Saturday, August 04, 2007

Happy Birthday Glenn

Glenn Tindle turns 31 today. He is one of those super Sysco salesman out of Pocomoke. Happy Birthday Glenn.

Sargent James R. Truitt, 1944

The Bi-State Weekly, August 25, 1944


Mr and Mrs. Larry W. Truitt, Delmar, Del. have received a telegram from the war dept. informing them that their son, Sgt James R. Truitt,19, died August 4 from wounds received in action in France on July 11.

Sgt Truitt enlisted in January 1941 and had been overseas since October of 1942 as a member of the 29th division. He trained in both England and Scotland before participating in the invasion of France. In a recent letter home he informed his parents that he had been awarded the "Expert Combat Infantryman" badge.

Before enlisting Sgt Truitt attended the Delmar Maryland High School and was very active in sports.

Besides his parents he is survived by one sister, Mrs William Livingston, Salisbury, MD, and four brothers, George B. Truitt, Charles M. Truitt, Delmar; Sgt Louis H. Truitt serving in Italy; and E. Russell Truitt, S-2-C stationed in Oklahoma.

Sargent Truitt is on the honor stone at the American Legion.

A Monument in the St Stephen (Mt Olive) cemetery to Sargent Truitt.

Sargent James R. Truitt, US Army, 115th Infantry Regiment, 29th Infantry Division is buried at the Cambridge American Cemetery in Cambridge England. The Cambridge American Cemetery and Memorial site in England, 30.5 acres in total, was donated by the University of Cambridge. The cemetery contains the remains of 3,812 of our military dead.

To find the location of a military person who was buried overseas you can go to the American Battle Monument Commission click on which war they died in and enter their name.

Friday, August 03, 2007

The Steel Plate

I have noticed today that additional blacktop patching has been added to the steel plate on Foskey lane. Looks like it is going to be here for a while. Must be part of the business friendly image the town is trying to go to.

Marina's Restaurant And Bar

One Bite and You're Hooked

I finally made it up to Blades to eat at the Marina's Restaurant. The restaurant and bar is next to the Blades Marina. It is run by the Saylor family, of which Delmar's own Police Chief Hal Saylor is a member of. Matter of fact Hal was working there the night we went. Now a restaurant that calls it's self "Marina's" and is run by a family named "Saylor" and has a slogan of "One Bite and You're Hooked" is bound to be mainly nautical in theme and will be heavy on Seafood and it is. The interior of the dinning room has a nautical motif but not the heavy nautical decorating that is found at Watermen's Cove in Salisbury or any Red Lobster. I found we were seated next to the only display of a fish net and shells hung on the wall. At least there was only one in the restaurant. Thankfully no pictures of Seagulls on fishing piers were present.

We use to go to this restaurant years back when it was Poor Tom's. It is much improved under the Saylors. One thing they have done is to install small octagon windows in the front of the building at a height that block you seeing the traffic passing through Blades.

The food, no hidden surprises here it is a standard Eastern Shore Seafood menu. I am not sure about using the term home cooking or home made when it is applied to a commercial restaurant as the phrase seem to be an oxymoron, but everything has a home made touch from the rolls to the homemade chips to the seasoned vegetables and nothing tasted like it came off the back of a Sysco truck and was microwaved and brought to your table. All the food we ordered looked as well as it tasted and all tasted like they were made with top quality, fresh and very well seasoned ingredients. Prices are in the $15 to $25 range.

After dinner we went upstairs to the bar and deck. One look at the bar and deck and you know you're in for a good time. Might as well find a table on the deck with a group of your friends and settle in for the night as this is Western Sussex County and pub crawling doesn't exist. The bar and deck is upstairs and was crowded the night we were there. In Delaware you can't smoke inside but if you enjoy a smoke after a meal you can move upstairs to the deck and smoke there.

The address is Marina's Restaurant and Bar
Alternate 13/ N. Market Street, Blades De19973
The phone number is 302-629-8788

Closed Tuesdays, opens at 4PM

There is a website for Marina"s but I think it was when it was under a previous owner.

Air Traffic Controllers strike in 1981

In 1981, the Federal Air Traffic Controllers, who were members of PATCO (Professional Air Traffic Controllers Organization) demanded a $10,000 across-the - board wage increase, a 32 hour week and full retirement after 20 years of service. The Controllers felt they deserved it due to the highly stressful nature of their work. The federal government didn't.

