Vol. 2-Interview-Maloney


inter. M/M Clifford Falatko -1- 8/11/72 CF: Clifford Tape 11 MF: Mrs. Falatko

IM: Now we’re on the air, what were the meals you were served as kids and maybe meals you served your own children.

MF: I use to make soup

IM: What kind of soup

MF: Well beef soup or chicken soup

IM: Just slices of beef, cut up pieces of beef and chicken, what in it

MF: Carrot and potatoes, celery, parsley

IM: Sort of like a stew

MF: Yeh

IM: Was this for your own kids

MF: Oh yeh

IM: And I know when you slaughter a duck your husband wants the blood out of it? and you don’t want anything to do with the duck, right

MF: I don’t like duck, I don’t care for it

IM: What would be a typical meal that you might serve your kids when they were young let’s say 10, 12 years old?

CF: Well the same thing she told you now.

MF: Soup and I’d make dumplings, turkeys

CF: In the morning toast and coffee just like milk

MD: And maybe eggs.

MF: Oh yes and maybe bacon

MD: No filled cabbages

MF: Not for the morning, but later on filled cabbages and potatoe cakes, do you know about potatoe cakes

IM: I figure everybody had that

MF: Potatoe cakes, bean soup and pea soup

IM: Now when you did this you had you own eggs, your own chickens in the back


Inter M/M Falatko -2- 8/11/72 Tape 11

MF: I had chickens and ducks

IM: And you would slaughter the chickens also

MF: We’d kill them by ourselves

IM: And did you have a cow back then

MF: Well in the beginning we had a cow then she wasn’t much for milk so then we killed her and then we had 2 or 3 pigs, hogs

IM: And you used to butcher them yourselves and cut the pieces up

MF: Oh yeh

IM: How did you store those do you recall, when you butchered a hog what would happen after that

MF: We smoked the hams, bacon the rest why you’d have to freeze it

IM: You could freeze it even in those days

MF: Oh yes

IM: What about smoking, did you have a smoke house around here

MF: Yes we did

IM: I though you had one but where was it

MF: That was outside not in the house

IM: Yes I know a smoking house outside, where was that, do you know where the smoke house was

MF: It was in the yard

IM: Oh each one had his own

MF: Just a building with the smoke coming out

IM: That’s how you’d preserve the meat, pork and what else would you smoke

MF: Bacon and kilbosi

IM: Kilbasi, I know what that is, it’s a sausage and you could make that up from

MF: All pig meat, of couse you’d have the casing from the pig to clean it and make our own sausage

IM: You did all that and then you smoked it so it was a big kill so it was practical


Inter. M/M Falatko -3- 8/11/72 Tape 11

IM: all day to be spent, just a couple hours, I don’t know, I never did that

CF: It would take more than one hour to kill a pig and clean it

MF: No he means the sausage, it wouldn’t take long

MF: You would have to have it like I’d say 2 days to smoke it so you could get that smoke into it

IM: So it would be like 5 or 6 hours one day and maybe 2 or 3 the next

MF: Oh yes

IM: And that was a yearly occurance, what time of the year would you slaughter the pig

MF: Well around December when cold weather, cause you can’t kill them in the summer it’s alright now they can slaughter them because they have deep freeze they can freeze everything but them times we had to wait for a certain month

IM: So you could freeeze outside

CF: We had a ice box

IM: Then the ice would last when the weather was cold

MF: Oh yes it would last long and then we’d have like in the outside shanty when it was cold

IM: So what would you eat during the summer, if you waited to winter to butcher the hogs and pigs, what kind of meats would you have in the summer

CF: The butcher used to come with all kind of stuff and you buy what you need one or 2 pounds or so what you want for one meal or 2 meal that’s all, pretty near everyday the butcher use to come

IM: So you bought more meat from the butcher during the summer than you did in the winter

MF: Naturally

IM: Because you could put up your own meat during the winter, o.k. The butcher back in those days had a 4 wheel cart with a couple of horses pulling it

CF: 2 horses

IM: And lots of sides of beef hanging inside

F All kinds of meat


Inter M/M/ Falatko -4- 8/11/72 Tape 11

MF: All kinds of meat he had, nice meat in the truck

IM: Well it changed to a truck after the horse and buggy kind of truck, automobile truck

MF: Yeh

IM: What would you have for something special like saints day or feast day or Christmas

MF: Oh chicken or ham

IM: Ham or chicken is that all

CF: Different kinds of meat, maybe pork chops or something

IM: Did people around here like cranberry jelly or cranberry sauce

CF: Oh yeh

MF: Like Jell-o

IM: In molds, fancy molds

MF: Uh huh

IM: What about salads, we didn’t mention salads before, did you ever have toss green salads

MF: Oh yeh

IM: Because I know everybody grows their own lettuce

MF: Lettuce, tomatoes and cucumbers and all that

CF: We got that just like we get it now

IM: Did you grow all that yourself

CF: No, yeh in the summer yeh

IM: Did you grow all the things we’re growing them at our house now

MF: Yeh

IM: Anything else you got for fancy, like Easter feast

CF: Nothin’ fancy

MF: Nothing fancy, nut rolls we’d make

CF: Nothin’ fancy kilbosi we’d have and they’d make special bread that was for


Inter. M/M Falatko -5- 8/11/72 Tape 11

Easter only, Easter eggs

IM: You made Passover bread for Easter

CF: Oh yeh

IM: The unleavened

CF: Oh yeh

MF: Nut roll, poppy seed roll

CF: That’s was for Easter everybody knows that

MF: Well that’s what he wants to know

IM: Well you think everyone knows it but when people hear this tape again it won’t be me as it might be someone that doesn’t know anything so that’s why I’m going to sound kind of dumb today I’m asking lots of questions because I want them to know when they figure out what the people of Eckley use to eat I want it to be down there on tape from the people who really knew it so I’ll probably sound kind of dumb I’ll ask a lot of dumb questions I may know

MF: Well you ask and you’ll get a answer

IM: That’s right but the unleavened bread I know it doesn’t look exactly like a host that you would get at communion but it is just a very flat hard kind of bread with a kind of crust over it or what, could you describe it for me

MF: It can’t be the cabbage

CF: Yes, yes that’s what they call it

MF: He use to make it out of the dough, you’d roll it and fill it up with cabbage and then put another layer on and bake it

IM: Unleavened bread even with cabbage in it

MF: Yeh

IM: Cabbage is one of the big staples of the diet around here isn’t it

MF: Oh yeh

CF: Cabbage, we had a 100 lb. or 100 gal. or how much it was, barrel full of cabbage every year

IM: That’s what I’m going to ask you about later you’d better start thinking about


Inter. M/M/ Falatko -6- 8/11/72 Tape 11

IM: that’s because I’m going to ask you about your saur kraut barrel

CF: And bacon we didn’t have to buy bacon because we had bacon the whole year round smoked we made it ourselfs

IM: You were a butcher weren’t you Mr. Falatko

CF: Well I can butcher a little

IM: He’s being modest isn’t he

CF: I’m forgettin’ everything

IM: Oh I’ll bet I could get it out of you if you’d just listen

MF: Sometimes you know you forget all those things, it’s been so long, you know

CF: Lots of times I have to ask I don’t know honest to God I don’t

IM: Oh sometimes I can’t either that’s not because you’re old it’s because you have a lot on your mind

CF: Sometimes I think my head , I think I don’t have nothin’ on my head

MF: Put your hat on

CF: Now if I had nice hair like he has, nice curls

IM: Nice hair I don’t have any hair the ony hair I can grow is on the sides it falls out on the top

CF: When I was in the hospital 3 years ago for gall bladder and the nurse came over and she was a joker, she’s from here from Weatherly, she knowed me and I knowed her and she was dressin’ me and she was doin’ all kinds of jokin’ because she knew I was a joker I said isn’t it too bad they didn’t put them curls on top of my bald head, she said, Clifford I was thinkin’ that

IM: No that’s right, I wish I had some curls on top of mine but I don’t. Mrs. Falatko do you have any recipes you get out of books or did you just figure it out yourself

CF: No her mother learnt her because they had the good way of cookin’ bakin’ and every thing her mother and she was always with mother

IM: And she just taught you how, how many sisters did you have


Inter. M/M Falatko -7- 8/11/72 Tape 11

MF: Three

IM: Three sisters and all four of you learned how to cook how was this done, did she just expect you to help with the food and peel the potatoes

MF: No I would try to do it myself, she would just tell me what to make and judge for myself that’s the only way I learned

IM: And I’ll bet you made some pretty terrible stuff until you learned

MF: I didn’t spoil anything, I don’t think I did

IM: You didn’t have to throw anything out

MF: I didn’t have to through anything out, I didn’t make that much I made a little and I seen that it was good and I started making more, that’s the way I learned

IM: Very good, and this was kind of a natural thing you learned over the years. Your mother didn’t come up one day and say, now it’s time you learned to cook. Lets start, it was just kind of a natural thing that was expected

MF: Yeh, then my sister she would stiffen the rye bread and I’d stiffen the white bread and she would just tell us what to put in and we’d putting it in and everything would come out nice. My father used to like the rye bread, the homemade

IM: With the caraway seeds and all

MF: Yeh

IM: I never had homemade rye bread in my whole life. That was another favorite food of your family

MF: Oh yeh

CF: I stopped her makin’ bread now it’s too warm and for 2 of us she’d make 2 loaves and it would get dry but when she bakes now

IM: Wouldn’t one of your sons or daughters find it out and grab it all, and poor old pop hasn’t anything to eat

CF: When I come from the hospital I’m not allowed to do it

CF: It’s no good for her

IM: I was going to say that’s a little exerting, stiffen that dough and kneading


Inter. M/M Falatko -8- Tape 11 8/11/72

it and everything it’s pretty rough

MF: When you had 2 heart attacks you can’t be pushin’ yourself too much

IM: You had 2, wow, I’m glad to see you rocking in the breeze

MF: Yeh, I’m just glad I can do any work, of course Mary was workin’ over here for a long time, she was doin’ my work

CF: She comes over and helps

IM: She’s a hard working gal I told you how I like her I really think she’s a dear woman, she’s really great, I hope she likes me half as much as I llke her, I like Piker too

MF: Oh she likes youse

IM: Piker’s a joker too

MF: They went down to Levittown

IM: Yes I know they went down to see their daughter and are they going to take care of the house for awhile

MF: They’re goin’ to a wedding

IM: The family is but they’re not they’re going to stay at the house

MF: Yeh stay with the kids

IM: That’s not a bad idea and they don’t mind it because they both of them get a kick out of the grandchildren

CF: They have nuthin’ to do here anyhow

MF: Yeh, he’s not working’ so

IM: Well I have another question about cooking and this is going to be hard to remember this is going to make both of you think a little bit, what kind of utensils and tools and dishes and stuff did you have in your kitchen when you were learning how to cook

MF: What kind pencils

IM: No utensils, cooking utensils of one kind or another, spoons, spatulas, bowls, flower sifters and stuff

MF: Like they have now, same thing as what we have now.


Inter. M/M Falatko -9- 8/11/72 Tape 11

IM: Which ones did you use most of

MF: Well for Sunday I’d have the silveware and doing the week days I’d have the plain ones

IM: I mean when you were cooking, special bowls for cooking, special bowls for cutting things up, knives

CF: Some things that she used to cook she didn’t use a table spoon she had a wooden spoon

MF: You couldn’t use the silver spoon you had to have the wooden spoon

IM: Did you have a special bowl that you’d put the salad in maybe

MF: Yeh and a special spoon and fork to mix it

IM: Potato masher

MF: Yeh, potato masher

IM: I’m trying to think now, I was hoping you’d help me out here

MF: Egg beater

IM: The hand beater the old fashioned kind, they’re better you can control that kind than you can the new ones

MF: I use them, I have an electric one but I’d sooner have the hand one, I don’t care for the electric one

IM: But don’t push yourself too hard tho, oh here he comes should we cut it off for a minute (son comes in)

CF: How about for breakfast

IM: What was your favorite breakfast that your mother prepared for you

Son Homemade bread toasted, egg

IM: Always a pretty big solid breakfast before you started the day

Son Yeh

IM: And lunch was what

Son Whatever she would make, soup or noodles, homemade noodles

IM: Pretty much the same as now, not much has changed, plain good food


Inter. M/M Falatko -10- 8/11/72 Tape 11

Son Right

IM: This has to be your son, right, I’m Denny Mercier, I’m one of the researchers in Eckley you may have heard about me rather notorious around town

CF: Is Tommy layin down

MF: He’s supposed to rest Here’s the guy that played

CF: You never met him did you, he’s the guy that played in Sean Connery in the Molly Maguires

IM: You were his son

CF: Yeh

IM: I finally got to see you then congratulations

CF: When he was with Connery he told his daddy I’m not your son no more I have a new daddy, he’s a cracker jack

IM: That’s not very smart he might have gone off and left you, this guys still with you that wasn’t a smart idea

MF: He got nice pictures taken

IM: I seen the pictures of you but I didn’t recognize you

CF: Them pictures ain’t no good atall, it was a flop the whole way thru

IM: Oh the movie was a flop, they left out the good things about the people of the town, do want to cut this short and you guys have a visit and I’ll come back later

Son No I got to go, I got to go home and eat supper

MF: O.K. then

IM: They’re in fine shape if that’s what you were checking on

MF: Did youse have your supper already

CF: Johnny did youse come back with Bert because the gas man was here and he asked where you lived and if you wanted gas

(Family talks about other things all at once)

IM: I hope I didn’t screw up your visit because I can leave and you guys can visit

MF: No he has to take him to play ball

IM: O.k. good luck with your game, is that an old P P & L truck

MF: Yeh, he bought it


Inter. M/M Falatko -11- 8/11/72 Tape 11

IM: I wondered for a long time why people drove pick-up trucks that were orange and gray like that so I thought it was a P P & L truck

CF: He just got that a few months ago his other truck was gone, shot so he had a chance for this so he got it

IM: It’s a pretty good looking truck

CF: Yeh he said it’s pretty good so far.

MF: Well keep on goin’

IM: O.k., you can’t think of any more utensils that you use to use to prepare the food

CF: No, the same things as right now, she has fryin’ pans from her mother yet they must be about 60 yrs. old or more

IM: Big cast iron fry pans

CF: Cast iron, they’re the best

MF: Oh boy when you make potato cakes in that when it gets heated up, boy that goes

IM: And how do you clean those, not use very much detergent

MF: Well scour them, no, no no detergent, you have to have hot water

CF: They don’t get rusty

IM: Well I made a mistake with ours and scoured down so far it got rusty and have to re- do the whole thing

CF: Was it a cast iron like this one

MF: Mine is the black cast yours is more like aluminum,grayish, well you shouldn’t do that

IM: I learned, my wife laughed at me, see I haven’t been cooking very long, I did a little bit of cooking for myself in college, I didn’t like it, I’d much rather have someone else cook, I’m glad Wally cooks, I don’t mind dishes and he hates to do the dishes and I hate to cook so

CF: Oh dishes

MF: He hates dishes

CF: And cookin’ I’d say I could cook or do anything, but when she was sick, I’d sooner starve


Inter. M/MF:alatko -12- 8/11/72 Tape 11 (Interview- outdoors and when trucks go by you lose their conversation)

then make it for myself, I don’t know

IM: That’s the way I am

MF: Hot dogs

IM: Yeh hot dogs and apple sauce you can pour out of a can, I know what you mean I’m the same way, I love good cookig but I don’t like to do it myself

CF: I used to get good cookin’

MF: My daughter used to make it

CF: I’d go crazy if I made it for myself, I’d have the neighbors comin’ up with a platter everyday. and my sister would, any one of them

IM: Boy that’s the way to live

IM: I’ll bet you were glad when your woman got back and she could make all the food again.

CF: The thing I didn’t like was I was by myself in this big house the doctor said it’s not safe to be in the house, I might trip or something, you know or if you break both legs especially if I had to go to the commode in the bathroom or something I was afraid

MF: Trippin’, and when he fallw he’s so big he can’t help himself

CF: Mary used to come at 10 o’clock at night to see how the stoves are and everything they’d lock the door and it was lucky that she was so close

IM: I was going to say you were lucky that you had someone that close to take care of you

CF: Yeh well she was on the job

MF: Well get on your job

IM: She’s going to make sure I stay on this, isn’t she. Did you mention you had silverware for special occasions and some for everyday. We have a whole bunch of silverware at home that we hardly ever use

MF: Well I use it when I get company and holidays

IM: We wee poor as church mice when we got married but everyone of our relatives


Inter. M/M Falatko -13- 8/11/72 Tape 11

Bought us spoons and knives and forks and we have a complete set of silver but we still didn’t have much we didn’t have a lot of things we needed but we had nice silver and nice china. Do you have special china too

MF: Well some

CF: When we got married we didn’t have a dish, do you believe that DM: Neither did we, we just had some old stainless steel

CF: But we got there

DM: You’re like we are we just accumulated things over a couple years now we’re in pretty good shape

MF: It takes awhile but you’ll get there

DM: Do you still do all your cooking on the coal stove

MF: Uh huh on the coal stove, I make coffee like for breakfast on the gas when the stove is low but but I do all the rest on coal stove

CF: Nuthin’ like King Coal Stove, honest to God, we can make brea and everything and boot rags

DM: Stove rags

MF: Yeh stove rags, boot rags

DM: I haven’t heard them called boot rags, but they’re the things with brown butter flour all mixed up with milk

MF: No milk, just potatoes and a little flour and a little salt and add a little water to it and roll it out and bake it on top of the stove

DM: On top, no pans or anything, right on top

MF: Just on top of the lip

DM: And do you ever make pancakes on the little top things, that look like burners, what do you call them little round things, I don’t know what they’re called. Did you ever have a cookbook, did you ever write one down

CF: Never!

