John Manke is an active former Bay View resident who is involved in numerous neighborhood organizations, including the Bay View Historical Society, the Humboldt Park Fourth of July Association and the Shore Shore Farmers Market. He believes Bay View has a fine tradition in its past that we do not want to lose in the future.
FERNWOOD/SAUERKRAUT HILL WALK
9:30 AM, SATURDAY -- AUGUST 7, 2010
I can remember two major rain storms from the past. In 1953, the South Shore area of Milwaukee County was hit with a cyclone that knocked down many trees and electrical wires. Many trees were pulled up from their roots and landed on streets, yards, buildings or cars. I remember one man who just stepped out of his brand new car on E. Pryor Avenue, and tree fell inside of his car. On my street, several trees were blocking the road and two live electrical wires were lying in the middle of the road. For two weeks we went without electricity, until one day an ex-neighbor, who was a police officer, came down our dead end street to show us his new squad car. When he saw the live wires still lying on the road, he called the fire department and electric power company to eliminate this problem and to restore service to us again. You become forgotten when you live on a dead end street. My mother was in the insurance business and took us on a tour of the South Shore areas to view all of the damage from this storm. They claim the the storm was a reverse tornado or cyclone that hit us. My dad and worked a two man saw to get wood for the coal furnace that year. Some of the trees that fell were huge and old. Sidewalks had to be replaced in many cases. We as children, could play outside, but we were told to stay clear of the live wires on the road.
In August of 1986, as I was delivering my mail route, I got soaked completely. People would ask me why their mail was wet. I told them that it was as dry as I was, since no dry spot existed on my uniform. After returning to my postal station in Bay View, I drove home to get some dry clothes on. All of the streets had inches of rain on them. The underpasses were all closed due to the heavy rain. I took S. Clement Avenue home to avoid the underpasses. I was praying that my car would not stall while driving through the water. My wife and the kids were at State Fair Park and came home after the storm subsided. A friend of mine was trapped west of the freeway, and could find no open roads to our postal station. He had to go to a station west of us to turn in his vehicle, keys and accountables. The supervisor went with him to try and find a way to get back to Bay View, but found all main roads were under water and too dangerous to travel on. In reading the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel recently, I found out that the major storm that hit Milwaukee several days ago, was similar to August of 1986.
I urge all of you to visit the Beulah Brinton House, 2590 S. Superior Street, for the installation on its front lawn done by Discovery World and Bay View High School students. It is truly spectacular and you will learn so much about Bay View's History. The students and Discovery World staff will be collecting historical and archaeological information about Bay View from the general public. Activities will include portrait photography, oral history, genealogy, artifacts and heirloom documentation. Dates for these sessions are Saturday, July 31, 10 AM to 2 PM;
Opening Reception, Sunday, August 1, 10 AM to 2 PM, Saturday, August 14, 10 AM to 2 PM, and Saturday, August 21, 10 AM to 2 PM. This display will be on the lawn of the Beulah Brinton House from July 31 to September 5 -- so come and bring your histories and your stuff. It is really worthwhile. When all of this information has been gathered and digitalized by the students, it will be given to the Historical Society for our archives. Please tell everyone you know about this program.
When we were kids, we used to walk to South Shore Park and go swimming at the beach. The water had a lot of small stones to walk on and very little sand. Unless you were a good swimmer, you never went out too deep in the water. The beach was sandy, unlike the the water, but it was hot. We used to take a blanket and lie down in the shade on the hill.
Sometimes in Summer, my dad would take us to a small lake to go swimming. Beaver Lake, Wabbasee Beach, Muskego Beach, Wind Lake and other such places to swim at. Most of the highways going to the lakes were two lane with little passing room while driving. Sometimes we took along inner tubes to swim with. Sometimes you would find a crab nipping on your toes or you would step on a clam in the water. If you were in some waters, blood suckers would nail you.
