Thursday, August 31, 2023

Grand Opening of Tiffany's – August 24, 1973

Do you remember Tiffany's Steakhouse on West Erie Avenue in Lorain, next to Skate World?

I drove by it many times during its heyday, but never stopped in or ate there. I think the combination of the fortress-like appearance (whereas you couldn't see inside) and the feminine name made me think it was a strip joint.

Anyway, Tiffany's held its Grand Opening fifty years ago this month. Above is the ad that ran in the Journal back on August 24, 1973.

An article (below) by Staff Writer Bob Cotleur ran in the paper on the same day. 

The article notes, "Tiffany's Steak and Brew House opens today on Lorain's west side at the site of the former Benny Hart night club opposite the Lorain Drive-in Theatre on West Erie Avenue.

"The structure has been totally remodeled. Inside walls have been moved and the dining areas as well as the lounge are thickly carpeted and plush. The motif is a Mediterranean turn-of-the century effect with Tiffany lampshades, maroon and bright red appointments and wide windows overlooking the lake."

Gee, now I know Tiffany refers to the lamps, not a stripper!

The article reveals the owners behind the restaurant: Jim Perrino,  a noted organist who would provide entertainment); Karel Fiser (who also owned the Prague Restaurant in Vermilion); Loren Bachman; and Phil Provenzano, who ran the Philbo House in Huron some years earlier. 

Tiffany's thrived for many years, as well as its sister restaurant in North Ridgeville near the Elyria border.

Today, there seems to be some activity recently at the former Tiffany's on West Erie, with a dumpster outside.


That area of Lorain has been the subject of many blog posts over the years. This post about the Ed Blahay Transportation Company has a vintage aerial view of the property; I did a previous post about Tiffany's here in 2014; and this post shows how Edna's Restaurant used to occupy the building before Benny Hart's and Tiffany's.

There are also posts devoted to Skate World, Garwell's, the Lorain Drive-in Theatre and Ed's Place Motel.

Wednesday, August 30, 2023

Men's Fashions – August 1973

It's strange being in my 60s and thinking about how mens fashions have changed over the decades – often for the worse.

Above is a good example, from the pages of the August 24, 1973 Journal. The trio of photos shows what was going on, fashion-wise, at that time. Ugh. But while that look might provoke a chuckle now, at the time it was considered pretty groovy.

Elsewhere on the page, we have an ad for Tudy's, a visit with The Lockhorns, a Nobil's Shoes ad and one for Zayre. (Wondering what ever happened to that chain? Click here to visit its Wiki page.)


Looking through old Brady photo albums from the 60s and 70s, it's funny seeing what my brothers and I were wearing on the first day of school. For many years, it seemed like the theme was: anything goes. I'm wearing a bolo tie in this 1970 shot, pardner (below). No wonder I watch GRIT-TV all the time now.

(Note the suitcases covered with decals from our family vacation trips. No backpacks in those days!)

A year later, a little grooviness began to seep in.
And here's the last Brady 'first day of school' shot, from 1972. I remember sitting down with Mom to pick out new school clothes from the Sears Catalogue at that time. She did try to make sure we were dressed for the times. (Hey, I thought white belts after Labor Day were a no-no!)

I'm guessing that paper lunch bag had a peanut butter sandwich in it.

Tuesday, August 29, 2023

George May Ford "Back to School" Ad – August 1963

Lorain City Schools had their first day back in session on Monday, so this vintage ad with a "Back to School" theme is somewhat timely. It's for George May Ford on Kansas Avenue in Lorain, and ran in the Journal back on August 15, 1963.

Ads for George May Ford have been featured on this blog before, because they usually have some interesting angle or design. This one's no exception. There's a lot going on, with bold clip art and lettering, stock photography and a listing of the area high schools and their team names, which is nice touch. (I almost missed the giant pencil going down the left hand side of the ad.)

George May ads sometimes had a gimmick to generate some traffic to the dealership and this one does as well. A 'Twist' party was promoted for the upcoming Friday night, with music by The Wanderers. (This was not the Wanderers out of Michigan; instead, it was a local group who had a regular "Twist Nite" gig at Lincoln Park, as well as performing at St. Mary's dances and Lorain Rainbow Girls events.)

And as usual, vintage car ads are always interesting. I like the line art illustrations of the various models, and I'm not even a Ford guy.

