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Submitted by Joan Bittner Fry

Here are some news items from Sabillasville from 1915. I wonder how they might be reported on social media today.

July 13, 1915

Ross Brown has completed his new barn.

Rev. M.L. Firor, who has been at the hospital for five weeks, is able to preach again.

George Small has opened a boarding house in the brick house known as the A. H Anders home.

Guy Eby, who was at the Frederick city hospital for the past ten weeks with typhoid fever, has returned home.

Rev. Firor’s son, Whitmore, goes to Frederick every Friday to take violin lessons.

Mrs. Alice Working is erecting a new dwelling. Wm. E. Bentzel is doing the carpenter work.

Children’s Day service was held in the Reformed church Sunday with a good attendance.

The Reformed church has been made new inside by painting, murescoing, and other improvements.

Amos Ferguson who has been confined to his room for the past nine weeks with typhoid fever is now out.

The wheat crop was an average one. The corn looks promising, Fruit will be in abundance throughout the valley.

Mrs. Dorothy H. Pryor’s funeral took place near Foxville. She was in her 89th year.

C. C. Pryor, who fell on the ice last Christmas day, has not fully recovered yet. He walks with crutches. His leg was injured. He is a very heavy man, weighing 300 pounds. He is not able to lie down at night but sits in a chair ever since the fall.

July 20, 1915

Mary, daughter of Samuel A. Arnsparger, went to Baltimore a few days ago to visit her sister, Nora Chenoweth. After there a day or two, she died suddenly. Her body was brought home on Monday and buried on Wednesday.

The automobile fever is running at about 110 degrees. The usual number that pass through Sabillasville on Sunday is an average of 70. Last Sunday, 81 passed through here. This travel is wearing out our macadamized road between here and Blue Ridge Summit.

Earl Eby is planning to build a dwelling on land he purchased from C.N. Stem.

Jesse Poole is under Dr. Mentzer’s hands for treatment of an injured eye.

An unusual thing with the housekeepers this summer, at which they rejoice, is the failure of the fly crop.

Josiah Wilhide, who was confined to his room the past eight months, died Monday. He was helpless all these months. Funeral in Thurmont.

The Reformed church will hold its annual picnic August 21 in Mrs. Pryor’s grove.

September 1, 1915

The enterprising men of the town are oiling the streets, which is quite an improvement. Sabillasville is an old town but it’s always up to date.

Miss Nellie Rouzer has just returned to Baltimore after spending several weeks with her sister, Mrs. D. O Harbaugh.

The farmers are complaining very much of the potato rot. One farmer lost about a thousand bushels.

Peter Harbaugh and M. Sheffer of Fairfield spent Sunday in town calling on their friends.

Joseph Smith, formerly of this place, who has been living in Oregon for the past fifty years, is on a visit here. He expects to spend several weeks in this neighborhood.

A new telegraph office was recently built here by the W.M.Ry. (Western Maryland Railway). It is in charge of three operators, each working eight hours.

Jesse Poole, who was recently graduated from the business school in Waynesboro will take charge of the commercial department in the high school at Thurmont next week.

Prospects for large porkers are good as usual.

Owing to the fire blight, the apple crop is very light across the valley.

Take a trip to Catoctin Mountain Park and explore two new trails! Between the Hog Rock and Thurmont Vista parking lots, keep your eye out for a small parking lot with a picnic table behind it. Across from that parking lot is where the trail starts, eventually connecting to the existing Blue Ridge Summit Trail. Left will take you to Blue Ridge Summit overlook and the Hog Rock parking lot, and right will lead you to Thurmont Vista (this trail and other trails such as Hog Rock may be closed until July 4th). The new spot is a great place to start your hike!

The next new trail extends the Blue Blazes trail past the Whiskey Still exhibit; you’ll notice a sign on a tree past the little creek with text that says “Work In Progress.” You’ll continue past the creek and the sign. Due to it still being a work in progress, the markings along the trail are limited, so be sure to stay aware of your surroundings and stay on the trail. This new trail will lead you 0.6 miles to a sign pointing you across the road toward Wolf Rock and Thurmont Vista, and continue straight toward the Misty Mount cabins. Take the opportunity this summer to get out in nature and try out the new trails! Stay safe and stay hydrated.

