Friday, April 29, 2016

65. Summer of 1946


Nancy and I were not yet sixteen when we were growing up in Gettysburg in the summer of 1946, so we were not eligible for a work permit. Nancy helped her mother with summer chores like canning and freezing fruits and vegetables. She also helped her father in the garden where they grew tomatoes and string beans.

Even though I didn’t have a work permit, I was employed as a member of the ground crew at Camp Nawakwa, a Lutheran camp twenty minutes northwest of Gettysburg. I worked on construction projects, mowed and dug ditches for a new waterline.

Summers in Gettysburg in 1946 could be unbearably hot and humid, so Nancy and I swam often. She cooled off in the Battlefield Swimming Pool south of Gettysburg and I swam in the pool at camp which was always freezing. On weekends, we  often picnicked with family at any one of numerous parks in Adams County.  

TV was not yet popular in 1946, so we found our entertainment listening to the radio or going to one of the two Warner Brothers Theaters in Gettysburg.  There was a teen canteen in town in 1946, and we remember that it was located in the first block of Baltimore Street in an abandoned bank building.  

In August, The Gettysburg Times reported that Burgess C. A. Heiges instructed borough police to begin enforcing the town’s 1917 curfew which provides that during Standard Time all youngsters under 18 years of age must be off the streets of town by 9:00. During Daylight Savings Time the curfew limit would be 10:00 p.m.  

Nancy and I remember no curfews so we assume this law was rescinded sometime later that year.

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