DM: You didn’t need one


DM inter. M/M Falatko -14- 8/11/72 Tape 11

MF: I never had a cook book

DM: Didn’t any of your kids or your grandchildren ever give you one

CF: No

MF: Well I didn’t care for them because I knew enough to make my own stuff and what am I going to do make fancy stuff

CF: And my children today, they don’t look at cook books they make it just like she does,

MF: Well if they want to make something different maybe they have a cook book, I never did

DM: You didn’t have a cook book that was hand written or anything

MF: No

DM: No recipies

MF: Nothing

DM: Wow, that’s great, most of the things you made were things you learned from your mother and then sometimes you might change them if you didn’t like the way it tasted, if you didn’t like the way it turned out this way you’d change it

MF: I’d just make it the way I like it but I never looked at no books

DM: I’d like to ask you another thing about that some people seem confused about here and that is the bake ovens, do you remember the bake ovens – outdoors

MF: Sure my mother had one

CF: It was made out of bricks, out in the garden

DM: And they did have them around here

MF: Some, my mother had

CF: Yes but very few

MF: Machelle’s had one

DM: Machelle’s and do you remember who else

CF: Quite a few, it was about this high

MF: Just like a box, the sides were square


DM inter. M/M Falatko -15- Tape 11 8/11/72 CF: And on the top were bricks

DM: With a chimney on top

MF: No, no chimney

DM: What did they do, burn coal underneath the grate

MF: Only wood, there was sheet iron like on the bottom, heavy one

DM: And underneath the sheet iron was the wood

MF: Oh no, just the bricks on the bottom and sheet iron on top and then you’d put your wood in there and you’d leave it all burn to a crisp, scrape that up and then put your bread in, they pushed it more on the side to give it more heat no matter if it was breaddin’ a little bit you know it wasn’t breaddin’ because it just about throwin’ the heat

DM: How high were they off the ground

CF: Different sizes

MF: Well different sizes they could have that high or higher

DM: Three or 4 feet high from the ground, and it would be just like a big brick box that you would put your wood in

MF: Now say like from over here straight

CF: That was all bricks, all around and the bottom was stones and some of them had sheet iron on the bottom and make a fire on top of these stones and on top of that sheet iron and the top was just made out of bricks too

DM: And there was no real chimney, where did the smoke go

CF: The door was always open

MF: Well you know there’s cracks and they had the sheet iron on the door like, and that smoke would come out but the/heat would stay in

CF: But you could only use certain kind of wood so it wouldn’t smoke too much and give lots of heat

DM: What kind of wood was that do you know

CF: Lots of chestnut, cherry and not pine, but oak they use to use


DM inter. M/M Falatko -16- 8/11/72 Tape 11 DM: Not apple or pine or anything soft

CF: Yes dried maple yes, but it had to be dried not fresh

DM: Not too green

CF: No not too green, right

DM: Were the doors like over doors or were they homemade things or what

CF: Yeh, well

MF: She had sheet iron across like with a poker just to hold it close

CF: Push it over and that’s all

DM: Did you ever work, did you ever break bread in one

MF: Oh yes I baked bread in it

DM: You just took your dough ready to bake and took it down there and put it in

MF: Well we used to have big pans like that we’d have 2 or 3 loaves in a pan and bread would get that high, beautiful, nice

DM: Annie Timko does that she makes 3 in a pan and they get huge, they’re not very wide but high

CF: But she doesn’t have an over outside

DM: No she does it right in her coal stove, but very, very good bread, oh boy and we had other peoples homemade bread, Annie Maloney makes good homemade bread too she still does

MF: Well she always did

CF: Well most of hte people use to bake, around here anyway, but now very few

DM: But what else did they bake in the bake ovens beside bread

MF: Well nut rolls, or poppy seed rolls or what they want

DM: But most of the time it was bread

MF: oh yeh

DM: And you can only remember 2 or 3 in the whole town

CF: What

DM: Bake ovens, there were probably more in the older days


DM: inter M/M Falatko -17- 8/11/72 MF: I don’t think Zipky had, no

DM: Where was the Marchelle’s house

CF: Up by the breaker, way back

DM: On the Back Street, this end of the Back Street because that’s where

MF: Right on the end,

CF: You can’t tell because the strippins there now

DM: There’s no foundation there

MF: No nuthin’

DM: Those were the days

MF: You’re darn right

DM: Now think way beack the old-fashioned ways of storing food, where did you put it and how did you put it, I know some people used their basement to store food other people use the outside

MF: Well I used to have a cellar, I used to put things in the cellar

CF: Everything in the cellar

DM: Now like what could you store in the cellar because it was cold and kind of damp down there

MF: Well like pickels and tomatoes and beans, red beets everything that you canned

DM: And the cellar was about 45 or 50 degrees all the time

CF: Our cellar’s down there now it’s not too cold because it’s low but still you can keep everything, like potatoes, nothin’ would spoil

DM: And what else did you put in your cellar besides cans

CF: Well potatoes and carrots and stuff like that

DM: You mean carrots just laying there not wrapped up

MF: No you’d have to have a box and put sand in and then lay your carrots and then put your sand then another layer and then sand and then you’d cover that up just keeps them nice and fresh, they wouldn’t get withered

DM: In sand


DM inter. M/M Falatko -18- 8/11/72 Tape 11 MF: In sand, dry sand

DM: Now what else might be in the basement now this is interesting because they don’t do this anymore

CF: Carrots, onions and sweet potatoes and stuff like that, parsley

DM: Now how would they put parsley in

CF: Roots, not the green stuff

MF: Just get a crock and put the plants in and you’d plant it just like a flower same thing

DM: And let the roots stay dormant and plant them outside later

CF: Yeh

MF: See in the winter we use it we keep breakin’ them off till spring if you want to have for soup

DM: In the old times, jesus it was that think and long

MF: Last year I had parsley that high and it was just like a bush, you’d think it was just grass and it was parsley

DM: Was this outside

MF: Yeh outside, till the frost came and then you’d take it in the cellar, how much you need

DM: You must use a lot of parsley

MF: I use quite a bit new I’m dryin’ some now like when you make fillin’ you know well then I crumb that in the fillin’

DM: And parsley is good for the digestion, that’s what my mother used to say because she put parsley in everything, I say, Mom why do you have parsley on, she’d say it’s good for your digestion, it’s good for your stomach, you won’t get sick and you’ll have less trouble if you eat lots of parsley

MF: Yeh, a lot of people boil the parsley and they drink it

DM: Like a parsley tea

MF: They say that’s good for your gall bladder


DM inter. M/M Falatko -19- 8/11/72 Tape 11 CF: Good for constipation

DM: Good physic, that’ll get you going, eh. What else might you have down there, would you keep your smoked meats in the basement or would you have them somewhere else

MF: Well sometimes yes, bacon some

CF: Not much, not the meats no

DM: Where would you put the meats, where would the meats go, be stored

MF: Well I would have it in the refrigerator

DM: No even back before refrigerators

MF: Well we had the ice box, we’d get 100 lbs of ice and I had a pretty big box and I’d put the meat in there

CF: We didn’t keep too much, we’d didn’t kill 2 pigs at once, one was almost gone before we’d kill the other

DM: Yeh, because you didn’t have that much room to store

MF: No, if I would have a deep freeze it would be o.k.

CF: When we smoked bacon you could keep it any place it wouldn’t spoil

DM: Once it salted you can keep it anyplace, and say if you made 12 loaves of bread what would you do with the 11 loaves you weren’t working on at the time

CF: She never made 11 loaves

DM: You didn’t make that many

MF: No, 6 I would make and what good was a loaf for 5 children, well 8 in the family, well a loaf would’t be enough, dinner and supper

CF: Homemade bread didn’t last, you’d take a piece that big and put homemade butter you don’t want better, each

DM: I was going to say I don’t know how you would do much better than that, that would be like eating like a king

CF: That was good fresh bread and fresh butter

DM: But vegetables you could store by layering them in sand and the meat you could


DM: inter M/M Falatko 8/11/72 -20- Tape 11 smoke and keeping it in a cool place or keeping it in a dry warm place and milk, I guess you didn’t have that much to worry about storing

MF: Well I use to have canned milk I didn’t get quart milk very often, they weren’t coming around with milk like that, the store man would come and you’d get a quart or so just like now you get a quart and God knows how long it’s in the store and you have it for a day or two and it will sour

DM: Did you like buttermilk or anything like that

MF: Oh yeh, I love buttermilk

DM: That’s supposed to be good for you too but I forget what it’s good for

MF: Well it’s good with potatoes or you can use buttermilk for anything

DM: It says here recipes for food preservation was there any set formulas you followed for say preserving certain kinds of meats or certain kinds of vegetables like you said layering sand, is there a special way you prepare them or

MF: No it’s only string beans that you put up but like the things you put in sand you can’t

CF: You just take them out and scrape them and that’s all

DM: But before that do you wash them off or

CF: Oh yeh wash them off

MF: Yes, clean and dry everything and then just lay it down

DM: Of course when you take it out of the sand

MF: Why you wash it off and scrape it

DM: Now lets say you put carrots in the sand and leave them there say for 2 months and then you tkae them out and knock the sand off, would they be crispy and juicy inside

MF: Just like you take them out of the ground

DM: Boy that’s amazing, you’d think they’d be as dry as a board, you’d think it would be like eating wood or something

MF: Oh no


DM: Inter M/M Falatko -21- 8/11/72 Tape 11

MF: Just the same as when you put them in, unless you don’t know how to fix them

MF: They even get little sprouts on like they’re growin’ in the sand

IM: And you had to get some special sand for this purpose

MF: Oh yes dry sand, there was. I was to a wake and the guy was sain’ he never takes his carrots out and I said, don’t they freeze and he says, no, he says I go and put a lot of dirt on top and a lot of straw and then dirt and cover it pretty good all around so they don’t get no air and he said, anytime I want a carrot I just pull it out of the ground and it’s just as fresh as ever.

IM: Right in the ground

MF: Right in the ground

CF: Listen, we used to do the same thing with parsley in a box in the window cover it up and it would get sun

IM: The greenhouse effect, it would get warm under that glass

CF: Yeh

MF: It would get the sun and it would start sproutin’ out

CF: But now we don’t bother, last year like she said, we had parsley in crocks big buckets here there were 2 farmers coming in and he said, Oh what is that, a farmer and he didn’t know what it was

IM: I guess that was parsley that was parsley

CF: That was parsley, Holy God, he said, I can’t get no parsley no place, I like parsley, my lady said, do you want it, so she wa here with 2 big pots and he said, I’ll take one, but we had 3 or 4

MF: I gave Mary one

IM: And this is all out of one root, it just keeps on growing

MF: Yes, just keeps on growin’

IM: Any other things you can think of for preserving food, any other kind of special things you have to do

MF: We didn’t do such special things only plain


IM: Inter. M/M Falatko -22- 8/11/72 Tape 11

IM: And the canning technique, the regular technique with the parafin over the top and the Bell Mason jars or Kerr jars with the libble rubber things, I remember those, I grew up right next to a town where Bell Mason jar were mad in Muncy, Indiana

CF: She don’t jar much it’s no use she use to jar pickels and things

MF: I’m not allowed to have salt and you have to have some salt in there and he don’t care for them for what am I goin’ to make them

CF: Lots of tomatoes she jarred and red beets and stringbeans

IM: Can you come thru

CF: Yeh, I’m alright, Ihave my other leg in (there, crossed out) this, oh brother, o.k. thank you

DM: Just asking sure you got thru there o.k., he hasn’t been able to walk right for years has he he’s been that way for a long time

MF: 17 yrs.

DM: He’s in great shape considering that, you know

MF: But it’s gettin’ worse and worse everyday it’s drainin’ off on him, he changes sometimes 2 & 3 times

DM: And has he had a doctor look at it lately

MF: Oh yes( he’s had a, crossed out) [????] doctor right along see all of those bones were crushed and sometimes they are stickin’ out and the doctor pulls them out

DM: It’s a good thing he has a good sense of humor

MF: Ain’t it, but he does

DM: He could be really something without it, I admire someone like that that can beas up under something like that I hope I never have to

MF: He had a terrible leg there, it was hangin’ just like on a string, maybe they could save it much better but when they took him out of the mines they left him in the sun and the blood and everything stayed and got thick see if the blood would have come out it would have been much better but it didn’t come out

DM: And this is 17 yrs. ago, you’d have thought they would have known more about


DM inter. M/M Falatko -23- 8/11/72 Tape 11

saving legs

MF:: Well Kettrick said, they wanted to take if off, Kettrick said, no I’m goin’ to save that leg and by darn he did

DM:: And the one leg will bend but the other one wont, right, one leg will bend and the other one is just stiff

MF:: Oh yeh, only his toes, the joints are all broken up, they’re all twisted that’s why he can’t wear a good shoe, that bothers him

DM:: And that was a motor accident

MF:: The door didn’t open up when he was ready to go with the cars [??? handwritten word cannot decipher] on the slope and the door didn’t open and the door squeezed our daddy right in there

DM:: And he was in the hospital how long, do you remember

MF:: He was in the hospital about 4 months once, the second time it broke for him again, he was a couple months oh yeh, but then he was in Wilkes-Barre couple months

DM:: And he had to go there for therapy

MF:: Yeh, every week the guy used to come and take him

CF:: for a check-up

DM:: Well you do real well, I think

CF:: It’s 17 years goin’ for 18, my God it should be

DM:: You should be used to it anyway, huh

CF:: I tell you this one that was broken don’t bother me much I can get around better with this one, see this one had a piece of shrapnel in from first war my knee cap was fractured right in there

DM:: Life hasn’t been kind to your legs, has it

CF:: And there was nothin’ wrong with me since I was discharged in 1918 but the doctor said, I was discharged at Camp Meade, Maryland he said, Cliff you live long goin’ to have lots of trouble with that leg, just about a year now it started I can’t go up steps, just in the house but didn’t give me trouble


DM inter. M/M Falatko -24- 8/11/72 Tape 11 DM:: I got a football injury in this in this leg but it hasn’t given me any trouble at all

MF:: Yeh but when you get older

DM:: It kept me out of the army tho, that’s the only thing it did for me

CF:: I didn’t want to get out of the army

DM:: I had it all smashed up the ligaments torn and my knee cap was floating around I’ll probably have trouble when I get older that’s why I keep exercising I don’t want it to get stiff

CF:: When I was in the veterans hospital now 2 yrs. ago and I told them, they took an x-ray and they said it won’t bother you there’s nuthin’ to it, and now since then it’s worse and worse and worse but what am I goin’ to do

MF:: Everytime he goes to the hospital they’re always coaxing him to get it off no they want this

CF:: /No see they took this bone from here and they grafted all the way from here up to my hip so they have a place [???? handwritten words cannot decipher] from here and one from here all the way up here so the doctor that put it in that fixed this leg he wanted to see what caused it because it still drainin’ have to change it almost every day, the doctor, bone specialist in Wilkes-Barre, Dr. Smith everytime I go down he looks at my leg I was there 4 times, and he changed her mind, he told the nurse to laugh at me that I’m coward, coward he just wanted to take the plates out to see what’s makin’ it drainin’ so much it don’t bother me I get pain in bad weather or somethin’

MF:: Well you can expect it the plate is there and when he walks that rubs and that has to pus

CF:: Well that’s what I said, that’s what they want to find out why it’s drainin’ so well I’m sayin’ if they take them plates out now 17 yrs. maybe them plates are holdin’ them bones together and if they take the plates out the bones will fall apart, I can help myself and maybe they have to take the leg off, I’d sooner suffer the way I am

DM:: I agree


DM inter. M/M Falatko -25- 8/11/72 Tape 11

CF: So what am I gonna do, I don’t suffer so much it’s only this one that bothers me my bones were crushed from here all the way up to my hip. Doctor Kettrick when they took me from the mines to the state hospital he said, Dr. Diason, he was the main guy at the hospital, he was anxious and he said that this leg has to come off he can’t save it and Dr. Kettrick, Kettrick’s dead now, Diason’s dead too but Kettrick was over him and he said, we’re not goin’ take this leg off, he’s goin’ to have a stiff leg because the bone came out here the bone came out and these muscles or whatever you call it, the ligaments they all were broken up they couldn’t connect them together so he said he’s goin’ to have a stiff leg but we’re goin’ to save the leg and Diason wanted in the worse way to take it off. Everytime I’d go Kettrick would say, Clifford I saved your leg

MF: Well he did

DM: He sure did you got them both

CF: Only this one I don’t know if they can’t do nutin’ they can’t do nuthin’ what am I supposed to do

DM: If we can bet back to this questioning for a minute, how did you sit around the table, what was the seating arrangement did you sit near the oven or anyplace

CF: Any place

DM: Any place, you mean you didn’t have special places you mean Lefty didn’t have his own chair by the table

MF: Oh I had my own chair, and he had his own chair and so did the children

CF: Yes but we didn’t have no special place like me I have one special but the kids would take a chair here and a chair there

MF: They would take their own chair and sit in set in their place

DM: An yours was close to the stove

MF: No it wasn’t close to the stove, no

DM: At the end of the table


DM inter. M/M Falatko -26- 8/11/72 Tape 11

MF: We were all clost together and we’d set down I wouldn’t have to serve anything from the stove because I had everything on the table

DM: But you always had the same chair everytime

MF: Oh yeh

DM: Did he sit at the head of the table, or did you

MF: Oh yeh I had my seat and he had his’n

CF: Now there’s only 2 of us

MF: Well when there was 5 children, well one of the boys would be on night shift, well they couldn’t have supper because I had to give sooner, the girls would come from school and one would come from work then they wouldn’t wait for each other because they used to go for huckleberries or they use to go for coal so it was anyone that come well they got their supper

MF: When the familly was together we all ate together

DM: Did you have a table that was long and thin and he sat at one end and you sat at the other

MF: Yeh

CF: Just like we have now

MF: We had a big one because I could open it

DM: But you always sat at the same place, and was that at the side or the end

MF: On the side

DM: ‘ And pop sat at one of the ends, right

MF: Yeh

CF: Like now always at the side so all I have to do is holler, give me this

MF: Well I make sure I have things on the table so I don’t have to get up 3 or + times

DM: That’s smart, so when you set down to eat you can eat

MF: Yeh so I could eat anything that struck me

DM: When times were tough did you hold back till everybody else was fed before you


DM: inter M/M Falatko -27- 8/11/72 Tape 11

ate yourself or

CF: Sure sometimes, lots of times

MF: I use to go on a farm with the children while he was home with only the baby so we were good for one week and on a farm you couldn’t pick your supper there you had to grab whatcha got

CF: You had good meals on the farm

MF: Yeh

CF: Better meals thatn you git at homes sometimes

MF: Sure we’d have bologna and bacon and stuff like that

CF: Good fire outside cook everything on the fire, boil coffee, roast bacon that whatcha like, roast bacon big slices of bacon

MF: They had everything in a big box salami and stuff like that that wouldn’t spoil

DM: Things you could take around with you

CF: Poppy seed bread and that bacon you didn’t want nuthin’ else, a piece of onion

MF: I like my onions

DM: You still like them, you can still eat them without any trouble

MF: Oh yeh

DM: You said there wasn’t that many special preparations for big feasts you didn’t have that many special things going on

MF: Well maybe I’d get a turkey, or I’d get a chicken or I’d get ham, what else are you going to have, but special things beside that why, you have chili sauce, string beans and mashed potatoes and stuff like that

CF: And horseradish I have to have my horseradish

DM: You like hot foods both of you don’t you

CF: I do, we used to buy them cherry mangles, these hot peppers and she use to jar them and I use to eat them but I was stopped

MF: That was no good for his stomach

DM: I was going to say I couldn’t do that now and I’m young


DM inter. M/M Falatko -28- 8/11/72 Tape 11

MF: Piker would take one and bite the stem and eat it right up

DM: He can [??? handwritten word] do all that stuff, he can do anything he wants, he’s amazing

CF: He was brought up that way, was raised that way

MF: And it didn’t take affect on him so

DM: The only thing he can’t do it run up a hill

MF: That’s for sure

DM: We went fishing with him a couple of times and he’s slow going up the hill and that’s the only thing he’s got wrong with him, he’s been a good son-in-law hasn’t he, he’s taken good care of Mary

MF: Wonderful, she has everything and anything she needs

DM: They’re a good couple, I think, I really like them

CF: They work hard, what they want they have if they want to go they go

MF: I don’t blame them, they have no children [???], everyone is on their own

DM: They’re still able to get around

MF: When the winter comes around they’ll have to [??? handwritten word] the stove like we do

DM: That’s too bad you can’t get around a little bit better, what kind of table cloth did you have, table cover, did you ever use just the bare table

MF: I always had either a green checker or red checker

CF: No fancy tablcloths

MF: What do you know about table cloths

CF: Well that’s what he wants to know about table cloth

DM: You mean the red gingham, nothing like Irish linen

MF: Oh my God no

DM: Too hard to take care of

CF: They’re not for our class of people

MF: When I come from work I have 7 to cook for and go to work and come home very little sleep you’d get

DM: Right, where did you work


DM inter. M/M Falatko [11??] -29- 8/11/72 Tape 11

MF: At Weatherly

DM: At Tungstall, did you work there

MF: Oh yeh, they had their meals made, the washing would be done, the ironing would done the house was clean, so what else you can’t expect nuthin’ else

CF: You didn’t wash with a washing machine, on a wash board and tub and carry water from like here to Piker with the buckets

DM: Is that where they hydrant was

CF: No over on the Back Street, there was no hydrant over there it was down here but those people had water in their house but not here they were all bosses [??? handwritten word] so they all had water

MF: But we didn’t

DM: Yes this was the first part of town that got water

CF: It’s only a couple of years ago we got water in the house

DM: How did you get rid of your garbage, the bones of the meat and coffee grounds etc

MF: We used to have a special can and when it was full throw it in the strippin’ and the paper why we burned it just like we do now, in the back yard

DM: You had a special can and you would let it get fairly full and then you’d drop it in, now was there strippings behind this house all the time

CF: No no strippin’ at all, this was all open there was no banks there was nuthin’ but [blank area no words in this space] cemetery it was level

DM: But in older days you didn’t have strippings’ to throw it in

MF: There use to be a strippin’ out at Buck Mountain, there use to be a strippin’ there

DM: Did you use to drive up there car and drop it off

MF: Oh no, we used to take the wheelbarrow and carry it up

CF: We had no cars, do you know when we got married, in 1919 there was only, the first car in this town, Mrs. Maloney’s brother, Phillip [???? handwritten word] took us to church you had to first [blank area no words in this space] Buick a jalopy he took us to church it was in March


DM: inter M/M Falatko -30- 8/11/72 Tape 11

MF: Oh rain and sleet

CF: Oh all roads were mud.

