Posts Tagged ‘New Castle PA’

James A. Addis – New Castle Nonagenarian

February 17, 2012

Note: This same photo of Mr. Addis ran in the newspaper several times with various articles.


James A. Addis enjoys the distinction of being the oldest Mason in Lawrence county and also of being the only man in New Castle who was engaged in business on Washington street an even 60 years ago.

Mr. Addis opened a confectionery and baking establishment in New Castle in April, 1847. His stand was located where the store of Jacob Cosel now stands.

He was the first man who ever packed and sold ice in New Castle and his methods were strikingly different from the ice monopoly-trust combination methods of the present day.

He was the first to open an ice cream parlor in this city and was the first to manufacture candy. His store was not as elaborate as those of the Greeks of the present day, but he didn’t lie awake endeavoring to defeat the purpose of the laws and withal he was better satisfied with his business than are the present day money seekers.

Mr. Addis remembers when Poland was the largest town across the state line and when Youngstown was proud of the number of people who stopped every day at the watering trough on what is now Federal street.

Mr. Addis is only three years short of being in the nonagenarian ranks, having been born in December of 1820.

New Castle News (New Castle, Pennsylvania) Jul 10, 1907

With two such hale and hearty 90-year-old youngsters as Joseph S. White and James A. Addis, New Castle would appear to be a health resort of no mean reputation.

New Castle News (New Castle, Pennsylvania) Dec 30, 1910


Oldest Mason in City Ends Busy Life Begun When Republic Was Young.
He Opened First Store of Kind in New Castle and Distinctly Remembers Visit of Marquis de La Fayette to Pittsburg in 1825.

James A. Addis, one of the city’s most venerable men, died at the family home, 5 Franklin avenue, very suddenly Monday evening. He was in his 91st year, and was one of the best known men in the city. He was also New Castle’s oldest merchant, as, although he had led a retired life for some years, there was not another man living who was in business in this city at the same time that Mr. Addis was a merchant.

His death was most unexpected. Despite his advanced age, Mr. Addis had been in good health until just the last few days, when he complained of feeling not so well as usual. Monday evening, about 6:30 o’clock, shortly after he had finished his evening meal, he was taken suddenly ill, and expired within a few minutes.

Born on what is now Second avenue, Pittsburg, December 23, 1820, Mr. Addis was able to tell many interesting tales of the early days of that city, and at the time of the sesqui-centennial celebration, he was interviewed by representatives of a number of Pittsburg newspapers, giving many items of interest, and telling of seeing Lafayette enter the city in 1825. When he was in a reminiscent mood, he often told of his boyhood, and retaining his faculties to the last, was a most pleasing conversationalist.

Mr. Addis was the son of Isaac Shea and Susanna Patterson Addis, and was the eldest of six children. His father moved to Pittsburg to take up his permanent residence in 1812, and resided there for many years. He had been born in Philadelphia, and first came to Pittsburg in 1809, returning to Philadelphia in 1811. He and Susanna Patterson were married in 1817. The Addis home was located on Second avenue about an eighth of a mile above Smithfield street.

James Addis’ first recollection of affairs in the early years of Pittsburg occurred when he witnessed the arrival of General Lafayette in that city in June, 1825. Mr. Addis saw the triumphal procession on Wood street, between Second and Third avenues, and stated that each feature of the event was idelibly impressed on his mind.

According to Mr. Addis there was but one iron plant, known as the Douglas mill, in active operation in Pittsburg about 1825. The locality of the plant was then called Pipetown, and was near what is now Second avenue.

Image from Wikipedia entry: Great Fire of Pittsburgh

An interesting tale of the great fire, which wiped out a portion of the business section of Pittsburg in 1846, was told by Mr. Addis. The burned territory embraced more than 50 acres and covered what is now the district bounded by Second, Ferry, Smithfiled and Diamond streets. The only building left standing in that entire territory was the one owned by George Weyman.

Mr. Addis did not retain an active impression of the government of the early days of Pittsburg, as he left the city shortly after he became of age. He remembered clearly when the famous canal was opened in 1829 between Johnstown and Pittsburg. It was an extension of the famous Juniata canal and greatly stimulated commerce in the Pittsburg district. It was in constant use until its absorption by the Pennsylvania railroad about 1855. An interesting story of a stage coach ride over the Alleghenies in 1850 as far east as Altoona was recalled. He took the stage at the old St. Charles hotel at 7 o’clock in the morning and was at Altoona at 8 the next morning, a distance of considerably more than 100 miles.

Mr. Addis was apprenticed to Robert Knox, a candymaker on Fourth street, when but a boy, and worked at that trade for some time. He attended night school in the old First ward building on the present site of the big Wabash depot. Here he obtained the rudiments of his education.

Mr. Addis stated that the coal business about 1830 was but in its infancy. Nearly all Pittsburgers burned wood. He distinctly remembered being on an Ohio river steamboat when but a child and states that there were many other passenger packets in operation at that time.

Mr. Addis came to New Castle in the year 1846, and had been a resident here much of the time since that date. He established the first confectionery store and bakery ever in the city, his place of business being located on the south side of what is now Washington street, near the Knox block. Later, he moved to the north side of the street, about the location of Mathers’ store. He was the first man in this city to open and ice cream parlor and also the first to sell oysters cooked. In those days, the supply was brought overland from Enon Valley, in the winter time, when the boats were not running.

Mr. Addis was thrice married. His first wife was Sarah Reed, a daughter of John Reed. Their children, who survive to mourn the father’s death, are Mrs. David Osborne of Buckeye, Tex.; Mrs. Sue Johnson of Covington, Ind., and Mrs. Jean A. Jones of St. Louis, Mo.

1850 census shows James A. Addis with wife, Sarah, a small child, and perhaps a sister (Reed). Occupation: Confectioner

1860 Census shows Mr. Addis, wife, Sarah, several children and his father, Isaac Addis. Occupation: Confectioner


During the Civil war, the family moved to Kansas, and there Mrs. Addis died. Some time later, Mr. Addis married again, his second wife’s death occurring in this city, after he had again taken up his residence here. His third wife was Mrs. Eliza McCandless, who survives him.

1870 census shows wife Jane (2nd wife?) and some children. Occupation: Clerk in Store

1880 census show wife Jane. Mr. Addis is working as a clerk in a hardware store.

1900 census. Mr. Addis is now married to 3rd wife, Eliza and working as a tax collector.

Mr. Addis voted for Abraham Lincoln, both times in this city. He had always retained an active interest in current happenings, and was able to give a valued opinion on many subjects.

For many years, he was a tax collector in the city, but was compelled to give up active work on account of his advancing years.

He was one of the oldest Masons in this part of the state, having been initiated into Mahoning lodge 243, F.&A.M., in 1859. On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of his initiation into the lodge, he was honored by fellow members in being presented with a handsome gift. He had always been greatly interested in Masonry, and was highly esteemed by his fellow members.

Image from Ballou’s Pictorial — More on the church at Wood St. on the City of Pittsburg website

In Pittsburg, Mr. Addis was a member of the old First Presbyterian church on Wood street. For many years, he had been a member of the First Christian church of this city. He was a man of many splendid traits of character, and his passing from the scenes of his long life brings sorrow to many.

The funeral services will be held Wednesday afternoon at 2:30 o’clock at the residence in Franklin avenue, and will be in charge of Mahoning lodge, No. 243, F.&A.M. Interment will be made in Greenwood cemetery.

New Castle News (New Castle, Pennsylvania) Jul 12, 1911

Letters Home: The 332nd Infantry

May 26, 2010

Camp Sherman (Image from

More Young Men Go To Camp Today

Nineteen Of Registered Men Leave For Training At Chillicothe.


Capt. A. Martin Graham Goes Part Way With Group On Trip.

