New Castle News

Local News

July 24, 2013

Bessemer at 100, Part 2: From baseball to education, residents recall borough’s history

NEW CASTLE — There wasn’t an official baseball field in Bessemer in the late 1950s.

So Stan Grebenz and his friends changed that. And Eagles Field became the center of their lives for a few summers.

“Most of the boys in town loved to play baseball, but we needed our own place,” Grebenz, 67, recalled.

A man donated 11⁄2 acres of ground on the corner of 13th and Clyde streets.

“About 20 of us worked and cleared the land. We got a snow fence for the outfield and lumber for the dugout, and even some old bases.”

Every morning during the summer, the boys rode their bike to the field and played ball until lunch. After eating, they swam in the quarries of North Main Street until dinner. Then it was back to the ball field until it got dark.

There are houses there now, said Grebenz, who served on Bessemer Borough Council for 30 years.

But those magical summers of playing ball will always be with him.

SUMMERTIME

HANGOUTS


Growing up in Bessemer holds some special memories for those who stayed and those who left.

For Brenda Frazier, summers were also spent at the quarries, which have since been closed off to the public.

“Everybody met there,” Frazier said. There were big rocks and one called ‘Flat Rock’ and we hung out there. They even put in a big diving board. It was the place to be.”

She has another memory — a slithery one.

“There were snakes out there but the older guys would pick them up and keep on going.”

Lifelong resident Paul Tenhula, 61, recalls the carnivals, too.

Those fun summer events were held on the lot of the Bessemer Elementary School, Tenhula said, adding parades were also held for Independence Day and sometimes on Halloween.

Diane Nord, 40, has lived in Bessemer all her life and is currently secretary of the Municipal Authority. She is also on the centennial committee, which is organizing all the events that will take place July 28-31.

“It’s a sense of community spirit,” Nord said. “Growing up, I always felt safe.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • 06.jpg Photo Gallery, Story: Clifton Flat hosts annual egg hunt

    With three crosses standing outside Clifton Flat Alliance Church on Saturday, there could be no mistaking that it was Easter.

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo 1 Slideshow

  • Pride.tiff New Castle Schools: Second-grader recognized for reading 200 books

    Alexandra Browne of New Castle could very well be Lawrence County’s youngest bookworm. The petite, curly-haired 8-year-old was summoned to the New Castle school board meeting Monday with her parents, Rochelle and Ted Browne, to receive the district’s Pride and Promise award for April.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Hilcorp a partner in vo-tech shale course

    A shale drilling company’s contribution to the vo-tech school will help fund a curriculum for careers in that field.

    April 19, 2014

  • 01.jpg Photo Gallery: Church’s tradition of Easter countdown continues

    Easter is keenly anticipated by Christians around the globe. But perhaps nowhere is its arrival more heralded than at Independent Methodist Church.

    April 18, 2014 11 Photos

  • Lawrence county receives state grant

    Lawrence County will receive state funding to update its comprehensive plan. The county will receive $47,000, in the form of a Municipal Assistance Grant, from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development, according to state Sen. Elder J. Vogel.

    April 18, 2014

  • Mahoning Township sets spring cleanup

    Mahoning Township will have its spring cleanup the weeks of April 28 and May 5. Residents should place items at the curb the day before their scheduled collection. They should be neatly bagged or bundled.

    April 18, 2014

  • Vo-Skills.jpg VoTech team claims silver medal state honors

    The Lawrence County Career and Technical Center boasts a team of disciplined, well-spoken winners. The school’s SkillsUSA team, comprised of 21 students, stood against other schools from throughout Pennsylvania last week in Hershey.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Columbia Gas announces pipeline replacement work

    Columbia Gas has scheduled a pipeline replacement project for New Castle. Beginning this month, the company will replace approximately 2,800 feet of existing steel pipe along Eastbrook and Paper Mill roads and Cascade Street. The project is expected to be completed in July.

    April 17, 2014

  • ESB Financial reports earnings increase

    ESB Financial Corp., parent company of ESB Bank, has announced an increase in earnings for the quarter ended March 31.

    April 17, 2014

  • Author.tiff Arthur the author: Children’s writer/illustrator visits Neshannock Elementary

    A story about a grandmother and her granddaughter flying over a city grew from the vivid imagination of children’s author Arthur Dorros. “Abuela” also spurred the creativity of students at Neshannock Memorial Elementary School who had eagerly awaited a visit from Dorros yesterday.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo