Christmas 2016 there was a nasty fire adjacent to the Wawa on Planebrook Rd and Lancaster Avenue in Frazer. Here we are the last week of September, 2020 and that ramshackle and what visibly appears to be a structure quite unsafe.
What is going on with this structure? Everyone said that it would come down but it hasn’t so what’s up? We all of course also thought about it again when thehuman trafficking story broke in East Whiteland.
Anyway, I think the building is continuing to deteriorate, don’t you? Does it also give a whole new je ne sais quois to the term slumlord as well?
So many years ago, I became friends with a boy named Tiger. His given name, his birth name was David but we always just knew him as Tiger.
I had this crew of guy friends who were amazing. I just hung out with them. I didn’t date any of them, we just were all friends. Tiger was one of those friends. Most of us are still connected today, as a matter of fact.
I used to get in trouble for talking to Tiger on the downstairs telephone too late into the night. Those were the days that every call was a charge, so come the end of some months my parents were ready to kill me for the jump in the bill and me spending too much time on the phone.
Tiger was also one of the guys who would prop you up and just be your friend when somebody he didn’t think you should’ve been liking in the first place was rotten to you. I knew a lot of those guys. I always felt lucky to have them as friends.
Tiger had a big head of curly hair. And he was tall. He still has a lot of curly hair and he’s still tall. So are his brothers. I feel like a positively short person next to them !
We all have Tiger stories. OTB for Over The Bridge. The story of moving the coffin in a station wagon on the Schuylkill Expressway that was a prop for a school play. My husband was involved with that. Trust me, that is a story that will make tears run down your face with laughter.
Tiger was the first of my friends to enter the military. He chose the Marine Corps.
Truthfully he love the Marine Corps and it was good for him.
And the thing about being a Marine that I have learned from all my male friends who have been in the Marine Corps is once a Marine always a Marine. And this Marine needs our help.
Over the weekend Tiger’s brother Christian called me. We are also really good friends. Tiger has stage 4 renal cancer. I just sat there stunned and probably talked a mile a minute because I don’t want to cry. This is another one of those things in the year 2020 that we could all use a do over for. It’s bad enough there’s COVID-19, but now this?
Oh but wait it gets worse. At some point when he started his treatment I don’t know when, his company eliminated his position. Which I think is really crappy and I think there’s a special place in hell for people who try to justify doing things like this. But this is why Tiger needs our help.
If you have ever been treated for a debilitating disease like cancer, you know quite simply how expensive it is. Even working through my treatment with breast cancer it’s still took me a few years to pay off just the radiation bills. And that was with having paid co-pays.
Tiger and I share common interests and loves in cooking and gardening as adults. We also have a love of chili peppers. But Tiger as a home chef so far surpasses me. Seriously, he’s like Jacques Pépin only American. And his gardens are lovely. Tiger is not perfect, none of us are, but he is a good dude, plain and simple.
I am now going to let Tiger’s wife Sarah‘s word take over. She has started a go fund me, which was not easy I am sure because they are not the kind of people to have their hand out and ask for money. They are the people that usually help other people.
It all started with a little back pain: Tiger started his new dream job on Monday, March 16, 2020. Like many of us, he was working remotely. About a month later he started to develop some annoying back pain. Many of us can relate to the back pain that “working from home” created–cramped spaces, uncomfortable chairs, etc. Tiger’s back pain persisted and grew increasingly worse.
On Tuesday, June 16 he had a spinal X-ray, and to our surprise, the radiologist saw a compression fracture in his thoracic spine. On June 18, he had an MRI of the spine and our lives changed forever.
While in the first hospital, more scans were done. The doctors speculated it was kidney cancer that had metastasized to the spine but would not know definitively until an interventional radiologist conducted a biopsy. There was a delay of at least a week to get the biopsy because Covid had backed up such procedures.
Knowing it was likely cancer, we started pushing for a transfer to world-renowned Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City. And within a couple days, Tiger was admitted to MSKCC into the neurosurgery unit due to the spinal tumors, and then the real process of diagnosing and treatment began.
….In early July, the love of my life, my active, energetic and seemingly healthy 56-year old husband was diagnosed with Metastatic Renal Cell Carcinoma (kidney cancer) Stage 4. He had no symptoms other than intense back pain. We realized we were going to need a lot of emotional support to navigate this…thus, the advent of TEAM TIGER…..On August 1st, yet another unexpected adjustment…he was told that his company could no longer keep his job for him as he was ineligible for additional leave or FMLA. Now unemployed and ineligible for benefits, not knowing what the future holds, he gathered up his courage and continued to keep in the fight……
…Covid safety precautions prevent visitors at the facility, so he has not seen his family in weeks. Since insurance will limit his time in the rehab facility to possibly another week, we must act now to make preparations for his transition back to our home.
How YOU can help support TEAM TIGER: As a former US Marine, he has incredible resiliency and strength. Each day he has fought valiantly. He has been the model of courage, fortitude and persistence in the face of adversity.
……If you cannot donate to TEAM TIGER, you are still part of the team by keeping him in your thoughts and prayers!
With the loss of his salary and some medical/healthcare-related expenses not covered or only partially covered by insurance, we are asking for ANY amount of monetary contribution to help defray these expenses. We will have significant out-of-pocket costs to adapt our home (exterior and interior) to accommodate for Tiger’s mobility needs.”📌
There is more to the story and you can go to the Go Fund Me to read all of it.
A final personal note is I am definitely over 2020 now. I know this person doesn’t live in Chester County, I am going outside the borders because this is a lifelong friend. I am trying to pay it forward and you can make an anonymous donation to this fund if that more suits your comfort level. I personally choose that route a lot of the time because you just wanna give a little something you don’t need anything in return.
I am proud to be part of #TeamTiger. please help uplift his family during this difficult time. If you can help in any way, that’s amazing, and if you can just set the heavens on fire with prayer that is also welcome.
Today is the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment or the anniversary of women getting the right to vote.
Think about that. Imagine that day. The suffragettes had worked so hard. They literally were put in jail at times trying to get to August 26, 1920.
Happy Women’s Equality Day, ladies.
The Women’s right to vote was ratified on August 18, 1920 but was not certified until August 26, 1920. It had to be certified by a government official. So on August 26, 1920 the 19th Amendment to the United States Constitution was certified by U.S. Secretary of State Bainbridge Colby at his home at 8 A.M. which is why today is Women’s Equality Day and the 100th Anniversary.
Now these suffragettes, these women, these ordinary extraordinary women of their time were labeled as radicals. Just like the women in the 1960s forward who have tried to get the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) ratified and certified. Sadly the Equal Rights Amendment is still a proposed amendment almost 100 years later because did you know that the first version of the ERA was written by Alice Paul and Crystal Eastman and introduced to Congress in December of 1923? Yes the same Alice Paul who bore witness to Bainbridge Colby certifying the 19th Amendment 100 years ago today.
Radicals. Shrill. Bitches. You name it, people (men and women) will have a offensive descriptive adjective to apply to women who wish to preserve their rights and the rights of others . It’s like being a strong woman is a crime. It’s like being a woman active in your community as well as your home is a crime. Look no further than the pipeline issues in Chester County.
