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Thursday, February 26, 1987


PIX #1 - Wells Fargo Express horsedrawn wagon, and its driver Taylor Brumbaugh, met all the passenger-baggage trains in Fostoria. Brumbaugh was uncle to Meredith Brumbaugh and Mrs. Paul Krupp.

PIX #2 - The Michigan Central Depot, Detroit where passenger-baggage trains from Fostoria pulled in and left.

PIX #3 - A railroad (free) pass coveted by railroaders back in the old days. This one is from Ken Smith's collection.

PIX #4 - This front page of a railroad schedule for the Hocking Valley Railroad, dated 1898, owned by Ken Smith tells its own story.

AUTHOR'S NOTE: Today's article is the last in a 3-part series about the railroad days in Fostoria. Many readers have expressed joy in reading the articles of an important era in Fostoria's history.

An important adjunct to the railroad systems of yesteryear were the express companies. Fostoria had two as far as I can recall...Railway Express and Wells Fargo. The former was located near the Nickle Plate Depot, between S. Union and Wood St., and the latter on W. Center.,, where Alt's Music Store is now.

In a way, the express companies were another post office for shipping packages. The accompanying photo shows a typical horse-drawn wagon used by Wells Fargo. They met all passenger trains.

Every passenger train had a special car hauling baggage and a part of that car was also the official U.S. mail car. Bags of mail were taken to the train stations and the Postal Clerk on board dropped off the bag of each town containing its mail. It was a fast way of getting the mail to its destination.

Back in that era many products including food items, were shipped by rail - one of those being oysters from Chesapeake Bay. Taylor Brumbaugh, the driver of the Wells Fargo rig, shown with this article, often told the author of the large "select" oysters that were shipped into Fostoria. Lots of them were consumed because of their freshness, size, delicious taste...and low prices.


Another innovation of the past, relating to railroads, happened every fall, when the apple crop was harvested. Charles W. Springer who resided at 148 E. Fremont St. always had a box-car with a variety of apples shipped into town and put on the T&O siding adjacent to Cadwallader St., between North and McDougal St.

In those days, many folks put in a supply of apples for the winter...for pies dumplings, sauce...and just eating while sitting near the coal heater on cold winter nights.

There were many varieties of apples back then, which are not heard much of today, and Springer had many of them. Some of those I recall were: Rambos, Northern Spys, Balwins, Russets, Rome, Beauties, Greenings, Show Pippins.

Apples, popcorn and homemade fudge were standbys for munching time in the evenings back then. Those were good, clean sensible, trouble free days.

In his ealier days, Springer was a brick and stone mason. In my recollection, he was retired from that trade and up in years when he sold apples from the box-car.


Many readers were interested, but one in particular, John Twinning, 376 Perry St. was especially pleased to see it, because it brought back memories of his visit to the remains of Pompeii when he was stationed in Italy, during WW II.

There were many interesting photos of the restored city other than used in the article...sorry not enough space.


Several weeks ago, Associated Press carried a story of the death of Dagwood Bumstead, one of the stars featured in the "Blondie" comedy film, which were so popular from 39 to 50.

One of the local readers saw the story and clipped and sent it to Potluck to alert me of the death of Arthur Lake, who plated Bumstead in the comedy series. The printed article reports Lake's birthplace as Corbin, KY., which was correct. But what AP didn't know, and neither would many or any of the Fostoria residents who read the article have known that he lived on Crescent Street in Fostoria perhaps as far back as the 1920's or 30's.

The author of this column first learned of Arthur Lake from Esther Shaffer when writing about that area of Fostoria. shaffer has been a resident on E. Crocker St. all her life. Lake's name was originally Silverlake. It is not known when it was shortened.

Lake, the comedian, died in Indian Wells, Calif., at age 81.


Dear Mr. Krupp: Thank you for your recent letter of support for the President and for including copies of your "Rebirth of America" series that appeared in the Review Times.

We appreciate your drawing our attention to these pieces on the spiritual heritage of America.

Best Wishes for continued success.

Sue Mathis Richard, Director

Office of Media Relations.


The Dec. 11, issue of Potluck pertained to the Band and Music Camp, started by Jack Wainwright in 1926. A copy of the article was sent to Mrs. Jack Wainwright, brought a welcome reply, explaining what has happened to it since then, and reporting on her health, etc. It is being reprinted in full for the many readers who will be interested.

Dear Mr. Krupp: Thank you so much for your nice letter and for sending the Potluck column, which I have been much too long acknowledging. All of our family here were interested in seeing it. I was gratified to learn that there is still so much interest in the camp.

The Limberlost Camps Corp., which had been organized in 1942, with Fabien Sevitsky as Music Director, was dissolved a year later, and the Band Camp ceased to exist as a Summer Music Camp.

Jack's assistant manager and athletic coach, Kenneth Peterman, who had been serving in that capacity since the 1930's assumed most of the physical burden and he and Jack continued to schedule various groups at the camp for short periods.


Bands came a week at a time, mainly to rehearse their halftime shows for the football field. Last year there were eight different bands and the same number has been scheduled for this summer (1987).

Other groups which continued their annual visits were the Englewood Outdoor Club of Chicago, which had been coming every summer since 1944; numerous 4-H Clubs and leaders; a Home Demonstration Club; the Purdue Faculty; Red Cross Youth Group and this year the National Association of Trappers will hold their meeting here in September.

Meanwhile, in 1954 the camp property, including the farm, was donated to the Purdue Research Association, also the Library of Band and Orchestra music was given to the Purdue Music Department.


Mark Peterman, son of the deceased Kenneth Peterman, had been for some years continuing to operate the Camp. In 1982, he and his wife decided to buy the Camp property from the Purdue Research Association and they continue to operate the camp in the same way as before.

In late summer when the strains of band music float across the fields it rolls back the years and leaves a heartache.

I am fortunate in having some of my immediate family near and the others situated in Boston to Los Angeles, from Seattle to Ecuador, kep in touch. My grandsons have grounded me while the snow lasts, but later I hope to be driving to the grocery and doing my own shopping again.

Thank you for your kindness in writing and sending Potluck.

As ever sincerely, Jeannette (Mrs. Jack) Wainwright.


The Feb. 1 issue of "The Nazarene Weekly" published in Nashville, Tenn., printed in their column "Around the Corner" about Leah Smith's book, which was reviewed in Potluck some weeks ago.

A recent note from Mrs. Smith said the sale of the book was going very well.

Several Fostoria residents who have belonged to the Fostoria Church of The Nazarene received copies of the Weekly, in which the Potluck story was reviewed.

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