967 Suburban York, PA, Directory give their business titles. The construction of the 4-lane Route 30 resulted in the demolition of The Florida Room in 1969.
To be continued, with additional ads and information.