Over the past couple of days I have written about the pipeline problems and related political machinations. (See this post and this post). Women I know, like, and respect are being labeled as radicals and also quite unbelievably inferred to be traitors to the Democratic Party of Chester County. And a quite obscure yet hideous Nazi sympathizer descriptive adjective was applied to one who is of Jewish faith.
And all of this was done by a man, I won’t refer to him as a gentleman because he’s certainly not, who works and has a relationship with State Representative Kristine Howard. This man is also from Pittsburgh. And why is it he meddles in our politics? If he wants to be around elected officials, why doesn’t he run for office where he’s from in Pittsburgh? I don’t understand why we need Pittsburgh politics in Chester County Pennsylvania do you?
Why is this man so desperate for Kristine Howard to be reelected? Who else does he work for? Why does State Representative Kristine Howard just sit silently and allow good women and any woman upset by either her lack of performance or who care about issues like pipelines because they either have a brain in their head or because they are directly affected to be maligned and denigrated?
Why does Kristine Howard as a woman and elected official not have her own voice? And if you ask around Harrisburg are you going to be told the people hear her voice with great regularity? Is she either unwilling or unable to have a voice? It’s a great puzzle. Because you have to wonder if she really wants to be a state representative don’t you? Or is this man actually the power behind the throne and he’s running this state representative seat only he wasn’t elected to office and he’s not a resident of Chester County right? And is she either unwilling or unable to have a voice? It’s a great puzzle. Because you have to wonder if she really wants to be a state representative don’t you?
And let’s also wonder about the Chester County Democratic Party. If the Chair, is not acting in the best interest of the women being denigrated and singled out specifically in the emails which have been flying and the nasty Facebook stuff and ads during the primary, is he fit to lead? And are those two women also on the Executive Committee who are essentially trying to say if you’re not a good little Stepford Wife you essentially should be politically shunned? Or if you God forbid talk to someone of another political persuasion who is not a Democrat you should also be shunned and the party shouldn’t back you if you want to run for office and so on and so forth?
*******(The screenshots have to be downloaded and then enlarged so here is the text from them verbatim and any spelling/grammar errors all on them.) ******
Please see the attached social media posts made by Ginny Kerslake and Wendy Graham Leland.
The posts clearly demonstrate that Mrs. Kerslake and Mrs. Graham Leland are openly colluding to cause harm to Representative Howard’s candidacy and benefit the campaign of her Republican opponent. Let ‘s be clear, Mrs. Kerslake and Mrs. Graham Leland are tagging each other in the posts when there is no reason to do so except to politically denigrate Kristine.
In my previous email when we called for banning Lani Frank from all Chester Democratic Committee social media platforms for her direct and indirect assistance to Republican Graham Leland, we did not include Mrs. Kerslake or even mention her by name. However, with this clear and present evidence of her collusion with Rep. Howard’s Republican opponent, a ban of Mrs. Kerslake on the party’s social media platforms is also called for.
Simply removing posts is not enough. A clear message must be sent that undermining the Democratic nominees chosen by our voters will not be tolerated. I am under the impression that your bylaws preclude Democrats who support Republicans from holding party offices or seeking the party’s endorsement for a public office for a period of two years. We are requesting the Executive Committee notify Mrs. Kerslake and Ms. Frank that they are in violation of the rules and may be prohibited from holding party office or seeking the Democratic Committee endorsement for a public office in the next two election cycles.
I thank you for your response to my earlier email. However, I disagree with your conclusion to merely take down posts. I believe the most corrective and preventive action is to ban the perpetrators of such betrayals. As you requested, I am sending this to your leadership team and the zone leaders in Kristine’s District first. If the executive committee does not act in a timely and affirmative manner, in the interest of transparency, I will share it with the committee as a whole and encourage them to take appropriate action.
The Committee to Elect Kristine Marty Marks 412.352.0317
Hi, I have been advocating that these actions result in banning from CCDC social media sites and informing all members of the EC about the action and why it has been taken. So far our tactics of ignoring or a slight slap on the wrist has only emboldened this group. It is time for CCDC to stand up for our candidates and our values. This is not a new problem. The same people have been attacking fellow Democrats since the 2018 primary.
From: Marty Marks <email@example.com> Date: August 23, 2020 at 10:04:45 AM EDT Subject:It is time to ban the quislings
Dear members of the Democratic Committee,
Giving aid and comfort to the enemy in a time of battle is treason. We are experiencing such betrayals at this very moment undercutting our mission to elect Democrats up and down the ballot in November.
For example, see this post on the Chesco Dems Facebook page made by Lani Frank, a former member of the Democratic State Committee and an unsuccessful candidate for Chester County Democratic Chair:
Nice of you to show concern now. Why don’t you stand up for our values and call for a stop to this nightmare instead of taking money from the very PAC’s that support the continuation of this project. You can’t have it both ways. Take a stand.
Please note that the comment is edited. When it was originally posted it was specifically addressed to Representative Kristine Howard and stated her name. Lani Frank was attacking Kristine for not sharing exactly the most extreme positions Lani Frank and a few others hold regarding the Mariner East Pipeline.
And this is not the first example of her duplicitous behavior. After Kristine won her primary in a most convincing manner against Lani Frank’s client, Ms. Frank publicly questioned the integrity of voting by mail suggesting there was something inherently wrong causing harm to her client. At a time when Democrats in Chester County and throughout the country were pushing voting by mail and championing its efficacy, Ms. Frank was sounding like Donald Trump.
Please don’t get me wrong. Ms. Frank is entitled to freedom of speech and she can avail herself of a multitude of forums to enjoy it. I am suggesting to you, in the midst of an historic election when we have an opportunity to flip the PA House from red to blue, we should not be giving her or anyone else a forum on our Democratic Party social media platforms to denigrate our candidates, and give aid and comfort to their Republican opponents.
I apologize for appearing to be singling out Ms. Frank because she certainly is not alone in this behavior. Since the Primary Election, Kristine’s primary opponent and a few of her supporters, Kristine’s Republican opponent and Ms. Frank have been interacting on social media platforms. I am merely seeking to make the point that during the General Election campaign we should not be providing a forum for anyone to attack the very candidates that our Democratic primary voters selected as their nominees, and in Kristine’s case by a nearly 60% plurality.
Ms. Frank and her allies seek to re-litigate the Primary Election, ignoring the results and obsessing about the candidate the voters overwhelmingly elected. Ms. Frank would have us believe this is about issues related to the Mariner East Pipeline. Rather, I detect the bitter flavor of sour grapes.
Rep. Howard – who enjoys a 100% lifetime pro-environmental rating on the Pennsylvania Environmental Scorecard used by Conservation Voters, Sierra Club and Clean Water Action – has taken strong stands demanding transparency and accountability from pipeline operators. When recent violations took place that allowed 8,000 gallons of drilling fluid to flow into Marsh Creek Lake, she immediately called the Governor’s office and requested urgent intervention. The Governor responded by shutting down drilling at the site and launching investigations by the appropriate regulatory agencies.
