Did You Know?
Did you know that all you needed was $5.50 and you could have bought a wedding
ring in Connellsville back in 1946?
In February of that year, Posner’s Credit Jewelers on North Pittsburgh Street
had a sale featuring a “wide selection of all the smartest styles in wedding
You could get the carved 14K gold wedding band for five and a half dollars.
Or, if you splurged, you could take home a “5-diamond wedding circlet,” for a
Did you know that with the state of Pennsylvania adding new gambling
establishments in recent years, an event that made national news back in 1915,
could serve as a worthwhile cautionary tale?
I found it in the May 20th, 1915 edition of the Trenton (New Jersey) Evening
Times. It seems a Connellsville woman got a divorce because of her husband’s
extremely serious gambling problems.
I know the word “extremely” is a mighty strong word, but in this case it could
even be an understatement.
The woman’s husband would take his daily earnings and gamble them away each
night. The couple also had two adolescent daughters, and the wife told the court
that her husband had even taken pennies from their piggybanks and gambled them
Did you know that hair (something that, at this age, seems like a fading memory)
has saved the lives of two women in Fayette County – and in two different eras?
That same Trenton, New Jersey newspaper reported on February 17th, 1910 that a
Uniontown woman who’d had her hair made up in the style of Napoleon’s wife,
Empress Josephine, was walking along a busy Uniontown sidewalk, when disaster
A runaway horse pulling a broken sleigh ran onto the sidewalk and, according to
the article, “Women and children scattered into doorways out of danger.”
Everybody had avoided serious injury, except that woman with that highly styled
hairdo. It seems “the shaft of the sleigh shot through her high coiffure and
dragged her a hundred yards, retarding the horse sufficiently to be stopped.”
The woman was bruised, and perhaps a little startled, but her hair probably
helped her escape serious injury.
That very same newspaper reported on September 6th, 1921 the case of how a
woman’s hair (or the lack of it) prevented another serious injury in Uniontown.
Miss Sarah H. Kline was in town from Bryn Mawr for the Labor Day auto races,
when somebody lit a cigarette on a hotel balcony along Main Street – and threw
their still flaming match in the direction of the sidewalk.
The flame from the match instantly caught the Bryn Mawr woman’s sweater on fire.
A Philadelphia man immediately took action to extinguish the fire.
Fortunately, the woman was wearing her hair in a short bobbed style or she may
have received even more than a scorched neck.
Or, as the Trenton newspaper put it, “it almost certainly would have ignited,
Of course those Labor Day races had gained quite a bit of popularity and
national fame back in 1921. In fact, auto races at Uniontown Speedway even
rivaled those of the races in Indianapolis.
But did you know that long before Uniontown held races at Uniontown Speedway,
automobile drivers still raced for prize money in the area?
This item comes for that Trenton newspaper on January 9th, 1915: “AUTOMOBILE
DRIVERS WILL HAVE $205,000 TO FIGHT TO FOR DURING THE YEAR 1915,” the headline
Later that year, the Indianapolis race would offer $50,000 in prize money. Among
the other locations listed was the Uniontown Hill Climb. Five thousand dollars
would be awarded in that race.
While Uniontown trailed Indianapolis, Chicago, Detroit and a number of much
larger cities in prize money that year, there would later be a category in which
Uniontown was only second to Boston nationwide. It was called postal savings.
The United States Postal Savings System was first implemented in January of
1911. It was similar to the FDIC (Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation) today.
People could deposit their money (usually in small amounts) into the U.S. Postal
System and their money would be safe because it was backed by “the full faith
and credit of the United States Government.”
In January of 1923 it was reported that Uniontown was only second in the amount
of increased deposits versus withdrawals in the U.S. Postal Savings System
during the previous Christmas season.
The Portsmouth (NH) Herald claimed the increases across the country were because
of high employment in mining and industrial communities.
Boston had the highest number of deposits, followed by Uniontown and then
Did you know that an alert airplane pilot near Connellsville once saved a small
child in what was termed “movie-thriller fashion?” The September 20th, 1940
edition of the Reno (Nevada) Evening Gazette carried an item about a “youthful
farming couple” that had reported the strange, four day disappearance of their
two year-old little boy.
The article claimed the state police had theorized it was a case of abduction,
and they had “set out to find a kidnapper.”
However, on the couple’s 13th wedding anniversary (coincidentally), an airplane
pilot spotted the child in a cornfield and he flew to the couple’s farm, where
he signaled by yelling at them.
They followed him and found that the child was safe.
The article concluded by saying that the search for the child, which had
involved dozens of police officers and hundreds of volunteers, had ended.