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Fifty Years Ago

According to the Brighton Pittsford Post

Local History Published 1/21/2014

It was suggested to me by a fellow member of Historic Pittsford, that I might compare life in Pittsford 50 years ago to now. I have many bound editions of the "Post" in my office and so I decided I would try an article and see how readers respond. So here goes...

January 6, 1955:

Rochester Royals, (a professional basketball team) just barely beat the Pittsford All Stars, which included Win Cooper, John Sens, and Chan Whiting by the small score of 63-67. This contest was arranged by the Junior Class as a fundraiser towards their trip to Washington in the spring.

March of Dimes Drive opens on a note of hope and caution. Final results of the tests conducted during the past year using the new Salk vaccine will not be known until spring, but first indications are very promising. Only 70 new cases of polio were reported this past year, down from 220 in previous years.

The Rayson-Miller Post of the American Legion sponsored a "Mile of Dimes". A length of tape was placed in front of Town Hall and will extend throughout the business district as dimes are added. This was the second year this project was attempted and was very well received by the community. From the profits, the American Legion Post has purchased a hospital bed with sides that can be used free of charge by any resident. The Post has also been able to purchase an additional pair of crutches.

661 Students in Grades 1, 2, and 3 in Brighton Schools and 226 students in Pittsford Schools were inoculated with the experimental vaccine. (Fifty years later, we hardly consider polio a health risk.)

Report from the Christmas Seal Sale showed that $33,000 was raised across Monroe County but was down from its goal of $42,000. The committee hoped that additional monies would be received within the next week of two. Contributions from Pittsford showed $1,863 was raised.

A report from the Pentagon showed that government officials found 5,500 new typewriters when they cleaned out some of the storehouses. This might save the taxpayers $680,000 in the next year or they might go ahead and spend that money for some other item to store and be "found" in another year.

TAXES will be collected at the Town Clerk's office Monday through Friday from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM. and on Saturdays from 9:00 AM to Noon. Tax rates for the Village of East Rochester are $13.57 per $1,000; Village of Pittsford are $13.62 per $1,000; Town of Pittsford $5.05 per $1,000. This notice was posted by Mr. Ward Hendee, Town Clerk.

January 13, 1955:

Graflex Considers Pittsford as Site for New Home. An application for rezoning filed by Graflex Inc., internationally known manufacturer of precision cameras and photographic equipment was considered at the regular meeting of the Pittsford Town Board.

This application applies to approximately 50 acres of land with 1050 feet of frontage on Monroe Avenue almost opposite Woodland Road. It would make the premises usable for manufacturing of all of the equipment made by the company. Graflex Inc. is now operating in four different places in Rochester and is chiefly interested in the Pittsford site for the purpose of coordinating all operations under one roof. The Speed Graphic camera, in the hands of photographer, Joe Rosenthal was known for the famous picture of the flag raising on Iwo Jima.

An Editorial discusses the January Thaw stating that after a "dragged-out" cold spell, farmers look for the traditional first month thaw. There is more to it than the fact that a person grows tired of too much of any one kind of weather, whether it is cold, snow, sunshine or clouds. A January thaw has practical aspects. A thaw settles soft snow and permits the farmer to get into the woods and haul the wood he has chopped; it allows the cows to get out of the barn and into the muddy barnyard. Pillows and feather dusters may appear on clotheslines for refreshing. January thaw does not mean the end of winter but it gives us a glimpse of what is to come. (I wonder if this January will have a thaw!!)

And so it was 50 years ago.