DM: It’s a wonder you got there at all

CF: Oh we got there all right, made sure we got back too

DM: Well you obviously did

MF: And Sunday take the short-cut over the hill

CF: Right from where the store is now and from our place to the [blank area no words here] church right thru the woods there was a path over the mountain [blank area no words here] and everybody walked to church and back, three miles

MF: Today they have a car and they won’t go

DM: Today they won’t walk from one end of town to the other, sometimes, and some people wonder why the younger generation is flabbier than the older generation that’s why

MF: Now they have dish-washers, they have driers they have everything automatic so they don’t have to do nuthin’

CF: I bought her a automatic drier I don’t think she used it twice or 3 times, she won’t use it she hangs them on the line

MF: In the winter I’ll use it but in the summer I want fresh air I dont’ want them in that drier

DM: I agree, they’re not quite as soft but they sure do smell good, all aired out

CF: That’s the huckleberry man, at one time in every house there was buckets and buckets but not today

DM: Do you remember those days when you use to pick huckleberries, everybody just went out and picked and picked until they couldn’t pick no more

MF: For 2 cents a quart we sold them

CF: Not all the time it was 5, 8, 10

DM: I guess in the beginning it was down to 2 cents

CF: No I got 10 cents from the beginning, down at Albrights


DM inter. M/M Falatko -31- 8/11/72 Tape 11

DM: That’s a lot of work for 2 lousy cents

MF: And do you know what we’d take them back to his barn and come back and go and fill our buckets with apples and carry the apples, like crazy

DM: DId you have a way to put up apples or did you eat them all before they got spoiled

MF: Well you know what children are, one would come and grab and the other would come and grab inside of a week there’d be no apples

DM: You’d have no preservation problem because the apples would be gone. I know that you mentioned earlier about churning butter did you have a butter churner a long time ago

CF: Yes, sure we had one when we had the first cow, Blackie, we had one

MF: Well that’s how you make your butter

DM: Would you just put milk in a butter churner and that’s it

CF: No

MF: Not milk, cream, very slight salt and you keep on bouncin’ it up and down till it gets into butter

DM: When you took it out what did you do put it in tubs

MF: It forms itself you know, in the lumps and you take it out in a pan and have cold water and wash that milky stuff off till it’s clear and then put it in a dish and put it in a cold place

DM: And then it would stay, it wouldn’t spoil

MF: No

DM: And you could use it for anything, I can imagine how homemade bread and homemade butter would taste

MF: And that was buttermilk because there was little pieces of butter in there and was that every tasty

DM: But it’s so fattening that’s the thing, that’s the thing I wouldn’t like, it has so many calories in it


DM inter. M/M Falatko -32- 8/11/72 Tape 11

CF: And you can get it here from the milkman too, but it’s not as good as homemade

DM: Oh well, no. The meat man sells butter, did you say

CF: No the milkman

MF: Now the milkman don’t even come around here

DM: Nobody comes around

MF: No, nobody comes around

CF: One time there was 2 or 3 storemen, there was 2 or 3 butchers, 3 butchers

MF: And today, nuthing, you have to make a trip to Freeland and if you don’t go you’re out of luck

DM: Yes I know we took Annie

MF: Only the baker comes, Monday and Friday

DM: The Jewel J E W E L truck

MF: No I don’t think so

DM: I think he stopped at Annie Malones one day

CF: Who

DM: The Jewel Tea Company, like a little super market on wheels

CF: Oh he comes everyday

MF: Oh that’s the tea man

CF: That’s what he means

DM: But he sells all kinds of groceries doesn’t he

MF: No, just tea and coffee, maybe he does I don’t go out and buy

DM: Does Lefty take you to Freeland

MF: Piker

DM: Oh Piker does

CF: That’s just what I was goin’ to say, she don’t even go shoppin’ and I’m mad

MF: Mary does the shoppin’ because when I walk around too much I can’t make it, it takes my breath away

DM: Well how come you’re mad because Mary does the shopping


DM inter. M/M Falatko -33- 8/11/72 Tape 11

CF: Mary don’t treat me as good as her, oh that’s right, Mary treats me better that her that’s why I’m glad she don’t go

DM: Now let’s not start a big argument, I don’t want to do that to you. Did you ever do it the way someone told me, I forget who it was, but the said they churned butter in a jar, just roll it along the floor, put cream in the jar

MF: You would have a 2 qt. jar, you know, [handwritten word above qt. jar,cannot decipher]

CF: You have about 2 cups like this, cream, and put it in a jar [handwritten word written above jar, cannot decipher]

MF: Yeh and keep rollin’ till it gets into a lump

CF: You can see it form

MF: Yeh it gets nice form into butter

DM: You don’t have to have a plunger that

MF: Oh no

MF: Was you in Ellis’

DM: I’ve been there, sure. The last couple days I’ve been there talking about other things but not food. I know that Ralph is a pretty good canner, he cans stuff, he puts stuff up, I’ll have to ask him about that because I want to learn about it

MF: He put up a lot of stringbeans

DM: Yes we got some of them, they are good, I’m going to have some of them tonight

CF: He always does a lot of cannin’

DM: Let’s see, I almost forgot this is about it but the saur kraut barrels, did you have a big one

CF: We had about a 50 gallon

DM: 50 gallon barrel, wow

CF: We always put it clear to the top

DM: With saur kraut, did you ever put apples in it

MF: Oh yes, apples

DM: Like those sour apples

CF: Sour apples and heads of cabbage, couple heads of cabbage, bog cabbage


DM inter. M/M Falatko -34- 8/11/72 Tape 11

MF: And some Rusty Coat apples that’s what they used

DM: Rusty Coats is that what they called them

MF: See if you put the plain apple it rots quicker, the skin is more hardy than the other apple

DM: You could recognize them when you picked them

MF: Sure

DM: Was that a special kind of apple or, that’s the name of the apple, Rusty Coat

CF: They’re brown like rust, all rust, they drop

MF: Yeh, they’re brown, they’re delicious when they’re in cabbage

DM: What did you do, run the cabbage on a cabbage slicer then fill up the drum on those little cabbage slicers, and didn’t you put it up against the wall, something solid keep rubbing the cabbage right down and chopping it up

CF: Just go with your hands and out it

MF: You have to have something solid, then you put one layer and then you put salt and spices.

DM: Now what kind of spices

MF: Mixed spices, pickel spices, and then you keep adding more cabbage on top

DM: And it would make it’s own juice, right

CF: And what gives you taste in your saur kraut – dill

DM: Right, my wife grows that

CF: The branch

DM: The whole branch you just threw it in there, you didn’t grind it up

MF: No just the whole branch, bend it and put it in

CF: That’s what gives it taste

DM: Did you ever have dill bread

CF: No

DM: They call it dilly bread, when we come up here in the Fall I’ll have my wife make some for you, you’ll like it I think if you like bread you’ll like this I think it’s very tasty, very spicy. And is it true that you used to get your feet cleaned and jump up and down on it like you jump up and down on grapes


DM inter. M/M Falatko -35- 8/11/72 Tape 11

MF: Oh yeh, he would have this washed and cleaned your toe nails and scrubbed them off good with a brush and soap and tell them what happened to a party

DM: The party

CF: The party uptown

MF: She’s dead and he’s dead

CF: The daughters were all nurses and the sons professors, they’re all dead the young ones and the old people they were particular about everything, you know but the mother and daddy they weren’t particular they

MF: They were old-fashioned

CF: So the old man couldn’t go in the barrel because he was too fat and clumsy so the old lady didn’t want him to go in because he had clumsy feet and she said she don’t want him to go in so Clifford come on a couple times a couple years finally it was [blank space] I went in the barrel and on top of the barrel that hoop, that ring was sharp and I cut my toe, bleedin’ like a pig, Holy Christ Almighty i’ts a good thing nobody was around and heard she takes me and wraps me with a rag and whatever the hell else she put on I don’t know I was almost [blank space] full of blood but I had to finish it and nobody did know

DM: Oh no

CF: Oh yes

DM: Extra iron in the saur kraut, didn’t those pickling spices and stuff feel like iodine in that cut

CF: And the kids didn’t know

MF: That wasn’t all on the cabbage that’s when he was finished already that it happened

DM: I thought it was in the cabbage

[?]F Oh no

CF: It was on the top but the blood went down in anyhow


DM inter. M/M Falatko -36- Tape 11 8/11/72

MF: maybe it did and maybe it didn’t

DM: Then everybody wanted to know what the secret recipe was

CF: Nobody did know but me and the mother, well she wanted me to finish it

DM: She got what she asked for I guess, well I think that’s all I have to know about this, at this point, if I find you out on the porch again sometime I’d like to talk to you some more if I can come up with some stuff I know you can help me with

CF: I don’t know nuthin’ else

DM: Oh I don’t believe that, you’re like Bella

MF: Maybe there’s some things you know that you forget and you have to be reminded

DM: Sure, I wouldn’t expect to sit down and say, now here I am tell me all you know about Eckley, you have to come up with some things and that’s why I told you ahead of time so you could be thinking about it a little bit, you know I had to study up on it myself so I would know what to ask and that’s the only way we can do things

MF: Were you up to Bertha’s already

DM: Angela’s been taking care of Bertha and she really likes Bertha

CF: I was going to tell you to go up there about this story because she was a saleslady, she was a butcher, she was everything in that store she was a butcher and everything

MF: She worked there for years

CF: [Blank space] when I came here because I didn’t know much about the stores

MF: She knowed because everything was in her head

DM: Do you know what she did for us, she drew a complete diagram for the whole store with everything in it

CF: Bella did

DM: No Bertha did and you know I have not met her yet, I would like to tho

CF: That’s my sister


DM inter. M/M Falatko -37- 8/11/72 Tape 11

DM: I know

CF: I was goin’ to tell you that

DM: She was really good, she really helped a lot

CF: She must have been a good woman

MF: Well she was over here about a week ago and you know that she couldn’t even sit down she said she had such terrible pain in her back

DM: I’ve had back trouble myself

MF: So told her to go to the doctor like she was supposed to, so I don’t know if she went or not

CF: I told her but when someone tells me I tell them, I told her you need a good man to give you a good rubbin’ whew, did I get it there

DM: Has she ever been married

MF: No always single

CF: She could get married lots of times, she had boyfriends

DM: I was going to say according to a lot of people she was such a nice lady

CF: She was, she didn’t want to leave mother, mother was old and she didn’t want to leave mother

DM: Was she the youngest in the family

CF: Yeh, no Ronica is the one in Freeland

DM: But she was the one that took care of the mother

MF: There was a guy that wanted to marry her from Highland, a guy from Eckley, 2 from Eckley

DM: She turned them down

MF: She turned them all down, she seen so many trouble that they get married and the

CF: There wasn’t so much trouble in Eckley with young couples like now and there’s none now because there ain’t no young people

DM: Well as long as we’re on that subject it seems to me that the wife of a miner if you make a decision to get married that it’s such a rough life, first of all


DM: inter M/M Falatko -38- 8/11/72 Tape 11 you got the children to take care of and the house to take care of and you have all this work to do and you had to take care of boarders maybe if you can afford that and if you have a house big enought to take care of them and that seems like an awful job and it might be better to stay single and avoid all that

CF: There were very few boarders in Eckley, because everybody had terrible big families so there were no boarders here

MF: Some families like Gaffneys up there, 18 they had

DM: Oh there were a lot

CF: There were 14 of us there and mom and pop, 16 and they had how many grandchildren about 12 or 14

MF: Every family had a lot

CF: Kushners, Sorgenson’s had a big family

DM: Not rrom for any boarders around here

MF: God no

CF: Unless they were related somehow [blank space] but no strangers, very few

DM: That makes for all strange arrangments, a stranger living in somebody’s house, I don’t like that

MF: My mother, may her soul rest, she said they had boarders but when we use to bake bread they had they use to have a tub and they would make the bread in the tub and they would make 10 or 12 big pans, when you have boarders like that you don’t have to be choicy because you had potatoes and cabbage and bread you were satistied

DM: You were happy you had something to hold body and soul together, well how demanding could you be, how much could you expect, you were lucky to have a place to call home

MF: And you had to clean the house

CF: They had no beds some were layin’ on the floor on straw, in the summertime on the shed, on the roof they were, I don’t remember that

MF: Well my mother said, make a mattress out of straw and that’s what they had they didn’t have mattresses like we have now


DM inter. M/M Falatko -39- 8/22/72 Tape 11

DM: Oh no, I know it was very primitive, what did they have to pay, a dollar a month or was it more, plus food whatever their share of the food was

CF: They claim they use to figure it out together, how much the butcher, how much the store man how much the milk man or whatever they had they’d figure out and ecah one would pay so much

DM: That wasn’t a bad idea

CF: I don’t know we never had no boarders

DM: But the boarders were around like in Jeddo and

CF: What boarders in Jeddo, there was boarding houses there, they were down at #2 at Buck Mountain where them 2 houses is and there was about 7, 8 homes down there but them Greeks that use to come, I don’t know what country that is Croatian or whatever it is, but them homes were filled up with them boarders but they didn’t work in the mines, in the strippins’ them strippins in Buck Mountain that’s where they worked only in the strippins, that’s where the boarders used to be, but now you ain’t got one boarder in

MF: Now they don’t allow them because you don’t know who you’re takin’ in

DM: That’s true, a guy could come and live in a hotel and then people would know he’s a good guy then people might let them board with them

HF You can’t trust them

CF: I wouldn’t want to have a boarding house

DM: No I wouldn’t either, too many strange people in the world, I know I lived in a rooming house in West Hazleton for a week before I moved here, that’s not my way of living lousy little room on the top floor of a lousy boarding house, that’s no way to go

MF: And you know that time they use to have an awful lot of bed bugs no matter how they were cleanin’ and still they couldn’t get rid of them, today if you wanted to buy one you couldn’t

DM: I was goint to say I’ve never seen one, and I don’t know why that is


DM inter. M/M Falatko -40- 8/11/72 Tape 11

HF They just disappeared, bed bugs and cock roaches, but we never had any

CF: Down at Buck Mountain in them boarding houses had them

HF Oh yes

DM: I lived in a place the first time I had a teaching job I ordered a new apartment in a new apartment building and they didn’t have it finished yet and they stuck me in one of their old apartments over a garage and the garage had a dirt floor that place was full of cock roaches and I didn’t even unpack, I left all my stuff in the car and used only what I had to use and my mother said, leave everything in the car and leave the car door shut and don’t use the stuff and leave it in the car and when you move out shake everything out make sure there’s no bugs in them

HF Yeh, make sure you have it aired out good

DM: Oh that was terrible it only lasted 2 weeks but that was a long 2 weeks for me. I think you guys must be ready to eat dinner, aren’t you

HF No we’re done a long time ago

DM: I’m going to go up and get all the left overs out and heat them up that’s what I’m going to do, it’s easier

CF: Well what does he eat if he’s on a diet

End 1280 footage


Walr[?] Brown interviewing Margaret Maloney – 1 – 8/19/72 Tape 4-2

WB: Did your parents ever tell you how the house was furnished, before you were born, how they used to live, things like that?

MM: Well no I can’t think of anything like that I know we had a couch, chairs but the couch wasn’t like these things but was a plain couch ike with a back on it, a high back, I can remember that when we’d be runnin’ in or out we’d run on it or lay down or when we’d get tired we’d sleep on it.

WB: Do you remember what the house was like when you were 10 or 15, you lived in this house when you were that old?

MM: Yeh

WB: Was the shanty part of the back of your house on like that?

MM: No we put that in between the shanty and the kitchen, we built that ourselves, yeh because we used the shanty a lot in the summer and we used to leave our kitchen fire out to keep it cool and we used that so I said we might as well build it and not be bangin’ one screen door and open another screen door and I said we’ll close it in and when it rains you can go in and out and have no trouble and we built that ourselves.

WB: Do you remember about when that was built?

MM: Well now wait till I see it was after the fire yes this was a new house then oh yes wait until I think I guess it was in the 30s that it was built.

WB: Well this house burned down in the 20s wasn’t it?

MM: yeh

WB: And then who rebuilt the house?

MM: Mike Geyer he was the contractor he built it well Mrs Coxe had it built because they were her homes.

WB: So the company actually took care of building you a new home?

MM: Yeh they made sure that we got a house they built it.

WB: So it was rebuilt in the late 1920s? And at that time did they rebuilt it with 2 room or 3 room it was built with 3 rooms on the bottom?

MM: It was built like it is the house was the same it was buit on the same foundation


Waln Brown interviewing Margaret Maloney – 2 – 8/19/72 Tape 4-2

WB: So it was after that that you had the shanty part

MM: Yeh, when the boys began to work and comin’ in with workin’ clothes we had to use the shanty I said well we might was well close it in and make a place to eat out in the summertime.

WB: So that shanty used to be an outkitchen a summerkitchen?

MM: Yeh.

WB: And a lot of homes had the summerkitchen you would cook the food out in there and bring it in the house to eat and that would keep the house cooler?

MM: Yeh, we had 2 stoves one out in the shanty and on in here and then in the summertime we’d leave the one in the house out and then use the one in the shanty.

WB: But in the wintertime you’d fire up the one in the kitchen and that would help keep the house warm, right?

MM: Yeh and then I washed out in the shanty the washer was out there and I’d wash out there.

WB: Who was responsible for tending the fires both in the outkitchen and the house?

MM: The cook.

WB: In other words the mother, so how about do you remember, let see you were born in 1902?

MM: 1904

WB: Can you remember say about 1915 you were about 11 yrs. old then do you remember what the house looked like say in 1915 say for instance how the bedrooms, how many were in your family, I forget?

MM: 2 boys and 2 girls.

WB: Yours was a small family you didn’t use the attic for bedrooms in other words.

MM: Well I slept up in the attic in the summertime we put a bed up there and I’d go up in the attic.

WB: Wasn’t it hot up there?


Waln Brown interviewing Margaret Maloney – 3 – 8/19/72 Tape 4-2

MM: Well it was and it wasn’t when the screens were in it wasn’t too hot of course summer’s wasn’t really too hot only a few days just the same as it is now it’s not too hot you can, yeh.

WB: So you just kept a bed up in the attic, that’s all.

MM: The bed and the clothes, I had a rack up there the clothes used to go up.

WB: And the attic was used for storage area?

MM: Yeh, well I never had much storage I didn’t like things stored around I always made sure every room was in the same condition.

WB: But when you were a child I’m speaking about. Didn’t your parents keep old clothing or blankets or anything like that up in the attic?

MM: I always had a big box and I kept all the quilts and the blankets and all in there my attic is just like a bedroom but since they roofed that I pulled the roof off and now I’m goin’ to re-roof it and then I’ll paper it again.

WB: How about the master bedroom, the front bedroom up here when in the 1915s do you remember how that was furnished, what that looked like?

MM: Well it had bureaus, well it’s the same, come on up and I’ll show it to you the furniture that was in it before isn’t there it’s different.

WB: This stairway was it built into the house later on or was it always the same stairway?

MM: That was closed in, I cut that, now here’s the front bedroom.

WB: Was it the same type of furniture that’s in here?

MM: No it was a little different, not much though the bed was a brass bed and that was all the difference, the same size as this a double bed.