On August 3rd nearly 13,000 of the 17,000 members of PATCO walked off their job. The strike was designed to take place during the busiest time of the year for airlines and if the strike went on very long huge losses would occur for the airlines. President Reagan gave them 48 hours to end the strike and return to their jobs as they were violating a 1955 law banning strikes by government unions.

On Aug. 5, 1981 President Reagan fired 11,359 Air Traffic Controllers and ban them from ever being rehired by the FAA.

A High School friend of mine, Phil Johnson, was an Air traffic Controller at Leesburg, Virginia. He had told me how bad he felt they had it and how they were going to strike and he was with them. Well, I had been through the Air Traffic facility at Leesburg and saw how little they did in the way of work (admittedly it was stressful) and told him he was a fool as he made more money than anyone else and the American Public would have no sympathy for the strikers. Sure enough the public sided with the government and exhibited little sympathy for individuals whose earnings were already well above theirs. Phil spent a number of years doing different jobs before he eventually got another job with the Federal Government.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Ed Ferro In Hospital

I have just hear that Public Communication Officer Ed Ferro of the Delmar Police Department is in Peninsula Regional Medical Center. I hope he gets out soon.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Houses For Sale

506 Jewell Street, Coldwell Banker, call Peggy Bowden 410-251-7847

609 Grove Street, $145,000, Esham Real Estate, call Mary Kinnikin 410-543-2969

Vacation in Reboboth Beach

This ad is from the "Wilmington Commercial" newspaper in the summer of 1876. Even in 1876 people wanted to escape to Rehoboth Beach. Mrs Annie Grubb, Proprietress, describes the hotel as an unequal watering place (I don't have the impression she was talking about alcohol) for those seeking health and recreation during the summer months. She says the beach is entirely free of undertow and is one of safest beaches to found anywhere. In addition it has an elegant grove of primitive oaks with in a half mile of the hotel, which has a camp meeting from July 21st to August 1st.

Vandalism In Delmar and Laurel

Vandalism is such a disappointment. Particularly when we know most vandalism of public parks come from our own local juveniles. We can't point the finger at anyone else and say it is some outsider coming to town and doing it. It is always worst in the summer when they are out of school and once one does it than it creates a chain reaction and others do it. I have heard it describe as a crime of boredom. I think we can thank our federal government and their child labor laws for encouraging teenagers to sit on their asses doing nothing but thinking up ways to get in to trouble.

We would all like to take pride in Delmar but it is difficult to when you pass a public park or water tower or building that has spray painted graffiti on it.

This is the playground equipment in the center of State Street park where some one used a little spray paint.

This is where some one used a felt tip marker to write a little graffiti on the inside of the play equipment.

The most recent casualty at State street park is this lamp post that looks like someone backed a car into.

Delmar is not the only place where vandalism occurs. Up in Laurel at the park in the center of town it is an on going problem. It is also a problem all along their river park.

This building looks nice until you get up close.

I guess they were bored and decided to kick the railing out. Perhaps as high as 20% of the railing are missing in the building.

Anything that can be ripped off will be. This is a vandalized Electrical Box

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Happy Birthday Gavin

Today Gavin Dennis turns five. Happy Birthday Gavin!!!

Trash Day in Delmar Delaware

BFI is out bright and early picking up our trash

Camp Somerset

Camp Somerset is located on Camp Road in Westover Maryland. Today it is a migrant Labor Camp but it started it's life as a Civilian Conservation Corp (CCC)camp in 1935. The first 17 buildings there were built for 270 men. It included an administration building, five sleeping quarters, a mess hall, a kitchen, a recreation hall, officers quarters, shops, pumping station, an electric generator, a bath and a garage. A number of buildings currently in use look like they originate from this time period.

This is the entrance to the present migrant worker camp. I tried to enter to take photos but the security guard forbid me to enter the property.

The men in the CCC camp cleared tax ditches and worked on drainage projects in the area. The men were allowed to go to nearby town two nights a week. Their present not only increased the economic life of the area but also increased the date life for the local girls. With the outbreak of World War II the CCC camps were done away with and in their place Camp Somerset became an Army post. It was headquarters for the Army posts in Berlin, Chincoteague, and Oyster that guarded the shoreline during World War II. Eventually Camp Somerset had near to a thousand men stationed on it. More buildings were built.