Don't you miss the days when cars had a distinctive look? I can't tell a car's manufacturer or model these days nohow. To my eye, they're interchangeable. Worst of all are the SUVs, especially the Cadillac or Mercedes (with its way-too-big logo.) I guess that's why I'm not too emotionally involved with my cars any more. The last ones I really liked were my Olds Achieva and my Olds Cutlass. After that, they've been largely forgettable (but cheap).

Monday, August 28, 2023

Lawson's Comes to Vermilion – August 1963

Lawson's opened its first store in Lorain (in the Westgate Shopping Center) back in June 1959, but it took another four years before it made it out to my current city, Vermilion. Above is the ad announcing the Grand Opening of the store on W. Liberty St. (the old 6 & 2) that ran in the Journal back on August 21, 1963.

The ad is kind of hilarious, with the boisterous crowd celebrating by tossing hats in the air.

It's pretty amazing just how ubiquitous Lawson's was at that time in Lorain and the surrounding areas. There were stores on Grove Avenue, W. 21st Street, E. Lake Road in Sheffield Lake, Oberlin Avenue, Vine Avenue, two on North Ridge Road, Pearl Avenue, Cleveland Avenue in Amherst, G Street and Kansas Avenue.
Since it was so easy and reasonably cheap to pick up a gallon of milk from Lawson's, it's not that surprising that the local dairies – seeing their home delivery dollars go down the drain – would eventually close or sell out. 
Home Dairy lasted longer than I expected. While cleaning out my mother's house late last year, the estate sale company discovered a collection of Brady checkbook registers from the early 1970s. Mom was still writing checks to Home Dairy in the spring of 1972, about $10 every week or two. I guess my siblings and I went through a lot of milk, between guzzling it and pouring it on cereal.
Anyway, it's a source of amusement in Northeast Ohio just how many former Lawson's store buildings survived and are repurposed. They seem to be everywhere. Some have had drastic makeovers that hide their convenient store roots, like this one at the end of Oberlin Avenue at Cooper Foster Park.
Others (like this one in Vermilion) still look like it wasn't that long ago that you could go in there and get some chipped chopped ham and "Big O" Orange Juice.
And this one (located on Cooper Foster Park in Amherst) seems to have grown organically.

Friday, August 25, 2023

Twitty & Loretta Lynn at the 1973 Lorain County Fair

As noted on this blog a few days ago, country superstars Conway Twitty and Loretta Lynn were the grandstand headliners at the 1973 Lorain County Fair. Their appearance at the Fair is still pretty impressive.

Here's the Journal ad from Saturday, August 25, 1973 – the day of their performance. (I don't know about that clip art of the crowd; it looks more like a birthday party to me.)

And here's the account of the show that ran the next day in the Sunday Journal.

As the article notes, "It was a big night for Lorain County Fairgoers. Over 6,000 persons jammed the grandstand area to see Twitty and Mrs. Lynn, two of the most popular country and western entertainers around.
"The two performed separately and then sang a few songs together for two shows. Fair officials put extra bleachers and chairs on the track to make sure everyone got in. They feel last night's performance was the largest since Gene Autry appeared in 1959.
"Mrs. Lynn, dressed in a long, red gown, joked with members of her band and with her audience which was obviously pleased.
"The striking, black-haired entertainer entered the stage to the "Coal Miner's Daughter" and went on to sing other favorites such as "Love is the Foundation," "Blue Kentucky Girl" and "Your Squaw is on the Warpath."
"She then teamed with Twitty to sing two songs, one of them their latest hit "Louisiana Woman, Mississippi Man."
The article continued. "Twitty also sang a number of songs including "What Am I Living For," "Release Me," "I Can't Stop Loving You," "Proud Mary" and, of course, his well-known "It's Only Make Believe."
"Twitty, who started out with rock and roll, said he had always wanted to do country music and one day just quit the rock and roll scene.
""Country music is more real," he said. "But a lot of your rock hits are country hits.
""Country music has changed but everything has to change and grow,"Twitty added. "I think the biggest change is in the way country music is presented.
""The music, of course, is changed and the style is changed a little bit but the song still says the same things," he said. "The days of the old cornball type thing are gone but that music too, had its day.""

Thursday, August 24, 2023

Lorain Gets a City Seal – August 1973

It was fifty years ago this week that the City of Lorain got a glimpse of its new official city seal, as noted on the front page of the August 23, 1973 Journal shown above.

"Here is the new city seal proposed for Lorain by Mayor Joseph Zahorec," reads the caption. "The date is the year the city was incorporated. In the center of the seal the new city hall complex is pictured underneath the symbol of the Lorain International Association. The work was commissioned by the International Association, and designed by Lorain artist William F. Smith."