New Castle’s latest contribution to Camp Sherman left this morning as scheduled. The nineteen young men accepted for service were on hand promptly this morning at the city building. They left that building shortly after 8:15 a.m. escorted by the Croton school drum corps directed by Prof. Hoffmuster, members of the G.A.R., the Lawerence Rifles, Mayor Newell and Councilmen Burns and Whaley and other citizens of the community.

They were taken to the P.& L.E. station, where a good sized crowd was on hand to bid them farewell. Their train left at 8:48 p.m.

The men were in charged of Leslie S. Moore, who had as his aides Edgar Thompson and John McNulty. Attorney A.M. Graham accompanied the boys a part of the way to see that they got the proper start.

The Croton drum corps had fifteen members out, the younger boys having been ordered to stay at home by the leader, owing to the expectation that the extreme cold weather of yesterday would still continue this morning.

The boys leaving this morning were:

Edward Anderson
Harold S. Johnston
Andrew J. Quinn
John Schrader
Howard Kirkwood
Leslie S. Moore
John P.G. Hirschinger
Pietro Scalero
J. Allen McNulty
Joseph Dawson
Harry Penrose
George Slack
Edgar Thompson
Wm. Joseph Heinrich
Joseph Embleton
Bernard Rosenblum
Russell W. Hiles
Walter Gunter
Simeon Cumberledge.

New Castle News (New Castle, Pennsylvania) Feb 6, 1918

Soldiers Send Notes Of Thanks
Comfort Packet Committee Receives Responses From the Various Recipients Daily


Dear Madam:

Through your kindness I received a Comfort Packet before leaving home, and not until I arrived in camp did I realize what a valuable gift I had received.
Every article is of use to a soldier, and is certainly appreciated by all. Conditions here are very good (in my opinion) and the training received here will be of great benefit both at present and in the future.

Thanking you and your co-workers for your kindness, I remain,

Yours truly,
Walter Gunter,
Med. Detachment,
332nd Infantry,
Camp Sherman.

New Castle News (New Castle, Pennsylvania) Mar 8, 1918

From Enoch Gunter.
Enoch Gunter of Mill street, received this from his son, Walter:
Italy, July 30, 1918.

Dear Dad:

In the land of song! And it is really the most beautiful place one could imagine. Had a fine trip through the Alps and saw some of the most famous resorts in the world. The scenery is so wonderful that one would have to see it to really know how beautiful it is. At the base of the mountains they farm and raise fine garden products and fruit and farther up the mountainside wheat is the principal crop; then there is space where there is no vegetation, till finally the mountain peaks disappear into the clouds.

The railroad through the mountains runs through more than thirty tunnels, one of them seven miles long. We saw two of the largest cities of Italy and the reception the Italians gave up was fine.

Sunday night I slept in an old palace and it is surely a fine place. Last night I spent in a school house; it is a fine building and we are quartered here for the time being.

Yesterday I visited a monument where there are three thousand skulls and bones of all the men killed in the last battle of 1876. The battle was fought within a mile of this place and these bones were placed in this monument and it is interesting to see them. There are many old castles around here and if possible I intend to visit them. Will write again soon.

Your loving son, WALTER.

Walter Gunter,
Med. Dept. 332nd Inf.,
American E.F. in Italy.

New Castle News (New Castle, Pennsylvania) Aug 29, 1918


Mr. and Mrs. J.W. McNulty of Volant have received the following letter from their son, Jay A. McNulty:

Back in Austria,
Jan. 26, 1919.

Dear Father and Mother:

I am out of Montenegro again, but most of the fellows are still there. I was taken sick on an outpost and laid around for a week or more, then I was taken down where the climate is more mild.

