08-13-2020 Tri-City Area History Page

Woman walking in front of Fryman’s store… Notice the prices on the window. Do you know the woman? Do you remember when shopping was done going store to store down the main street in town? If you have stories you would like to share, contact North Berrien Historical Museum at 269-468-3330, info@northberrienhistory.org. North Berrien Historical Museum is open for private tours, Tuesday through Friday 10-4. From the photo collection at the North Berrien Historical Museum 300 Coloma Avenue, Coloma

The Paw Paw River Journal

EDITOR’S NOTE … the passing of longtime columnist Roy “Bud” Davis necessitates adding local history columns. Going forward our popular local history columnists, Pearl Playford, Dorothy Cannell, and Roy “Bud” Davis will rotate through a 3-week cycle. Enjoy!

January 16, 1985 Marching off the edge of the world Recently we had dinner with a friend of ours, a lady, and she is now ninety years old. I mean to say that she took us out to dinner at a fashionable country club. We dressed for the occasion and drove into the parking lot in our International Scout (our principal trailer pulling and vacation car). I parked next to a very stylish new Mercedes. A gorgeous woman was lifting her golf clubs out of the trunk. As we pulled in, and I shut off the Ignition, the engine continued to diesel. It shook and rattled, and with a sigh, emitted some blue smoke and quit. I came around to open the door for our hostess and help her out. The woman next to us had her golf clubs in hand and stood there watching us. I said to her, “Sometimes I have to shoot it to get it to quit.” She just smiled. I don’t know if Mercedes ever do that or not. We went into the club and our ninety-year-old hostess said, “I don’t golf, swim, play tennis, or cards. But I do enjoy the lunches they serve here, so I maintain a membership.” That was very nicely put, and we enjoyed a tasty luncheon of chicken salad and pineapple. Later, when I had time to reflect, I thought about life and age. One time when I was very little, my father was trying to make real to me the vast numbers of people in the country of China. He said, “If all of the Chinese people were to walk into the sea, four abreast, the line would never end.” I have never forgotten that mental picture of all of those people marching into the sea. But now, that picture has gotten transposed to life itself in my mind. I see all of us marching four abreast, not into the sea, but OFF THE EDGE OF THE WORLD. I see myself as a little kid way back in the line. All of our older relatives were ahead of me. As time goes on, I am getter closer to the edge… bigger and supposedly better able to deal with the final swan dive, but closer nevertheless. Our older friend, the one who took us to that marvelous luncheon, is even closer. Recently, Marion, my sister, and I went out to Maple Hill cemetery to dig up the geraniums for fall and to plant daffodils for next spring. The girls were busily engaged in taking care of the family plot, and I sneaked off to walk through the rows of monuments and speculate on mortality. I said to myself the names I recognized… many names. More people in that quiet town I know than in the living town of Hartford down below the hill. But it was a beautiful afternoon and I smiled in the sunshine and took a deep breath of clean air. I was glad to be alive and returning to those two still attractive girls who by now had finished all of the hard work of digging and planting.

Watervliet District Library holding Census event Aug. 19

Enabling every city and township resident to be counted in this year’s Census is the Watervliet District Library’s goal. The library was pleased to acquire a grant through the Berrien Community Foundation back in January to create programs and opportunities for community outreach, when COVID-19 required library closures across the state. Plans have now resumed and the public is invited. “Wellness Counts”, a Census, Be Counted, Berrien event, will take place in the library’s parking lot Wed., Aug. 19, from 4-7 p.m. Anyone completing the Census at the event will be entered into a prize drawing for a Nutri-bullet blender or a Harding’s gift card. Subway gift cards will be handed out to everyone, while supplies last. The Red Cross will hold a Citizen CPR class during the event, as well. Complete the Census using the laptops provided; help will be available to anyone with questions. Masks are required and will be provided if needed. Social distancing practices will be in place to keep everyone safe and counted. Other upcoming library events: The Third Monday Book Club will discuss the memoir by Saroo Brierley, entitled “A Long Way Home”, 7 p.m. on Aug. 17. Contact the library for more details. Pinteresting, the adult crafting program, is back. The August craft will be Fairy Garden Homes. Sign-up is required; supplies are limited. Packages containing a variety of creative supplies to complete the project can be picked up at the library the last week of the month. Call the library to register. For more information about any of these events, please contact the library at 269-463-6382, through Facebook or email to info@wdlib.org.

Hartford Library moves to new building Aug. 22; reopens Sept. 2

The Hartford Public Library will be moving to their new