WB: Same type of tables and things like that see what I’m trying to do it get an idea of how the houses were furnished.

MM: Well I’m only tellin’ how our home was furnished, some homes were altogether


Waln Brown interviewing Margaret Maloney -4- 8/19/72 Tape 4-2

different so this is how ours was furnished only the furniture was made a little different than what it is now only it’s a little newer.

WB: So you had a dresser in the master bedroom, did it have a mirror on it like that?

MM: Yeh

WB: And then you had perhaps a chest of drawers, a rocking chair?

MM: Yeh, well here’s the rocking chair.

WB: Yeh, that looks like an old rocking chair.

MM: Yeh thats from away back that’s my grandmothers.

WB: It’s a beautiful chair, may I sit on it?

MM: Yeh sit on it if you like and then we had a dresser and here’s a wardrobe and here’s one.

WB: What about the floors, there wasn’t carpeting like this on the floor?

MM: Yeh we had.

WB: Oh you did have carpeting?

MM: Rugs all the time.

WB: Similar to this pile carpet or was it rag carpet?

MM: No it wasn’t rag carpet we had regular Brissel carpet it was Brissel like and it had big flowers in it. Mary Zurko has something like it in her parlor and that went down in the fire.

WB: Did you always have the holy pictures on the walls.

MM: All the time, this is the holy [?????]

WB: Well a lot of the Catholic people had an awful lot.

MM: Well this is the room that I sleep in now, this is a spare, the boys used to sleep in here.

WB: This was built on later wasn’t it?

MM: No this was part of the house.


Waln Brown interviewing Margaret Maloney -5- 8/19/72 Tape 4-2

WB: That’s right these are larger homes down in this direction so you had this extra room here.

MM: Yeh, when they built this house, [handwritten word above the word house, cannot decipher] in the other house we lived in this was closed in and this was left like it was so when we moved we had the door cut make a bedroom for it. [handwritten word below the word it, cannot decipher]

WB: A lot of the houses have this room now?

MM: Yes everyone after we cut ours and cut the window in everybody began to do it they decided you can make a room out of it.

WB: And all of these bedrooms had carpeting on?

MM: Yep, all the time.

WB: Were the walls always painted and papered or whitewashed.

MM: Well away back I guess the used to have them whitewashed the ceilings and papered on the sides but I don’t remember that far back.

WB: But when you were a child they were papered?

MM: Yeh.

WB: Usually like a light colored paper like this?

MM: Well no they used to have flowers and all and designs.

WB: How about on the windows did you always have blinds there or did you have curtains? Like white lace curtains?

MM: They used to have curtains, yeh white lace curtains I intend to take my whata callit off when I get my curtains and have a double drape on here after I get around.

WB: This seems to be a fairly old bed here.

MM: It’s not too far old it was got in ’23 they’re a metal bed.

WB: And when you were a child there wasn’t electricity in the houses either?

MM: No, watch yourself goin’ down the steps because the steps seem kind of narrow.

WB: I’m a little too tall to get up and down here.


Waln Brown interviewing Margaret Maloney -6- 8/19/72 Tape 4-2

WB: And I assume the downstairs always had carpeting on it too? In your family what was the center of your house did the people more or less live in the kitchen or did they live in the living room?

MM: Well away back you lived more in the kitchen and they didn’t bother the living room till later on like they cut doors and got more heat that way.

WB: Is that the reason people cut out the small doors and made them larger so they get more heat throughout the house?

MM: Yeh that’s why they’re making them all cuttin’ the

WB: Well most of the houses now have the archways?

MM: Yeh, I was the first on to cut that.

WB: When was that?

MM: I just can’t think when it was that wasn’t botherin’ me-time or anything.

WB: Was it in the 30s would you say?

MM: Yeh, well when we moved in first we couldn’t do any paperin’ or anything we had to leave it dry, the walls are very good in this house, so about a year we lived with no paper on they told us to let the plaster dry really so then I wasn’t paperin’ then because I was goin’ to school the paperhanger came in once and put it on but then I decided I’ll do the job myself when I was ready to do paperin’ you know then when I started to paper everybody was troublin’ me to paper and I was goin’ from one house to the other I was always helpin’ somebody to paper or paint or somethin’ like that.

WB: So you think the archways was in the 1930s that you changed your archway?

MM: Yeh about 1938 I guess that was.

WB: Were there originally doors between the rooms, I know there are door sills but were there doors that went between the rooms?

MM: Yeh they had doors on and I took the doors off and I they’re up in the attic yet you know I had them put across the to cut of some parts and they’re up in the attic, I took them off so I started that and then everybody else started


Waln Brown interviewing Margaret Maloney -7- 8/19/72 Tape 4-2

takin’ the doors off and when I was up at Denions they had a kind of wains coating like in between makin’ it part way a board chairrail goin’ in like this goin all the way around in the living room but in the dining room they used to have the wainscoating all the way down in the old houses so I was up at Denions goin’ to paper for them I was a very close friend to them up there I am yet as far as that goes Mr. Denion he went to work and we, Anna that was my friend, I said, “Anna I’m goin’ to pull all of that out,” the wainscoating, and she said, “Oh our Daddy will kill us, “I said I’ll run home and when he comes home you tell ‘im to put slats in there and plasterit. So he came home and said, “Who did that?” She said, “Margaret, well and she gave you orders to fill it in,” “Sure but she went home,” he said, “so I wouldn’t [?????],” then when I came up the next day he had it all plastered for me and then I papered and then when he saw it he said, “That’s a good job.” See you’d have to cut the paper so far and then put in at the bottom.

WB: But did most of the houses have that?

MM: All the houses up in that section, the only house that didn’t have it was this house because it was new.

WB: But it was a wooded strip that went all way around the room, maybe about 3 ft. [handwritten word – chair rail] up from the floor?

MM: Yeh about 3 ft. up from the floor that was put on that the chairs would hit the wall it would hit that.

WB: Do you think that was originally part of the building?

MM: Well it was on there, naturally it was part of the building see they put it on for protection you know sometime the plaster you’d get up agin and you’d knock it, I said that’s out on my grounds to I started pullin’ all the boards off the whole way around, so I’ll go [????], I always called him Daddy, when Daddy comes in tell him he has to pull all them off and plaster, and he did, but she ran home,” he said, “good enough so wouldn’t start hollerin,” when we


Waln Brown interviewing Margaret Maloney -8- 8/19/72 Tape 4-2

were burnt out each of us stayed in different houses so I stayed in Denions I was a friend, well our family was all a friend, but I stayed there and my uncle lived up next, you know where Teddy Shane is well my uncle lived up next door and then the rest of the family stayed up there.

WB: So you only stayed at 2 different houses?

MM: Yeh,

WB: If there was a disaster like that in a home like that was it the usual thing for another family to take in somebody?

MM: Yeh, everybody helped everybody that’s the way it was here.

WB: Regardless if you were Irish

MM: Or Polish or whatever you was.

WB: Or Slavish or anything?

MM: Yeh, we all helped, I went to Upper Lehigh after I came in here to Hazle Sauers, Hazle Sauers lived down at the hotel it was a 4 family house but she and she was livin’ there I used to go down there, I used to take care of her when all her children were born so when she moved to Upper Lehigh she treated like one of her own family and she calls me and, I went over to Upper Lehigh I used to go there, paperin’ for her, and then went I went away workin’ for different places takin’ care I was out at Youngstown for about 10 years nursin’ a lady with a broken hip it took me a long time to get her goin’ because she was about an inch and a half short in the hip so I went there and everybody, Hazle would always say “Did you ever see Margaret?” and after I got Miss Higgins going then I said well I’ll take a little time off because I was exhausted the heavy lifting and going with her and then she said, “Come on and spend some time with me,” and then when I went out to Forest City she always wrote and all to me, when I came back they told her that I was home now and they thought I was home to stay, I said “Don’t depend on me ’cause you never know when when somebody’s, but I’m goin’ to try and stay home for good, “we got talkin’


Waln Brown interviewing Margaret Maloney -9- 8/19/72 Tape 4-2

on the phone and she said, “you know I got a room to paper and I’ve been waiting a long time and nobody seems to want to do it and I said “get your paper but somebody has to take me over,” she said, “well Donald will take you over,” that’s her son he’s married and he’s livin’ the house next to her so he came after me and I went over and I did it for her so she said well now I thought you’d spend a couple days with me. No I said I must get back home.

WB: You said that out in the dining room that there was a

MM: Wainscoating the same as my kitchen and it still iis.

WB: But the ones out in the dining room had the boards that went down?

MM: Yeh just like my kitchen, it had them in the dining room.

WB: It was a bord that went around the room and also had the planks that went down to the bottom of the floor and that was like a wooden thing that went all the way around?

MM: Yeh all around the room.

WB: But in the living room just a single [handwritten word -chair rails] board went around.

MM: Around the wall but then when we started to paper I said I’m goin’ to fill in all them whatucallit, I’m goin’ all the way down and paper straight and so I did that at Dennion’s, what was the use of keepin’ that you were paintin’ it too.

WB: But did all the houses have that too?

MM: Yeh all them houses up there had them they built the houses and I guess they thought children will be, if you put plaster down they’d be hammerin’ it so they put the boards on.

WB: You said about the hotel down here was there a name to the hotel?

MM: I don’t know that’s a way back further I don’t know I was only listen’ to the older people we all was only listen’ to the older people.

WB: Oh that was knocked down before you were born, that hotel?

MM: No it wasn’t knocked down it wasn’t too long ago when they were tryin’ to get rid of Eckley they were tryin’ to get rid of the town I guess.


Waln Brown interviewing Margaret Maloney -10- 8/19/72 Tape 4-2

WB: That’s when it was knocked down just a couple years ago, about 10 yrs. ago?

MM: Oh I’d say 12, 13 years ago.

WB: Late 50s early 60s when they took down that hotel it was a 4 family hotel?

MM: 4 family and that was a nice building, Hazel Sauers lived there you know the woman I was talkin’ about she lived in the back of one side and O’Donnells lived in the front of it like and then Shearins lived in the back of it and Mr. and Mrs. Wilson lived in the other side of it.

WB: There was 2 apartments on the first floor and 2 on the second?

MM: No just like a house like this it was partioned off and gave each one down stairs one part and upstairs the other families.

WB: Oh I see in other words 2 families stayed downstairs and 2 families stayed upstairs were they complete apartments like did they have a kitchen area and everything in there, everyone had their own kitchen and their own door?

MM: Yeh.

WB: Do you remember what the basement was like in that? Was there a basement to it?

MM: No I don’t remember, yeh there was a basement I wasn’t in that house that much we were only kids we weren’t botherin’ much, I know that O’Donnells had steps to go up to the other room like upstairs there.

WB: I’m just trying to figure out now did 2 families live on the first floor and 2 families live on the second floor?

MM: They all had their rooms like we have here they all had the up and downstairs and next door had the up and downstairs and the other 2 in the back had the up and downstairs it was just like an ordinary house it was turned into.

WB: Oh I see how many rooms were in each apartment do you remember?

MM: 3 up and 3 down just the same.

WB: It must have been a very large house?

MM: And the store was right next, well Fatula’s lived there, well the store was right next to them in that open field there.


Waln Brown interviewing Margaret Maloney -11- 8/19/72 Tape 4-2

WB: Where Falula’s live now?

MM: Yes

WB: I guess it would be between Fatulas and the Colliery Road?

MM: Yes that’s where it was, a big store.

WB: And that hotel was behind it, was behind the company store?

MM: No the store was right, the hotel was on this side and the store was right on the same side goin’ straight.

WB: I guess it was right up against the road?

MM: Yeh, but even with all the houses like on down they had their yard and all at that hotel that was all company property.

WB: I was just wondering why they would put up a hotel?

MM: Well for the people that came in when they were building homes and work while they were building the homes I guess that’s the only thing I could figure out it was very nice and they had big porches for them to be on.

WB: I guess people didn’t hang around there did they, it was just like a house?

MM: It was just like a house they had a big porch.

WB: It was a pretty high porch wasn’t it it was off the ground pretty high, I think we have a picture of it.

MM: Yeh it was high, it was higher than this house.

WB: With a big long bannister?

MM: Yeh,

WB: Did you ever hear anything about the Casel Garda that was back here, I just wondered if you ever heard anything about it?

MM: No I don’t even know of it just listen’ to somebody talk about it.

WB: The houses from [?ooperts] office on down were bigger than the ones up town

MM: From Barrens down the houses are bigger see they made different type houses, for different type people and on the other street on Back Street there was one room up and 2 down.


Waln Brown interviewing Margaret Maloney -12- 8/19/72 Tape 4-2

WB: The Main Street houses were the bigger ones and from Barrens on down on down Main street were the larger houses in Eckley?

MM: Yeh the other have 2 rooms up and 2 rooms down from Barrens up, Willie Nagle I don’t know if you know him well where their house is, 2 rooms down and 2 rooms up and it’s the same way on the other side, Zoshak’s, of course some people built themselves on, you know.

WB: These houses were mostly rented by Irish people, weren’t they, Irish, Welsh and English?

MM: The Protestants and the Irish were on this road Miller’s lived there and we lived here and Lutz’s lived there and I don’t know who lived next door, Van Horn’s lived next door but then they all moved to Hazleton.

WB: So from Barren’s on down were Protestants and Irish and on up was mostly Slavish, Polish and Greeks and Back Street was the same way, Slavish, Polish, and Greek?

MM: Yeh they were mixed up wherever a house was empty or something they would rent it.

WB: I was wondering why the Protestant and Irish were down here was it because they were more or less the bosses in the mines?

MM: Yeh, well I don’t know it faired out that way I guess people wanted a house if it was a family they got a bigger house.

WB: Those Back Street houses they were tore down in the 1940s weren’t they?

MM: I think it was in the 1940s.

WB: But that was mostly Slavish, Polish and Greek back there?

MM: Yeh.

WB: Do you remember anyting about Shanty Street?

MM: Well yeh, they were all Slavish down on Shanty Street.

WB: Were those houses about the same as those on Back Street?

MM: Yeh.


Waln Brown interviewing Margaret Maloney -13- 8/19/72 Tape 4-2

WB: They were 2 down and 1 up?

MM: Yeh,

WB: Do you remember how many houses were on Shanty Street?

MM: one, two, three, four, four down to the schoolhouse.

WB: That was very small and that was just behind Main Street?

MM: Yeh.

WB: Have you heard anything about #4 was that before your time?

MM: Yeh, I don’t remember I just used to hear the people talking about #4.

WB: So those houses were knocked down before you can remember?

MM: Yeh, I don’t remember that.

WB: How about the train station do you remember anything about that train station

MM: No, just listening to the older people talk I know they used to say the train used to come in down there, down by the store, used to come in back there somewhere, but I don’t know anything about it, I know when we used to walk to Foundryville to get on the train then it was takin’ off then they made it into well the coal cars used to come in up back of the breaker somewhere, but I know if we wanted to get on the train we had to walk to Foundryville.

WB: How far is Foundryville?

MM: Oh about a half of mile or so, them houses are all down.

WB: Do you remember much about the company store?

MM: Oh yeh, that was the company store down there you know.

WB: Do you remember what they sold what kind of products?

MM: Everything they sold, anything that the people would want and then they went out of the thing and then Mr. Reese took it the store and everybody would buy off him and you had a book you could get from 2 weeks to 2 weeks and then pay your bill.

WB: Was he a very fair man, Mr. Reese?

MM: Oh yeh he was a very good man.


Waln Brown interviewing Margaret Maloney -14- 8/19/72 Tape 4-2

WB: Did he extend credit to people?

MM: Oh yes pretty near everybody in town was on credit.

WB: And you had a brass key that you carried with your number buy off the books and you could show your number and he’d put your number down that you bought such and such?

MM: I don’t remember that it must have been away back. We had a book and you took your book down and bought what you wanted and he wrote down for you, shoe or stockin’s or whatever, groceries of any kind.

WB: How as that paid for then did he just take it off of your pay check?

MM: No you just paid your bill.

WB: You just went in and pain him when you got your pay check?

MM: Yeh, no he didn’t have nothin’ to do with the check they had an office up here and they used to pay up at the office pay the men when they came out of the mines.

WB: Then they’d get paid by check and you took your check down

MM: They didn’t pay by check you got the money.

WB: Was this as far back as you can remember, you always got paid by cash?

MM: Yeh they got paid by cash, no checks, you get paid by cash.

WB: So maybe when they, after they bought off the book, for 2 week period maybe they’d owe $10.50 bill or something the man or the woman go down and pay it all and then perhaps pay until they ran out of money and then buy on the book again?

MM: Yes.

WB: During strikes and things did he carry a lot of people?

MM: He did, a very good man he carried them right along.

WB: I know there was a period when there was a 6 month strike and a lot of people had bills maybe 100 or 150 dollars what happened then when the work started up did they pay him little by little?

MM: They paid him little by little.


Waln Brown interviewing Margaret Maloney -15- 8/19/72 Tape 4-2

WB: Did many people stick him?

MM: Quite a few stuck him but the really good people really paid of course there was some that had a big family and didn’t pay everything, that’s hard too and they weren’t makin’ a whole lot it wasn’t like today people are makin’ money hand over fist and that’s altogether different than in them days.

WB: So actually maybe a lot of people might not have paid their bills, perhaps just move off or something.

MM: Well sure there was lots of them leave him with the bill, maybe later, my uncle was the milkman up here and they never paid him, a lot of them, he carried them along.

WB: Well if some people didn’t pay him off did he raise the prices or something like that.

MM: No.

WB: Were his prices fair at the company store?

MM: Yeh, you paid 10 cents for a bag of salt and sugar 15 cents for 5 lbs. things were cheap you know.

WB: But his goods were a reasonable price he didn’t overcharge?

MM: No he didn’t overcharge as time would pass

WB: Things got more?

MM: Yes and now it’s altogether different you go for one thing you’re payin’ twice the price for it.

WB: How about the traveling stores, did they give him a pretty good run, the stores that came in the stores on wheels did that cause his prices to go down did they compete with him?

WB: Did a lot of people buy off of them, the butchers and the dairy man and

MM: Yes and they were handy because you didn’t have to go to Freeland for different things, they came in and they carried everything you know when the store begin to close.

WB: When did the traveling stores first come to Eckley do you remember did they


Waln Brown interviewing Margaret Maloney -16- 8/19/72 Tape 4-2

come in before you were born?

MM: Oh no it was late years they came in, late years must have been in the 30s, 35 somewhere in that Joe Motor was the first to come in we used to call him Joe Motor it was Joe Gallagher.

WB: Did they call him Joe Motor because he had a truck. I understand there were some traveling stores that came in before that in other words there were ones came in that were horse-drawn with wagons?

MM: Oh yeh Ed [?????] came in.

WB: What did he sell?

MM: Groceries, I forgot [?????} came in that was our butcher.

WB: And he’d come in and have all the meat in the wagon and then chop them for you?

MM: Yeh and chop them what you want.

WB: And then after that they started coming in the 30s with motor vehicles, were there many of these that came in that were horse-drawn?

MM: No there was only 1, I think, or 2 came in and I don’t know who the other was.

WB: There was a butcher was there a dairyman that came in?

MM: Yeh Dairy Lee used to come in well then the trucks began then to come in like when the automobiles got goin’ then they began to trucks and all that.

WB: There was a whiskey a beer man that came in?

MM: Yeh and they had horses and whatucallit.

WB: There was a feedman that came in that sold feed?

MM: Yeh feed for the cows pretty near every other family had a cow for themselves for a long time.

WB: Actually quite a few of the stores came in and that would help to sevice the people because they had things coming in at regular times that they knew they could buy. Did these men extend credit too?


Waln Brown interviewing Margaret Maloney -17- 8/19/72 Tape 4-2

MM: Yes if they knew you well enough, they’d extend credit to you, yes it was handy you could go out and get on the motor truck and pick what you want and it’s just of late they went off because the people the town began to get deserted like and it didn’t pay them to come. Joe Motor used to come in here at 3 o’clock and he’d be in till 11 and then maybe he’d have to make a trip back to bring things in that the people wanted when everybody was buyin’it was handy, carried your groceries in and that was it.

