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From the December 1941 Delaware County Advocate
Courtesy of Harvey S. Martin

The Yellow Bowl, 606 Sproul St.; Photo from the Delaware County Advocate, courtesy of Harvey S. Martin

LOCALE for the Pre-Christmas dinner was one of those famous Bowls - The Yellow Bowl, at 606 Sproul Street in Chester. The cooks took in our fresh-killed turkey and raw vegetables and In practically no time served a feast.

PRESENTING- An All-Delaware County Dinner

Now that the seas are treacherous, and railroads and highways used increasingly for defense needs, we'll have to begin looking in our own back yards for life's necessities. But just to prove that it wouldn't be a starvation diet, the Advocate set out to prepare a full course dinner from products native to Delaware County. It turned into a feast - a banquet and to be quite sure it was appreciated we invited a dozen boys with large appetites from the Chester Boys' Club to eat and set their stamp of approval on our All-Delaware County Dinner.

Farmers and wholesalers throughout the county were most cooperative in donating samples of their specialty and telling us with pride how they do it. The Yellow Bowl restaurant in Chester cooked and served the dinner, eager to do its part in boosting Delaware County as an industrious, prosperous and comfortable place to live.

Crimson CocktailMenu for the Delaware County Dinner
The appetizer, though one was hardly needed, was luscious red tomato juice made from Meredith tomatoes in Concordville, bottled just across the river at the Hurff cannery. Tons of Delaware County tomatoes are ferried across to New Jersey each year, emerging in bottles and cans as nationally famous soups, sauces and cocktails. No, the Jerseyites have no monopoly on "love-apples."

Holland Turkey Off the Map
This is not a war bulletin but the sad story of what happened to a 16-pound white turkey from the Village Green Hatchery. Said bird was honored by being chosen as the. main course on the menu of the Delaware County Dinner.

Messrs F. A. Hallman and G. F. White raise about 3500 turkeys annually, including Broadbreasted Bronze and White Holland varieties that you see in wire-floored sun porches built on the front of their houses. Pedigreed turkeys are always kept off the ground, except that the breeding flock is sometimes allowed to strut about and scold the visitors as you see them voicing their indignation at the presence of our photographer.

Messrs Hallman and White hatch and raise all their own turkeys for poultry dealers principally, although one can be bought at the farm. The Thanksgiving and Christmas demand runs about even. Just now they say they have "only 700" on hand, which still seems to us a lot of turkey.

Between this turkey's departure from its native heath and its appearance on the table at the Yellow Bowl it was deftly dispatched, dressed and drawn by Mrs. Esther Kerr down on "Commission Row" not far from where William Penn may have seen his first wild turkey.

Ground-Hog Day at Heyburns
H. H. Heyburn's Sons Sausage & Scrapple The firm of H. H. Heyburn's Sons has been making sausage and scrapple at the plant along Baltimore Pike in Concord Township ever since the earliest part of the gay nineties. Here you see William A. Heyburn stuffing sausage tubing, while a large quantity of link and ball sausage is on the rack of the spotlessly clean table ready for delivery to the trade. Some of it was used to season the stuffing of the bird that graced the Delaware County Dinner.

Mr. Heyburn's brother Senator Weldon Heyburn, beginning to be mentioned as gubernatorial timber, lends an expert hand when not busy at lawmaking in Harrisburg, as does A. Darlington Heyburn.

The world knows of Philadelphia scrapple but Delaware County is also a sausage and scrapple making section. About the time Jack Frost first sneaks up on the pumpkin local pork-packers begin to make sausage and scrapple. Demand continues until about the time the wrens arrive in early May. War conditions have influenced the costs of manufacture. The best sage, one of the principal seasoning ingredients of sausage, comes from Dalmatia on the Adriatic Sea. It used to cost about 20 cents a pound. Now it sells for two dollars a pound, when available at all.

The combined output of the half dozen manufacturers of pork products in Chester, Media, Middletown and Concord at the height of the season amounts to 15 ton of scrapple and 10 tons of sausage per week. Now we know where the Three Little Pigs finally wound up.

Yoo-Hoo, Kalamazoo!Shisler Brothers Celery, Glenolden, PA
That town in Michigan with the funny name, and the black soil belt of North Jersey may have built up a reputation for celery, but if you have ever tasted the very superior celery that comes from Shisler Brothers just outside Glenolden you would decide that our own County's product is no mean rival. (Left) Shisler's huge celery fields at Glenolden yield their crisp harvest in the frosty months, between October 15 and February 15. Connoisseurs say this local delicacy has unusual sweetness and flavor.

For twenty-five years Shisler Brothers have sent the output of their large truck farm to the metropolitan quality market. They are wholesalers only but were glad to add another evidence of what Delaware County can do to make up a dinner.

Drinks by a County Dairy
Miller-Flounders Dairy Barn at Feltonville Since no meal (or between-meal) is complete without a glass of milk the dozen diners at the Yellow Bowl didn't let even a turkey dinner stop them, but downed at least one glass of Miller-Flounders Milk. This dairy at Twelfth and Kerlin in Chester pasteurizes, bottles and distributes the milk output of a number of nearby farms, some in Delaware County. From one of their farms, at Feltonville, came the very beverage the boys drank with such gusto.

