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Thursday, January 8, 2015

Up the Street

Clinton Street with the of Main looking toward Washington Street.
The building on the left was the old Wertz Drug Store - one of the few buildings to survive the flood - only to have a date with the wrecking in the 1970's.
On the right - the home of Henderson's furniture store and funeral parlor. Later the Title Trust bank was built there and the Fisher uilding next to it on Main Street. Along the side of Clinton - the building next to Henderson's was occupied by the Geis store. Where a small building (just beyond the awning) was located, the Gately-Fitzgerald furniture store was built.
And further down the street - St. John's Church was under construction about the time this photo was taken. 


Gene said...

It was my understanding that St John's church survived the 1889 flood so are you saying that this picture is prior to that?

Laurel Hill said...

The church a first survived the impact of the wave - but it then caught fire and burned to the ground.

Gene said...

Did not know that. I wonder if any of that is the reason they decided to move the cemetary that use to be next to the church to Geistown.

Laurel Hill said...

I don't know about the cemetery part. I'll ask around.

Laurel Hill said...

Another reader found this: Saint Joseph Cemetery is in the Geistown section right next to St Benedicts Catholic Church. The flats refer to the section that has all flat tombstones. Those with the ending of MS are in the Mausoleum section.

The earliest Catholic Church in the Johnstown area was St. John's in 1835 on Church St. in the old Conemaugh Boro* area. Their original cemetery was also at this location and was sometimes referred to as the Conemaugh Burial Grounds in obituaries. Some bodies buried there before 1855 May have been reinterred in St. Joseph Cemetery.

The Germans founded St. Joseph Church in 1852 at the corner of Singer & Huber Sts. in Conemaugh Boro*. In 1855, they acquired a cemetery site at Sandyvale and was known as the "Catholic Burial Grounds." After this cemetery was severly flooded in 1887, St. Joseph's began looking for a new cemetery site on higher grounds. After considering sites at Grandview or Geistown , the one in Geistown, offered by the Nees family for $200 per acre, was selected.

The earliest burials in Geistown were victims of the 1889 Flood. All bodies were removed from the Sandyvale site to Geistown and they sold the Sandyvale site in 1920 for industrial use. This was separate from the stie of the current Sandyvale Cemetery. A mission chapel in honor of St. Benedict was built in 1893, at the site of the present St. Joseph's Mausoleum. This building was moved to Geistown (site of the present St. Benedict Church) in the early 1930's on land acquired from the Freidhoff family. St. Johns, lacking space on Church St., also acquired a cemetery site in Geistown. All bodies were then reinterred in Geistown and the Church St. site was sold for housing development. * Conemaugh Boro was later incorporated into Johnstown Proper and is NOT part of either Current East Conemaugh boro or Conemaugh Twp. Above Data provided by: Carl Gaus