The lack of food and exposure finally got to me, although it was a long time coming. We have been getting all we can eat for a week or more. I am beginning to feel a lot better, or else I would not be writing to you that I have not been well. Will be O.K. soon, especially if I continue to eat good. We are getting more and better food now than we have had for seven months. In one of your letters you asked me what we had for our Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner. Well, for Thanksgiving breakfast I had colored water and one-half slice of black bread with brown bugs in it, and for dinner about four tablespoonsful of macaroni cooked in water, and a little piece of black bread, and no supper at all. Christmas was just a repetition of Thanksgiving, only we had three meals instead of two. But I just want to tell you what we had for dinner today: Potatoes and gravy, brown bread without any bugs, bacon, coffee, and all of it that we could eat. Now, isn’t that fine? My, how we did enjoy it.

I received your letters of December 20 and 26. Am sorry that you are not getting my letters. I write to you quite often. Hope you are getting my letters by now. I will be glad to get back to the good old States again. Since coming across seas I have seen soldiers of every creed and color. Men from every part of the world. This was has certainly been a ponderous affair. Well, by-by for this time.

Your loving son,

Jay A. McNulty, 332nd Inf., A.E.F.,
Italy, 901 C.A.P.O.

New Castle News (New Castle, Pennsylvania) Mar 8, 1919

Make Exceptionally Fine Record In Austrian Defeat And In Diplomatic Campaign.
Losses Small In Battle — Best Trained Regiment In War — What Colonel Says.

The 332nd Infantry of which so many New Castle boys, who trained at Camp Sherman, O., are members, accomplished everything that it was called upon to do in the Italian offensive that put Austria out of the world war, as may be seen by the laudatory letter addressed to the members of its regiment by its colonel William Wallace.

A copy of this letter of commendation, which tells the history of the work of the regiment, the only Americans in Italy was received by Mrs. Ben McCann, whose husband, a well known employee of the New Castle post office, is a member of the regiment. The letter of commendation follows:

Colonel William Wallace - Italy

Above picture and others can be found at this Italian website.

Headquarters 332nd Infantry,
Treviso, Italy,
Dec. 6, 1918.

From Col. William Wallace, 332nd Infantry.
To the officers and enlisted men of the 332nd Infantry:
Subject: The 332nd Infantry, U.S.A. in Italy.

The Italian campaign of the 332nd Infantry has been exceedingly creditable. The government, state and friends of the regiment have reason to be greatly pleased and the soldiers composing it to be rather proud of themselves and of each other for the rather excellent manner in which they have adjusted themselves to unaccustomed conditions and borne themselves through many trying experiences.

The regiment had two missions. One of fight if occasion arose. The other, to act as a propagandist or diplomatic agent.

As to the fighting. Some regretted not being thrown into battle immediately on arrival. This could not be. There was no fighting taking place, the activity on the Italian front consisting solely in the exchange of occasional artillery compliments. Moreover, we were not sufficiently trained. So the time that might have been wasted in boresome guard duty in unhealthy trenches was spent in better fitting us to fight. The result was that no other regiment ever underwent so thorough a course of battle tactics as did this under the tutelage of Major Allegretti’s 23rd Assault Battalion of Ardittles. It was as near the real thing as training can be made. And for those who still cherish regret for lost time, it may be said that there seemed to be more warlike activity around the training camps of the 332nd Infantry than at any other place on the Italian front. The instruction was ideal and marred only by the deplorable accident which killed six and injured 50.

Owing to the time, the place and the occasion, these comrades of ours are, and should be, held as reverently in our memories as though their death and wounding had occurred in combat with the enemy.

In order to hold a place for the regiment when the advance should take place and actual fighting begin, one battalion was sent to take over a section of the Piave trenches. It received high praise from all superiors for its conduct there. Three weeks later the rest of the regiment was moved to Treviso, to be put in readiness for the expected offensive. Ten days’ hard marching followed. No doubt it hurt, but if it had not been exacted, the regiment, despite its previous training, would never have reached the Tagliamento with any integrity left. As it was, when the order to move against the Austrians came, and crossing the Piave, the hard marches that ensued were accomplished in a manner that would have been creditable to veterans. We were honored by being made, during the advance, the advance guard of the 31st Italian division (Major Gen. DeAngells) of the Tenth Italian army (Gen. Cav??). This is, we were an American regiment in the Italian division of a British army, and in a position showing utmost confidence by both our allies. That the regiment did not fail this confidence, the attached letters of approval by our generals fully show.

