York Town Square

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Made in York Archives

This tall Manna Pro grain elevator has formed part of York, Pa.’s skyline for decades. The city’s Redevelopment Authority is going after state funding to demolish this former agricultural center. One estimate places that job at $500,000. So let’s see what this says about change in York, Pa. A former grain elevator, representing county agriculture, is expendable. The city is looking to use the land for a possible hotel, given its proximity to the York Expo Center, aka the York Fairgrounds. The York County Agricultural Society, sold the land to the Redevelopment Authority. So we have the fair and its board, representative of the agricultural community for 250 years, selling a former agricultural asset to clear way for a hotel. An county agricultural economy, as old as the fair, is giving way to a recreational/tourism economy. The grain elevator and its planned demolition is a symbol of that change. Not that there’s a bad guy in this case. It’s change, and that often is good and needed.

Alpacas such as those seen here on Shady Pine Farms in North Hopewell Township are relatively new to York County, Pa., soil. But as the desire for natural fibers has grown in America, this South American animal is increasingly seen around York County, a county that is no stranger to working in the carding, weaving and spinning business. In fact, a museum is opening to educate and observe York County’s long relationship with textiles.

The counties of York/Adams were dotted with all kinds of furnaces and kilns in their past – a loose combination of agribusiness, mining and manufacturing. Perhaps the best-known is Codorus Furnace. But smaller kilns were virtually everywhere. Consider the remains of an old kiln along the Susquehanna Trail near Stillmeadow Church of the Nazarene in Manchester Township. And consider the pottery giant Pfaltzgraff that grew its business from baking ore in kilns or ovens. And those old kilns near the Susquehanna River in Wrightsville. Artist Cliff Satterthwaite captures a vestige of Adams County brick making, circa 1970. They sat on the left ‘before you’re into Gettysburg rt 30.’ He added: ‘(I)t’s a needle in a brick kiln’ if they’re there now… .’ Satterthwaite’s technique in this photo illustration was to take two slides and combine them into one, using computer software.

Now this is the way a one-room school should look. Bell tower (not all schools had such towers). Flag flying (between two trees). Students enjoying the outdoor (or in this case a photo op.). This is the Red Lion area’s Springvale School in 1913, as it appears in the book ‘All in One Room’. (You won’t recognize it, but see the school today below).

A lot of people think this iconic weightlifter – the lasting memory many people have of York, Pa. – is York Barbell founder Bob Hoffman. It’s not Hoffman. Weigh in, if you can ID him.

Les Stark, a marijuana activist in Pennsylvania, believes this photograph shows an old hemp mill. Mark Walters of The Evening Sun in Hanover is seeking more information on this mill, originally published in this YorkTownSquare spread about the Colonial Valley Mill in Menges Mills. The sellers of the Heidelberg Township mill, now under new ownership, believed this was part of the Colonial Valley operation