WB: Were their prices reasonable also?

MM: Oh yeh they were cheaper than they are today it’s more expensive today than on them motor trucks.

WB: Did the people sell any vegetables or meats to these grocers when they came in?

MM: No, not that I know of.

WB: They just used them themselves. What happened to the men when there was a strike and there wasn’t any work what did they do to make money because they were tough periods they had to work they had to do something to feed the family?

MM: Well Mr. Reese took care of the credit.

WB: Was there anything else the men did but mine, in other words when the mine was shut down did they go and pick huckleberries or

MM: Yes they’d go out and pick huckleberries and things, I know that when we used to go out my uncle would wait until we’d go out and he’d make a sign and when he’d come he’d fill his bucket and go home and sometimes when we came back the buckets were empty and would we holler and we’d have to pick all over again and we knew who was doin’ it and I said “If you don’t quit stealin’ our huckleberries you’re goin’ to pay for’em.”

WB: What else would the men do to make some money, I guess, I heard that some men used to go and work for farmers when there was periods that the men didn’t work


Waln Brown interviewing Margaret Maloney -18- 8/19/72 Tape 5-2

MM: Yes some of them would go out when the farmer was takin’ in the potatoes, cabbage and things in the Fall and such that’s all that I know of them doing but if you couldn’t get anything you had to take credit, today the people have everything handed to ’em they don’t need to worry.

WB: Well they had to be hard working people.

MM: Well they were very hard working.

WB: It just seems to me there must have been a lot of things the men did when the mines weren’t working so they could make a few dollars just to put something on the plates.

MM: Well some of them went in to Bayonne or New York or any of them places to get a job and send money home.

WB: Oh some of the men went away to work and sent home the money?

MM: Yeh, lots of them did that, WB: what kinds of jobs would they get do you know?

MM: I don’t know what they worked at some of them had relatives out and they’d tell them to come out and get a job and work.

WB: That’s something I haven’t heard yet, that’s interesting. They’d lived with their relatives?

MM: Yes and pay their board there and send money back to the family.

WB: Was this done during that 6 month strike?

MM: Well quite a lot went that had relatives, they’d tell them to come and work.

WB: How about the women and children would they do anything to

MM: Well in the summer they’d pick huckleberries, everybody would go out and pick huckleberries.

WB: Who did you sell the huckleberries to?

MM: Johnny Campbell he was from down at the scale sliding that was way down at the farms there he’d come in and buy huckleberries and there’s a man that comes in now only 2 or 3 pick them now nobody goes out I know Mr. [?????] he used to pick them and now since he got sick there I kind of got worried about his


Waln Brown interviewing Margaret Maloney -19- 8/19/72 Tape 4-2

he was down quite a bit so he said, “I think I’ll go out pickin’ huckleberries.” I said, “No you won’t you’re stoopin’ and that’s not good for yeh,” when the swampers are out, they’re high, I said, “When the swampers are out if you feel like goin’ out go out and pick some,” and Agnes was tryin’ to say, “Now don’t go out,” he said, “Now Margaret said you’re not to go out when they’re low,” he couldn’t go out when they’re low because he was stoopin’ and his pressure was low and I worried about him and so he listened to me and now he’s pickin’ the swampers and he gave me a can so he goes out he takes the car with ‘im and only goes so far he went down to the water works and I said, “I must take a walk down there some night to see the water,” I said, “Does it still have water down there,” and he said, “Yeh,” it’s down here where you go towards Hazleton there, he picked quite a bit I was over, just came in, helpin’ you know some times the get sticks and different things in the huckleberries and I was helpin’ to clean ’em.

WB: Do you remember off hand when you sold huckleberries back in those days, how much you got for them?

MM: 10 cents a quart, and now they get I don’t know what.

WB: 40

MM: 40 oh brother we had to pick a lot to make that.

WB: But when was that that you got 10 cents about 1915?

MM: Yeh around there.

WB: So the children would pick the huckleberries and that money would help with the household

MM: Yeh if there was 2 or 3 in the family and pick 5 or 10 quarts some could pick 20 when we got together we could pick 20, 25 quarts a day.

WB: That would help considerably, would the mother go out too?

MM: Well she would go out if the kids wouldn’t, some time you’d go in the brush and walk and not be doin’ anything so she’d go out for awhile


Waln Brown interviewing Margaret Maloney -20- 8/19/72 Tape 4-2

WB: Did the kids pick coal too I guess the picked coal off of the slate heaps, that would save on the coal bill?

MM: Oh yeh, the people here didn’t buy no coal all winter the bank was right up here back of us we had a bank and we’d go up, Joe and John and I and Mary well she’d go up with a can and we’d go up and pick coal and we’d pick 8 or 10 bags and then we’d roll them down the bank and leave them stand there and the our Dad would come along and take them home.

WB: Then you didn’t have to pay for coal?

MM: Everybody did it here and there.

WB: Did the mine care if you took it off the slate bank or not?

MM: Some time they’d let you go ahead and then some time they’d go after you.

WB: That was a good way to save money?

MM: Yeh everybody in Eckley never bought much coal as far as that goes they used to pick their own and then see the had a strippin’ down here and our boys used to go down to the strippin’ and carry it up.

WB: What did the woman do to save money I guess just watch the pennies?

MM: Yes she’d just buy what she really need.

WB: And she’d tend the garden I guess that was pretty much hers or was that the childrens?

MM: Why she’d put us out to pick the potato bugs or whatever.

WB: The garden was a very important part?

MM: Yes oh you’d get 20 bushel of potatoes and then you’d get cabbage and all that Mr. [K???????] still plants a garden and he gave me a head of cabbage tonight I was helpin’ when he planted it so, I don’t eat half the stuff I get I said so.

WB: So the garden was very important?

MM: Yeh you had potatoes, beans and peas and all that stuff, red beets you didn’t need to buy all that stuff you had it in your own garden and then chicken’s


Waln Brown interviewing Anna Maloney -1- 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

[??????????? handwritten words on top of page – unable to decipher]

WB: How long have you been living in Eckley, how long have you been living in this house?

AM: 61 years in this house it was in June [????]

WB: Did you move to this house when you got married, where you living in this house before you got married?

AM: Yes I wasn’t married before I moved in this house there was nobody from my family married they were all kids my father always wanted a bigger house he didn’t like them little houses uptown he said there was no room for the children to sleep

WB: He wanted a bigger house and this is what you got

AM: My father got his stroke while in work [?], in Buck Mountain you know what I’m talkin’, you understand me, and they thought that he’ll die with that stroke my father lived for 11 years with the left side paralyzed and he never worked no more and he couldn’t talk very good but you could understand him you know but he walked around and he helped himself but one good thing you didn’t have to help him on the pottie, never and if he forgot himself well but Mamma washed him.

WB: You weren’t born in this house Annie, where were you born?

AM: [????????} that was my birthplace

WB: When did you come to Eckley how old were you when you came to Eckley

AM: I don’t know

WB: But this isn’t the first house you lived in you lived in other houses in Eckley

AM: In other houses we used to live where Mrs. Zosak lived for awhile but there was only 4 rooms at that time people didn’t have fixed up like now the kitchen wasn’t here the company always said the kitchen don’t belong to the house, it certainly does all these houses, Barrens and mine and Murmellos, Shanes and them houses were connected together that wasn’t built extra, this wasn’t, there was no shed, this shed my brother built he built that 25 or 26 years ago before they moved to Freeland it was bad and he built it people used to keep it but


Waln Brown interviewing Anna Maloney -2- 8/12.72 Tape 3-2

I don’t know how they kept it I can’t remember every dam shit oh God, we had a lot of responsibility, after my father got sick when he took the stroke we had to look for a piece of bread, but we made our huckleberries Mom used to save a couple dollars for winter because she knowed that Daddy wasn’t workin’ and the boys weren’t big enough to, Phillip wasn’t big enough to go to work and when he went to work someplace at Hazlebrook, Mom said he was gettin’ 5 cents an hour and one day they’d be workin’ and the next day they’d be fired.

WB: So picking huckleberries that’s how you lived really, pick them and sell them?

AM: Yes and this was no lawn here this was all garden

WB: Who took care of the garden?

AM: Mom when were kids she couldn’t push us but when there was huckleberries we did, she never wanted to pick huckleberries she hated like hell to tell you the truth to pick huckleberries but she said as much as you pick that’s alright and if you don’t pick it’s alright if you fight it’s alright, if you don’t fight it’s alright, Barbara Helen and I.

WB: How many kids were in your family Annie

AM: 12 but she had 2 or 3 born dead there’s only one sister living Mrs. [F?tula] you know [D?lli?] and I, all the rest are dead, Tommy is dead, Phillip is dead, Barbara is dead, Frank is dead, Mary is dead, Susie is dead, I had a sister up in the country Mrs. Sendora she had 9 boys baseball team, and my brother in-law, I wish his soul to rest, he was so proud of them boys that there was no money in the world to pay for them there was overseas boys 5 soldiers 1 dead never come back he was killed Albert, he was killed in that Japan, 2nd World War was that Japan? Oh them Japs and after he was killed he was a single pilot you know and they were all educated them boys, my father never told [???? handwritten word] us about [???????] and after all I had to go to work I wasn’t a houselady Wally like them ladies there they know where the huckleberries are I never picked huckleberries, very little I had to go to work and I


Waln Brown interviewing Anna Maloney -3- 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

and I worked in the Freeland factory all my life.

WB: Oh really, when did you start in at Freeland

AM: I was making them overalls that you have on and makin’ pockets and aprons some times I was on time and do you know what we’d get, 25 cents an hour. I was about 22 and I worked about 35, 36 years in that factory

WB: How did you get there everyday?

AM: Well first of all there was a bus goin’ we used to walk first then they got a bus after the bus they had a regular bus see I don’t know how many years ago there was a [??????] Weatherly there was woodwork for the men and the ladies but some of the girls went but there wasn’t very many there [?? words handwritten on top of this line cannot decipher] was only 2 of us working in the Freeland factory Helen Fedorchak she’s a wonderful lady for the pants she was makin’ them kind of a pants and I was makin’ overalls with bibs on you know what I mean that you make for farmers, hard work but if you wanted to keep the job and we were workin’ 10 hours and then they said 9 hrs. and then they said 8 hrs when they organized the union, oh boy it was tough and then we got the regular buses [blank space] well they started on Weatherly they would run from Freeland to Weatherly to [blank space] then from Freeland [??????] and Eckley anybody would be workin’ at Weatherly they’d get on, sometimes Eckley was full because the street on the Back Street I guess you know all about that

WB: I don’t know too much about that Back Street.

AM: Didn’t they tell you anybody

WB: Very few people know that much about it

AM: No I don’t know about it but my brother was livin’ on the corner house but when Housie bought it over, that place here, no before Housie Jetta Highland they said they were goin’ to strip that they said there was lots of coal there you know and I don’t know how many houses they knocked down but they were small houses and when they start to strip they, [????words handwritten on top of the line – cannot decipher] didn’t get a pound of coal there was nothin’ but pitch rock


Waln Brown interviewing Anna Maloney -4- 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

WB: So they knocked all those houses down and they didn’t need to

AM: And they were sorry after that because that street was nice they had nice houses far from there up to the corner, that first row there and the other one only small little houses

WB: There were bigger houses down here on Back Street but there were smaller ones up there

AM: 2 rooms downstairs and one room upstairs but people lived there was no other way for them you know it was poor for everybody Wally that’s the truth there’s no use to deny it

WB: The men didn’t make too much money they couldn’t afford big houses

AM: How could they afford one when they didn’t make it

WB: They were only make 20, 30 cents an hour wasn’t it

AM: I don’t know what they were makin’ but I know what I was makin’ and then every day we wasn’t workin’ we’d say well no work tomorrow work on some other day and if there wasn’t a bus coming a certain times how many times Helen and I walked home we used to come home lots of time in the winter in zero sometimes we’d be done at 2 o’clock and Helen would be done and she’d say, “Anne,” and I would say, “Yes, “We’re not goin’ to wait for the 4:30 bus,” the bus would leave at 4:30 and then pick all the girls from the shirt factory and from [Po????????] and from Icoff’s I don’t know what happened to Icoff because I think he went bankrupt because I guess the poor man lost everything he had, there was no money, but he was tryin’ to push but he couldn’t, that’s what happened to Oberenders when the old Oberender died the boss he had 3 sons well John was the older one and John got married and when his father died John took over but then I guess there was no business much and I don’t think his wife was any lady for business too because business people must be sociable they could give but they had to take it everybody no matter what they are so then Mr. Oberender sold his house sold it to them dam Jews there, oh my God, Abrams was nice I’ll tell you I


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney -5- 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

I worked for oh I don’t really know how long Mr. Abrams had that plant there he never told me nothing if he wanted something I never knew If he was pleased or not he put it right on my machine, he’d want this one morning and this one morning and he’d pick it up this 4 pair, this 5 pair now you know you can’t make money on that but he wanted special so he would pay me on time they were already payin’ me 50 cents an hour then the union told him that she can’t work for that she has to be paid on how much she makes an hour so but I tell you he was a Jew he was a hell of a good man he didn’t pick on Hunks and he didn’t pick on Polish and he didn’t pick on Irish and he didn’t pick on Dutch everybody was alike do you know what he would do when he come in in the morning lift them nice white sleeves up and push them trucks like a workin’ man he was workin’ with the boys he helped and see what happened they found him dead in the morning wasn’t that awful he bought a home in Hazleton 40 or 50 thousand dollars he had 2 sons and my father was left crippled at home and that’s the way it had to be.

WB: So your family had to work, chip in to feed everybody’s mouth?

AM: Everybody that’s the way it was my brother oh that poor guy well I guess the cars, I don’t know what happened to him the cars hit him or whatever I don’t know nothing about the mines because nobody to tell me I had to work in the factory that was my job after Daddy died there was still one sister Barbara she was sick, she died she had a goiter and they operate on her and it’s not like now and they cut one of her veins well she lived for about 6 months after that but if it was like now people would prosecute and would find out what would be no shit, that’s the truth she was 22 years a nice beautiful girl, handsome girl.

WB: Didn’t you live right behind where the Casa Garda was?

AM: No we lived right in Zorchak’s house, no we never lived behing the Casa Garda, wouldn’t I remember

WB: Do you remember that Casa Garda?


Waln Brown interviewing Anna Maloney -6- 8/12.72 Tape 3-2

AM: That’s what the people used to call the Casa Garda or what ever it was, I think there was 5 or 6 families in one in them houses no we never lived in there.

WB: Was that like a hotel?

AM: No that was a long building but I guess it was just for people to live in but I don’t know if they had more than one room upstairs or not, just like [??Josie] when you come into Jeddo Pink Ash there’s a big house with so many families in a row that wasn’t like that, like a stable I guess, it was nothin’ fixed up people didn’t have nothin’ like that have today, cows

WB: Did you keep cows Annie?

AM: No we had a cow when we lived at Zorchak’s but just for awhile my Mom didn’t like cows we had a lot of chickens in here, in this house, lovely chickens, we had white and black I don’t know what they used to call them Rhode Island were the red and black and brown and they were great big and we had enough to eat we weren’t hungry

WB: How about your garden, you said your whole lawn was a garden?

AM: Everything

WB: What did your mother plant in the garden

AM: Plant potatoes some cabbage, some lettuce, cucumbers, parsley, celery, red beets Mom used to like red beets lots, you know and that’s all but we had quite a bit of potatoes here, more than half the garden was potatoes, right after my Daddy died my mother stopped said she wasn’t goin’ to plant any more everyone gets tired out from hard work and she said I can’t do it no more so we’ll have to settle down like this she still had some potatoes planted further and carrots, onion she always like to have scallions because she said she had enough onions for the whole winter then and a lot of lettuce and celery but that’s about all almost everybody, this Mr. Shane there was no lawn there from here to out there they had a garden as much as I know around [b???] everybody had a big garden


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney -7- 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

Patsy Ferko the one that went away, they built a home in West Hazleton some place they had a beautiful garden but you know he lost his arm in the work he cut his arm off far as the elbow, accident in the work I don’t know if a lokey ran over it or well after that Helen couldn’t do it and they had 3 girls and they went to school well they couldn’t do nothing much but the kids had to work that time the kids had to work 20 years ago only it’s lately that they got bums them big boys they could be workin’ any place but they won’t look how many kids in Eckley they wouldn’t pick a dam huckleberry would they and Wally they should only to make their own spendin’ money I don’t know how in the hell they do it

WB: Annie did a lot of men get hurt in the mines you said that your father was hurt in the mines, your brother was killed in the mines

AM: No my father had a stroke

WB: But your brother got killed and that fellow had his arm cut off did a lot of men get hurt in the mines? so they couldn’t work any more?

AM: Oh yes, well Patsy worked then he got a job as a watchman and my father could have worked they would give him a job as watchman but he couldn’t work he was paralyzed he had to walk with a cane he couldn’t go up to the colliery they wanted to give him watchman at #10 see my brother was an engineer at #10 he didn’t run the lokey he used to run the men down in the mines that’s what I call an engineer I don’t know to heist the men up and heist the men down the lokey’s that they used to have he was a patcher on the lokey and my father I don’t know what they did in that strip in the mine strippin.

WB: With so many men hurt did the women make ends meet? It must have been awful tough even if her man was working how did she have enough to pay for the food?

AM: Well Wally they owed lots of money some of them did to the store man there used to be a store in Eckley way down at Fatulas that was a compnay store so lots of people never seen a penny becuase they would take everything

WB: Take all the money that you earned to pay for the store bill?


Waln Brown interviewing Anna Maloney -8- 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

AM: Well you couldn’t expect them to give it to you for nothin’ could you, it’s not like to day I’m tellin’ you we had it mighty hard

WB: Well I guess you ate a lot of potatoes and cabbage?

AM: No I never liked cabbage I never ate it till today much

WB: What kind of meals would you eat when you were a child when you were growing up

AM: Oh I don’t know my Mother used to cook lots of soups, lots of home made bread and she used to make lots of [col??????] from the dough that she would bake bread she used to make all the kind of dough things, with the cottage cheese with the prunes and with the cabbage and then she would make [l?????] cheese stove rags they bake potatoes on it’s not potatoe cakes but stove rags then when winter’s comin’ we’d get one leg of a cow, I still laugh when I go in Helen’s how we’d go in the shanty and how we’d cut a piece from that leg and then we’d fry that meat, it was always from a young one now a old cow you know then we didn’t keep pigs but we would always get about 2 or 3 hams we didn’t keep the pigs but we would buy a pig and my uncle from I don’t know where in the hell he’s from, Hazleton I think, he’d come over and he would cut it and take the 4 hams off you know and we’d have our own hams, smoke them but they would have to be soaked in garlic, salt and I don’t know what else for 2 weeks Mom used to have them in the kitchen, my Daddy didn’t want the smell of it but he said that wasn’t right but you couldn’t put it outside because it would freeze you know and in the dining room we didn’t have nothing fine in the dining room, stove with a round belly, that’s all that was in there

WB: Just a stove, and a table I guess to eat on?

AM: Yeh, but it was alright it was clean

WB: Can you remember when you were a child how the house looked like when you lived in it, like the kind of rooms

AM: Well the were whitewashed, everything was whiteashed.

WB: How often did the whiteash , every couple of years?