The continuation of the article (just as now, it was not on the page indicated) reveals some of the symbolism in the seal. The blue field "stands for Lake Erie, where Lorain thrives." The white field "stands for the purity which the city strives for." The red field "stands for the blood shed by generations of fighting men throughout the world." The four stars "represent the four corners of the world that brought the citizens of Lorain together." The wreath's individual petals "symbolize the people and unity in Lorain."

The version of the city seal on the City of Lorain's website is a little different from the original color scheme.

Fortunately, I remembered that I had a sticker of the original design on my trombone case (below). If I remember correctly, the stickers were given to Admiral King Marching Band members for some performance at Lorain City Hall. 

Wednesday, August 23, 2023

Lorain County Fair Ad – August 20, 1973

On Monday I posted a full-page ad from the Journal promoting the 1963 edition of the Lorain County Fair. It was a fun ad, with cartoon illustrations of kooky clowns, a carnival barker, balloons and circus tents, all under some wacky headline type.

Fast forward ten years and we see the 1973 version of the ad, which ran in the Journal on August 20, 1973. 

The ad is pretty informative, with a schedule for each day of the Fair, as well as a listing of all of the ad sponsors. But unfortunately, it's too restrained, graphics-wise, for me. 

The daily, tall Fair ads in the Journal were a little bit better. Below is one of them, which ran in the paper on August 22, 1973. At least there's some animals in the ad, along with some kids that would be right at home in The Brady Bunch (the TV show, not my family).

Interestingly, the ads that year use 1855 as the Fair starting date, which corresponds with the first 'Wellington' fair, which for a time was separate from the actual Lorain County Fair. Current Lorain County Fair advertising uses the 1846 date, which was when the current Lorain County Agricultural Society was formed.

Anyway, I've posted a lot of Lorain County Fair ads over the year on this blog. Here are two of my favorites (below), from 1946 and 1951. Love dem cartoon critters and old-fashioned typography!

Tuesday, August 22, 2023

Buried Treasure in Troy, Ohio – August 1963

Do you still put money in savings accounts in local banks? Or do you prefer to put excess funds in an IRA, or invest in CDs, bonds, stocks, etc. (Or perhaps you don't have any excess cash at all, which is increasingly becoming the norm in America.)

Well, this page from the August 23, 1963 Lorain Journal has the story of Pop Altman, a man from Troy, Ohio, who distrusted banks so much, he preferred to bury his money in the ground for safekeeping. More specifically, he buried it in huge milk cans at his Miami County feed mill plant beginning in the 1930s. 

On his death bed in late July 1963, he told his son and daughter about the buried money. Two 10-gallon cans with $350,000 in small bills were unearthed shortly thereafter; the article above notes that another milk can with an additional $150,000 had just been found.

Elsewhere on the page: the U. S. Post Office on Broadway gets spruced up; the "By George" column offers some whimsical advice; the Delis family (including the owners of Delis Furniture) has a visitor from Greece, who offers up an interesting view of life there; and Governor Jim Rhodes and Patricia Lei Anderson, Miss Hawaii of 1962, open up the Ohio State Fair (which seems pretty late compared to the current schedule).

Monday, August 21, 2023

Lorain County Fair Ad – August 17, 1963

It's Lorain County Fair Week – one of the best weeks of the year.

And to help celebrate, here's a full page ad for the 1963 Lorain County Fair that ran in the Lorain Journal back on August 17, 1963. 

Back in 1963 it was the 108th edition; sixty years later, this year's version is being identified as the 177th Anniversary. Why the discrepancy? According to the fair website, the year 1846 is being used as the inaugural year – so apparently the years that there wasn't a fair don't factor into it any more. It makes it much easier.

The full-page ad is fun to look at. Oddly enough, it has a 'circus' feel to it, with all the clowns. I guess the Journal had a limited amount of clip art back then.

But there's some interesting things in the ad. What jumped out at me was the fact that Leduc's Frosty Follies Ice Show as one of the attractions. (I wrote about Jean Paul Leduc and his Ice Show back here, when it performed at Midway Mall in 1969.)

Aside from fireworks, the International Auto Daredevils is the only other act being promoted. So the fair back then really was about the judging of livestock, harness racing, 4-H Club events, tractor pulls and the Junior Fair – not big name entertainment.

Anyway, the article below, which appeared in the Journal on August 9, 1963 provides some background for the Fair that year. It also notes, "Each year, for the past several years, a new addition has been made to the physical plant of the fairgrounds, and this year it is a 6,000 square-foot building for exhibits on the southern side of the grounds."