Kristine supports the conclusions and actions taken by DEP to date and demands there be remediation of any damage the company’s actions may have caused. She supports tough civil and criminal penalties for any and all violations that have been committed including the possibility of revoking the company’s permits to do business in Chester County if the evidence justifies it. Kristine believes in the regulatory processes that the legislature in which she serves has established and she supports having the scientific data and evidence the investigations will reveal before determining what penalties should be levied on the company.
Most informed people understand that the pipeline under construction today was approved by local, state and national leaders long before Rep. Howard became a candidate for the legislature. Furthermore, until we flip the house from red to blue, Democrats can do little more than grandstand on the issue. Those of you who know Kristine know that is not her style. While others organize sit-ins in the Governor’s office, Kristine has worked to have sit-downs at our Democratic Governor’s conference table. (I should mention that the Governor is the leader of our party and enjoys more than a 60% approval rating in Chester County)
On behalf of Democrats who want to flip the PA House from red to blue, I am asking you to ban Lani Frank from your social media platforms and delete comments and block anyone else who persists in undercutting our Democratic nominees.
Thank you and can we please put the Primary behind us and get on with the General Election?
Marty Marks 412.352.0317
Today marks a very important day for women in the United States. But I’m also here to remind you that there are still enough dark forces at work that we can lose ground if we are not careful.
I am not going to apologize for being profoundly disturbed by men and even women who want to label other women because of the courage of their convictions. And it’s never become more apparent until this pipeline issue heated up again. It’s why I also think on social media we need a #FacesOfMarinerEast.
The #FacesOfMarinerEast aren’t radicals. They aren’t bitches. They aren’t shrill. They are regular people affected by something that is out of control. The #FacesOfMarinerEast are people you know and are friends with and aren’t even related to possibly.
The #FacesOfMarinerEast are your neighbors, people you see in the supermarket, people you see in the car rider line at school, people you see in church, people you see walking your dog in your neighborhood.
The #FacesOfMarinerEast aren’t a bunch of handmade protest signs, they are people from all walks of life and professions.
The #FacesOfMarinerEast are also people like Chester County‘s children who look longingly at what once was their Little League field in Exton the pipelines took over.
So when questionable political operatives from Pittsburgh want to label as “radicals” women I know, respect, and call friends, it’s time to cry happy horse manure on that. Women fighting to preserve where we call home and who wish for all of us adult and child that we are protected and not just long term victims of pipeline companies are oh hell to the no not radicals, they are our heroines. They our are everyday people who have taken a stand for good over greed.
Do not let the future generations lose ground because people still want to put women down. Especially because standing up for what you believe in is one of the tenets of being an American.
Ladies, again, Happy Women’s Equality Day. Stand up, be heard, be counted and in November….VOTE. And pass along the #FacesOfMarinerEast and let your light shine bright.
As if the Trumpublican convention wasn’t troubling enough comes an email circulating:
So he’s not meaning to diss Lani Frank and others, but he is? Did I miss some memo or Daily Local or Inquirer article about who his guy is? Does he date State Rep Kristine Howard or does she just pay him for ummm campaign services? Why is some rando-man from Pittsburgh so concerned about people in Chester County?
I mean I don’t really know much about him other than he blocks me on Twitter 🤣
So according to this political pretzel logic, if you are against the Mariner II pipeline and think State Rep. Kristine Howard is doing a crap job and is some kind of odd political puppet with no voice of her own, you are a radical? Is he saying I am a radical? Is he saying moms worried about their kids drinking pipeline tainted well water are also radicals? Is it just me or does this guy actually sound like a Trumpublican???
So the point of this email is what exactly? Attacking people who actually live and vote in Chester County? Attacking anyone who opposes Kristine Howard? Did Kristine Howard have on her magic cloak of invisibility when people like State Rep. Greg Vitali visited Marsh Creek August 14th to see the plume of pollution in the water? So is her “friend” or employee saying people like Vitali or any other elected official who are questioning the pipelines being here are also radicals?
So Chester County Democrat Committee why are you letting some guy from Pittsburgh try and influence your committee people? And why is this guy and by association Kristine Howard so afraid of people like Lani Frank? Because these more independent voices might be right?
I just don’t get it. And it’s all a little sleazy, isn’t it?
Ahh yes, getting political again and I don’t care. If you care, don’t read this post. Seriously. Because if you give me crap, this suburban housewife might verbally wield one of her rolling pins, while wearing an apron no less.
Recently I wrote a post about Trump’s mischaracterization of surburban and rural women. Well with apologies to Britney Spears, oops he did it again.
Well Oh Donnie Boy, the tweets, the tweets are calling. From glen to glen, and down the mountain side. The summer’s gone, and all the roses falling, It’s you, it’s you must go and I must bide.
I am back. And you Donnie Boy are indeed a national treasure. As well as being the poster child for a deranged, malignant narcissist. And yes I am saying that about a sitting U.S. President. Last time I checked they hadn’t revoked the United States Constitution. (Although I am sure someone is working on it?)
Allow me to re-introduce myself: part of who I am is indeed a suburban housewife. And I am offended that apparently we are all supposed to be pregnant barefoot in the kitchen, or at least chained to something in the kitchen. And drooling versus thinking.
If you love this President, there is no way on God’s green earth that you can talk your way around any of his tweets. They are consistently offensive to every woman everywhere.
And I say that as someone who has never exactly been a women’s libber but I’m starting to understand why you get to be that way as a woman more and more every damn day.
Gloria Steinem , I get it. Further and to the point, Susan B. Anthony doesn’t need to be pardoned by this guy and her ghost rolling over in her grave wouldn’t vote for him anyway.
So this is the guy who went from grabbing women by the pussy (not my words) to telling us suburban ladies how we are supposed to think? This is the guy putting up commercials aimed at little old ladies showing little old ladies in terror in their homes? This is also the guy saying the DNC removed “God” from the pledge of allegiance?
Umm hello? This is beyond ridiculous. This is beyond offensive. Lies and distortions and the rantings of a Twitterholic much? And people still support him. And I marvel at that.
So back to “suburban housewives”. Can we say sexist pig boys and girls? You talking about us? We are trying to do the man a favor. We are voting for Joe Biden so he has even more time to rant like a sexist pig on Twitter. (Picture me in an apron stirring a pot on the stove while saying this.)
We are all just here knitting socks, after all. My gosh, Mr. President you know we haven’t even one collective brain in our heads. I mean why we hadn’t even noticed you wanted to switch Puerto Rico for Greenland did we? Or that you are eviscerating the United States Postal Service so you can steal the election did we? Gosh honey, let us smooth our carefully coiffed hair we just sprayed with Aqua Net and give us a second to refresh our lipstick and don a fresh apron.
I’m sorry, am I being sarcastic? I am so sorry. I am after all, just a suburban housewife. I know not what I say. I do not have a brain. I am incapable of independent thoughts. I am but a mere mortal, female, and bobblehead. But before I turn Stepford, here are some runaway thoughts:
I don’t know when we moved into a dictatorship or oligarchy or something pretty damn close, but here we are people. More and more reminders every damn day of why this person doesn’t actually represent the American people.
