April 2004 Harlansburg Adventure


Monday April 19

Smitty arrived at about 1:00. We decided for a lunch at Browns Restaurant. On the way to Portersville, we paused next door to watch a truss being craned into place on the Bowers' new garage. At Browns, after a much delayed western sandwich, Larry was awarded a free piece of pie.

The covered bridge at McConnells Mill was damaged by a falling tree during a spring storm.
In the New Castle Library we found where Charles and Stella Davis are buried in Greenwood Cemetery. We went there and photographed the headstone for their grand-daughter. Unfortunately, we were unable to locate Charles and Stella's son Charles.
The New Castle Industrial Railroad facility at 700 Moravia Rd.
And 201 Power St.
The new Coverts Crossing bridge. Quite a change from the old picturesque steel-framed, one-laned, tree shaded, wood-planked bridge that used to be there.

We located the Alduk Neshannock trail crossing of Maitland Lane. The trail is the old railroad bed that follows Neshannock River and crosses it at Maitland Lane. The trail is not well maintained there, so it's hard to tell, but it seems to go across the river on the railroad bridge. I don't think I'd venture out on the bridge. The bridge itself looks solid, but the ties are very old are what you have to walk on to get across.

We stopped to see what work is being done on the Maitland Lane bridge over Hottenbaugh Run in Hickory Township. It looks like they are removing the chicane and replacing the bridge, I assume with a two laner.

Showed Gene the other McConnells Mill, which is now a house. It's on Hottenbaugh Run straddling the Scott-Hickory border. It's unfortunate they put light blue siding on the place. That bothers me every time I see the place.

Back to Slippery Rock to meet Beverly at the Ginger Hill Tavern for a 6:00 dinner. Then home.


Tuesday April 20

Harlansburg Cave entrances, and no sign of any old hermit named Dave.

We didn't take a trip down Memory Lane because in Scott Township, it's a private drive.
The head of the Alduk Neshannock Creek Trail on SR108 in New Castle. It allegedly goes all the way to New Wilmington and Volant. But, as we found out on Monday, there are places where it's darn near impassible.

You wouldn't know it from the picture, but there's a gnome behind the left column.

We went looking for a new motor complex in Beaver County. All we knew was it is in Big Beaver. So in Big Beaver, we asked a mailman, who gave us general directions, a man and woman in a car who didn't know. We finally stopped at a construction contractors business office and asked a guy that was in a car there talking on his cell phone as we pulled in. It turned out he's a part owner in the place and told us EXACTLY where it is.

BeaveRun MotorSports Complex, just off SR18 at the very northern edge of Beaver County.

Vintage Grand Prix cars were being tested. You can see two on the back stretch.

Smitty purchased two belts for his Craftsman mower at the Sears Parts in Beaver Falls.

It turns out there are no gas stations close to Route 60 all the way from Beaver Falls to Hermitage. So we limped into the Hermitage Sheetz on fumes, where we filled her up.

We had Dippin' Dots super frozen ice cream at the Shenango Valley Mall. It was, uhhh, interesting. Good to experience once, but not a serious candidate for daily ice cream. Not enough kick and a bit too expensive at $2.50 for a small container.

SS. Cyril and Methodius Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Church on Pew Road in Delaware Township, Mercer County.

The grounds are 289 wooded acres that were donated in 1975. The site is actually a retreat called Camp Nazareth, the church being part of the Camp. The church was consecrated in August 2003 with a capacity crowd including two bishops from Europe.

Dr David Zuder was kind enough to show us the inside of the church. It is very simple except for the colorful screen of icons in front of the altar.

Dr Zuder lives there year round with his wife and two daughters. He holds Divine Liturgy every Sunday, but through the winter it is often attended by only his family.

We had a very nice visit with Christian & Kristen Kuharik at their home at 325 N. Sassafras Street in Mercer.

The Venango-Shenango intersection in Mercer.
In case you're wondering why I bothered with this, I just like the sound of "Venango-Shenango".

Took a photo of the Rockwell Science Hall at Grove City College, but the sun was behind the building, so it wasn't too thrilling.

Back to 285 Sylvania for a home cooked roast pork and sauerkraut dinner.


Wednesday April 21 . . .

Grove City College Rockwell Science Hall with the WSAJ antennas.

WSAJ was first licensed 11/29/22 for 100 watts AM.

FM 91.1 came much later.

The GCC teaching station WGCC is 530AM.

This photo's not all that great, but better than the one taken Tues afternoon.

From the FCC microfiche files, April 14, 1995:

                           WSAJ

11/29/22  Date first licensed.  The licensee was Grove City College,
          Grove City, PA.  They were granted License No. 953 and
          460.  License No. 953 was granted 11/29/22 for a new
          station on 360 meters with 100 watts, unlimited.

  3/6/23  Granted License No. 460 for 360 meters with 100 watts,
          unlimited.
Breakfast at The Coffee Grove, downtown Grove City in the old First National Bank Building. Sandwiches and cappuccinos.

After breakfast, an enjoyable stroll the length of the business district turned up the Grove City Chamber of Commerce. Not knowing what we wanted to do for the day, we went in and asked for ideas and were provided with a couple of pamphlets listing the attractions of Mercer County. We had already done most, but got a couple of ideas.
In Henderson, which is east of Perrine Corners on SR965, we found this colorful display of signs behind the Hardesty General Store.
And spotted an 8 foot tall chicken watching us from next door.

We toured greater Sandy Lake and Stoneboro Boroughs.

Then on to revisit an old friend ... Maurice K Goddard (State Park). Here, we were disappointed to discover that the ice cream shop at the north end is now a bait shop. Gene went in and tried to order a hot dog and a milkshake, but the proprietor told him he was in big trouble. It was the same guy that ran the ice cream shop.

At Williams Corners, we visited the Wilhelm Winery and Antique Wine Making Museum, which opened at 12:00 sharp. It is Mercer County's first winery. We sampled one of their wines and Gene bought a bottle of their best white wine.

Lunch at Shirely's in Sheakleyville on US19. It was recommended by the locals, and for good reason.

We dead reckoned our way toward Greenville, but not trusting the navigator, we stopped for directions. It was at a mower shop and Gene also got some consultation on his mower belt wear problem.

In Greenville, we drove by some old friends (the RR and Canal Museums) and visited Packard and Riverside Parks, where we took a short hike and got a closeup view of the Shenango River.

South of Greenville, we got off SR18 at Reynolds Industrial Rd, which was Camp Reynolds war prisoner camp during WWII. The road turns into Kidds Mill Road and at the Shenango River is Kidds Mill Park, which contains:

KIDD'S MILL COVERED BRIDGE
Built in 1868, spanning the Shenango River. The only remaining bridge in Pennsylvania with an all-wooden truss design patented by Robert Smith of Tippecanoe City, Ohio. The last historic covered bridge in Mercer County, extending 120 feet in length and restored in 1990.

A river gaging station is at the bridge with a sign saying:
US Government property. Stream Gaging Station.
Operated by the US Geological Survey in cooperation with federal, state and local agencies. This station is a part of the national network for obtaining water resources information. The recorded water level and corresponding rates of flow are used for many hydraulic and hydrologic studies.

We continued south on 18 and then at West Middlesex, over to Ohio border. The south on State Line Road going through Mercer and Lawrence counties in PA and Trumball and Mahoning Counties in Ohio. But you couldn't tell it except from a map - there were no signs. And then back roads home from NW corner of Lawrence County.

Gene shoved off for home at 5:00 about an hour ahead of rain storms.

Copyright © 2004 Lawrence McMillen. All rights reserved.