Above) Shisler's huge celery fields at Glenolden yield their crisp harvest in the frosty months, between October 15 and February 15. Connoisseurs say this local delicacy has unusual sweetness and flavor.

Idaho Spuds From Concord
Frank P. Willits, who sat in the 'Pinchot cabinet at Harrisburg, and his son Paul are in the forefront of potato growers on adjoining farms midway between Chester Heights and Elam in Concord Township. Their potatoes came to the Delaware County dinner, whipped within an inch of their lives to frothy whiteness.

Mushroom Magic
The tender button mushrooms, creamed in fresh Miller Flounders Milk, came from Concord Foods Co. cannery. Mushrooms from Styers and elsewhere keep the Concordville cannery going full steam in season. The bulk of the nation's mushrooms, however, come from neighboring Chester County, a few miles west along the Baltimore Pike.

Mr. W. Lehman Forwood, Elam Feed and Cider MillBrown October Cider
The diners who enjoyed the Delaware County dinner had their choice of beverages, and nearly all chose both. There was Miller-Flounders milk from nearby dairy farms and cider from the Elam Feed and Cider Mill.

The many brown jugs full of sweet cider you see at the roadside stands dotting Delaware County come from local cider mills. We stopped at Elam just in time to see W. Lehman Forwood who runs the mill turning his neighbors' apples into cider quicker than a flash.

Mr. Forwood described the process as he worked. The apples are fed through a hopper into the press, the crushed apples resembling a gigantic order of sandwich spread. But there was no mistaking the fragrant- aroma of Stayman Winesaps - from Delaware County.

A cider press, if you have never seen one, doesn't look unlike the printing presses of Ben Franklin's day. The cider comes through a hose after straining through cloth, to fill the gallon jugs, or the large storage tank at the mill.

Around Halloween time cider sales mount to 2500 gallons a day. This tapers off gradually to about 1000 a day through Thanksgiving and Christmas, until a dearth of apples and warmer weather call a halt, come spring.

Eggs Mark the Spot
Here you see Walter P. Shaw's white Leghorn hens on the poultry range at his farm at ConcordviIIe. The hens are dining on ladillo clover with mixed grasses which they relish and repay with a steady output of eggs. Hens pay no attention to priorities but they maintain an even pace of about 5000 eggs a week. Mr. Shaw is recognized as an expert poultryman and knows how to coax and cajole the hens.

Thus far he has not had to resort to music which has been tried elsewhere. If he does we can't helpHerbert Shaw, Concordville, PA wondering whether 'You're in the Army Now" would make these hens give in greater numbers.

Mr. Shaw's output is carefully candled and goes to the retail trade principally in Chester, Lansdowne and Springfield. Some prefer white eggs. Others specify brown. Mr. Shaw Jr. says one is as good as the other, though a white egg looks prettier in a bowl at the soda fountain. (Right) you see Mr. Shaw's son Herbert packing the eggs which were used in the dessert at the Delaware County Dinner.

 

(Left) Every diner at the Delaware County Dinner found room for a big red apple that came from the farm of Norman S. Passmore on Walter Road, Concord Township. Mr. Passmore specializes in superior apples. No fruit since days of Adam and Eve has received more publicity (or polishing) than the apple.
We hear much about Oregon apples, York State apples and the very fine apples of our neighboring Delaware. But nowhere will you find finer apples than the Stayman Winesaps right here in our own county.

The farmers of Delaware County know how to grow good apples. With the cooperation of the Agricultural Extension Bureau they have learned that pruning and spraying (above) help to produce mighty nigh perfect apples. This year's crop was especially free from diseases that attack the fruit. So have an apple - do!

For Christmas Spirit
Styer's Nursery, Concordville, PA These frosty-looking Christmas trees, row after row, are at Styer's in Concordville, who have the largest assortment of plants in any Pennsylvania Nursery. A rare new shrub from China, furnished by Styer's, was used as table decoration at the Delaware County Dinner. They also provided a pumpkin which promptly turned into pie.

Motorists on Baltimore Pike a few weeks ago noticed the gorgeous display of chrysanthemums, and hundreds stopped to admire them. All year long there is some kind of plant at Styer's which makes a marvelously colorful show. We'll take you there when the flowers bloom outdoors again, for it's worth a visit.

Delaware County Dinner Group: Vincent Bonaquisto, Paul DeMeo, Howard Anderson, Bill Swanson, Fudy Peticca, Bill McGinnis, Albert Perrari, James Perrari, Ralph Bush, Albert Thomas, Albert Zaffiri, Frank Ferriola and their leader Mr. John J. Vaul.

A LUCKY DOZEN, ready to fall to in the Yellow Bowl. In the group are Vincent Bonaquisto, Paul DeMeo, Howard Anderson, Bill Swanson, Fudy Peticca, Bill McGinnis, Albert Perrari, James Perrari, Ralph Bush, Albert Thomas, Albert Zaffiri, Frank Ferriola and their leader Mr. John J. Vaul.

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If you have any information and or pictures that you would like to contribute about any businesses in Chester, please forward it to john@oldchesterpa.com


2006 John A. Bullock III.

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This page last updated 03/05/06

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