Anyone who attends the fair each year no doubt stops at the building shown in the photo, and its lookalike building next door. It's always fun to check out the photographs, cakes, piles of junk antiques, etc.
Check out this great Fair photo sent to me by longtime blog contributor Todd
He wrote, "Since it's Lorain County Fair Week, I thought you might get a kick out of the attached photo. It was taken by Cleveland Plain Dealer Staff Photogragher William A. Ashbolt and was published in the PD along with a nice article. It's of my sister Andrea and me enjoying a candy apple dressed in our matching Indian suits on some kiddie ride. I'm not sure of the year but I look about four years old, so that would make it 1962. 
"My Grandmother Elizabeth Schinder loved taking us to the Fair to look at the animals, climb on the tractors and eat.  She would always "start" our candy apples since our mouths were to little to crack the hard candy shell. Even though I no longer live in Lorain, I have a soft spot for the Fair."
Todd calls Nashville home these days. He has left some great comments over the years about working at the Journal, which he says was his first real job after college. Thanks for sharing, Todd!
Be sure to visit some of my 27 other posts about the Lorain County Fair over the years. (When you visit old posts through a link like this, when you get to the bottom of the lonnnnng page, be sure to click on the 'Older Posts' link on the lower right corner to bring up the rest of them.)

Friday, August 18, 2023

School Safety Ad – August 14, 1963

Believe it or not, I saw on the news this morning that school is already back in session in some Northeast Ohio cities, so this vintage ad is somewhat timely. The two-page spread encouraging safe driving around schools ran in the Lorain Journal back on August 14, 1963.

I wonder how many kids actually walk to school these days? With the consolidation of elementary and middle schools into one main campus that many cities find practical and economical, I'm guessing not too many these days.

I still feel very lucky that I grew up when I did, being able to walk to both Masson Elementary and Masson Junior High. It was good exercise, plus a way to become familiar with the neighborhood, and learn where your classmates lived. (I walked to Admiral King High School the first few years, until my older brother began driving.)

It's still strange in 2023 to drive down Skyline Drive and remember who lived in almost every house, especially if kids lived there. It's almost the same with Marshall Avenue, Palm Springs and many of the West Side numbered streets. 

Anyway, as usual it's the list of sponsors in the 1963 ad that is interesting. As expected, there doesn't seem to be many survivors, except for McDonald's, Lorain Monument Works and the successor companies to banks and public utilities.

And as for the ad graphics, I like the gloved policeman (who looks slightly intimidating) and the slate chalkboard (which today's kids wouldn't be able to identify).

Thursday, August 17, 2023

American Ship Building Office – August 1963

Last month I posted an ad announcing the move of the American Ship Building Company's relocation of its general offices from Cleveland to Lorain in July 1963. It was big news, because it gave the Lorain yard greater prominence and importance, and put it in a better position to be utilized.

A month later in August 1963, local photographer John Fazio visited the central offices of the company and captured the images above, which accompanied an article by Ralph Neumeyer that appeared in the Journal on August 10, 1963.

The photos provide a nice glimpse of the employees in Lorain who played such an important role in the company's operations. We also see the outside of the building itself, well-remembered by many Lorainites who passed by the shipyards while driving on Colorado Avenue

As described in the article, "Erected at the top of a hill and giving a front view appearance of a one story structure, the building has a lower level which overlooks the yard facilities.

"The building is of brick with a partial front trim of imported Cardiff granite aggregate.

"Among its features, according to Elmer Hume, Amherst, who was general contractor and worked in conjunction with American Ship Building Co. engineers in designing the building, is unusual heating and ventilation.

"It is believed to be the first electrically heated office building in this area, and as a result a number of innovations were required in installing air conditioning.

"Because the shipyard area was originally the old river bed, and marshy, it was necessary to base the foundation on solid limestone 60 feet down.

"A new roadway parallel to Colorado Ave. was built to relieve traffic congestion along this busy thoroughfare.

"The offices are trim, functional and business-like, with paneling in the lobby and executive offices.

"On the upper floors are the lobby, executive offices, conference rooms, library and offices, for engineering, estimating, materials handling, purchasing and industrial engineering.

"The lower level includes accounting offices, a print shop, storage, mechanical equipment facilities and social room."

Today, there's no trace of the former office building of the American Ship Building Company in its old location near E. Street overlooking the redeveloped marina property.

