Memory from Ellen (Stahle) Meuse

Memory from Ellen Stahle Meuse, Bodega Bay, California

Memories - I was very sorry to see the devastation of the fire. My whole family has very happy memories of our youth at Turn Hall, especially my parent’s generation who are now dwindling, unfortunately. Here are some of mine:

I remember a very large horse chestnut tree in the back yard - peeling the green jackets to reveal shiny brown chestnuts -(that’s what little kids remember!)

My older brothers (Billy and Charlie) used to set pins in the bowling alley downstairs while I busily dug coke bottle caps out of the coke machine (that’s what little kids do!)

When I was bored, waiting for my father’s card game to finish, I’d hang by my knees from the horizontal brass bars that stuck out from the front of the bar – coming perilously close to the spittoons that sat on the floor in front of the bar.

To make my waiting less painful, my father would occasionally buy me a glass of orange crush and a bag of Royal Feast potato chips – I can still remember the wonderful combination of flavors!

Gymnastically, I was so young, that I never got to use much of the equipment other than the rings, trapeze and the ladder – you know - the one that pulled out of the wall. We’d walk up the rungs, standing erect and then turn around and slide down the side. Great fun! But – in an exhibition, when the boys’ class formed a big human pyramid, my father had me climb to the top and hang by my knees from the extended arms of the two boys on top! It must have been all that practice doing knee hangs in the bar!

Yes – fond memories of a wonderful era where TV, computers, cell phones and play stations did not compete for real physical activity and obesity was unheard of among kids!


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Founded in 1978 as the Immigrant City Archives, the mission of the Lawrence History Center is to collect, preserve, share, and animate the history and heritage of Lawrence and its people.