In 1944 the entire group at Camp Somerset were sent to Camp Pemberton, Virginia. Since most of the young men in the area were in the service there was a shortage of farm labor. The county requested German POWs and Camp Somerset became a Prisoner of War camp. There were over a thousand of them and about 150 army guards. The prisoners worked in canning houses, sawmills, meat packing plants and on farms throughout Somerset County. The Germans stayed at Camp Somerset until June of 1946 and were than sent to England, where it is assumed they were returned to Germany. On occasion you will read in the Daily Times of one of the young men who were a POW at Camp Somerset returning to visit the area.

The six acres of land than became a migrant worker camp and with some periods of none use has remained so. Today I believe it has some connection with the tomato canning plant on Route 413.

A number of the points made in this post came from newspaper articles and oral history but I would amiss if I did not mention the excellent Old Home Essay done in 1962 by Linda Boston on Camp Somerset.

One of the other points of interest on Camp Road is a natural spring. This photo looks like a drainage pipe but it is the water flow from the natural spring. There seems to always be some one there filling a jug with water. In the time it took me to take this picture there were four different cars of people stopping for water.

Fireman Memorial-Progress

Work is progressing on the Fireman Memorial in Delmar.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Delmar Joint Council Meeting July 30

The Delmar Joint Council Meeting was held Monday, July 30th. Maryland Commissioners Tisinger and Williams were absent. I think everyone was worn out from the heat and humidity of the day as I did not see the usual high degree of enthusiasm tonight that this council exhibits. Even Diane Buckley, who is always good for a comment on my blog, looked like she had been rode hard and put away wet. I should also mention my comments on the meeting are not minutes of the meeting. They are items I found interesting to comment on. I certainly admit to deafness and an inability to understand some of the mumbling of the elected officials plus general mind wandering on some topics that I have no interest in but you may. The best way for you to know what is happening at one of these meetings is to attend. A second way would be to look at the minutes that are finally being posted on the Town of Delmar website.

Cindy Fisher, Clerk of Council, had her winning streak on perfect council minutes destroyed tonight with several changes to the minutes.

Amy Bradley from Delaware had applied for permission to have a block party but was not there to present the date and times so it was tabled until next month.

The first reading of the Harvey Mack annexation was given. The owner was there to answer questions. He did not seem to know the answer to any of the questions asked. When asked about the infamous steel plate on Foskey Lane he said he would talk to his contractor and make him aware it was a priority. Does that sound like a blow off? I don't think Harvey Mack is going to be a very good responsible Delmar business but it is a Maryland problem not a Delaware one.

Mayor Outten appointed an Annexation Investigation Committee for the property owned by Patrick and Donald Hurley, Old Stage Development Company, Brittingham, and Chesapeake. The investigation committee has to have a public hearing in which they gives the Pros and Cons of annexing this land into town. The public meeting was scheduled for August 16th at 6PM. This is a good chance for the public to ask questions to see if the annexation committee actually investigates or just rubber stamps the developers request. Diane Buckley, Mary Lee Pase, and Michael Houlihan were put on the committee.

The Town manager said the town has received $36,000 in funds from Open Space for the renovation of the basketball Court. The amount still is not enough to refinish the surface of the court.

The Fire Company representative Luther Hitchens said the Fireman Memorial is being worked on and should really look good when finished. It will have three flag poles, a pond, two statutes and a lot of hardscapes. Luther Hitchens said Bobby Twilley did much of the work, with of course Luther supervising.

The Public works department has hired two general laborers. The Department is looking at radios for the trucks. Vandalism is still occurring at State Street park. They are looking at putting an iron gate on the bathroom doors in the park to stop people from busting the locks. I always have a problem with this. I think if you are going to have a park, a public restroom should be provide. If a person has to go they have to go and if you can be arrested and charged as a sex offender for urinating in public it should be a law that a public rest room be provided at reasonable intervals. This Wednesday they will flush the North water tower. In September they will start flushing hydrants.

Mike Houlihan and Carl Anderton talked about the Planning and Zoning commission meeting. I don't know what is happening to this commission but they seem to be giving in to the real estate developer, or as they put it, they want to be business friendly. Anyway there is a whole group of changes to the codes that are more business friendly. Stop by town hall and pick up a copy if you want to see what they are. Apparently if you have the money you can get your way in Delmar, Pond's Edge was given temporary approval (to turn into permanent approval) for a signage package that includes flutter signs.

The Foskey Lane business park has changed from 15 lots to 3 parcels.

The Town manger said Del-dot will be working on the roads around Westerlee. A working session is to be held between Tidewater Utilities and the Council on August 15th at 6PM.

Diane Buckley said on August 9th at 10AM Wawa will have their ribbon cutting ceremony. She also said because she was on vacation for the next two weeks there would be no Chamber of Commerce meeting in August.

Mary Lee Pase talked about vandalism in State Street Park. She said teenagers are using the tot lot and they may be a bad influence on the younger children in the tot lot.

A mother of one of the Basketball players appeared and asked how she could help with the basketball court. Councilman Figgs suggested she attend the Parks and Recs meeting on August 1st.

A person from the Mardela area talked about how approving a small development may turn into a much larger development due to real estate developers flipping the property and the town should be careful of the way it approve developments. Diane Buckley agreed saying she had tried for a number of years to get this current council to go along with her by putting a restriction on approved developments that says if the property is sold than the new property owner has to starts the whole development approval process over from scratch.

The council than when to an executive session and the public left. I am concerned at times over these executive sessions. The public leaves and when the executive session is over the council will pick up new issues to discuss that the public is not aware of until they read the minutes of the meeting. Plus when things are done in secret you automatically suspect all of the elected officials and town employees.

Delmar Utility Commission Meeting July 30th

The Delmar Utility meeting took place on Monday, July 30th. All members except Commissioner Tisinger were present. Newly appointed member of the Utility Commission, Lori Dewald, attended her first Utility commission.

Among the items discussed were;

The Delmarva Inn has been connected to the Town Water system. The Delmar Diner did not drill a well but have continued with the temporary hookup to Delmarva Inn for their water source. As you may recall last month I had mention the well serving the Delmarva Inn and the Delmar Diner went bad, causing the dinner to shut down.

It is still expected to be another six weeks until the Delmar Diner is hooked into the town water system. There was a brief mention of the Delmarva Inn being up for sale. In the past weekend reality section of the "Daily Times" it is listed by Ralph Krum Realty at $2,950,000.

The Pump station at State Line Plaza was down due to grease build up. Letters have been sent to the food establishment in the Plaza concerning the discharge of grease and the maintenance of their grease traps. The cause of this problem has not yet been identified.

The town engineers Davis, Bowen and Friedel has recommended we accept the WaWa water and sewer connection into the town. This will be based on a February inspection date.

The Delmar Fire Department wanted approval for a sprinkler system on a small strip of grass they will have on Grove Street. The Delmar Fire Department receive 'free" water from the town. There was some discussion on why they would want a sprinkler system in an area that could be served by a garden hose but it's their money they are spending.

The State Street Laundromat, which was delinquent in it's account, is now current on their bill.

There were two proposals from Davis, Bowen and Friedel for engineering studies. The first was a $9,000 fee to study the effects of additional development from Pheasant Lake and Heron Pond on the sewer force main at Bi-State Boulevard and Foskey lane. The second was an $80,000 fee for engineering services to expand the Town backup well capacity by building a new well on York street. I have two problems with both of these proposals. First, we have just finished a budget that went in effect in July and already we are being asked to approve items that were never discussed in the budget process for this year. Second, the money will come out of a pot of money the Utility commission has from impact fees received. As I have stated before the Utility commission is floating in excess funds. Between overcharging the users and building up a significant debt reduction fund, and an accumulation of impacts fees, and an accumulation of depreciation money the Utility Commission is a rich entity. However it is like the State of Maryland when they announced their surplus a few years back and a new governor came in and spent the state into a negative position. There is something about Governments and money sitting in a reserve, they just have to spend it. The Town engineers are aware of this and obviously plan to get a piece of it for their selves. When it was all said and done the two un-budgeted proposals were approved with the money to come out of the impact fees. I expect I will see more of this unplanned spending thru the year.

I asked when the metal plate that has been on Foskey Lane for over three months will be removed. The Town Manager said to wait for the Joint Council as the owner of Harvey Mack would be there to answer questions regarding his annexation into the town. When driving over the steel plate and ramp built up to the steel plate, you feel like you are doing one of those car jumping scenes from the "Dukes of Hazzard".