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney -9- 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

AM: Well I don’t know my mother used to do that, she used to keep that house clean alright and some of them houses had them beams and then they had muslin sewed up and put on them because they were plastered and this room Pop and my brothers fixed that out-kitchen at first we had only boards but then when it got better for us we got some plaster and my brother-in-law and they fixed the kitchen up it was like a shanty only

WB: What was in the kitchen was it just a stove and table

AM: A stove and table and we had a bench and a couple old-fashioned chairs and that’s all

WB: And regular wooden chairs

AM: And we had an old-fashioned cupboard my niece took everything we had old-fashioned Our Teresa down in Hazleton she wanted old furniture couple pieces and whatever I had left I gave to her I said take them, she wanted this cupboard from my shed besides that Frigidaire and I said, “oh no Teresa you can’t take that I wouldn’t have no place for my dishes,” I said, “Leave it stand, after my death I don’t care watcha do.” There was a man from Weatherly and if he’d be longer here I was going to say, “Mr. get out of here,” he came only about 3 weeks ago he said, “you Annie Maloney and I said “yes,” and stopped him here and I said, “What, do you want anything Mister,” he said, “Yes, I want to go up in your upstairs, I heard you had some old furniture up in the attic,” “No,” I said, “If you could go up there and if I haven’t you wont go there,” he insist because he said someone told him and I said, “then if someone told you then let them come and tell me.” Wally I don’t have no old furniture, we have an iron bed and I have some clothes I put away the winter clothes and blankets and pillow cases and what, he said some lady told him and I said, “Tell that lady that Annie said she’s crazy,” then he wanted an old lantern, “I haven’t any lantern he said, “You have so,” I haven’t I don’t know who took them we had 2 but I don’t know I still think our Teresa took them but any old thing she sees she likes to have, she’s a good girl that’s my


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney -10- 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

brother’s girl.

WB: But now in your kitchen when you were a chld Annie, were there pictures on the walls like holy pictures or calendars or

AM: Oh yes we had holy pictures in our parlor not very many but we did, I still have a couple holy pictures, oh yes, I have Sacred Heart of Jesus that I’ll never throw it out and I have The Last Supper which I’ll never throw out.

WB: The Last Supper picture wasn’t that usually kept in the kitchen Annie over the table?

AM: I don’t know because I never went much on the house what they had or what they didn’t, our house it was in the living room but I have a little picture of the Holy Supper in the kitchen, people didn’t have such nice things before.

WB: There wasn’t much in the kitchen then on the walls just white walls?

AM: We had claenders from some place we would see some nice picture we would buy it for about 10 cents in Newberry’s and make a little ruffle around it and hang it on the wall and make like a picture, sew the ruffle on it the picture would be about this size and you’d put the ruffle all around that was a nice pticure, then upstairs we had beds, in front room one bed and in back room we had 2 beds up in the attic we had our bed but nothing fancy.

WB: In the bedrooms was there carpeting on the floors or were they all wood floors?

AM: No just clean wood and something a piece of a carpet we had oilcloth in the kitchen and oilcloth in the dining room.

WB: Were they like the patch rugs that Emory made, that type?

AM: No we didn’t have that kind, we had oilcloth, that’s what I tell you.

WB: How about the bedrooms, were they whitewashed too?

AM: Everything was whitewashed, I have to take my meat off.

WB: O.K.

AM: Our Helen used to like cornmeal and rice together and that got thick after it was made then Mom would put it in the pan, a square bread pan, and let it git thick


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney -11- 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

it wasn’g frozen because there wasn’t no frozen then and then she would cut it slice it and fry it and our Helen used to enjoy that.

WB: I had some of that Mrs. Barron made some of that one day and they’re like little rice patties, you just said there wasn’t any refrigerators how did people keep their meat cold how did they preserve food?

AM: I don’t know, in the cupboard only they didn’t have such a, I guess we only had what we had from a nother day or two Mrs. [????] downtown she had a couple houses in back of there and she used to keep cows and she used to sell lots of butter and lots of sour milk and that milk would get pinky like in flakes you could even cut it and my mother, and then I said I will put it in a tub and cold water and keep that water and then we got a ice box after that

WB: About what year did you get an ice-box?

AM: From Freeland

WB: About 1910 or something like that

AM: Yeh and then it was alright but you know what you had to watch it if you put the ice in you had to have the pan under or the water

WB: Yeh the water would drip down and you’d get it all over the kitchen floor then somebody would get in trouble

AM: It was always somethin’ but we used to put a lot in our cellar and have the water in the cellar in the tub and put yourself in there and it wouldn’t get smelly

WB: Oh you’d stick it in clean water in the basement and then you could keep some of your food for a couple of days

AM: My mother didn’t do no canning she didn’t know how then

WB: What about your living room what did you parlor look like

AM: Nothing, a couple chairs and that’s all, we had only a couple rockers and I’m sorry till today because my mother throw them out, she said I don’t want them no more and my God I could get them rockers fixed now they would be $200, they were


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney -12- 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

strong and they were nice they were wood you know but Mom didn’t want them and she was the boss, she was the boss everyplace.

WB: What kind of curtains did you have on the windows Annie?

AM: Just curtains like this and we had plain curtains they were cheezy I guess lace curtains you know

WB: White lacy curtains

AM: White curtains, lace curtains I guess they were the cheapest we could get.

WB: Did your mother make them or would you buy them?

AM: No we would buy them

WB: At Newberry’s?

AM: Yeh, cheapest things you could get

WB: And how about in the parlor you said you had religious pictures on the wall,

AM: Yes we had, I still have that picture that my mother bought, I still have it in my upstairs in my room, Sacred Heart of Jesus, she always said, “keep that and when I die you keep that and when you die tell the girls, for Jesus is for everybody,”

WB: Was there a special place in the house where you pray, where’s that?

AM: Oh yeh, we prayed in the kitchen most of the time

WB: Was there a special place in the kitchen where you prayed, like an altar?

AM: Yes only we didn’t have an altar fixed up but we had to pray together after supper, in the kitchen, see its not so heck of a long ago [Ya???s] lived next door to me of course my mother didn’t live that time because my mother’s dead 35 years it’s 36 years now that she died and I don’t know how many children they had that time and everytime I come home from work I could hear them praying they lived next door to me for 9 years I think you could hear that “Hail Mary Full of Grace” every day after meal not at dinnertime at night after supper and they were all there and believe me they did and them kids were dam good kids.

WB: Did they read the Bible then too?


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney -13- 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

AM: I don’t know if they read the Bible.

WB: How about you did your family read the Bible?

AM: No, no time, my mother would tell us lots of things about the Bible but I didn’t have no time, “Mom”, I said, “We have so much to do, “Annie”, she said, “you’re always talkin’ about work.”

WB: The people in Eckley were very religious in those days weren’t the?

AM: They were, my sister Mary, I wish her soul to rest, she lived uptown and do you know on Christmas Day she’d go to three masses, she’d go to midnight mass, and 7:30 mass and 11:00 mass. she’d go to the Freeland church.

WB: Would she walk back and forth?

AM: Well back and forth and then they bought a Ford already and when they bought a Ford it was there because I had a place to ride but I didn’t go three times [blank space] but I’m tellin’ you probably everybody that was here they were good religious people Shane’s across the road they were nice people, they were Polish you know and they had 3 sons, one died and they were nice, you know Joanna, [???????] she lived with her father because her mother died on the Back Street in the other house Annie Boots was livin’ here Petey Ferko’s brother was living there

WB: Right they called him Bootsie he was the barber? I never met him but Margaret Maloney was telling me he was the barber.

AM: Yeh he was the barber and Margaret they’re all good people down there and all them ladies Mrs. Zurko and I don’t know any further down I don’t know about Bella Spire but she’s a nice woman too. [???????? handwritten word cannot decipher] Falatko he crippled up with that leg

WB: Yeh, he’s not too well

AM: Can he walk yet or not

WB: He can just barely get around

AM: And uptown, well everybody that was young got old and the young boys didn’t stay in Eckley they went away and there’s lots of smart boys from Eckley I tell you


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney -14- 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

AM: Doctors, professors, even we had a minister because Mr. Jane’s son was a preacher.

WB: Mr. Jane was the superintendent of the mines

AM: Yeh, I don’t know what he was he was something in the mines I know we went in once to steal his flowers Mary [blank space] next door she said, “Annie,” I said, “What is it Mary,” “Come on down,” “Where”, “We’re goin’ to get some flowers,” “From where?” “From Janes” wait till I think, oh it was lilacs I said, “Mary if they ever find out they’ll shoot us,” she said, “The hell with them,” she said “you get on the fence” I said, “I will not,” and she got on the fence and she fell in the mud and we didn’t get the flowers I’ll never forget that we both came home and she washed herself and she cried, oh there was lots of hard days Wally it wasn’t easy.

WB: What happened a lot of times they’d be strikes here in the mines and the men wouldn’t work, what would the men do when they didn’t work?

AM: I don’t know what they done, nothing I guess, what would they do

WB: They’d just loaf around

AM: That’s all they’d do and there were strikes for 6 months I remember that damned old strike

WB: Do you remember about what year that was?

AM: I don’t remember what year it was Wally, 6 month.

WB: 6 whole months it was I’ll bet the people had to buy there stuff from the company store so when they went back to work then they owed a lot of money.

AM: Well a lot of people still in Eckley have enough food for 2 or 3 months anybody that know how to manage their place because you cannot live in the patch from today till tomorrow I don’t mean in the meats, but in the meat, now I’ll tell you people up town had lots of chickens and lots of geese, had pigs they had cows they would kill the pigs they would have a lot of fresh sausage made, Mr. [blank space] was the regular man he would help he knowed how he’d kill the pig


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney -15- 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

make the fresh sausage and cut the meat into pieces and put it like seal it in the barrel and each piece was wrapped up just like today with the regular butcher man so you know the people some of them was never hungry I know one thing my sister was never hungry because they had enough of meat from Thanksgiving Day until about Easter of their own meat and maybe she’d have 100 chickens.

WB: How would they keep all that meat Annie, how would they keep it fresh?

AM: Keep it in barrels.

WB: Pickel it?

AM: Yeh they would pickel it with the grease I don’t know I can’t tell you till today, our Mary would have a couple hundred pound of fresh sausage and see they would roll it up like this and put it in the barrel and then no water grease and then another batch and that would keep it

WB: Was the barrel kept in the basement?

AM: Down in the cellar everything was clean and it was never smelly and you would often wonder like the meat from the pigs and the cows in the shanty outside like we have people used to keep their shanty there for a regular shanty like the junk that I have there now

WB: What would they keep in that shanty?

AM: What would they keep, why they’d keep all the meat from the cows and the pigs and then they’d have a shack built up a smoker you know in the back yard and then they would smoke it and they’d go for wood they’d have a certain kind of wood for smokin’ you can’t put any kind of wood, and you’d have to have the place fixed up, you’d have to have a little stove, a regular heater and pipe on it and that smoke and you’d have to hang, you’d have to have 2 big 6 iron bars and you’d hang that meat up and that smoke would be good but just a certain smokey you know everybody couldn’t do it because they don’t know how but Steve Feister showed my sister and our Mary was


Waln Brown interviewing Allie Maloney 8/12/72 Tape 3–2

WB: Well every house didn’t have a smoke house

AM: Oh no they didn’t know how to keep it

WB: So just a couple people had smoke houses

AM: Anybody that could afford it but our Mary could

WB: So then there was only 3 or 4 smoke houses in Eckley

AM: Oh and maybe not that much it was a lots of work but my sister wasn’t a lazy woman till the people would get up she’d be done workin’

WB: What about the basement Annie, what would be kept down in the cellar

AM: Everything I guess, we had potatoes in the cellar and they never froze, and cabbage, and a barrel of apples

WB: Where would you get the apples pick them from around here?

AM: No sell them from the farmer we’d buy them and put them in the barrel and sometimes you’d just buy a couple baskets of apples and they’d be sealed like they’re sealed now and they would hold

WB: And they’d last all thru the winter time

AM: Maybe sometime till after Christmas anyway there was no hard time then the farmers would come around there was a huckster that we called our huckster since the flood he wasn’t over I wonder did he drown himself maybe he has nothing left I feel sorry for poor Mike he

WB: Was coal kept in the cellar Annie did people keep coal in the cellar

AM: No we never kept coal in the cellar, never the coal was kept in the shanty in the back then when people had no more sheds they started keepin’ the coal in the cellar

WB: So the basement was just for food, potatoes, cabbage, apples

AM: And everybody had a dam clean cellar my sister’s cellar was whitewashed and cemented my brother-in-law cement that

WB: Not all the houses were cemented tho?

AM: Oh no just for yourself you done it, the company didn’t do it, you had nothin but


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney –17– 8/12/72 Tape 3–2

but the yellow clay in the cellar and in case you had a couple boards to put here where you could walk here and there, but our John had his cellar cemented

WB: Did the rats get in the cellar very often

AM: We didn’t have rats there’s not rats around much now

WB: I was just wondering since the food was down there did you have rats?

AM: I didn’t get a rat now here since last year I have a trap always set and I have it tied on the steps and I have a piece of bacon on, once in a while but I didn’t get nothing no more I don’t know since when Wally the last one I got I knowed he was comin’ that rat there was some place I didn’t know where in the hell he was comin’ from so finally one night I was saying my rosary I was goin’ to go upstairs and I hear this click like this and I turned the light on and I seen that big rat on top of the coal here I had the coal here by the window but the trap is that big trap like the big ones our boys used to have and he was caught on the back leg and he was goin’ “Eeee” he was squealin’ and I said, “You bastard you, till morning I’ll never go near yeh you’d bite me,” I wouldn’t go near so about one o’clock he was still livin’ in the morning before I went to work I mean before I was goin’ to come to him I was afraid I still was thinkin’ he was livin’ but I poked with the poker at him and I took and untied it you know and put him out there and honestly he must have been like a young cat and that was the last one I seen I never seen nothin’ no more but maybe they’ll come in the fall I don’t know but my cellar ain’t so bad no more see I have my cellar partitioned I put up myself the cardboard from mattress covers so I had 2 pieces it was so cold it was freezin’ everything you know the foundation is bad you know this ain’t my house Wally and they can put me out anytime they want, ain’t that right so I couldn’t spend any more than I did on it.

WB: Well it’s a lovely house anyhow it’s immaculate inside you keep it so clean

AM: Well yeh, I spend a lot of money on it it’s only 2 years ago I got my storm windows that wasn’t for nothing and they’re not the cheap trash, Mr. Bonneau


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney –18– 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

up at Lamont the man that I from and he put them on I need new doors for my parlor but I’m not goin’ to get them in Spring if I live but not now I have to have some things else

WB: How much clothes would people have would people have many clothing?

AM: Well everybody was dressed good but lots of people were very poor and they didn’t have much

WB: Say just have their work clothes and maybe Sunday

AM: No they had nice Sunday clothes but cheap clothes you know their mothers would make the things for the children, little money and they could wear it because it was nothing fancy it wasn’t like today

WB: And where did they keep the clothes did they hang them up or

AM: Now I’ll tell you a story, it’s not a story it’s a true story my niece died in Wilkes-Barre she had beautiful clothes but they were too big on me I don’t know why she didn’t want to give them to nobody else but to me I guess she must have that in the will so her sister brought, Veronica, a big truck and a Jetta to my other sisters and she says do whatchuse want with them but these are all free from our Mary’s I picked it up 6 good dresses and 2 coats some sweaters, 5 pair of shoes I gave it to a lady from Eckley because they would fit her, I won’t mention her name but Wally you know what I seen, I saw one dress in the alley and that dress was about $25 it was ruined but see they were so much on skinny you know they would have to rip them here I have a lot of clothes myself I have a lot of clothes only I wear pants around the house so I thought to myself I told even my sister-in-law well I’ll give them to her she has nothing I never see nothin’ decent, do you believe me, honest to gosh, then about 2 weeks ago we were goin’ once no it happened that I went for something in her house and do you know what she was doin’ using them good dresses for carpet rags, that’s the God’s truth and she didn’t know what to do she said, “We need some carpet rags and they’re such nice dresses,” well I told her, I said, “Well, I could have do that.”


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney –19– 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

I said, “But I knowed you need some clothes.”

WB: But how about the men and stuff when they had like did they keep their work clothes out in the shed or

AM: No they kept them in the house in the kitchen back of the stove we had always our boys in back of the stove and Pop had hisens a piece of oilcloth like on the table Mom would put up so it wouldn’t get dirtier and they were there hangin’

WB: How did the woman wash the clothes did she wash them by hand outside?

AM: Sure, scrub them some in the kitchen but lots of ladies had a bench outside and scrub them with coal-oil because they were so dam greasy where they were workin’ around the lokey’s and every place else, they had to scrub them some with that yellow Fels Naptha soap and then they scrub them with a brush on the bench and scrub them and scrub them and then sometimes they’d have to boil them yet put them in a big boiler, you know what I mean and then take them out and rench them and hand them and rench them a couple times the water was out here where Jack Davey used to live we had no water here by Micky’s place and you had to wait for your turn

WB: Were there many ladies that would line up at the water?

AM: Maybe sometimes 5 sometimes 2, 3 and sometimes nobody but on wash day everybody would try to get their water before the wash you know

WB: When was wash-day, was Monday wash-day usually

AM: Well they would wash on Monday and would have to carry the water Sunday afternoon because you wouldn’t getchur water on Monday you would never get it

WB: Who would get the water, would the women get the water Annie or would they send their kids?

AM: Sure the kids would go out and fill your buckets and then you’d go and bring them home and then go out again, when we had no water, when it was frozen here oh I’ll never forget that the water was frozen here and we went by the breaker and we had the boiler so when I came on the corner the boiler fell to the street


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney –20– 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

I had to go back and fill the boiler and come back again and some kids had shoes and no rubbers but we didn’t have rubbers but we had some kind of dam boots I don’t know where my mother bought them [handwritten, illegible] was our storeman and he always told her, “Get the boots for the girls because they need to save their feet,” and lots of poor kids had none, you know because they couldn’t get them, they were hard times but one thing I was never hungry for my mother I was hungry for myself when I’d go for huckleberries I was near starvin’ that wasn’t right I didn’t pick huckleberries much in my life the only this year a couple of times out there someplace that’s were I got lost

WB: I heard about that

AM: Nobody knows that, nobody only [typed note says “recorder off and on again”]

WB: Just to think that only 50, 60 years ago when the doctors came here they only charged you a dollar a month

AM: But that was a free hospital for all the miners the Hazleton State Hospital but now my niece said $42 she was payin’ when she was in the hospital then the doctor from Wilkes-Barre that they had for Agnes he took $500 that was $4,000 another guy took $3,000 but the day she was gettin’ buried I was to her funeral for 42 years

WB: Father Coreman was priest here the Church of Immaculate Conception up here

AM: No he was only at St. Johns at Freeland, he was 42 years here, he built that beautiful cathedral for us well whatever he said, everything was true, he wasn’t– they wanted him to be a bishop they wanted him to be a professor but he didn’t want because he said I came to this sheep and they need a good pasture as he said it’s not because you’re a Catholic all the denominations in the world Jesus Christ died for them, Wally I used to hear all my life they used to say, “We’ll never get flood in Pennsylvania there’s no water around here,” what happened now where did the water come from my nephew hasn’t got a stitch left, Phillip the youngest boy his house is taken away I don’t know where he’s staying tho, he was only


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney –21– 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

married not long ago because his mother allows some place out there, when we were up to see Emory last Saturday a week ago today, there was an old man there and I went by him he’s, there’s 4 guys in [handwritten, illegible] in that poor house I call it I feel terribly if I think of him Wally I pray to God I hope to God that I’ll never have to go I want to die with the people where I am, I went by that old man there and I said, What are you here Mr. [handwritten, illegible]?” he looked so good and he told me he’s goin’ tell me somethin’ and I said come on, what? “Tell the nurse to give me 2 pieces of bread more,” I said, “Sure,” he was hungry I guess so I went by the girl she wasn’t a nurse she’s only a worker I told her, “would you get him some bread he said 2 pieces,” and she went in and put some butter on it and she wrapped it up but she took it to him you know but after he was done eatin’ he told me, see he’s only there 3 weeks yet and he said, “I ain’t goin’ to stay here,” and I said, “What the matter with you,” and he said, “I had a stroke on the left side but with a crutch I could get along [space] because he laughed and he cried

WB: What would happen to the old people in the old days when

AM: They died at home there was no medication, there was no hospital you got sick and sick and that’s all I guess

WB: Would they live with their sons and daughter in Eckley

AM: I don’t think anybody from Eckley went anytime to the poor house or the poor home there was a poor house in [blank] but I don’t think there was one soul that I’d remember in the poor house and do you know Father would say “No wonder how Anne I’ll be, don’t send me to the poor house,” I said, “Pop I never will I’ll never think of that,” “I don’t want to go there,” he said, he couldn’t talk pretty good but I knowed what he was sayin’ he said, “I often see them pants that them guys wear at the poor house and I never like them, no,” Wally there wasn’t a man from Eckley that I’d remember if there was then I didn’t remember


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney –22– 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

WB: Well Mrs. Coxe would take care of them too wouldn’t she, she’d help out

AM: She didn’t take care of everybody

WB: But she helped a lot

AM: She did wonderful she was a good old lady

WB: What do you mean she wouldn’t help everybody, would she help certain people or what

AM: She would help when she could and there was lots of people that needed they got it and if they didn’t need it they didn’t get it because they would find out everything about cha, you know, she was good, was good to the school kids she was good to the schools all over look at that MMI she put up before [handwritten, illegible] Brady was there he was half Indian or his wife they were smart people and they weren’t lazy, they lived next door to the factory [space] the factory’s on the corner and they lived in first house

WB: But Mrs. Coxe helped out with a lot of people

AM: Oh yeh she did

WB: Did you ever meet her

AM: Mrs. Coxe, I never met her but I wish, I would knew her, we were all body from the factory and Mr. Oberander they shut the plant down in the afternoon I guess they must have been a personal friend of her or maybe she helped him with his properties you know, or something anyway, she looked like an angel I’ll never forget she had a black dress on and a little white hat that she used to wear and there were about 6 girls in white uniform like guard when you come in and they would lead you and we went from one room to the other not only one but the whole factory

WB: But she used to give presents to the children

AM: They got presents they not only got dollies and foolish things but they got clothes and shoes I guess and things like that she helped a whole lot of people

WB: And she used to help the widows and orphans a lot, if men were killed in Eckley


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney –23– 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

mines, right?