Terry Falk is running for the City-Wide position on the Milwaukee School Board. He is having a Fund raising Event on Wednesday, August 25th from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM at the BYO Studio Lounge, 2246 S. Kinnickinnic Avenue, Milwaukee, Wi. 53207
I have just recently been able to receive a dog, whose owner has been placed in hospice care. This dog, Brownie, is just a joy to have. I encourage anybody who wishes to have a dog or cat to go out and look for one. The love that they give is worth all of the effort that you put into owning it. Don't be afraid of becoming an owner. A dog is like a member of your family. All it takes is a lot of tender loving care and you will receive much love in return. Please support the Bay View community.
On Saturday, the Green Bay Packers will start their pre-season games. I look forward to watching football again. It is too early to tell what kind of a team we will have this season, but time will tell us. My favorite sport has always been football. Although I have played other sports, football is the game that I like best. It takes team effort to win a game. If the skills of all the players help each other out in harmony, we will have a great team. If too many individuals think that they are the only key to the game, them we will lose our team spirit and go down in defeat. It take the united effort of all of the players to win a game.
We started off with a great lineup, but several players have faded with their skills. The owner of the team has obtained some quality players, but we still have failed in our mission to win more games. While we are not in last place, we also are not in first place or even close to going into the playoffs. I hope that they can at least win some more games this season to look respectable. Maybe next year will be different for them. Time will tell. Who knows what the future will bring. Maybe we will be able to field a good team next year.
In the United States we have the privilege of being able to vote for people to serve us in politics. Not all countries offer this freedom. In some countries, the government monitors who votes and sometimes tamper with the voting results. We should take advantage of this freedom and choose who we want to represent us in political office. On Tuesday, September 14th, the polls will be open. We have to elect a new governor, a U.S. Senator, U.S. House of Representative members, Wisconsin State Senator, Wisconsin State Representatives, School Board Board members, and many other political officials. Take the time to vote. Choose the candidate that you feel will do the best job of representing you in political office. Be a good American citizen and use your privilege of being able to vote wisely.
If you are like me, and have received many mosquito bites, and are running out of repellent, then hope for some cool weather to come soon. Dragonflies are eating many of the mosquitoes. Bats eat lots of them. A bird feeder will encourage more birds to come and eat them. The more rain and heat we have, the more mosquitoes to bite us. Some communities are using bug spray to eliminate them. All I can say is watch your back and keep scratching. Cool weather will soon be here to end their time here. Please support the Bay View community.
Many years ago, I heard a story from a person who has since passed away. It seems that this one cemetery had to move some bodies to a new location in the cemetery. As the bodies were being dug up, a small person looked down at the site. The first corpse had turned all black, probably due to no preservatives, much as President Lincoln's body looked as they moved it to a new spot. Another body had the hands and arms in an odd position. Another body had almost become a skeleton. It was amazing to be able to look upon these bodies as they were being moved. Another person told me that a body was only guaranteed his burial spot for 50 years. After that time, a body could be moved to a new common site.
It seems that undertakers have always had a hard time trying to preserve bodies. During the Civil War many bodies were sent back home to be buried. They had to be preserved very well if they were to travel any long distance. A perfect preservative was found, but it turned out to be deadly to the undertaker. Arsenic is great at preserving bodies, but if any of the chemical got on or into the person using it, they could get very sick or die. Formaldehyde is the most common form of preservative used now in funeral homes. It is a lot safer to use than arsenic. I suspect that Lenin's body in Moscow has a lot of arsenic in the preservatives used there.
Do you remember going to South Shore Beach when they still had lifeguards and swimming available? The beach was sandy, but the water's edge had a lot of small stones that you had to walk on to get out deeper in the water. There used to be trees on the hill near the beach. People had blankets and large beach towels to lay on. The radio stations used to announce the water temperature at the various beaches. You could walk down to the bath house/pavilion to change clothes if you wanted to. Sometimes they would play music from a radio at the beach. They used to have tall stands for the lifeguards to sit on. No dogs were allowed on the beach. Many times the sand was very hot to walk on near the beach. Sometimes the water in Lake Michigan was so cold that you shivered as you entered the water. The main times that they closed the beach was during a thunderstorm or during the time when Polio was epidemic in our area. You were always told not to drink the water while swimming because it could be dirty. The beach was frequently crowded in those days. On a hot day, you could expect more people than normal there. As kids, we used to look on the beach for anything that was unusual, like small stones, rings, money, keys, watches, shells and other such things. Some of the small stones could be used to make simple jewelry or similar things.