Submitted by Joan Bittner Fry

From the Record Herald, Waynesboro, PA, 1951, by Carol Woster 

It has long been debated whether teaching aids, learning games, films, or the preponderance of gimmicky books that flood present-day classrooms add much to the serious business of teaching.

And learning is what the late George Willis Manahan deemed it: serious business. A former pupil recently conjectured what Manahan would think if he could walk into a modern-day classroom. One got the idea he might not like some of what he saw.

The consensus of opinion seems to be that Mr. Manahan taught a well-rounded approach to subjects, offering at the same time skills that held a pupil in good stead no matter what field the student entered.

Former pupil, Paul Fry (late, of Sabillasville), says when you went to school with him, you could spell 25 words each day, about 67 new words each week. “He taught sixth and seventh grades and 13 subjects, and he rarely missed class. He believed (at minimum) everyone should be able to read and write his name, count money, and read to find out what was going on. He had discipline; he wasn’t afraid of you; the majority of students respected him and parents did too.”

Fry said Manahan was not opposed to giving a thrashing now and then, but after it was over, all was forgotten and amends were usually pretty quickly made. Citing examples from his own work interests, Fry tells how Mr. Manahan used the ‘simplest ways’ to explain the most complicated of learning areas: finding meridian distance, square roots, and logarithms. Fry says he has done a lot of surveying because of the interest Manahan showed in teaching.

Well-known play director, Alan Schneider* praises his school days under the tutelage of Manahan. “He not only gave me confidence, he impressed me with the gentility and manners of American tradition.  Schneider says he owes Manahan a ‘great debt’ for all his learning.

Concludes a former student, “To me, he was the greatest – if you made an effort, he couldn’t do enough to help you. He smiled when he thought he had done some good.”

We found Mr. Manahan’s daughter, Mrs. Florence Kipe, sitting with her husband, Oliver, on their porch, banked on either side by large lavender rhododendrons at the foot of Skunk Hollow Road. As early evening spread over the hilly landscape beyond and some of it parceled into growing corn fields, we spoke of her father and her earlier life.

She had been born the youngest of four at the picturesque farm located directly across from our view, now owned by Chester Willard. It had been a family home where they sold vegetables, chickens, and eggs to the State Tuberculosis Sanatorium up on the hill.

When asked if he had been taught by his wife’s father, Kipe said he had to go to school at Friend’s Creek. “I’m sorry I didn’t get taught by him.” Kipe, the son of a Church of God minister, was born at Smithville, Pennsylvania and ‘moved about 30 times’ in this northern Maryland area.

Mrs. Kipe said she was taught by her father. For the first three years, however, she was taught by Miss Frances Rowe of Emmitsburg. Mrs. Kipe recounted that her father was born on April 8, 1866 and was married to Virginia Miller, also of Sabillasville. Their children were Mrs. Earl Eby (Mabel), Paul Manahan, Emma Manahan, and herself.

“He started teaching when he was 19 and taught for 42 years.” All but a couple of months were spent at the former schoolhouse on Harbaugh Valley Road (now a residence next to St. John’s Parish Hall). Mrs. Kipe said her father didn’t go to college but attended summer school sessions in Baltimore.

*Alan Schneider (1917 – 1984) was an American theatre director responsible for more than 100 theater productions. In 1984 he was honored with a Drama Desk Special Award for serving a wide range of playwrights.

GEORGE WILLIS MANAHAN, 85 (1866-1951), retired teacher and surveyor of Thurmont, died last night at his home. He had earlier resided in Sabillasville, where he taught school for 42 years. He was a surveyor for 65 years.

He was a member of the Sabillasville Reformed Church. He was superintendent of the Sunday School for a number of years. He was a member of the Junior O.U.A.M. at Cascade.

He is survived by his wife, Virginia C. (Miller) Manahan, and the following children: Mrs. Earl (Mabel) Eby, Sabillasville; Miss Emma Manahan, Thurmont; Paul Manahan, Decatur, Ga.; Mrs. Oliver (Florence) Kipe, Sabillasville; 11 grandchildren and 9 great grandchildren. Also one sister, Mrs. Charles Brillhart, Hagerstown.

Dottie Davis

Nominated by: Phyllis Kelly

At 91, Dorothy (Dottie) Davis acknowledges that she is not as active as she once was, but her dedication to the Emmitsburg community remains unwavering. Born and raised in Thurmont, it was after marrying her late husband, Alan Davis, that she moved to Emmitsburg, where she still resides in the home they purchased together.

Dottie credits her husband as the one who got her actively involved as a volunteer. He volunteered as a firefighter with the Vigilant Hose Company, and Dottie became a member of the Ladies Auxiliary, which she has been a member of for over 40 years. As life progressed, soon her son and grandson would volunteer their time in the fire company as well, which meant the family spent a lot of time at the fire hall. In fact, Dorothy even served as president and treasurer for many years.

Dottie’s commitment to the community didn’t stop there. She fondly recalls the day her husband came home and announced, “We just bought The Palms.” The couple owned the restaurant on Main Street in Emmitsburg for 19 years, until Dottie sold it after Alan fell ill and passed away. Owning The Palms was a dream come true for Alan, and during their tenure as business owners, they continued to give back to the community. They ensured the volunteer firefighters were well-fed during emergencies. And it wasn’t just the firefighters that Dottie took care of. At the time, they had many students from Mount St. Mary’s working for them at the restaurant. The couple became like a second set of parents to many of the students who were far away from home.

Dottie became an honorary member of the Mount St. Mary’s Class of 1963, in recognition of all she did for the students.

Over the years, Dottie also served as Chair for numerous breakfasts and dinners at Tom’s Creek United Methodist Church in Emmitsburg.

Her friend, Phyllis Kelly, nominated her for her unwavering love of Emmitsburg.

“Dottie has dedicated her life to the good of the town through many volunteer efforts,” said Kelly.

Despite Dottie’s humility, claiming she hasn’t done anything significant, she cherishes the small-town atmosphere and loves to see how the whole community comes together anytime someone is in need.

Dorothy (Dottie) Davis has been an active volunteer in the Emmitsburg community for decades.

Members of the public joined Vigilant Hose Company (VHC) for a time-honored fire services tradition of a “Push-In”on June 3, when firefighters and citizens “pushed” the new Tower 6 into the stationhouse at 25 West Main Street. The event went great, with over 100 attendees on hand.

Firefighters and citizens “push” the new Tower 6 into the Vigilant Hose Company’s stationhouse in Emmitsburg at the Dedication Ceremony on June 3.

VHC Member Jason Powell signs a large sign that all present at the ceremony were encouraged to sign.

Susie Nicol of Firehouse Magazine, the most widely read fire-related technical publication in the world, sits in the front seat of Tower 6 at the “Push-In” Dedication Ceremony on June 3.

With the 2023-2024 school year behind us, it is time for United Way of Frederick County’s annual Stuff the Bus school-supply drive. For the 37,000-plus ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) households in Frederick County, the additional cost of school supplies adds extra stress on an already tight budget.

But you can make a difference by helping provide Frederick County Public Schools students in ALICE households with the tools they need for a successful school year. Together with United Way of Frederick County, you can bring hope and excitement for the upcoming school year to your community.

Through July 30, new, unused school supplies can be donated at any of United Way of Frederick County’s public drop-off sites located throughout Frederick County. For a full list of drop-off locations, visit

All new, unused school supplies will be accepted, but high priority items include: composition notebooks, earbuds (with microphone), scissors, markers, and binders.

Don’t have time to purchase school supplies and drop them off? Donate today by visiting

Maxine troxell

Volunteers with the Thurmont Alumni Association hosted the Thurmont High School (THS) Alumni Annual Banquet at the Thurmont Event Complex on June 8.