This man doesn’t respect women or men. This man does not represent America. This man does not care about America. The only thing this man cares about is his own toxic malignant narcissistic self and what he can get out of all of us. As in how much money can he make of of us before he walks or gets shoved away?
This country is teetering on total disaster. And you can lay it at his feet. These toxic politics of running a country on Twitter has created a divisive, caustic atmosphere in which we all must try to just exist. That’s not fair to any of us, no matter what your political persuasion.
We are suffering from a global pandemic which Washington DC really still isn’t dealing with because telling the truth might interfere with someone’s re-election campaign, right? COVID-19 really isn’t real is it? It’s just something made up by politicians opposing the current administration, have I got that supposition down correctly? Essentially people are dying but as long as this guy gets re-elected that’s all that matters right?
WRONG. And I’m speaking to all the Republicans out there who secretly within the four walls of their own home know this isn’t a good person to have as a Republican president yet because they think they will turn to pillars of salt if they vote for a Democrat they will be among the Sheeple in November.
And let’s talk about other things in this country. How about the great racial divide? What has this administration done to combat racism? NOTHING. They have made it worse. Until 2020 I didn’t think it was possible to make it worse. Yet here we are and people are dying because of that as well.
People are rioting in the streets yet Marie Antoinette with a comb over would just let them eat cake (or more appropriately in this case, McDonald’s.) I would ask if he was a student of history but I think he was the one that mixed up World War I and World War II and the last global pandemic, correct? If this guy was a student of history he would understand how and why revolutions happen, right?
And I’ll remind you (again) I’m not a screaming liberal. I am a suburbanhousewife and former life-long Republican. I am also a woman with a brain who definitely resents the crap out of men who are sexist pigs and talk down to us. Or anyone.
And as a suburban housewife, I could probably tell the President of the United States more about affordable housing than he actually knows. To make such a broad and offensively sweeping statements over and over is also at its core, utterly ridiculous. To keep repeating the insulting suburban housewife tweeting points is also just pig ignorant. It will never make the comments true to keep repeating them, just constantly reinforce why no one should vote for him.
A friend of mine reminded me we actually met Joe Biden years ago at something my father took us to. I had forgotten. But we were kids. And the thing about Joe Biden is he has never pretended to be perfect. He has in my opinion, owned his mistakes. He’s not a divider, he’s a uniter. Oh, and people like him. So I would say there is a lot of big orange jealousy going on.
The United States of America is not some giant reality show, but our great nation has been treated like one for four, long, angry years. We owe ourselves better even if for some it means going OUT of their political comfort zone. They need to realize they won’t be like Lot’s wife and be turned to a pillar of salt because I think the angels have been warning us over and over we need complete change.
I mean seriously, do you out there remember when the Republican Party were actually true Republicans? I do. It’s tragic what has happened to that party. But their tragedy is America’s disaster and none of us can afford it.
I am not a big Hillary Clinton fan. Never have been. But when she said the other night we can’t afford another shoulda, woulda, coulda election she is actually absolutely correct.
So Joe Biden, feel free to come door knocking on my front door. I would love to meet you and Kamala Harris. I do spend a lot of time in my apron in my kitchen. But hey, I am a suburban housewife. But as a woman with a brain, that’s not all I am.
God don’t like ugly, and Donnie Boy has cornered the market. He’s actually “winning” ugliness. Please for the love of all that is holy, vote-him-out in November.
By Erin Cox and Gregory S. Schneider July 5, 2020 at 7:07 p.m. EDT
The two energy companies behind the controversial 600-mile Atlantic Coast Pipeline on Sunday abandoned their six-year bid to build it, saying the project has become too costly and the regulatory environment too uncertain to justify further investment.
The natural-gas pipeline would have tunneled under the Appalachian Trail on its way from West Virginia through Virginia and into North Carolina…Property rights advocates in the Appalachians joined with an ashram in central Virginia and black Baptists from a rural county to make opposing the pipeline a high-profile political and social justice issue….Virginia-based Dominion Energy and North Carolina-based Duke Energy spent $3.4 billion on the project….But company officials said in a statement that other recent federal court rulings linked to the Keystone XL pipeline have heightened the litigation risk, extended the project’s timeline and further ballooned the cost of the project…
(Washington Post 7/5/2020)
So if the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and the Dakota Access Pipeline have been stopped, why not Mariner II?
I do not know how you could have missed the news this week. It started when Sunoco/Energy Transfer breached the aquifer and mud emerged from the ground while drilling on Saturday on Shoen Road. This is where my friend Ginny lives. I will let her words from five days ago be heard now:
It was a rough day y’all. Started before 6am with Sunoco violating our township noise ordinance. Then at 1:40pm I sent an email to Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection staff in charge of Mariner East informing them that Sunoco’s plan to handle a frac-out of drilling mud on our property was failing and instead of Sunoco stopping drilling as required or the DEP forcing them to, they all did NOTHING. Two hours later there was a river of drilling mud flowing across our property. All this while an estimated 250,000 gallons of formerly pristine groundwater pour down the drill hole every 24 hours to be hauled away as residual waste….. enough to fill an Olympic sized swimming pool every two days. This is expected to continue for a few months.
The upside of all this: As I stood at the road, amongst a crowd of township police and glaring workers and security, and with the support of friends, people from our community driving by gave thumbs up and bold raised fists.
Community power. Defend what you love.
~ Ginny Kerslake 8/10/2020
And I watched live videos where it looked like my friend Ginny was being menaced on her own property? It has been crazy. My friend Ginny, however, is grace under pressure. And she pointed out on Tuesday:
As an estimated 250,000 gallons of ground water per day gushes down the borehole from the Mariner East HDD on Shoen Road in West Whiteland Township to be hauled away as waste, after Sunoco beached the aquifer yet again, let’s look at the situation in Edgemont, Delaware county where Mariner East drilling also destroyed private wells. But unlike in West Whiteland, THERE IS NO PUBLIC WATER OPTION.
Erica Tarr’s family has been without clean running water for several months. They have had to dig a new well and put in expensive filtration devices to no success and at great expense to them. Aqua PA has quoted them $500,000 to extend a new public water line to their home. Sunoco had done nothing for them. The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection has done nothing for them.
Where’s Attorney General Josh Shapiro? He has been investigating Mariner East for over a year now. Meanwhile this family is denied our constitutional right to clean water. So many families have been denied this right along this egregious project and in Western PA due to fracking, many without the resources to fight or fix, or without even knowing their water was contaminated. Where’s Governor Tom Wolf?
A reminder of Pennsylvania’s Green Amendment, proudly passed in 1971:
“The Environmental Rights Amendment (ERA), (Article I, Section 27 of the Pennsylvania Constitution), states: The people have a right to clean air, pure water, and to the preservation of the natural, scenic, historic and esthetic values of the environment.”
What’s there to be proud of Pennsylvania?