AM: Yeh, it wasn’t like but now Danny Coxe he’s nothing no more because they sold that of Coxe’s he done a big mistake when he sold Eckley out because if he would sell it to the people that live in it Wally, everybody would do what they want with their little house whether they would fix it up or not and they don’t rent them houses no more they’re keepin them for I don’t know, there was lots of people after them houses and there was a lady Annie Fatula she used to live in Eckley once upon a time she was here only about 2 weeks ago with her husband and she asked me where was Mr. Hooper and I told her that he’d be workin’ on Sunday but he don’t I said he comes over but he don’t work it’s not his time is it, no I know it isn’t and I said did she want to see him and she said yes we’re after the house I said I don’t know they’re not givin’ them out I can’t tell her what I would tell her and I said, “What’s the matter with Bethlehem,” she lives in Bethlehem she said the children are married now the girls

WB: I was going to ask you something, I know that the rent is $11.50 a month can you remember was it cheaper when you were young?

AM: Sure, $5 then $8.50 the month then it went to $10 then it went to $11.50 that’s all I remember the coal was $5 a ton and now I say thank God I pay $43 I pay for the month to go for 2 ton and I have to get next month 2 ton then I’ll be pretty good for the winter because I have about 3 ton in the cellar you know, do you know that I bought 10 ton of coal last winter, that’s how much coal I burnt I didn’t use it all I have a little left

WB: Did the people have coal stoves back when you were a kid

AM: Sure we had stoves

WB: I know you had kitchen stoves that you cooked on

AM: Yeh but we had a regular for the dining room

WB: Like a pot-bellied stove


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney –21– 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

AM: : I don’t know whatcha called it

WB: Round? And that’s how you kept the house warm?

AM: Yeh it was about this high, we had a big one and you had to watch it Mom used to say don’t go near the stove you’ll get burnt it would get red on the bottom so hot

WB: About 3 or 4 ft high? What would you do with the ashes when you were done with it?

AM: Well take it out and throw the ashes in the back just where I’m throwin’ it now see where we have that toilet the old one that was about 2 or 3 but now it’s sinkin’ down but this year account of the ashes that I was doing all winter it didn’t stink I didn’t smell it did you and if I live this winter I’m goin’ put more ashes and make it higher and that’s what we would always do and throw ashes on the road make that higher on account of the water, ashes for the road because the road is so low and the water used to come and go in the cellar but it didn’t come now

WB: Where would you keep the coal before you kept it in the cellar?

AM: In the coal shanty

WB: Up behind the house

AM: No the coal shanty right in the back where I have it now it was always there there was no other place only that coal shed that’s goin’ to be busted out too

WB: How many shanties were in back of the yard?

AM: About 3

WB: Different shanties?

AM: Yeh

WB: Did you ever have a bake-oven?

AM: No we never had a bake-oven.

WB: Were there any bake-ovens in Eckley?

AM: No, I don’t remember, maybe somebody but not around here, no.


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney –23– 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

WB: You’d bake the bread in the kitchen stove

AM: In the kitchen stove

WB: And a woman that had as large a family as yours she must have made an awful lot of bread

AM: Oh yes, Mrs. Gaffney used to make 3 times a week or 4 times a week she baked lots of bread

WB: Did she bake pies and cakes, I mean your mother?

AM: My mother no she used to make lots of dough from the bread my mother was no baker for the cakes and pies she didn’t want that I guess we couldn’t afford it

WB: Did your family buy from the company store

AM: Not much we had [handwritten, illegible] and he was old, old man I remember him

WB: And he’d come in to town and sell

AM: Yeh with a big truck and they would take the orders and then pay him to much every two weeks

WB: Was it a horse-drawn truck

AM: Oh yeh

WB: Oh he’d come in and take the orders and then the next time he came to Eckley he’d bring the order to you

AM: Yeh, anything you wanted

WB: Did you pay for it or did you buy it off the book

AM: Yes Mama always paid when Mom died she didn’t leave no balance to nobody no matter how little it was even when I was workin’ and Mama and I had it very hard the works was bad but she never owed nobody she said she’d go with conscience on her soul that she’d never cheat nobody, I made enough for 2 people and if I didn’t my brother would say, “Never don’t be cryin’ we’ll have it,” my brother couldn’t help a lot because they had 7 children that was a whole lot

WB: How old were you when you came to this house?


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney -26 – 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

AM: I’ll be 78 years old next month

WB: Then you’d been 15 or 16 when you came here?

AM: Yeh, 15, 16, I think I could have jumped them hedges

WB: I think you could almost do it now Annie, I never met a woman as strong as you

AM: No not now no Wally no, she says when I look at our Annie, how fast she was

WB: You was always workin’

AM: That’s no when Mr. Oberander sold the factory to Abrams so when the old guy come around, the big boss-superintender might as well say and we were all workin’ [names four women all with foreign names] and he seen those big overalls piled by me and he told them that they shouldn’t answer that he’s watchin’ me he had his watch there and Mary said she had the notion to stick scissors in his rear

WB: That would give him a good shook

AM: Oh Mary’s a divvil she often says Annie I’ll never forget the jokes I used to pull and after he was done, I don’t know how many minutes he tapped me and he said, “Stop the motor for a minute, I never knew that the Freeland Factory is the geeses that laid the golden eggs,” and I said, And you’re gettin’ them aren’tcha.” and he said, “Yes I never seen anybody workin’ on the overalls like you ladies around here and and how do you handle them, and whose goin’ to carry them,” well I said, “The boys [?????] [recorder off and then on]

WB: Did a lot of the women in Eckley go to work in Freeland

AM: No not many I tell you only 2 of us

WB: Just you and Helen

AM: In the other factories there was some in the shirt factory I don’t know, not very many, see because the younger people went away from Eckley and any girls that went in training they were nurses and some got married and they went away, boys went to school and then they went to college and lots of them smart, Emory has 3 brothers professors he had John teachin’ state college I guess he must have


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney – 27 – 8/12/72 Tape 3-[?]

been teachin’ till he retired, Andrew was some kind of professor in Connectious[?] you know Mike was an engineer down in Mauch Chunk you know he had 3 brothers and they were all smart, I’m tellin’ you Wally there was a hell of a lot of people smart look at Mrs. Dorchak she has 6 nurses that’s right and John a professor and a little woman like her and she’s fast don’t you believe me there she’s a good worker

WB: Most women in Eckley are good workers.

AM: You went through the houses, you seen

WB: I know they’re immaculately clean inside, all the houses are clean, very clean

AM: Very seldom you could find a patch like this

WB: But where did you learn to clean so well did you have to clean the house when you were a child?

AM: No I don’t know, our mother made us work

WB: When you were a child, what kind of jobs did you do when you were about 10 years old

AM: Well help mother with the wash, help mother with the clothes to hand, help mother how to clean the stove, help mother with everything, each one of us had a job, I would do this and Barbara would do this and Helen would do this and then we wouldn’t fight

WB: Besides some times you’d be sent out to pick huckleberries and pick coal off the coal slate

AM: Oh them huckleberries don’t mention it because I remember my huckleberries if I ever tell, our boys there when I was lost but I’ll never tell ’em

WB: But you’d also go and pick coal off the slate heaps

AM: We picked lots of coal, indeed we did, I said My God, I said, $43 for 2 tons and maybe it’s goin’ to go up again, huh, if the men hot the raise, I don’t know

WB: That was a tough life on the children but the learned to work

AM: Oh yes


Waln Brown interviewing Annie Maloney – 28 – 8/12/72 Tape 3-2

WB: How about the buildings outside who built the buildings like the outbuildings, like the shantys and stuff

AM: They were all built when we come here, the company took care of everything, when Coxe’s were livin’ here they took care of everything they didn’t do much but they made sure, if your door was bad they’d fix your door if the windows were bad, but their windows are bad at Emory’s

WB: Yes they are bad

AM: Wally, he could have everything fixed up when Molly Maguire was here, how much I told him, I’m not braggin, I’m not lyin’ to you and he didn’t wanta, he would take that dam drink, then I couldn’t say anything could I. The time they were fixin the Molly Maguires plowin around here I said, I gave him a big pipe like this and I said mark it put that pipe there where we have the valve that in case something comes nobody will know where the valve is they goin’ to cover with coal dirt, it happened because next winter after the Molly, and you know what he told me, “the hell with you and your pipe”, well I didn’t say nuttin’ you know I couldn’t, I didn’t want to fight so finally when the winter come and that heavy big snow that we have I think 3 years ago I think it was ’69 or ’70

930 [neighbor comes in] [???????]

WB: If you like cheese we got some cheese in here, that no one is eating, for spaghetti sauce, oh there’s parmesan around here somewhere


Angela 8/8/72 Anna Maloney and Eva Sulkosky

Annie Maloney’s Prune Pie: Cook prunes. Leave some with the pits in. Cool, Mix with juice and corn starch and some sugar to taste. Cook some juice with corn starch to melt. For a nine inch pie use on cup juice. [ Annie didn’t give the crust recipe. She said she had work to do and went off.] She prefers to leave the pits in some prunes “for flavor.” She likes to “play with it” when she eats the pie, i.e. pick out the pits.

Eva’s Fruit Preserves: Cut up peaches and put sugar on them, a fourth cup sugar to one cup peaches. Let this stand. Cook in a pan adding juice and a half of a lemon. Simmer, stirring to prevent scorching, for about twenty minutes unit it isn’t watety, Put it in cleaned, sterilized jars.

Wash respberries and squash with hand. Cook in a pot adding sugar in proportion or to taste, about one cup sugar to three cups pulp. Simmer, stirring, for about twenty minutes and can as above.

Wash and squash huckleberries. Add sugar, a half cup to three of berries. Adjust sugar to taste. Simmer as above.


[?????? cannot decipher name] Anna Maloney Eva Sulkosky 8/8/72 11-12 p.m. Hand drawn box around these words crossed out [Fri – Sulkosky ???????]

Annie Maloney’s Prune Pie

Cook prunes. Leave some with the pits in. Cool. Mix with juice & corn starch & some sugar to taste.

Cook some juice with cornstarch to melt. For a 9 inche pie, used cup juice.

(Annie didn’t give the crust receipe – she said she had work to do & went off.)

She prefers to leave the pits in some prunes “for flavor.” She likes to “play with it” when she eats the pie – ie, pick out the pits.


[This is a handwritten page]

Eva Sukosky


Eva’s Fruit: peach

Cut up peaches in pieces & put on sugar–

1/4 cup sugar to 1 cup peaches

Let it staw [sic]

Cook in pan, adding juice of 1/2 lemon. Simmer, stirring to prevent scorching, for about 20 min., until it isn’t watery.

Put in cleaned, sterilized jars.


Wash raspberries & squash with hand. Cook in pot adding sugar in proportion (to taste), about 1 cups sugar to 3 cups pulp. Simmer, stirring, for about 20 min., as above.

Can as above.


Wash & Squash. Add sugar, 1/2 cup sugar to 3 berries: adjust sugar to taste & simmer, stirring, for about 20 min.

Can as above.


Waln [?] Brown 8/7/72 Margaret Maloney 1

There was a shoe repair shop owned by Henry Bartol in Eckley. The shoe repair show was located next to where the mule barn once stood which is at the lower end of town where the road bends in front of where Emil Gera now lives. The shoe repair shop was a small shanty located on the uptown side of the mule stable. It was housed in a small shanty between the stable and Bartol’s house, which no longer stands. The shoe shop had a sign in front which said Bartol’s Shoemaker Shop. Mr Bartol spent all his time as a shoemaker, as be only had one leg. The usual price for repair of shoes was a dollar a pair for grownups and fifty cents a pair for children. The shop had some “power” machinery, that is, there was two machines, one large and one small, which were belt-driven and received their power from foot pedals. There were no special social activities around the shoemaker’s shop. Mr. Bartol moved to freeland in the 1930’s, and thus abandoned the shoe shop. The house and shop stood for a short while. They were torn down some time later.

Mrs. Coxe was the only philanthroplist who helped in Eckley; she was also the only charity organization. there were no organizations or groups in Eckley which took care of charity work. Mrs. Coxe took care of all widows of men who were killed in the Eckley mines. Their widows would live in Eckley “rent free.” they were alotted $15 per month free supplies from the company store. They received free medical care. They also received free clothing and shoes at the company store. Orphaned children were placed in homes, or if a family of children existed where both parents had just died and there was an older son or daughter in the household, the children were kept together in one of the Eckley homes; Mrs. Coxe would watch over them. Old people were also provided for by Mrs. Coxe. She would allow old people who labored in the Eckley mines and had nobody to privide for them to live in Eckley homes “rent free.” For the very old people who could not provide for themselves, Mrs. Coxe would put them in homes where they could be taken care of. Twice a year Mrs. Coxe would give widowed women in Eckley a gift. the gift might be $25 and/or ten yards of material or whatever Mrs. Coxe thought was best for the family. Every two or three months the orphans were given toys or gifts of some sort. Every Christmas all the school children in Eckley would receive presents from Mrs. Coxe. Each child would get an envelope with a dollar in it. The boys usually received a sleigh and a sweater. The girls would receive a doll and some material. Eckley was not the only town which Mrs. Coxe took care of. In Drifton and Tom Hicken she did a great deal of providing for the coal mining people.


Waln K. Brown 7/4/72 Margaret Maloney

Water hydrants were located between the office and Berger’s house. Another was located in the vacant lot across from the club and down from Medash’s. Water was piped into the homes on Main [?} Street from Surgent’s up to M. Maloney’s house. This was because these houses were occupied by the bosses. The Back Street homes were destroyed in the late 1940’s. The house Margaret Maloney now lives in (#126) burned to the ground in 1925. The Coxe’s put up a new house in its place of the same design. All of the fences were a middle green color. There was a school house beside where Bruno Lagonosky now lives, toward the lower part of time. This is where Margaret’s mother went to school. It was dissembled before Margaret was born.

Her father was boss of the mule stable during the late ’30’s and ’40’s. He began work at 4:00 AM: and prepared the mules for the drivers (harness and curry). He finished at 4:00 PM. When the mules were brought in, he would unharness them, feed them, and water them. During the interval between the mules coming and going, he had it easy. He just cleaned the barn. During the period that John Maloney was the mule stable boss, there were partitions between the mules to separate them. He used to bring feed bags home from the stable or give them to the ladies. These feed sacks held a hundred pounds of feed and were white in color with designs on them. the sacks were used to make cloth goods, curtains, dish towels, shirts, undergarments, ect. This was during the 1930’s and 1940’s.


Waln K. Brown 7/19/72 Margaret Maloney 1

The wife or mother in a ming town would bake bread, clean house, make meals, help tend the garden, wash, iron, sew, and do other household chores. The women who attended school around the turn of the century and before usually went to the fourth grade, the last grade held in the Eckly grade school, and then would go to work in a home or in the Freeland factories. During the 1910-1920 period, about half of the girls would go up to the eighth grade; the other half would finish high school. It was during this period that the school house was built, behind the two churches located at the lower part of town. Girls who went to high school would leave the grade school at Eckley and go to Foster Township High School. The oldest girl in the family would have to take over the household chores. It was her job to take care of the younger children and help with the various household chores. Seventeen was the average age for a girl to be married. Girls would think they were getting old and should get married. The girls were interested in getting a home of their own and having their own family. There was a saying that, “A woman who didn’t get married was hard to suit.” A girl usually got married to a man three or four years older than she. Ususally a man of twenty or twenty-one years of age had a little money saved, as he had been working in the mines since he was fourteen or fifteen. The new couple would get a house of their own if one was available. If none were, they would live with the girl’s parents; once in a while they would live with the boy’s parents. the reason for this preference for the girl’s parents was that the girl felt she was not wanted by the boy’s parents because the boy’s parents would not be happy to lose their son, the son may be “too good” for the girl. There was very little trouble between the “new son” and the girl’s parents, however, the boy would feel strange in his new environment. The boy and his wife who moved into the girl’s parents’ home would pay board plus help out with the chores. The “new family” would be lookin’ for their own home so they could be alone and independent. Dating seemed to be pretty liberal. The girls were allowed to pick their own suitors. Hours were restricted according to the individual. Some girls would be in before midnight and others as late as two or three in the morning. The dates would consist of sitting of lovers’ rock and kissing or talkin’. Walking around town talking, or going to the picnic grounds which are located at the lower part of town near the ball diamond. Many times several couples would get together and talk and/or sing. On Saturday nights many times the couples would go into Freeland to the movies.


Waln K. Brown 7/19/72 Margaret Maloney 2

Bus service was available in the 1910-1920 era. If you let a boy in one door and let him out the other door, it meant you didn’t want to see him anymore.

Food was preserved by canning (Ball Dome Bottles) and was kept in the basement. Most of the meats were bought from butchers, but way back the meat was pickled to preserve it.

Wednesday and Saturday nights were the major nights for bathing. The miner would take a bath every evening as he was dirty from the mines. If someone went huckleberry picking or mushroom picking, they might take a bath. The usual nights, however, were Wednesday and Saturday. The girls and mother would scrub each person’s back, but the men would not scrub the women’s backs. the water was heated on the stove. The water before the 1930’s was drawn from the outside hydrants, and on a wash day there was much water to be drawn. The women would carry two buckets and make repeated trips until they filled the amount needed for the family’s baths.

The man would give his wife the pay check when he received it. The wife would then budget the money. She was never to have any debts but to make due with the money. Most women were able to save a portion of the pay check each pay day.

The girls were taught at an early age to run a household. From age six or seven, the girls were given little chores to do, and as they grew older, they were given more and more complicated jobs. This was to enable them to prepare for runnin’ their own households when they were married. At about age twelve the girls would learn to bake and cook. They were constantly bein’ given tougher assignments to fulfill.


