York Town Square

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Tearing down those old York, Pa., market sheds: Linked in with neat history stuff – March 13, 2010

This was the scene the morning after York, Pa.’s, Centre Square market sheds came down in what amounted to a middle of the night hanging in 1887. Teamsters roped support beams to the old sheds and pulled them down, thereby settling a controversy about their fate. York had just become a city with growing factories, and some wanted the main square cleared on the dirty, tottering sheds. People and product needed to be moved through the square at this moment in this Industrial Revolution. (For details, visit: Once pulled down, York’s market sheds won’t go back up.) The York Emporium’s Jim Lewin e-mailed this photograph with the notation: “An interesting old photograph walked in the door here … and when I saw what it was I thought of you.” The caption reads: “Tearing down the Market Sheds in Center Square, June 1887.” For another photo of the scene, visit: York County farm vs. factory tension relieved in overnight raid. Also of interest: From squealing pigs to wireless, York, Pa., markethouses have changed and York’s western gate: One image says so much and Civil War authors run York bookstore, too.

A mixed bag of neat stuff … .

A recent Los Angeles Times story bore a headline that might pique your interest: “A government genealogy service lets family history leap off the page.”
The story tells about a little-known genealogy service run by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
Here are excerpts to the story: …

The documents came from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, which runs a little-known genealogy service for relatives wanting to learn more about their family history.
The records include naturalization files, visa applications and citizenship tests, and may reveal family secrets and mysteries, said Marian Smith, the agency’s historian.
The details of the story have been told over time, and the edges kind of wear
off, Smith said. With the documents, there are a lot of ah-ha moments.
In the past, genealogy researchers had to file document requests under the Freedom of Information Act and sometimes waited years for a response.
Under the genealogy program, which started in 2008, requests are usually completed within 90 days. For $20, the government will run a search of the name, as long as the person is deceased. If there are records available, the government charges additional fees for the files.
It will be a treasure chest for genealogists, said Southern California Genealogical Society President Pam Wiedenbeck. Oftentimes these files will have information on brothers, sisters, aunts and uncles that will help connect the dots.
For experienced genealogists, the files may open the doors to even more research, perhaps leading people to exact hometowns in their ancestors native countries. And for those new to genealogy, they may be just the beginning. For every question you answer you come up with two or three more, Wiedenbeck said.

For more information about the program, check out www.uscis.gov/genealogy.
Recommended event of the weekend: “The Underground Railroad in Adams County’s Quaker Valley,” presented by Debra Sandoe McCauslin. 2 p.m., Sunday, March 14, Crispus Attucks Association, $10 donation per ticket. Limited seating. Tickets are available at the door. This lecture is the first CU@2 Lecture Series, to benefit the ongoing restoration of William C. Goodridge Freedom House and Underground Railroad Museum. For details, visit: For researcher, Underground Railroad stories keep leading to more stories.
Blog post of the day: Yorkblogger June Lloyd’s post: Can Anyone Help Date This Piece of Glen Rock (Traditionals) Furniture?
Forum of the day, The Exchange: Discussion on Joe Bury’s hamburgers continues. Excerpt: “To me the best thing about Bury’s was not the burgers, but the meat and potatoes meals.”
– To view other posts in this Linked In/Neat stuff series, click here.
– To see all York Town Square posts from the start, click here.

– To see all Underground Railroad posts from the start, click here.