~ Ginny Kerslake 8/11/2020
Ginny had this to say today:
As the DEP investigation into and cleanup of the drilling lubricant spill into Marsh Creek continues, so too do the investigations at Shoen Road where Sunoco has breached the aquifer and mud emerged from the ground while drilling on Saturday.
In a bold-faced life Sunoco claims they did not breach the aquifer, though they did it in 2017 and 2019 in their previous failed attempts and 250,000 gallons of water has been flowing back through the pilot hole and is being pumped 24/7 from drill pit.
And why isn’t the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection doing the appropriate analysis to determine an inadvertent return?
Time for the DEP to pull the permits
“This is an example of the crisis of our time. The people of Pennsylvania have a right to clean air and pure water, public health, safety and private property.
“Yet the priority seems to be protecting a multi-national, private, for-profit corporation, which then exploits and degrades our resources, our quality of life and our health and safety. Who does our government work for?”
~ Ginny Kerslake 8/14/2020
So what is Ginny talking about? Why the fouling of Marsh Creek by Sunoco/Energy Transfer this week. Lots of us, myself included have kept kids away from beautiful Marsh Creek since the polluting event this week.
Marsh Creek. A simply beautiful place loaded with wildlife. Where drinking water lives.
I first learned about Marsh Creek in my early 20s. I had a roommate back then who had grown up in the Downingtown area. Her mother worked for the EPA, so they were a family who completely respected the majesty of nature and were pro-environment back then.
Marsh Creek State Park was developed to help manage the water resources in the Brandywine Creek Watershed. Frequent flooding, water shortages, and lack of recreational opportunities were problems in the watershed.
The park was formerly a combination of rolling, wooded hills and small farms located on both sides of the Marsh Creek valley. The former village of Milford Mills is now under 30 to 50 feet of water. All of the buildings were removed; leaving only a few roads, foundations, and the embankments to the Larkin’s Bridge under the lake.
The lake was created by the damming of Marsh Creek. Construction of the dam occurred between May 1970 and June 1973. The impoundment is a 90-foot-high, 990-foot-long earth and rock fill dam on Marsh Creek, a tributary of the East Branch of Brandywine Creek.
On November 16, 1973, the gates of the dam were closed. The lake reached normal pool stage 218 days later on June 21, 1974.
At normal pool elevation of 359.5 feet above sea level, the impoundment covers an area of 535 acres plus a 25-acre wetland. The lake volume is 13,000 acre-feet (4.4 billion gallons) with a maximum depth of 80 feet at the dam.
The Marsh Creek watershed comprises 20 square miles of the Brandywine Creek watershed, which is part of the Delaware River Basin.
~ Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources
My friend historian Catherine Quillman wrote a book about Milford Mills.
Way back in the first half of the 19th century, there was the tiny town of Milford Mills. A little village, really.
Little houses in the midst of sprawling farm country. A one room school house, a bridge, a general school.
Only in Your State says “Local legend also tells of a majestic mansion with 44 rooms. It was here, so goes the story, that supposed gangster Max Boo Boo Huff spent five years – from 1930 to 1935 – in the mansion, running a modern-day bar during Prohibition. Huff’s departure gave way to a new owner who turned the mansion into a resort.”
The village of Milford Mills existed until around 1970 when federal and local authorities decided a dam and a reservoir would be built there. The plans for Marsh Creek Dam meant the end of Milford Mills. I am told residents tried to fight it, but they lost and the village was razed. The dam was built and the man-made lake began to fill up with water. In 1974 or so the Marsh Creek Lake had a reported 100,000 fish added to it. The remnants of Milford Mills became the ghost town under the lake.
Marsh Creek was built to address water issues. It was built to provide drinking water for the Chester County Resources Authority. Apparently, previously there had been shortages. Also addressed by the creation of Marsh Creek? Alleviation of seasonal flooding. Of course I have to wonder given the intensity of infill development including around Marsh Creek if that still helps as much as they had thought it would. The park was also created and there are all sorts of things to do there. You can hike around and look at the ruins of Milford Mills, picnic, swim, sail, fish.
So when I first saw Marsh Creek it was I guess the late 1980s. I was in awe of how pretty it was plus fascinated by the mob stories and probable urban legend of wise guys ending up in the lake.
But now what lies ahead for Marsh Creek? How fouled is the water? Will we ever really know? What we do know is thanks to the brilliant activists.
Drilling fluid used in Sunoco Pipeline LP’s Mariner East project in Chester County leaked into Marsh Creek Lake in a state park of the same name on Monday — one of three incidents in recent days along the pipeline construction project route.
Virginia Cain, a spokesperson for the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, said the agency is investigating the three incidents, which occurred at two project sites, in West Whiteland and Upper Uwchlan Townships.
The DEP said the first leak occurred on the 100 block of Shoen Road in West Whiteland on Saturday. Both the DEP and the Fish and Boat Commission responded and tested water to see if it contained drilling fluids. Drilling was stopped to await an analysis of the liquid.
~ Philadelphia Inquirer 8/11/2020
And this heinous fouling of Marsh Creek Lake is not the only pipeline problem this summer. More and more sinkholes keep cropping up:
Pennsylvania pipeline inspectors announced Friday that they are investigating a new series of sinkholes that have opened up along Sunoco Pipeline LP’s Mariner East project route in Chester County after cracks were reported in the pavement of Business Route 30 in Exton, impacting some traffic.
Public Utility Commission safety inspectors are investigating subsidence that has occurred since July 10 in places where the controversial pipeline is under construction. The incidents happened not far from the West Whiteland Township location where sinkholes formed over the last two years, forcing several construction halts and service disruptions on the operating pipelines.
~ Philadelphia Inquirer 7/17/2020
I just. Can’t. Even. What in the hell has to happen to be enough? Is this enough to get these people out of our communities? These pipelines are the things you hear about, but if you don’t live close enough to a pipeline site you think we are all a collective of drama queens.
I used to think that it was mostly drama before I moved to Chester County. I thought “oh it can’t possibly be that bad.” Then there are the moments that stick in your head. One such moment occurred for me a couple of years ago. We invited Adelphia Gateway which wishes to do Sunoco-like projects to a parlor meeting in my living room. My friend Ginny sat on my sofa with tears in her eyes as she recounted what had happened to her and her family at the hands of pipelines at that point.
This parlor meeting was July 25, 2018. I will note that questions we gave to the PR talking head sent to handle us have to date never, ever been answered. Adelphia Gateway will have my entire neighborhood within a blast zone if they proceed, and we are on wells. There is not public water for us so what has happened this week on Shoen Road and at Marsh Creek is EXACTLY what I worry about along with the sinkholes and well, the very real fear of any of these lines blowing up.
Anti-pipeline activists are still painted as these awful people. Ladies and gentleman, they are your neighbors. People you socialize with. Go to church with. Your friends. My friends.