Waln K. Brown 8/1/72 Margaret Maloney

There was a hotel locate between the single house where Fatula’s live and the road leading to the colliery. When this hotel was built is uncertain. It was torn down around 1945. It was a large building with about twenty rooms, ten rooms on each floor. The hotel faced the street. It had a high porch with about eight to ten steps to climb. The porch ran the length of the building. There was also a basement which was parallel to the ground level. When the hotel was first constructed, it was built as a boarding house for the many boarders who came to Eckley to work in the mines. It was around the turn of the century that the hotel became a structure which housed four families, two living in the front and two in the back. Each had access to both upstairs and downstairs rooms. The basement was used to do the cooking. Each family had a section of the cellar for their cooking area.

The coal company was responsible for putting up and main taining the out-houses. It is quite hard to guess how old an out-house is, other than by the age of the wood. The reason for this is that once an out-house hole was filled, you just knocked down the old out-house and covered up the ground, then built a new out-house in a different place in the yard. Some people would also have their out-houses cleaned out, shoveled out and put in barrels to be dumped elsewhere, and they would use the same out-house for a long period of time. The shanties outside the rear of each of the houses were used as summer kitchens where the meals were prepared, in order that the house could be kept cooler. These shanties were built at the same time that the houses were built. Once the main house was built, the shanty was built behind it. The garage behing the houses were built by the individuals who lived in the house. These garages were built at different times. Some were built to house buggies; others, cars. Many were originally small stables where livestock were kept, mostly cows. Almost every other house had a cow, and one family would buy milk from the other house which owned a cow. The coops and pens behind the various houses were built by the people who lived in the house. These coops were built at various times. The people would raise different livestock in these pens, geese, ducks, chickens, rabbits, turkeys, and other poultry. Also some houses were built for dogs around or near the coops to keep thieves and predators from taking or killin’ livestock.


Waln K. Brown 8/2/72 Margaret Maloney

It was a custom for the women to throw buckets of water on the men in town on Easter Monday. This was considered to be good luck by the Slavish people. On Easter Tuesday the men would throw water on the women as a good luck charm.


Waln K. Brown 8/2/72 Margaret Maloney and Mary Zurko

The streets were at one time covered with a heavy yellow clay. This clay made a nice surface for the road. There was coal dust imbedded into the clay. The surface appeared to be a light color. In about 1937 or 1938, the [W?A] came into Eckley and put a cracked rock surface on the road. The cracked rock surface was used until about 1945 when the township, Foster Township, had the road black-topped like it is today. The road was wider than it now is. It was about one and a half feet wider so that it was almost to the pipe drainage ditch beside Margaret Maloney’s The ditches were much deeper on the side of the road so that water could flow along the side of the road. These ditches were about two feet deep in the center. There was a water hydrant located in the front of house #135 one located between houses #120 and #122 where the Eckley museum sign now stands, one in the front of house #97 and not standing any longer, in the front of house #90 no longer standing, and one in front of the house that Anna Horwaf pays the rent for. The water hydrants were the place where the women and girls would meet and talk about various things. There was always women around the hydrants, as the women would have to have a lot of water for their homes. These hydrants would many times freeze up in the winter, and the women would have to walk to the colliery for water. In the early days the children could play in the streets. Nipsy, baseball, tag, etc. were all played in the streets because there was little chance of being hit by a carriage. Very few cars then came to Eckley. The township was responsible for the maintenence of the roads, but the coal company did mose of the maintenance. The only person who owned horses and a carriage in Eckley was John Crokin who lived downtown past where [?urgent’s] now live. There was also a horse-drawn bus which held about twenty passengers that was used in the 1920’s, also owned by Crokin. It was used to take people to Freeland, mostly on Saturday nights. The first car in Eckley was owned by William Ward and appeared in 1918.


Waln K. Brown 8/7/72 Margaret Maloney

The class system in Eckley was based upon the prestige or position of a person in the mining, economy. The mine bosses were the upper class; they were making more money than the miners. The superintendent and the mine foremen were the big shots. At first the class distinction was based on mining position and was ethnic oriented because the Welsh and Irish held all of the major mining positions. Between 1920 and 1925 the ethnic/mining class distinction changed when the Slavish and Polish began to get some of the prestige mining jobs. Before this time, however, the Slavish and Polish were only miners, never in positions of authority.

Different ethnic groups stayed to themselves until about 1910 or 1920. The Slavish would stay with the Slavish, the Irish with the Irish, etc. Marriages were kept within the ethnic bounds; interethnic marriages were frowned upon. The children, on the other hand, would intermingle in their play, “They didn’t care too much about ethnic differences.”


Waln K. Brown 8/9/72 Margaret Maloney

Many of the men and boys in Eckley had nicknames. Margaret says that the males who had these nicknames were the “older lads,” the males who were a few years older than her and her peers. The boys of her age group did not get nicknames when they grew older, when they grew to be the same age as the boys a few years older then her age group. It seems that this was a fad for a specific age group, an age group that was born in the 1890’s and predominated in the very early 1900’s. Some of the nicknames were: “Kisser”-Francis, Irish; “Meaty”- Frank, Slavish; “Dimey”-Raymond, German.


Waln K. Brown 7/26/72 Margaret Maloney


1 cup butter or shortening

1 pound raisins

1 1/2 cup of sugar

3 cups boiling water

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon ginger

1 teaspoon allspice

Combine ingredients listed above and boil 8 minutes. Cool and add 4 cups sifted flour and 2 teaspoons baking soda. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes in a greased loaf pan.

The first school in Eckley was located in the vacant lot next to where Bruno Lagonosky now lives. She thinks it was a one-room school.

The second school was located behind and slightly uptown of where “Piker” Ferko now lives. This school was built on top of coal dust washed down from the breaker by a trough (overhead) made of wood. The trough still functioned for a short while, until the parents complained about their children playing in the coal dust when they attended school. The trough was removed about 1916.

The school ceased to function as a school house about 1925; it was used as a club house for the Eckley men for another two or three years. About 1928 the building was sold for lumber and was thus destroyed as a structure.

It had four rooms for four grades. There were four teachers (1911-1912), three women and one man. Their names were Nellie Timothy, Dora [illegible], Edith Wyatt, and John McGera who taught grades one through four respectively. John McGera was also the principal of the school. The subjects taught were the 3 R’s. Most of these teachers were college graduates from Stroudsburg. They got their jobs through politics “just like they do now.” The teachers were paid through Foster Township.

There was a truant officer named Mr. Dirsoth who worked all through Foster Township. He seldom caught anybody; he usually just scolded the children and tried to scare them by saying they would go to jail the next time he caught them.

School began at 9:00 AM: and ended at 4:00 PM with an hour for lunch from 12-1:00 and two recesses of fifteen minutes each, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. During recess the children played ball or jacks. There were no regular playground facilities.



Waln K. Brown


Margaret Maloney

Everybody went to school in Eckley. All the parents wanted their children to have some education.

The teachers were very strict. If there was any trouble with the children, they were sent to see the principal. He would scold them, and, in the case of bad boys they would get the paddle.

The interior of the school had black boards all around the walls of the rooms. On the top of the black boards, either the ABC’s or the 123’s were written by the teacher and left there until the end of the term.

The last school constructed in Eckley was built directly across from the church and rectory located at the upper end of Eckley. It was constructed about 1915, and it was torn down about 1928 “because they didn’t have too many pupils they say.” The school was a two-floor structure with four rooms on each floor. It had classes for grades one through eight.

There were eight teachers. the people who taught at the last school taught at the new school, except Mr. McGera. Mr. O’Donnell was the principal, and Mary Cora, Anna Gafney, Johanna Pawkauski, and someone else not remembered were the teachers.

When the pupils were done at this school, they would go to the Foster Township High School in Freeland.

The subjects taught were reading, writing, arithmetic, spelling, grammar, geography, and history. Spelling was stressed. Every Friday there was a “spelling B” at 1:00 PM. It was held with the A section and B section of each grade against each other. the A section was the smarter section of each class. If a person in a B section became a better speller than the A person, he became an A speller.

At this Eckley school there was a night school, used primarily by the boys who worked in the mines during the day. Also some of the regular students who attended classes during the day would attend evening classes to “polish up” their studies. They could take an extra class if they wanted to learn more. The primary function of the night school, though, was to educate the youths who could not attend school during the day. The age group that attended the night school was from fourteen to about twenty-one. Most of the boys who worked in the mines were of this age and were very interested in attending classes. These “young men” would graduate from the eighth grade but would not go to complete high school in Freeland.

The interior of this school was nicer than the other schools. There were single desks for the students. A furnace, coal heating, was used to heat the entire building. A janitor, George Barron’s father, kept the building clean.


Denis Mercier


Mary Zurko and Margaret Maloney

The Welsh mine foreman Mr. Crabtree ordered the house down from Nicholas’ to be torn down. This was a capricious action on his part. It is now the site of the company store.

Coxe’s fixed the houses any time if anything were wrong with the interior or exterior. The colliery carpenter crew always took care of it. The foreman was Mr. Keller as Mary recalls.

If your toilet went bad, the company built a new toilet on the site “if it was good”; if not, someone from the colliery dug a new hole, and the carpenter crew came in. The “owner” had no say as to how it was built or what style it would be.

“Huss never gave us a nail.”


Waln K. Brown


Margaret Maloney

Girls would play nipsy as well as the boys. Girls would play individually, or one girl would team up with one boy. Thus there would be two on a side. Nipsy would be played at night or during recess at school. When Margaret was six years old, she first learned the game. The game was taught to Margaret and her peers by the school teachers during school recess. At age six the diameter of the circle was about one to one and a half feet. “As the children grew older and got to know the game better, they moved further away from the circle and the circle grew larger.”

You got to throw the nipsy, the regular double-pointed nipsy with three to four inches length, at the circle twice. If the nipsy did not fall within the perimeter of the circle, you were out after two tries.

The two teams played the game different from other nipsy games thus learned. “The game was changed after I was done playing nipsy. The new way made the game easier.” In this “old nipsy game” one team did both pitching and batting. The team at bat would throw the nipsy at the circle trying to get it to land and rest in the circle. If the first try was unsuccessful, you got another throw. If you missed this throw, you were out, and the other team would get its chance to hit the nipsy. If the nipsy landed within the perimeter of the circle, you got three “strikes” at it. If you did not hit the nipsy with three strikes, you were out. If you knocked the nipsy into the air and swung at it and missed, you were out. If you struck the nipsy causing it to go into the air but did not swing at it, it was a strike.

Every time you hit the nipsy you got two points. The nipsy would have to fly past the edge of the circle, or there were no points given, but rather, a strike.

There were no boundaries for this game; the nipsy could be hit in any direction. You only had one out in your turn at bat. The only ways to make a person out were to catch your opponent’s nipsy on the fly or for him to strike out.

To figure out who was at bat first, you asked the other team, and the one who wanted to go first would go first. The same number of outs were played by both sides so that the number of tries would be even.

Each side had his own nipsy which was used by that side only. A certain number of notches were carved into each nipsy to distinguish one team’s nipsy from another.

When there were two people on a team, the team at bat would have only one person from that team batting at a time. For example, the team composed of a girl and boy had the girl throw the nipsy and then bat at it until she was out. The next inning the boy would do the same. You were not allowed to


Waln K. Brown


Margaret Maloney

throw for each other, rather you had to throw and hit for yourself. While the offensive team was at bat, the defensive team also composed of a girl and boy would be waiting some distance away in the hope of catching the nipsy on the fly and making the offensive team out.

You could also play the form of nipsy with just one person on a side. No more than two people on a side ever played this form of nipsy because it was mainly played during recess, thus you had only a short while to play. It would take a long time for many people to have a turn at bat.


Waln K. Brown


Margaret Maloney

In house #124, now dormant, lived Michael “Boots” Ferko who was the barber 1910-1920. There was no sign or advertising that this was the barber shop, but everyone went to him for a haircut. Mike had his shop in the little shanty behind the house. He charged $.25 for a haircut.

There was a road between Margaret Maloney’s house #126 and Michael Ferko’s house #124, where the movie railroad tracks now are, which connected Main Street and Back Street. At the corner of this road, toward Michael Ferko’s home, there was a bench where the boys would sit. This bench was about eight to ten feet long and rested on two wooden supports which were nailed to the outside of the fence. The bench was large enough to accomodate eight boys sitting abreast. This bench was the meeting place for both men and boys. The boys would get together there and meet their girls. The men would sit on or around the bench and talk about baseball, politics, etc. This bench was a regular meeting place for the male population of Eckley.

Michael Ferko’s barber shop was also used as a place to play cards. When there was nobody getting a haircut, the shanty had a few men and boys, both men and boys would play together, who would be playing cards.

Girls did not use the bench or “loaf” around the barber shop. This was men’s territory. These areas of interaction were used by both “uptown” males and “downtown” people alike.


1 unbaked pie shell

2 cups pumpkin

4 eggs, separated

1 cup sugar

1 tablespoon corn starch

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/3 cup cream

1/4 cup melted butter

1 teaspoon whiskey

Combine pumpkin, egg yolks, slightly beaten, and a mixture of sugar, corn starch, and cinnamon. Beat 5 minutes. Mix in cream and butter and whisky. Beat the egg whites until peaks form. Fold in pumpkin. Mix.


Sandra Downie interviewing Margaret Maloney


Immaculate Conception Catholic Church:

Margaret was baptized in this church and attended there until it was no longer used.

Before Margaret can remember (she was born in 1904) priests lived in the rectory. Father Kelley was one of the priests that lived there. There was also an assistant curate but she does not remember his name. She remembers her parents telling of how Father Kelley walked up and down the street checking up on the children and if they were getting into trouble he would give a sermon on behavior and morals the following Sunday.

Father Gilroy lived in Freeland at St. Anns but he also came out to Eckley to say Mass. While he was in charge of the Eckley church the stairs to the front door and to the cellar were changed. The stairs to the front door came up on either side of the door. The left side was used by the men and the right side for the women. This was the same order that was used for seating inside the church. The stairway to the basement was directly below the front door and the opening was covered by two large doors on an angle. This did not provide much protection in the inclement weather so the entrance was changed to a side entrance with a weather covering.

The Stations of the Cross were a square wooden frame with a cross on the top. The figures were made out of paper mache and painted.

There were 3 single gold candlesticks on each side of the altar. They were about 18″ high. There were two gold vases about 12″ high. They had a flat base and were smaller in diameter at the bottom than they were at the top. The statues were made out of plaster material and painted. Our Lord was on the left side. He had a beard and was dressed in a white robe with blue trim. He was in a simple standing position. The Blessed Mother was in a blue robe also in a simple standing position.


Margaret Maloney by Sandra Downie


Outside was painted white with white trim.

Steps in the front of the church were wooden coming up on either side of the front door. There was a wooden railing on either side of the steps and on the landing in front of the entrance door. The newel post on the first step was a simple square post with a simple square top with a smaller square applied to the top. The steps and the railings were also painted white.

[There are two simple drawings, side by side on the page below the words above. The drawing on the left shows five steps coming up from left and right to a small landing. Under the landing, between it and the ground are double doors, with a handle on the right door. There are railings for each set of steps, which also goes across the landing at the top. The newel post with the smaller square is drawn at the bottom left step and beside it is written “Railings on both sides of steps”.

The drawing on the right is a side view of the same, with the church building represented by a vertical line on the left side of the image, with “Front Door” written near the top of the line and an arrow pointing at the top of it. There is a small square drawn just below and to the left of the door, its bottom at the level of the landing under the door. It is labeled “Step”. There are two close vertical lines coming up from the right edge of the landing which likely represents the railing. Below the landing, and in between the step to the front door and the right edge of the landing, are five horizonal lines, one below the other, labeled “wooden steps.” there is a diagonal line (labeled “Cellar Door”) from the right edge of the landing to the line representing the ground. There are small circles drawn in the triangle created by the diagonal line, right edge of the steps, and the ground. There is a side view of a handle in the middle of the diagnonal line.]

The entrance to the basement was thru slanted cellar doors just below the front door. The stones are still in place under the concrete poured steps. This door was a board and batten door with heavy butt hinges, a bolt latch on the inside and a handle on the outside. At the cellar level there was a pair of doors probably the same as the ones that are on the other side of the vestibule.

The inside of the church was painted white. The ceiling was gold with a mural painted in the center of the ceiling. The windows, door frames and wainscoat were painted and grained. The altar rail is in its original position and was painted white with a brown railing. The altar was painted white and trimmed in gold. The white marbelized plasterboard around the altar area is later. This area was originally white.

The floors were scrubbed until they were light in color, they were not painted or varnished. In the early 1900’s the aisle from the front door to the altar was covered with a braided hemp runner and the altar area was covered with a green rug.

There were two small kerosene lamps on brackets on every window. They were placed even with the first sash of the windows. The only other light was provided by candles on the altar.

[There is a small drawing representing one of these kerosene lamps. The bracket, which curves down and then up between the lamp and wall, is on the right side of the drawing. At the top of the lamp is labeled “CLEAR GLASS GLOBE 10″ IN DIAMETER”. It is a round-shaped globe with two short vertical lines at the bottom of it representing the burner. Below the globe is the base of the lamp, which is about the same dimensions as the globe. There are two parts of the base, one on top of the other. The top part is slightly narrower than the globe and the bottom of the base, and has close vertical lines drawn top to bottom across it. The lower part of the body has no lines, and is flat on top and bottom]


Waln K. Brown


Margaret Maloney


4 cups flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1 1/2 teaspon salt

1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon nutmeg

1 1/2 pound whole pecan meats

3/4 pound chopped[?] meats

3/4 pound whole candied cherries

1 pound raisins

1 cup butter

2 1/2 cups sugar

6 eggs

3 tablespoons brandy

In a mixing bowl sift together baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Add nuts and fruit. Mix until all are well covered. Set aside. Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Bake at 275 degrees for 3 hours.


2 cups flour

3 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon sugar

4 tablespoons melted butter

1 egg

1 cup milk

Sift dry ingredients. Add melted butter, egg, and milk. Stir lightly but quickly and only long enough to moisten dry ingredients. Fill greased muffin tins or paper cups 2/3 full. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes. Makes 1 1/2 doz.


[This page is a form that is filled out by hand. The handwritten parts are placed in quotation marks below.]

Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission

Bureau of Museums

P/O. Box 1026

Harrisburg, Pennsylvania

Date: 7/4/72

BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD for: “Margaret Johanna Maloney”

Home Address: (Street) “House #126 Main St.”

(City, State) “Eckley, PA.” (Zip Code) [left blank]

Home Phone: “636-[???]9”

Occupation: “Retired (Practical Nurse)”

Hobbies, Crafts, or Other Skills: “Wallpaper, paint, sew.”

[Business address and phone are left blank on the form]

Previous Occupations: (years) “Practical Nurse–Church Nurse & housekeeper for Priests from 1951-1962.”

Religion: “Roman Catholic”

Place of Birth: (town) “Eckley” (State or Country) “PA.”

Year of Birth: “1904”

Other Places of Residence (years): “Freeland (1951-1957) — Forest city (1957-19[??])”

Father’s Name: “John Maloney” Birthplace: “Ireland”

Father’s Occupation and Special Skills: “Stable boss at old mule stable & contract miner”

Mother’s Maiden Name: “Mary Sharkey” Birthplace: “Ireland came to Eckley when she was a child”

Mother’s Occupation and Special Skills: “Housewife–mothered four children.”

“I. Father was a contract miner but got hurt in the mines & was made boss of the mule stable. He attended 42 mules in the stable during the late 30’s & early 40’s.”

BM 12/70 500

Contributions Message

judyak, Karen R. Stafford, Melanie Akren-Dickson, Ann Kline, Marisa Bozarth, Marie Maranki, Wendy Henry, Camille Westmont, Daryl Bojarcik and jpalko