Wednesday, August 16, 2023

Bobby Rydell at The Note – August 1963

Recent view of the former home of The Note
Teenagers growing up in the 1960s in the Vacationland area were pretty fortunate to have The Note

The dance hall in Ruggles Beach that catered to young adults was an incredible venue for them to enjoy popular music, whether it was a live performance by a pop band or top 40 records spun by DJs. And it was alcohol-free for most of the decade, meaning that parents could relax while their kids were there, since they were less likely to get into trouble. 
(I did an extensive post about The Note back here in 2019.)
Just last week, I posted an ad for a special appearance there in August 1963 by Ghoulardi of Cleveland late night TV fame. And here's another ad from that same month – this time for Bobby Rydell. The ad announcing his upcoming performance ran in the Journal on August 16, 1963.
Bobby Rydell was a popular teen idol, who enjoyed fame as both a rock and roll singer and an actor along the lines of Frankie Avalon. Here he is singing one of his big hits, "Wild One."
It's pretty amazing that he even appeared at The Note at that point, considering his national fame. Compare that to today, when young concert goers have to jam themselves into stadiums to see a favorite perform.
Coincidentally, Bobby Rydell had a role in the movie, Bye Bye Birdie, which I wrote about (on this post) just last month.

Tuesday, August 15, 2023

What was going on in Lorain 96 Years Ago Today?

Ninety-six years ago today, there was a lot going on in Lorain and the world, as seen on the front page of the Lorain Times-Herald of August 15, 1927.

Front and center is an architectural rendering of Lorain's newest theater. As noted in the caption, "Design of the new $500,000 theater and business block for which excavation is now in process on the east side of Broadway at Sixth-st. The building, being built by the Midwest Properties company to be leased to the Varieties Amusement company, both of Cleveland, is expected to be ready for a January 1 opening.

"Most modern in construction and design, the main auditorium will hold 2500 persons. A lobby running back from the entrance on Broadway to a large foyer will necessitate an L-shaped plan of building."

Although the article doesn't mention the name, the new movie house was the Palace Theatre. Here's a recent Google Maps view for a comparison with the rendering.

(This blog post featured a souvenir program from the Grand Opening of the Palace on April 19, 1928.)

Judge Gary
Of course, the huge headline on the Times-Herald page overshadows everything else, and it was big news: the death of Elbert Henry Gary, the founder of U. S. Steel. He was known as "Judge Gary" because he had served two terms as a county judge in DuPage County, Illinois. (Click here to read more about him on a Wiki page.)

Two articles seem to indicate that Lorain was becoming a hotbed for crimes stretching beyond its city limits. In one, "nationwide operations of a blackmail gang with headquarters in Lorain" were uncovered and two suspects arrested accused of extorting money from the proprietor of the Thomas hotel. In the other article, it is noted that "Two gangs of gunmen and 'stick-up men' whom police say, "ate and slept" in Lorain and laid their plans here, had been captured by Cleveland police Monday after a series of holdups in that city."

On a happier note, two sisters that had been separated for decades were reunited. "Long years of almost hopeless search were rewarded at Kelly's Island Saturday when Mrs. John Schieferstein, 843 W. 11th-st, clasped in her arms her sister who was parted from her more than 30 years ago," said the article.

"Living only a few miles apart all these years little did Mrs. Schieferstein think that Mrs. George Kneaur of Kelly's Island was her sister."

How did they get separated? "The two sisters were brought to Ohio in 1898 from a New York orphanage for adoption," noted the article. One sister was adopted by a Lorain couple, and the other by a couple on Kelly's Island. 

Father Reichlin, the priest from Mrs. Schieferstein's church in Lorain is the one who made it happen during a trip to Kelly's to see if he could find the sister. Strangely enough, George Kneaur had made his first communion with him in Kelly's Island years earlier, and the good Father managed to put it all together for a happy ending.

In other news: a jail break down in Circleville, Ohio (home of the popular annual Pumpkin Festival); the burning of a B & O boxcar in the railroad yards in Lorain, possibly as a protest committed by Sacco-Vanzetti sympathizers.

(Click here to read about the still-controversial case of Sacco and Vanzetti, two Italian-American immigrants/anarchists who were convicted of robbery and murder, and subsequently executed on August 23, 1927.)


You might be wondering why I had this particular front page. I happened to find it while looking through old newspapers on microfilm dating from around the time of my late mother's birth back in early September 1927.