For the recent primary election, the pipeline proponents, supporters, etc spent a crazy amount of money to try to still our voices by attacking candidates who speak for us. Ginny Kerslake did not prevail in the end in the primary against sheeple Kristine Howard, but my other friend Danielle Friel Otten did survive and crushed her opponent. If that pro-pipeline money had NOT been spent, I believe Kristine Howard would have gone down in flames. She still can if people are now smart and get behind a third friend, Wendy Graham Leland. I know it is only a matter of time before Camp Lameass Howard starts in on her. I wish them luck there, but I digress. I know some amazing women, but I digress again. (Sorry I do that sometimes.)
Lookee here however, remember that the politics intertwined in the pipeline issues are very important. It’s a ridiculous game of who is on first.
People, we need to be first.
Please call on our leaders to demand Governor Wolf Pull the Mariner East Permits PERMANENTLY:
The pipeline leak into Marsh Creek earlier this week was an avoidable water emergency. To make matters worse, Marsh Creek is a source of drinking water for people in that community. Sunoco/Energy Partners demonstrates by their actions that they have little regard for the impact their negligence has on the community.
The issue surrounding water in Chester County is at its tipping point and is nothing less than a PA Constitution crisis. It is possible to support progress and be good stewards of our natural resources at the same time. In fact, our PA Constitution demands it, Article I, Section 27 says: “The people have a right to clean air, pure water, and to the preservation of the natural, scenic, historic and esthetic values of the environment. Pennsylvania’s public natural resources are the common property of all the people, including generations yet to come. As trustee of these resources, the Commonwealth shall conserve and maintain them for the benefit of all the people.”….AQUA is also engaging in a hostile takeover effort of our local water authority, Chester Water Authority (CWA). You may have seen the many, many SAVE CWA and Save Octoraro Reservoir yard signs in yards and on highways. AQUA wants to buy CWA. AQUA wants CWA because it stands to make billions on the deal, pulling vast amounts of money out of our fragile local economy. It also wants valuable public natural resources including the Octoraro Reservoir and 2000 acres of CWA land assets…..Will our water be sent to Northern Chester County for fracking?
~ Richard Ruggieri candidate for State Representative for District 13, learn more about him and his campaign at RuggieriPA13.com. 8/13/2020
Sunoco/Energy Transfer, the company behind the problematic and controversial Mariner East pipeline project, is in business with Aqua America, which provides water service to thousands of residents in Chester County, state Sen. Andy Dinniman revealed Friday.
“It is important that citizens know the relationship between companies involved with the Mariner East pipeline,” Dinniman said.
According to Energy Transfer’s 2018 annual report, the company owns a 51 percent stake in Aqua – ETC Water solutions, characterized as a “joint venture that transports and supplies fresh water to natural gas producers drilling in the Marcellus Shale in Pennsylvania.”
~ Daily Local News 6/28/2019
Talk about an unholy alliance, right? So Sunoco/Energy Transfer fouls the water. AQUA PA is public water and they are trying to take over the Chester Water Authority ? So that also guilt by association (or investment) means they are fouling Marsh Creek and so on but then they would have control over our water if AQUA PA takes over CWA?
Jesus H. Roosevelt Christ. (Yes I am an Outlander fan.) But seriously? You can’t make this stuff up! We are living it! And to what end? The destruction of where we call home and our water resources for freaking corporate profits?
The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has responded to several reports of fluid discharges at construction sites for the Mariner East pipeline system in Chester County, including a confirmed spill at a state park.
Operation at the drill site has been suspended indefinitely.
Harrisburg, PA — The Departments of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) and Environmental Protection (DEP) assured Marsh Creek State Park supporters that concerted efforts are underway to safeguard visitors and park resources in the wake of Monday’s pipeline drilling fluid spill affecting the lake; and that Energy Transfer will be held accountable to the full extent of the law.
“We are deeply concerned and troubled over this significant resource and recreation impact at Marsh Creek that comes at a time when that park, as are all our parks, is seeing incredible visitation rates amid the pandemic,” said DCNR Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn. “Drawing more than 1 million visitors a year, Marsh Creek is among our most visited park, and water-based activities are the catalyst for that draw.
“The popularity of paddle-boarding alone is phenomenal at Marsh Creek Lake, and anglers and other boaters can be found daily on the lake. Containment, water testing, and remediation are underway, and access to affected water and shoreline will be restricted.”
Noting the park’s connecting trails and other strong ties to surrounding communities, Dunn said, “DCNR recognizes this park is beloved by those who live nearby and is an important resource to the people and businesses of surrounding communities. I feel it is important to let them know we’re standing by them on this.”
On Monday, August 10, DEP responded to a report from Sunoco of a potential inadvertent return at HDD 290, a drill site off Green Valley Road in Marsh Creek State Park in Upper Uwchlan Township, Chester County. Operation at the drill site has been suspended indefinitely.
Used in Sunoco Pipeline LP’s Mariner East project in Chester County, an estimated 8,100 gallons of drilling fluid (mud and water) leaked into wetlands off park property and into a tributary to Marsh Creek Lake. The spill is affecting the lake’s cove area along Park Road.
What’s The Status
Buoys will be used on the lake to delineate the affected area.
Approximately 33 acres of the 535-acre lake is now off-limits to boating and fishing.
Offering a swimming pool, the park does not permit beach-based swimming. Boating and fishing still is permitted on the rest of the lake, and the park remains open to all other activities.
“With the assistance of DEP, Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, private contractors, and our park personnel, we are focusing on containment, cleanup, and remediation, and we need the public’s cooperation,” Dunn said. “Aiding that effort are DCNR park managers and rangers, as well as our aquatic specialists who will be gauging the spill’s effect on water quality and lake aquatic life.”
What’s Being Done
DEP, along with the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC), continue to investigate and oversee the cleanup of the inadvertent return into Marsh Creek, said DEP Secretary Patrick McDonnell.
At the conclusion of the investigation, DEP anticipates that there will be civil penalties and potentially other regulatory ramifications.
Drilling activity at the site has ceased until further notice.
“Since the spill occurred on Monday, clean-up crews have made significant progress in collecting and containing spilled material. DEP aquatic biologists have been onsite since the beginning of the incident to assess the spill and ensure that cleanup activities are conducted properly. Downstream drinking water intakes have been notified and there are no concerns about drinking water safety. There have not been any complaints of impacted private water wells,” McDonnell said. “DEP is also actively coordinating with experts at DCNR, Department of Health, Army Corps of Engineers, and Public Utility Commission to ensure that the ongoing situation is managed consistently and safely. DEP has consistently held Sunoco accountable for violations and will do so in this instance as well.”
Located in northcentral Chester County, Marsh Creek’s lake and 1,784 acres offer a refuge for migrating waterfowl and also are popular with hikers, hunters, and picnickers.
More information about Marsh Creek and Pennsylvania’s other 120 state parks is available on the DCNR website.
MEDIA CONTACT: Terry Brady, DCNR, 717-877-6315; Virginia Cain, DEP, 484-868-2452
WEST WHITELAND — Sunoco/Energy Transfer workers hit and breached an underground aquifer at Shoen Road which since then has fouled 250,000 gallons per day of fresh drinking water, according to State Sen. Danielle Friel Otten, D-155th, of Uwchlan, and Shoen Road resident Ginny Kerslake.