Now, when you go to South Shore Beach, there are no lifeguards, only signs that state that swimming is too dangerous due to heavy amounts of E-coli bacteria in the water. Many of the trees are no longer on the hill. The sand on the beach is a bit rough to walk on. Many people take their dogs into the water to cool them off. At times you can find dead fish on the beach near the water. Debris from the lake is also in the sand. Swimming is almost a thing of the past, as the beach is closed so often. Boating and fishing are more common than attempts at swimming in the lake. There are many yachts and other boats near the South Shore Yacht Club. The view of Lake Michigan is wonderful from South Shore Park. When you attend the South Shore Farmers Market, you always can get a beautiful glimpse of Lake Michigan while shopping. When there is a lake breeze, you feel like you are in the best place in world. In spite of the ban on swimming, South Shore Park, at 2900 S. Shore Drive, offers a lot of activities for the entire family to enjoy. The children's play area is just wonderful. Take the time to visit the area and enjoy this beautiful park with your entire family. Please support the Bay View community.
There was a rich lobbyist from Madison, Wisconsin who had a large cottage at Presque Isle Lake. He would bring in politicians from the State Capitol for some recreation. During the daytime, they would go fishing in a boat. At nighttime they would go visit Hurley, Wisconsin, and have some adult fun. Hurley was wide open with little law enforcement visible. Some mobsters from Chicago, Illinois, ran some wild dance halls. strip clubs and other adult places in this town. Many girls were brought in from Chicago to work at these places. During the day, this was a normal small town. At night, all hell broke loose in this town.
Across the river from Hurley was the clean small city of Ironwood, Michigan. What a contrast from Hurley. There were regular grocery stores and other normal places of business here. This was a good place to live with you family.
The Bay View Bash will be held on Saturday, September 18, 2010, in Bay View. The area from E. Potter Avenue to S. Clement Avenue on S. Kinnickinnic Avenue. There will be activities going on from about 11 AM to about 10 PM. There will be activities and music for the entire family to enjoy. There will be food served on the grill and other food. There will be a Children's Area located at Bay View M & I Bank, 2701 S. Kinnickinnic Avenue. There will be games and other activities for the children and other family members. There will be several stages for music. For any additional information on the Bay View Bash, go to web-site http://www.bayviewbash.org/. Here you can find out what is happening where and at what time. Come on down and have a great time with your entire family.
Schools will begin in early September for most schools. Now is the time to buy school supplies and clothing for your children to wear to school. Make sure that you buy lunch bags or a school box for children who eat a bag lunch at school. Buy snacks for them to munch on after school is over. Teach them to be careful crossing the streets and to watch out for cars or for strangers who could place them in harm's way. Protect your children in bad weather. Be sure that they dress warm enough to go outside. Take the time to meet your children's teachers and school staff. Parental involvement is very important to everyone. Your children will be proud of you if you get involved in their education. Try to get them to school on time. Have fun with your children. Enjoy the time you spend with them, because, before you know it, they will grow up and go their own ways. Please support the Bay View community.
Labor Day is day to reflect on all of the people who have given us their labor to sustain us. Every job is important. Each job is a part of our living experience. Where would we be if people had not taken the time and labor to provide for us all of these years. Just think. Food, appliances, electricity, natural gas, water, television, newspapers, railroads, airplanes, ships, banks, stores, government, mail delivery, doctors, dentists, hospitals, automobiles, houses, furniture, and many other things are brought to us through the labor of somebody. We should take the time and reflect on this and be thankful that we live in a free and democratic country. You should take the time to thank the union members, military, teachers, clerks, secretaries, officials, police and fire departments, health departments, food service people and many others who make our country as great as it is.