Monday, August 14, 2023

Grand Opening of New Hanna's Lounge – August 7, 1962

The ads connected with the Grand Opening of the new Hanna's Lounge at 2100 E. 28th Street dominated this page from the August 7, 1962 Lorain Journal. Since I'd never heard of this restaurant, I wanted to find out more. How long had there been a business on that corner of E. 28th Street and Oakwood?

The answer: a long time. One of the oldest Lorain City Directories revealed that Gideon Serbu had been serving soft drinks at that address since at least 1926. The business description had evolved to include 'billiards' by 1933, and was listed as a restaurant by the end of the 1930s. 

Although there was no name listed in the directories during that time, references to the business in newspaper articles from that era refer to it as Carpathian Restaurant, still run by Gideon Serbu. (BTW, Mr. Serbu's 1949 obituary noted that he was born in Romania, so it makes sense that his place was named after the Carpathian Mountains, more than half of which lie in Romania).

While the restaurant listings continued into the early 1940s, by 1942 the address was listed as 'vacant.' There was a one-year listing as the Atlas Athletic Association in the 1947 directory.

By the early 1950s, however, the place had sprung back to life as the Flamingo Cafe, run by Henry Ruth. Throughout the 1950s, the directory listing varied, with other names including Flamingo Bar & Grill and just plain Flamingo Bar.

John Hanna entered the picture around 1960, and the restaurant became Hanna's Flamingo Bar. The 1962 remodeling and re-christening as Hanna's Lounge seemed to be an effort to forge a new beginning.

After that, the place would change names and ownership many times: Pete's Bar (late 1960s to mid-1980s); Tony J's Cantina on the Strip and Tony J's (mid-1980s to late 1990s); Zamora's Crossing (late 1990s). 

By 2000 it was for sale. It looks like it finished up its useful career as Cantina Sports Bar; finally, a 2013 listing in the Morning Journal of addresses to be demolished included 2100 E. 28th Street – and that apparently was that.

Today the corner of E. 28th and Oakwood, that had seen so much activity over the decades, is an empty lot. But here's a 2013 view, courtesy of Google Maps.


There's plenty of other things on that August 7, 1962 Journal page that are of interest: a photo of young Carol Sandor of Avon Lake, who had just won the "Tell Me Why!" contest connected with that daily Journal feature; and a photo of a race held as part of the annual carnival of St. Vincent de Paul Church on then-Route 254 (which I attended for a while).

And of course the movie listings are always fun, with a great triple feature of house-themed horror movies at Lorain Drive-in: House of Wax (1953), House of Usher (1960) and House on Haunted Hill (1959).

Friday, August 11, 2023

Reddy to Freeze Just About Anything – Aug. 1963

It's been a while since our old pal Reddy Kilowatt has dropped by here on the blog. He was pretty much retired by the early 1970s, so it's unlikely that he'll pop up in any 1973 ads. So, we'll reach back a little earlier and post this ad that appeared in the Journal back on August 6, 1963.

Reddy surprises us a little this time. Rather than encouraging us to freeze fruits and vegetables as in previous ads, he's recommending that we plan ahead to 'ease the strain of holidays.'  Thus, Reddy encourages us to freeze decorated birthday cakes, frosted cupcakes, "blobs" of whipped cream to be used as toppings later, cream cheese balls, bags of ice cubes, spaghetti sauce, chili, chow mein, and even potato chips!

It's an odd ad, with its illustrations of a woman stylishly dressed while preparing her soon-to-be-frozen vittles. (It looks like she's wearing a cocktail dress while she decorates her cake.)
Anyway, I've mentioned before how I just don't use my freezer very much, despite Reddy's advice. I have a pot pie in there that's aging nicely, some soup I made in the early spring, and some ancient, stinky ice cubes – but that's about it.
I knew a few people in my youth that had those huge freezers like Reddy is demonstrating. But the Brady freezer in the basement was upright, and – for quite a time in the 1970s and 80s – filled with perch and walleye that Dad caught.

Thursday, August 10, 2023

Tudy's 20th Anniversary – August 1973

Tudy's Restaurant was a Lorain County favorite for decades, fondly remembered by those who enjoyed its pleasant ambience and fine food. Founded and operated by Art "Tudy" Diaz, the popular eatery was located on North Ridge Road E. in Elyria Township.

And fifty years ago this month, Tudy's celebrated its 20th Anniversary with an advertising feature on the Business & Industry Review page, as well as a Journal interview with Diaz. 

Here's the Business page feature article, which ran in the Journal on August 6, 1973.

