Could everyone write one simple essay about something that once happened in Saltaire…that they saw or were a part of…and put it on one big website? Somebody should collect a lot of stories before we all forget. Otherwise it is like a line in “On The Beach” : The history of the war that now would never be written.” -(JO'H)

Monday, January 21, 2008

The More Things Change...

The more they remain the same.

Hugh O'Brien notes that the picture of the swim meet from 1955 would be immediately recognized by a first time visitor today.

Well, lots of things have changed:

Look at the Islander in 1955: (click on any picture to enlarge)

Stillgebauer Archives, 1955

Or look at the "Danger" sign at the bay swimming area 1955. In 1955 they dredged out the bay swimming area. It was made much too deep so immediately after crossing the rope from the shallow area you were in ten feet of water. Hence the warning sign.

Stillgebauer Archives, 1955

Or take a look at the 1955 view from the long-gone benches facing the ocean just south of the lifeguard shack on Broadway (see the shower?). There is nothing but dune grass between the lifeguard shack and the Catholic Church:

Stillgebauer Archives, 1955

So, we can say that things have changed a lot in Saltaire in our lifetimes. But...

But some things remain the same (kind of).

They still have races on the field at Saltaire. That was Carberry O'Shea below with the bullhorn in 1957:

Stillgebauer Archives, 1957

Now look at these 1986 shots at the same location.



Only changes: the Fire House expanded into the ballfield and swallowed up the Shim Shack, and the basketball backboard is gone (there used to be three basketball backboards in the ball field: the one on the right field line and a double sided backboard in right center field). The trees in the background are new. A couple of changes, but still the same activities remain. And they still have races today. So things remain.

Tomorrow: Nathan's hot dog eating contests have nothing on the Saltaire kids of yesteryear!!!!!.

"The messiness of victory; the sweetness of defeat."

See how everybody came out a winner in the 1950's pie eating contests.


Bill Stillgebauer said...

Bill Stillgebauer replies:

The couple in the picture are Nanna and Pop Greer , who were long time Saltaire residents whose house was on Pacific walk. Their son was Dick Greer who with his wife Billie were also Saltaire residents in the late 40’s and early 50’s. Their home was at the end of Surf walk ( when it did not go all the way through to the ocean). It was infamous when we were kids as the house that was falling off it’s pilings. The Greers were instrumental in my parents return to Saltaire in 1955 after they had rented the Gurkie,then Brown cottage on Atlantic Walk in 1946 , where I spent my first summer of life. John Glascock will know the couple at the ocean , they were his grandparents.

dogfish islander said...

The blonde kid behind Stillge's behind may be Steven Kurachek. An interesting blip on the Fire Islander scene is part of the Episcopal rectory, to the left of the Bentley manse. It went up in holy smoke around 1962.

BEAVER said...

Bill -

I was pretty certain that the old folks in the picture were Johhny Glascock's grandparents. When my family settled in(1956)they(greers) had the house on the n/e side of Harbor on Pacific. I'll always remember Johns young cousin "johnnie Geer" - he couldn't pronounce Greer - when granpa Greer died the kids response to the death was that "he got old and tired and that was the end" I think?? that was around '58 or '59 - Who remembers Sid & Puddy Greer??

By the way - did your father have any pictures of Uncle Pete walking on water??

BEAVER said...

RE: Steve Kurachek - he is DR Steven Kurachek - he's a very well respected specialist in pediatric medicine - Uncle Pete lives with him in Minnetonka, MN - Uncle Pete would be 91-92 years old - and could probably still bend steel bars in his bare hands!!

dogfish islander said...

Remember Puddy Greer!! Of course I remember her,she was our 5 year old group counselor as well as my first true love--she reciprocated by affection by awarding me the highly esteemed "cup" for best child in the age group.

Anonymous said...

Dogfish Islander -

Jeez, I hope this wasn't some Mary Kay Letourneau type affair?? Could there be a Dogfish Islander Jr somewhere out there??

Derf said...

It seems to me that the person who took the of the photo of Nana & Pop Greer was STANDING ON THE DUNES. And directly behind Nana & Pop is the future site of the Shell house.

JOH said...

the kids in the water on the bayfront. Stile said one is Jeff Weinlandt; Dogfish Islander says one is Steve Kuracheck. Both can not be right because the kids in the picture are close inage and there would be abbout a 6 year differential between Jeff and Steven.

Anonymous said...


Your mission, should you chose to accept it:

Is to find the former Saltairian -
The Babylon Idiot/Clam King(alias Robin Torrey) and enroll him in

This message will self destruct in 20 seconds

Dogfish Islander said...

dogfish islander said...
Stillge was about five years ahead of me at Gettysburg College although we were both behind Ron REVOLUTION Paul by quite a few more. I think the blonde kid is about 4-6 years old-Steven was my age-could also be Mike Kurachek, then again maybe it was neither one--time to reach out to the Dr. in Minnetonka, Minnesota--home of the famous Deerskin loafer and moccasin make as well as Uncle Pete. Saltaire38.blogspot invades the heartland.