Alumni President Ron Pearcey (Class of ‘64) welcomed the crowd of 165. Carrie Silver led the Pledge of Allegiance. Frederick Children’s Choir, led by Carrie Silver, sang the “Star-Spangled Banner.” Ernest Rice (Class of ‘55) gave the invocation.

Fond alumni memories were shared with a big screen video, developed by Maxine Troxell (Class of ‘62), with photos from the good old days in school. 

Secretary Viola Noffsinger (Class of ’58) Minutes and Treasurer Becky Linton (Class of ’58). Reports were distributed to all.

Scholarships totaling $22,279 were awarded to this year’s scholars. Those receiving scholarships this year were:

From the Donald Lewis Community Impact Fund:

Meghan Gray (alumni Dorothy Jackson Ramsburg—‘52).

Vincent Reaver, III (alumni Darlene Shriner Wetzel—’67, Vincent, Jr. & Amber Reaver—‘74). 

Ella Jensen (Ray May—’59, Wayne May—’70, and Larry May—‘73).

Garrett Worth (alumni Fay Ann Christie Worth—‘67). 

From the Donald P. Dougherty Memorial Fund:

Willow Kint (alumni James Fuss—‘58). 

Stacey May (alumni Sheila (Sunday) May—’73, Larry May—‘73, Sandra (May) Schrock—                     ’69, Nancy (Green) Foley—’58, and Plummer Fraley—’57).

From the Thurmont High School Alumni Association:

Amy Elizabeth Eichelberger (alumni David Eichelberger—‘62 and John Eichelberger—’71).

Alexander Joseph Hauk (alumni Debra Jean (Rohrbaugh) Easterday—‘73). 

Samantha Lynn Orndorff (alumni Victor Morris Kelly—‘66, and Brenda (Kelly) Roberts—’70).

Abbey Shaffer (alumni Robert Shaffer—‘58).

Anniversary classes honored at this banquet were graduating classes: 1954, 1959, 1964, 1969, 1963, 1974. 

This year, the Alumni honored THS/CHS Band Members: Carol (Long) Beauchamp  (THS ’56), Jim Bittner (THS ’58), Eileen Hubbard Black (CHS ’71), Terry Black (CHS ’69), Juanita (Myers) Bowers (THS ’55), Sue (Eyler) Clabaugh (THS ’61),  Robert Frushour (CHS ’71), Rusty Hauver (THS ’65), George Henning (THS ’62), Denny Hoffman (THS ’62), Louise (Null) Humerick (THS ’55), Penny (Wood) Joseph (CHS ’69), Martha (Hubbard) Matthews (CHS ’69), Jo Ellen (McKissick) Miller (THS ’64), Jerry Lee Moser (THS ’62), Viola (Zentz) Noffsinger (THS ’58), Ernest Rice (THS ’55), Joan (Lawyer) Spalding (THS ’57), Joyce (Henning) Stambaugh (THS ’64), Connie (Heck) Testerman (THS ’57), Wayne Wireman (CHS ’69), Frank Valentine (THS ’51).

The oldest person was Robert Fox (Class of 1947). The furthest distance was Keith Culler (Class of 1972) from Gulfport, Florida. 

The items that were auctioned:  original brick from the school, donated by Ray May (‘59); Cat’s Meow’s by Dick Creager (’53); a book written by Terry Miller (‘57); Pewter Commemorative THS Plate, donated by Clarence Peiper (teacher).

Door prizes given, donated by various local businesses and organizations, was hosted by Carol Long.
The banquet was closed by President Ron Pearcey.

The Thurmont High School Alumni would like to thank the following donors of door prizes: Bollinger’s Restaurant, Carriage House Restaurant, Catoctin Mountain Orchard, Candyland Market, Fratellis New York Pizza, Gateway Flowers, Hillside Turkey Farm, Jubilee Grocery, Kountry Kitchen Restaurant, Los Amigos Mexican Restaurant, Maple Run Golf Club, Mountain Gate Restaurant, Mountain Memories, The Ott House, Rocky’s Pizza, Roy Rogers Restaurant, Shuff’s Meat Market, Trout’s, Weis Market, and The Wedding Bouquet by Karen Myers.