And here's the interview, written by Staff Writer Mark Ellis. It appeared in the Journal back on August 12, 1973.

As noted in the article, Tudy's started out as a drive-in in 1953, but quickly expanded to a sit-down restaurant.
Two years after the 1973 article, Diaz sold his restaurant to another well-known local restauranteur, Richard Head (profiled in this 4-part blog series) of The Hoop/Manners fame. But by 1980, Diaz was back at the helm of his beloved eating spot. He would remain there until late 2000, when he retired and sold the business to Con-Sun Foods, who built a Sunoco gas station and convenient store at that location.
Tudy's has been the subject of two other blog posts. This one featured a 1970 ad and a photo of the 'Drive-in' sign; this more extensive post featured several ads and photos from 1972 to 1975.

Wednesday, August 9, 2023

Lorain's Musty Old Records – August 1973

What does a city do with its old records if there isn't a local historical society around to take an interest in them and preserve them?

Apparently that was Lorain's problem back in the summer of 1973, when the article above and accompanying photograph appeared in the Journal on August 13th. 

"They're not much to look at. Dirty, musty and sometimes vermin infested, they appear to be a prime candidate for the nearest trash heap.

"Those old Lorain city documents are wanted, though. Friday the Western Reserve Historical Society of Cleveland came and took several hundred volumes to preserve them for posterity and future historical research."

The representatives from the WRHS had the unpleasant task of reviewing the old records in the sweltering heat of the basement of the police-court building behind the old Lorain City Hall. (That's the brick building in the photo at right.) They explained to the Journal reporter that the WRHS would collect the old documents, clean them up and catalogue them, making them available for researchers.

The article notes that, "Few of the Lorain records taken are what might be called extremely old. The oldest date back to about 1890."

Anyway, a quick search of the Western Reserve Historical Society's online library collection database shows there is a lot of Lorain and Lorain County material there in Cleveland. I'm sure local author (and regular blog commenter) Don Hilton has perused their files there, especially when he was writing his book about the early death records of Lorain County.


I had a situation not unlike Lorain's dilemma with its old records when I bought my first house, located on Nebraska Ave. on the east side. 

While exploring the attic of the house (which was built in the early 1940s), I discovered a stack of old ledgers from the steel mill. The books were large and dusty, with writing in them done with a fountain pen in a flowery style. (The original owner who built the house worked at the Mill.)

I brought the books down from the attic, only to discover that they were inhabited – by (ugh) silverfish! Soon I had a silverfish starter ranch in my spare bedroom. The books had been pretty much munched on by something up in the attic; I'm guessing miserable meeces.

As a result, I either got rid of them or stuck them back up in the attic. I can't remember which (it was more than thirty years ago).

Tuesday, August 8, 2023

Perry Victory 150th Anniversary Article – August 1963

Sixty years ago this month in August 1963, preparations were being made for the celebration surrounding the 150th anniversary of Commodore Oliver H. Perry's defeat of the British fleet in the Battle of Lake Erie during the War of 1812.

The Village of Put-in-Bay – known today as a great place to spend the day and drink – was actually starting the party a little early (rather than September 10th) to accommodate the tourists.

As the article above, which appeared in the Journal back on August 8, 1963 noted, "One-hundred-fifty years ago this year Commodore Oliver H. Perry defeated a British fleet in one of the decisive battles of the war of 1812 a few miles north of this little island community.

"The Battle of Lake Erie was one of the turning points of the war, which ushered in a century and a half of peace and friendship between the United States and its Canadian neighbors across the lake.

"And to commemorate those years of friendship and the hope of future peaceful years, the residents here are in the midst of a whopping anniversary celebration.

"The actual celebration doesn't come until Sept. 10, but the village of Put-in-Bay and the shore community of Port Clinton, which is cooperating in the project, are holding the celebration during the vacation season for the benefit of the thousands of tourists who visit the area each year.

"The celebration actually started earlier this week, with the 70th annual Inter-Lake Yachting Association Regatta Monday through Thursday, capped by sesquicentennial ceremonies.

"The crowning point of the celebration will be the International Queen of Peace contest August 24. Beauties from the United States and Canada will meet on South Bass Island, where Put-in-Bay is located, for the judging.

Yup, there's nothing like a beauty contest to celebrate an important naval victory.

The article also notes, "Another special U. S. celebration is being arranged for the early part of September to coincide with the anniversary of Perry's victory.

"This week's program was built around ceremonies at the 352-foot-tall Perry Memorial, where three American and three British sailors are buried. It also features parades, stadium programs and street dances."