In recent weeks there has been several dry wells in the Princess Anne-Allen-Eden area of Maryland. The wells went dry in part due to the over pumping of a sod farm and the State prison. The State of Maryland did not monitor the amount of water being pumped from the wells in the area. Since we have a number of irrigation wells in our area I contacted Stewart Lovell of DNREC to ask how much monitoring DNREC does of wells in this area. I was told they do no routine monitoring because they feel the water supply is adequate in Sussex County for the amount of water being pumped. They do monitor New Castle County. He asked that anyone experiencing well problems contact his office at 302-739-9945 and report it.

A Spendid Little War - XIIB

Men were not the only ones to die in or died from related causes in the Spanish American War. A number of nurses died from Typhoid Fever

Ellen May Tower of Byron, Michigan was the first U.S. Army nurse to die on foreign soil, of typhoid fever, in Puerto Rico during the Spanish-American War, and was the first woman to receive a military funeral in Michigan.

Twenty two women died as a result of service in the Spanish American War:

Bailey, Lurecia - Army Contract Nurse - Died from Typhoid Fever
Bradford, T.R. - Army Contract Nurse - Died From Typhoid Fever - African American
Burke, Mary - Army Contract Nurse - Died From Typhoid Fever - Nun
Cameron, Emma - Army Contract Nurse - Died From Typhoid Fever
Campos, Anna - Army Contract Nurse - Died from Typhoid Fever
Dorothy Cochrane - Army Conttract Nurse - Died From Typhoid Fever
Flanagan, Elizabeth - Army Contract Nurse - Died From Typhoid Fever - Nun
Greenfield, Margaret - Army Contract Nurse - Died From Typhoid Fever
Larkin, Anne - Army Contract Nurse - Died from Typhoid Fever - Nun
Plant, Lulu - Army Contract Nurse - Undiagnosed
Roberts, Alcice - Army Contract Nurse - Died From Typhoid Fever
Stansberry, Katherine - Army Contract Nurse - Died From Typhoid Fever
Sweeney, Mary - Army Contract Nurse - Died From Typhoid Fever - Nun
Toland, Irene - Army Contract Nurse - Died From Typhoid Fever
Tower, Ellen - Army Contract Nurse - Died From Typhoid Fever
Trioche, Margaret - Army Contract Nurse - Died From Typhoid Fever
Turnbull, Minerva - Army Contract Nurse - Died From Typhoid Fever - African American
Walworth, Ruebena - Army Contract Nurse - Died From Typhoid Fever
Ward, Clara - Army Contract Nurse - Died From Typhoid Fever
Wolfe, Carolina - Army Contract Nurse - Died From Typhoid Fever - Nun
Phinney, Dorthea - Volunteer - Died From Malaria

BiState Weekly July 28, 1944


Lt. Doris Brittingham, daughter of Mrs. M. S. Brittingham of near Delmar, and the late Mr. Brittingham, and a classmate, Lt. Emily Nickerson of Wilmington, have been in Normandy since D-Day.

The two were graduated together in 1941 from the Wilmington General Hospital School of Nursing, Wilmington, Del. and were commissioned in February 1942. They received their training at Fort Slocomb, N.Y. and went overseas together. They were among the first nurses to go to England.

After the invasion of North Africa they shared a tent together in a field hospital, and later followed the troops to Salerno.

After duty in Italy they returned to England for a rest and additional training before the invasion of France.

Both nurses are mentioned in a book, "Helmets and Lipstick," written by Lt. Ruth G. Haskell, an Army nurse.

Special People

So this guy pulls in to Wilmington Trust and instead of parking where there was plenty of open parking spaces he decided to park next to the Handicap parking spot in the cross hatched section that is there so vans with ramps can use the extra space. Since his car had temp tags and he went to the loan department I guess he was in a rush to pay for the little gem he was driving.

Chesapeake Bay Bridge Opened in 1952

Today in 1952 the Chesapeake Bay Bridge opened connecting the Eastern Shore to the Western Shore. For those of us who may remember the ferries that were there before the bridge, can also remember wait times for the next ferry that was much longer than the traffic tie ups at today's bridge. The thing I remember most about the opening of the Bay Bridge is the promise of the Governor that the bridge tolls would be removed once the bond was paid off. Another broken government promise.