*Next year’s Thurmont High School Alumni Banquet will be held on June 7, 2025.

Scholarship Winners

Anniversary Classes

Alisha Yocum

The Frederick Arts Council, The Ausherman Foundation, and the Town of Thurmont recently collaborated to bring Thurmont’s newest art installation to town. This 10 feet by 20 feet digital mural is attached to a building along S. Carroll Street. The group thanked the building owner, Shawn Dewees, for his collaboration on the project.

Many representatives from local and county organizations were on hand to help celebrate the ribbon cutting.

The artist, Robert Bohen, who was commissioned to create the mural, has been painting for 65 years, with over 30 of those teaching art at Montgomery College in Rockville, Maryland. While he was trained as a designer at the Pratt Institute, a world class and internationally ranked college with programs in art and design, he later went on to get his masters and doctorate in education.

Artists go through a competitive process, which includes a review of their proposal by curatorial experts and community stakeholders. “Nothing succeeds like success,” said Bohen.

 The artist recently started doing more digital designing rather than hand-painted murals and has received several commissioned digital pieces and public art pieces. Bohen explained the long and tedious process of working with the printer to print the large-sized mural. The digital print is an abstraction of the colors and texture inspired by the landscape.

The mural is part of the Frederick Public Art Master Plan and was supported through a grant awarded to the Frederick Arts Council by the Ausherman Foundation.

Caylee Winpigler, community impact manager for the Ausherman Foundation and also a Thurmont resident said, “[The mural] not only celebrates our scenic surroundings but also marks the beginning of what promises to be a flourishing artistic alliance that will further enhance the charm of the town.”

Community members celebrate the new mural in Thurmont.

Ruth Heaney

If there is an article and picture of interest to me, it is torn out and put in the file “of interesting people.” A story in the August 2023 Catoctin Banner was in that file, and my curiosity about the man standing easily among the goats and holding onto another goat prompted my phone call to him.

The person in the picture was Dr. Raymond Ediger. On the day I called, he was weeding, despite the 80-degree-plus temperatures. He did not hesitate to say “Yes” when asked if pausing during the weeding would be acceptable.

Dr. Ediger grew up on a “mini-farm” with a variety of animals, including chickens, goats, cows, dogs, and cats. His father was a mechanic but had a mini-farm that was just the right size for his family. Dr. Ediger remembers walking to the one-room schoolhouse and encouraging a dog (or dogs) to follow him home. Bobbie was the first dog Dr. Ediger was allowed to keep. To this day, goats, cows, and dogs are his favorite animals.

Fast forward to 1961, when Dr. Ediger earned from Washington State University both bachelor of science and veterinarian degrees. He was drafted a week after graduating. His final assignment was Fort Detrick as manager of the Laboratory Animal Facility. He and another veterinarian decided to live off-post, where the Links Bridge Winery is currently located. Eventually, the roommate married, and Dr. Ediger moved to Utica Park. The rent was $100 with no indoor plumbing. In 1968, the rent was raised to $125, but still no indoor plumbing. This was too much for him, so Dr. Ediger and his wife found a house in Utica. Today, Dr. Ediger, a widower, resides in that same house.

The year 1971 opened a new door for Dr. Ediger’s medical adventures. He earned an additional degree in comparative medicine through the American College of Laboratory Medicine. This degree focused on exotic, undomesticated animals and a comparison of animals to humans. By comparing animals to people, a better understanding of diseases can occur. The degree also allowed Dr. Ediger to serve on hospital accreditation boards.

Our conversation ended with some “hops” trivia. Hops were found on his farm. The Monocacy Hop is now being used at several Maryland micro-breweries. The closest brewery using the hops is the Liberty-town Milkhouse Brewery. Dr. Ediger surmises that some 200 years ago, the German settlers planted hops, which are still producing.