Since the 150th anniversary was in 1963, that makes this year's observation of the victory the 210th. It probably won't rate as much fanfare as, say, the 200th, which wasn't that long ago.

I often wonder if the general public still has any interest in celebrating the anniversary of historical events, especially when it comes to wars. It seems that even the Civil War doesn't get much attention these days; I can only imagine that the War of 1812 is of even less interest to the average Joe – and more's the pity.


The 100th anniversary was a big deal in Lorain. This post told how the Perry Centennial Celebration, held in July 1913, included the arrival of the raised and restored Perry flagship "Niagara."

This post covered the Lorain Journal's observation of the 122nd anniversary in 1935.

Monday, August 7, 2023

J. Q.Builders Ad – August 3, 1963

When the Lorain Skyport, operated by Ray and Ruth McClenaghan, was winding down operations in the late 1950s, the property became ripe for housing development. 

An article in the January 4, 1956 Lorain Journal noted that, "A new southwest Lorain housing development, to involve more than $5 million and eventually include from 200 to 300 homes, will be started in April, it was announced today.

"The homes will be built on Lorain Skyport property north of Meister and east of Leavitt."

Thus the property that originally was the location of Lorain's Port Mills Airport was going to be ground zero for the city's postwar growth spurt.

As it sometimes happened when a huge area was being developed, some properties and lots ended up in the hands of different builders, who offered them to their clients. 

When my parents wanted to build a new house in the late 1950s, they selected a builder who owned land on W. 30th Street west of Ashland Avenue (in the area described in the 1956 article). To decide which lot they wanted to purchase to build on, Mom and Dad had to use Ashland Ave. as a reference point, and count stakes and measure until they found the available property they liked. 

Our house at 1604 W. 30th under construction in 1957

Anyway, one of the builders who apparently owned several lots north of Meister and east of Leavitt was J. Q. Builders, managed by John Quarando. The ad below ran in the Journal back on August 3, 1963.

Although I lived on the west side of Lorain until the mid-1980s, I still had to think for a minute where Reeves Avenue was, since I rarely needed to use it to get anywhere. 

The house on Reeves in the ad is the second house off of Meister. Interestingly, the architectural rendering of the house (inexplicably called "The Jamaican") is the same one used in the 1962 J. Q. Builders ad with the downtrodden guy that I wrote about here

And here is the J. Q. Builders "Jamaican" house on Reeves today – still looking great, and now with a two-car garage.

Friday, August 4, 2023

Ghoulardi at The Note – August 1963

Ghoulardi (Ernie Anderson)

Although I grew up in the 1960s, I was a little too young to be aware of late-night movie host Ghoulardi (played by Ernie Anderson) during his stint on Channel 8 from 1963 to 1966. (I only remember his successors in that time slot on Channel 8, Hoolihan and Big Chuck, and The Ghoul over on Channel 61). But it's well known that Ghoulardi was wildly popular during his time on the airwaves and, naturally, he made personal appearances in Northeast Ohio and the surrounding areas.

And sixty years ago, Ghoulardi made a one-night appearance at The Note, the dance hall in Ruggles Beach that catered to young adults. Below is the ad that appeared in the Entertainment section of the Journal, promoting his appearance the following day – August 4, 1963.

Ghoulardi has appeared on this blog before. This post told of his personal appearance at the Meyer Goldberg grocery stores in Lorain in November 1963.

And this post includes a photo of the now-demolished Ghoulardi's nightclub in Lorain.


The Note was the subject of a post back in 2019 that featured many ads for the popular nightspot.

Thursday, August 3, 2023

Wiping Out a Block on Broadway – August 1, 1963

Sixty years ago, Lorain City Council was in the process of rezoning an entire city block – between 17th and 18th Street from Broadway to Livingston Avenue – so that the buildings currently on the property could be torn down. The plan was to replace the demolished buildings with a golden age center built by the Lorain Metropolitan Housing Authority to house retired persons. A high rise building and several smaller, home-like units comprised the project.

Above is a page of photos by Journal photographer Bill Conley showing the buildings and dilapidated stores that would be coming down. The page ran in the paper on August 1, 1963.

By October 1963, it was full speed ahead with the plan, as described on this blog post in which a final tour of the condemned buildings was conducted. By mid-February 1964, the demolition phase was just about done, as shown in the photos and article on this post.

It's interesting to see what was torn down to make room for the housing project. Too bad.

Anyway, in the photo montage, I noticed some empty bottles of one of my favorite beers: Black Label!