The two women estimate that 50 trucks, with a capacity of 5,000 gallons each, have daily been removing water from the drill site of the Sunoco Mariner East pipeline.
Sunoco/ET spokesperson Lisa Coleman responded with a one-sentence comment.
“We did not impact the aquifer at Shoen Road,” wrote Coleman on Aug. 11.
UPPER UWCHLAN—On Friday morning, local public officials and legislators paddled to the site of Monday’s Marsh Creek Sunoco pipeline construction spill of about 10,000 gallons of drilling mud to monitor the mitigation process.
State Rep Danielle Friel Otten, D-155th, of Uwchaln and state Sen. Katie Muth, D-44th, of Royersford invited the dignitaries to view the damage and cleanup firsthand. They visited the popular state park lake via paddleboards, kayaks and canoes.
State Rep. Melissa Shusterman, D-157th, of Schuylkill said that the 10,000 gallon spill is alarming.
“I’m here to make sure our public parks are clean and the air around them is clean so people can enjoy,” she said. “Public parks are for all of us to enjoy.”
State Rep. Greg Vitali, D-166th of Haverford, discussed meeting climate change goals.
“We can’t continue to build fossil fuel infrastructure and reach our goals,” he said.
“Marsh Creek is a valuable ecological and recreation area and I was very concerned when I learned of the spill.
“I wanted to see firsthand the extent of the damage and the progress of cleanup efforts. I was pleased to see both cleanup workers and representatives of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection on the scene….In addition to Friel Otten, Muth, Vitali, Shusterman and D’Amico, state Rep. Dan Williams, D-74th, of Coatesville came out, as well as Chairman Bill Miller from Uwchlan Township and Rebecca Britton, Vice President of Downingtown Area School Board.
~ Bill Retter, Daily Local News 8/14/2020
So…who was NOT there at Marsh Creek today?HOW ABOUT STATE REPRESENTATIVE KRISTINE HOWARD? KRISTINE, IF IT ISN’T A PHOTO OP WITH GOVERNOR TOM WOLF AND CAROLYN COMITTA YOU CAN’T BE BOTHERED?
PLEASE VIEW THIS NEXT SCREEN SHOT WHILE IMAGINING BARBARA STREISAND SINGING “MEMORIES”:
While we are on the topic of who has and has not been to Marsh Creek can we mention that Governor Tom Wolf and Attorney General Josh Shapiro should have been there over the past few days?
Enough is enough #WaterIsLife #DefendWhatYouLove
I do not know about you but I am over this pipeline bullsheit. Over it. Ever new adventure in the land of pipeline drama is worse than the last. These pipeline companies are destroying where we live and don’t try to spin the crap that they employ locally unless Oklahoma and all the other states that make up the out of state license plates are suddenly IN Chester County?
We put our lives and sweat equity into where we call home. So why is it government is just allowing it all to be destroyed? Systemic corruption? Greed? What?
I don’t know where to go in my head. I grew up around oil companies. My father did PR for one for years. Years. But all the pipelines I ever knew about then were petroleum. Like the Trans-Alaska Pipeline, which started operating in 1977. Of course in that same vein, I remember the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill in 1989. And I remember how the guy driving the tanker (while drinking) got off without felony charges.
As my friends from Just The Facts Please said regarding this latest jackassery word puzzle from Energy Transfer:
These [idiots] just can’t help themselves with their lies and stupidly worded statements. Marsh Creek IS an important drinking water source for this region. But I guess Kelcy Warren wouldn’t know that from his tower in Texas.
ETP states, “As a clarification to some public statements that have been made, no public drinking water has been impacted.”
So where in the Sam Hell do we go from here? I don’t know about you but I want these pipeline operators GONE. As in FOR GOOD. #SafetyOverSunoco #SoOverSuNOco
I know this is a ridiculously long post and I have meandered like a stream. But this Marsh Creek thing makes my head spin. This has to stop. Our elected officials need to man and woman up and kick the pipelines the hell out of Pennsylvania, starting with where we call home, Chester County, PA.
This is not a post about Chester County it’s about orphaned and other bridges in need of repair in our area, state, country.
The bridge in the photo opening this post and throughout this post is the orphaned railroad bridge on Pennswood Road in Bryn Mawr, PA. It’s in Lower Merion Township. This bridge has been falling apart for decades quite honestly. I started photographing it in 2007.
It takes far too long for unsafe and run down bridges to be repaired in this country. I photographed the deterioration of this Pennswood Road bridge between 2007 and 2012. I think I had some other photos once upon a time but I can’t find them.
This bridge had holes that you could see through to the railroad tracks and rattled like all get out. Underneath this bridge runs Amtrak and SEPTA trains. The bridge is on the orphaned list like many others that were built by railroads and then orphaned – original railroad companies go out of business successor railroads disavow responsibility. I don’t quite understand how it all works but that seems to be how it works.
What happens is the federal government will pay for most of this repair, the state will pay for some of the repair, and the final bit will be the responsibility of the local municipality. In this case, Lower Merion Township. After the bridge is rebuilt it becomes the responsibility of the municipality.
I have to give credit here to the local commissioner in Lower Merion (Scott Zelov) who has been at this since he became a commissioner in 2006. It’s absolutely ridiculous that it took so long to get to this point. And the bridge was failing long before he took office. It’s been failing since I was in high school.
This is a definite problem across the country. I have seen programs on news shows that run nationally like network news on orphaned and dangerous bridges. In 2019 Pennsylvania was still on the short list of states with the worst bridges. Our state was number 2 in the country according to the CBS news affiliate in Pittsburgh. Pittsburgh Post Gazette also covers the topic.
Development is a funny thing. I see all of these amazing adaptive reuse and other projects everywhere but in the area we call home. Chester County is overrun with bad and/or inappropriate plans. And yes there is one that concerns me in Malvern Borough. But first we need to talk about the last development which caused me concern there before due to it’s hulking nature: Eastside Flats.
And at the end of the day one of the biggest problems STILL with Eastside Flats is lack of human scale and inappropriate design for the area. They tower over everything and citify a small town in a way that is architecturally inappropriate. And I would still like to know how fire trucks can navigate this site completely in the event of fire?
Eastside Flats still is in my opinion, architecturally unimaginative and looks like hulky, looming Lego buildings that created a canyon effect in tiny Malvern. That is NOT a reflection on the businesses there which I love and patronize. Nothing about these buildings ties into the quaint Borough of Malvern or it’s history. I said this in 2013 and I still think that.
And again, this has NOTHING to do with the businesses. It’s the aesthetics, lack of human scale and even the crappy scored-to-look-like-brick-concrete-sidewalks which are a slip and fall and trip hazard. And the fact there is STILL no curb cut from the public parking lot so you don’t have to walk over MULCH. I mean how many years will it take to correct that? And there is little room for delivery trucks, so it’s not uncommon to find UPS and other trucks blocking a pedestrian’s path from parking lot to sidewalk. The finishes on the facade of the buildings are also already showing wear.