During the advance, Austrian rear guard action by means of machine gun patrols and nests were momentarily expected, and in all probability, heavier and more determined stands at river crossings. But the Austrians seemed bent only on getting away and paused only to break all bridges to delay our march. Not until the Tagliamento was reached, on November 3, was it possible to catch up. Here (at Ponte della Delizia) the enemy made a slight opposition to our crossing. The second battalion was ordered to clear the way. During the night it fled across a single plank foot bridge and deployed in position to the gravel bed of the river. About four platoons of other battalions had forded the river during the day and were in position farther to the right. Sixteen machine guns were in place in the line. The third battalion awaited on the bank up the river and the first battalion stood in readiness as reserve, both to be called upon to re-enforce the attack if by any chance it should be checked. At 5 a.m. the attacking line advanced. The Austrian machine guns and riflemen fired upon our advancing line. The line, however, moved steadily forward and in about 20 minutes charged, going over the top in a line as perfect as at drill, and with a cheer that could have been heard a mile, took the position and started the pursuit.

Only one man was killed and six wounded. The Austrain fire had swept the ground only a short distance to the rear of the advancing single line. The second battalion was halted at Codroipo, four miles to the front, and the only engagement of the campaign was completed. Small as it was it showed your metal and it proved pure gold.

Corp. Charles A. Kell, the American killed, was probably the last man of any allied nation to lay down his life for our just cause on the Italian front.

At 11:19 a.m. the armistice was signed and the war, one of whose great purposes was the restoration of Italy’s integrity, was won. Italy’s ancient foe was humbled beyond possibility of recovery, her lost provinces reconquered, and, let up hope, her people again cemented together in bonds of lasting loyalty to her good king and government.

To have had your part in all this and played that part well is great credit to yourselves and a good heritage of honor for your children.

As for the diplomatic part of the mission. That was of deepest concern. In a land where the language was unspoken by us, where many ideas, customs and manners differed radically from our own, where the people were sensitive and likely to be jarred by our American brusqueness, for 4,000 of us to live and march among them for four months without a note of friction, is simply marvelous. What praise you may get for having “the fighting spirit” is as nothing in comparison to the credit due all for the self-restraint that imposed upon yourselves a more tempered conduct than we are likely to employ even at home.

In the reorganization of the regiment back in France when it was ordered to Italy, it was asked that it might be made up not only of soldiers but gentlemen, without any of the latter’s bad habits, such as late rising and certain prejudices against work. This was a joke — a dream — then, but a realty now.

You have more than fulfilled expectations.

Thank you,

Colonel 332nd Infantry,

New Castle News (New Castle, Pennsylvania) Jan 27, 1919

Plans For Demonstration Are About Complete — Big Dinner At Armory — Decorations To Be Presented To Regiment By Italian Government —

Harry Penrose Is Last To Arrive Of Local Contingent — News Of Local Boys Who Arrived On Canopic

News Correspondent.

NEW YORK, April 16. — Plans for the parade of the 332nd regiment in this city are about completed. The parade will move at 10 o’clock on Monday morning, from Washington Square, proceeding up Fifth avenue to 102nd street, a distance of about 94 blocks or nearly five miles.

At this point the regiment will swing into Central Park, where General Emilio Guglielmotti, respresenting the Italian government will carry out the program of decorating the regiment. The program here will be quite formal.

From Central Park the 332nd boys will go to the Sixty-ninth regiment armory on Lexington avenue, as guests of the mayor’s committee at dinner. Governors of Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York, along with Mayor Hylan of New York, the Italian ambassador, Italian and other foreign consuls and notables will review the parade.