The consequences of Eastside Flats caused an election upheaval in 2013. Yet, Malvern Borough is still facing inappropriate development that will be completely out of scale again, in my opinion, if built. And no, I don’t have a horse in this race. I will merely be around to say I told you so if it gets built the way it looks now in the plans.
What was torn down a few years ago….
Here are the documents you can peruse that were sent to me by concerned residents in Malvern Borough (screenshots below are from these documents – it shows the evolution of proposed plans and note it doesn’t look like it’s Malvern at all):
“So much local development that happens before people are aware of it, and then the only thing people can do it complain after the fact. It would be great to get public input on this before it’s an inevitability.
The residents who attended the last PC meeting raising the several concerns about this project are: * Height – it will be out of scale and character with the surrounding buildings and neighborhood behind. They are requesting a variance for height. * Traffic – The proposed design will have people entering leaving at the intersection of King and Bridge, adding to our current rush hour traffic woes. * Construction – How are they going to stage this kind of construction on our overcrowded streets. They are refusing to consider another entrance off of Woodland, which would make this easier. To get the Woodland entrance they would need to purchase 2 parking spaces from the current owner. * Aesthetics – This is a gateway to Malvern. Do we really want a corporate monolith looming above the street as our welcome to Malvern?“
Another resident said:
“I think the applicant should turn his building 90 degrees on its eastern axis nearest Woodland. The short side of the structure takes up only half the King St. frontage of the current proposal. Run the remainder of the building back to the property’s 160′ depth, ending up with the same size building. Plenty of window light all around because the Woodland and King neighbor is small and not deep anyway (which the applicant should buy if possible, anyway). A now 65′ wide frontage (by 43′ high) is far more compatible with the current scale on King. Now, what do you do with the remaining half of the lot to the west? You put in a beautiful hardscape (cobblestones, bricks, maybe even pervious, etc) all the way to the property depth, studded with lots of trees (diminishing a couple or three parking spaces, for sure, but that’s all, and don’t forget, trees reduce bare ground temperature by 30%). Maybe the drive comes in from Bridge or maybe it goes in from Woodland, but that doesn’t matter to the concept. (Woodland is clearly better for traffic, though.) Office parking on the hardscape during business hours. The Borough gets the parking in the evening, without security concerns because no one has to go through the off-limits parking under building.On special occasions we would have a new park-like hardscape area for public events. And most critically, we all enjoy the view from Bridge, seeing lots of trees and openness at Our Town’s last main entrance.” It’s a creative solution instead of a box building that checks all of the bureaucratic boxes. In Malvern it seems we use our ordinances to justify buildings that no one wants. “
I am told that developer folks are asking for like 4 variances: height relief, parking relief, buffer relief (going from 20 ft. to 5 ft.), relief from having to install some kind of parking island? So, if these variances are granted without conditions, such as making them subject to PC recommendations based on SALDO issues, there will be very little the Borough can do to require changes to the plan, right?
Ok so I wrote about the site in 2015 when the original buildings were coming down. I felt back then that although I understood there probably there was no way to save the 19th century storefront and other structures given the decrepit buildings they was attached to. But this is the kind of waste that makes me crazy because someone had seemingly sat on this land for the better part of what? A decade or better?
Still lost? Remember where the lovely store UpHome had their first home? Across King from The Flying Pig? What was reported to have been Malvern’s last 19th century store front? There.
So Malvern Borough, you got rid of Malvern Victorian Christmas for something not quite as memorable, although nice. Are you slowly going to be overtaken by things too large and hulking for a small Main Street oriented town? Please consider better.
And Malvern Borough residents? Some of you will send me nasty comments or post them because I am expressing concern here. That’s on you. You can be ostriches or you can get involved with your borough again.
If I lived and paid taxes in the Borough of Malvern I would want better for my community. I would want new construction to fit and reflected the character of the borough. So ask your borough folks when meeting will occur for this plan. Or not. Again, it’s up to you. I am merely expressing my opinion and concern.
Ebenezer on Bacton Hill Road in Frazer (East Whiteland) is a sacred and historic place. It’s no secret I have written about this place for years.
The AME Church grew out of the Free African Society in the late 1700s, but the church became it’s own entity founded in Philadelphia around 1816. So you can see given the age of Ebenezer AME in East Whiteland, Chester County, PA that it is truly part of the early days of a church and religion founded in Philadelphia. Bishop Richard Allen died in 1831, just months before Ebenezer came to be after Joseph Malin deeded the land.
Hiram Woodyard was a Township resident and former slave who served in the Union Army as a teamster. He was a leader in the African American community and is buried at the Ebenezer AME Church. His home still stands on Congestoga Road. Other homes he built still stand. He was an inhabitant of Bacton Hill.
Without active preservation there will come a time that all which will be left of the area will be my blog posts including this one from 2017 which is an oral history complete with some really cool photos courtesy of Claude Bernadin, or this one from 2015, this one from 2016, this one from 2017, the ceremony November 2016, a post from October 2016, another one from October 2016, when for brief moment people stopped to visit the old souls now covered by weeds and brush once more, 2015 post which had links to earlier posts. Also what will survive will be the occasional newspaper article from every newspaper reporter who tried to raise awareness to this area and to Ebenezer.
Once upon a time people tried to get a Bacton Hill Historic District or something like that. It’s a shame it never happened. Because at least then there would have been a more organized history of the place.
So this Juneteenth, I was thinking of Ebenezer again and here are a few new photos scattered throughout this post. I remember the black civil war soldiers here and elsewhere throughout Chester County. I share again the oral history of one resident (CLICK HERE). I think of all of the people who have shared what they have discovered about Ebenezer over the years.
Juneteenth (on June 19) is know as Emancipation Day and also as Freedom Day, Jubilation Day, and Liberation Day. I never learned about this important day in any history class I took in school. Which is something I think needs to be rectified because it’s part of our history of this country.
Although Juneteenth is celebrating the end of slavery in the United States, it was still legal and practiced in two states – Delaware and Kentucky – until December 6, 1865, when ratification of the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution abolished non-penal slavery nationwide.
On Fold3, there exist some records of Hiram, including voluntary army enlistment. These photos aren’t the best but here they are:
Someone has been cutting the grass again at Ebenezer. I don’t know if it is the developer who will be building houses all around it or someone else. It’s not the AME church. They need to become involved as we believe that this is STILL their land, but will they?
I am but a middle-aged white woman. I am not black and won’t pretend I understand the black experience. I try to learn and respect it. But given the state of racism in this country and the need for all Americans to learn more of this country’s history good and bad, to me, this also means we need to SAVE sites like Ebenezer and preserve their history.
So I am calling on officials state, local, county, federal, and from the AME church to save Ebenezer. The church is too far gone to save BUT capping and preservation of the church ruin is possible. We need a study including with that sonar stuff like they use for Duffy’s Cut to map out where all of the graves are and what stones may lie beneath the dirt.
Officials also need to remember and properly notate the Bacton Hill area because it was a well settled free black community once upon a time. This needs to be done because otherwise this will all sink as a footnote to history that will be forgotten.