The Italian societies will occupy a reviewing grandstand at 92nd street, and will fall in line at this point, going to Central Park to take part in the ceremonies.

The parade and ceremonies are being arranged by the members of the mayor’s welcoming committee. Italian organizations of New York are taking great interest in the program.

New Castle and Lawrence County boys are rather eager to have the New York parade over with, as they are anxious to get back to Pennsylvania and New Castle.

The third ship which sailed from Italy, which carries some of the regiment, the Dante Alighieri, is expected to arrive in port Thursday. No message had been received until 11 o’clock this morning as to its time of making port.

Penrose Comes on Third Ship.

Among those who arrived on the Canopic and who were very evident among the returned vets were Bernard Rosenblum, Joe Dawson, John Hershinger, Walter Gunter, Jerry McNulty, William Robison, former New Castle boy, Joh Hares, Pvt. Hanselman and Arthur Flack.

Harry Penrose, prominent New Castle boy did not get in on either of the first two ships. He is due to arrive on the Dante Alighieri which docks today or tomorrow. His father, H.S. Penrose will be at the pier in time to greet him.

Rosenblum is still up to his old tricks. While waiting in the messline on the pier, he tossed a roll of tinfoil at the News man and hit his commanding officer in the eye.

“We’ll shoot you at sunrise for that, Rosenblum” said his C.O. “Bunny” is the pep of his company and carried his mandolin all through the campaign. Besides that he bought another in Genoa which he brought back with him. He says the local boys had it easy compared to what the boys in France went through, but it was pretty rough in spots.

“Bunny” is tired of parading and want to get home as soon as possible.

Hares Had Tonsillitis.

Job Hares had a slight touch of the tonsillitis on the trip home but is alright now. He says he is coming straight home to New Castle.

William Robison is a former New Castle boy who says he has a warm spot in his heart for New Castle and would like to come back and see the old town again.

Walter Gunter, who was with the medical detachment of his regiment saw about all of Italy there was to see. He was detached from the regiment and stationed at Dalmatia for three months. Besides, he was on a trip for supplies which took 44[?] days.

Arthur Flack says he is anxious to get back to the quietness of Volant again. He is one of a family of 5 sons serving in the army. One gave his life for his country.

Joe Dawson is very popular with his outfit. He says is glad he is on his last lap home now. He claims that the boys never saw white bread while they were in Italy and although the food was coarse, the boys got fat on it.

McNulty and Hershinger are two others who are glad to be back in their native heath again, and aren’t crying about hard luck.

The officers of the 332nd claim that the men received good food while they were in Italy with the exception of the time they were at the front, and then they were after the Austrians so hard that the field kitchens did not have time to catch up to them.

Hard Trip Home.

The Canopic had a hard time weathering the trip back. She was forced to spend five days at Gibralter for coaling and were unable to get attention at first, as there was a strike on. The ship listed [?] all the way over and it was with difficulty that she was tied up to the deck.

Major Gen. Emilioy[?], Guglielmotti, Italian military attache at Washington and Lieut. Camillo de Carlo, were the first to board the Canopic and greet Lieut. Col. Elverson, who was in command of the detachment.

Col. Elverson denied the stories that had circulated about the boys receiving poor food and complimented the men of the regiment for their splendid morale in teh face of the hardships which they had to face.

Major Gen. Guglielmotti will go to Camp Sherman when the regiment is mustered out to do them the honors for the Italian Government.

Lieut. Floyd Miller of Springfield, O., who is in command of F. company in which most of the New Castle boys who arrived yesterday belong, complimented the local boys in his outfit and said they were there at all times.

New Castle News (New Castle, Pennsylvania) Apr 16, 1919


Read more about the 332nd Infantry:

Title: In Italy with the 332nd Infantry
Author: Joseph L. Lettau
Publisher: J.L. Lettau, 1921 (Google book LINK)