Dr. Ediger will be the Thurmont Lions Club’s guest speaker on July 24 at St. John’s Lutheran Church, located at 15 North Church Street in Thurmont. All are welcome at no charge to come join the evening fun, beginning at 6:30 p.m., as Dr. Ediger tells his life stories about people and animals. You do not want to miss this!

Dr. Ray Ediger, retired veterinarian, with his prize Boer goats and his beloved Boer buck at his Utica farm.

The Optimist Club of Frederick held its 15th Annual Fish with a Cop program this June at the Camp Airy Pond in Thurmont. There were 26 boys and girls from across Frederick County who took part in the program. A total of 28 officers from Frederick City, the Sheriff Department, Maryland State Police Department, National Resources Police, and Thurmont Police Department participated in the program this year. 

The officers picked up the children from their homes and transported them to the pond. The Optimist Club provided a new Zebco rod, reel, and tackle for each child who attended.

The officers, as well as club members, worked with the kids to help them develop or further their fishing skills. The main purpose of this program is to encourage the children to enjoy the great outdoors and to give them a positive experience with police officers.  

When the fishing was done, the Optimist Club held a cookout and fish fry for the children and officers. They were served grilled hotdogs, chips, fried fresh fish, and ice cream sundaes. The officers then took the children back home. 

The following sponsors contributed to the program this year: The Brotherhood of the Jungle Cock, who made this program possible by stocking the pond and providing a tent and tables, and Camp Airy for use of their pond. A big thanks to the Strong Tower Church for providing most of the food for the program and helping cook it. Because of these sponsors and police officers who volunteered their time, the children and officers had a very memorable experience. Thank you again to all who helped with this program again this year. 
A special thank you to the law enforcement of Frederick County. They volunteer their time to make sure a child has a good time, all while taking time from their own families. They should be commended for their dedication to the community of Frederick County.

Frederick Sheriff, Brunswick, and Natural Resource Police

Bently Beachley, Shawn Haynes, Elias Barahona, CPL McKenzie Neville, Lorenzo Byrnes, Jayce Smith, Daniel Kristiansen, James Krepelin, OFC Nathaniel Minnick, Senior Officer Chad Marshall, DFC Nicholas Thomas, OFC Matt Crouse, DFC Travis Dykoff, SGt Tim Duhan, SGT Brad Lowe, OFC Will Faith, CPL Josh Keeney, DFC Amber Owens, and Patrick McEntee.

Frederick City and MD State Police

Daniel Kristiansen, Edna Dalhia Saint De Deo, Hunter Heims, Christian Maximo, DeSean Gomez, Ceasar Gamez Orellana, Anthony Ngalibika; (second row) TFC Tim Coss, SGT Rich Kulina, OFC Vincent Burns, CPL Josh White, TFC Adam Sweckard, SGT Greg Lantz, TFC Kole Riggs, TFC Noah Potvin, OFC Joseph Constantine, OFC Irvin Solano; (back row) Michael Johnson, TFC Jason Rickard, TFC Kevin Carter, Zaiden Cox, TFC Stephen Carr, and Jameirah Thompson.

The 68th Annual Thurmont & Emmitsburg Community Show will be held on September 6-8, at Catoctin High School, 14745 Sabillasville Road in Thurmont. During this event, the Catoctin FFA Alumni & Supporters Livestock Sale will be held on Saturday, September 7, at 7:00 p.m. in the Ag Center area and will be celebrating their 50th year. The sale began when Calvin Sayler, a Catoctin area farmer who lived on a farm in Rocky Ridge and who was a Hereford cattle breeder and Catoctin FFA Alumni member, felt very strongly that the Thurmont & Emmitsburg Community Show should have a beef cattle sale. On September 13, 1974, the first beef cattle sale was held when seven Catoctin FFA Alumni, 4-H and/or Grange members exhibited nine cattle. Four of the seven are still living for the 50th Anniversary: Gwen Long Kuster, Patty Keilholtz Kerns, Mike Baust, and Rodman Myers. William G. “Bill” Baker was the auctioneer, and Bob Valentine was the chair for the first year and for the next 49 years. Under Bob’s leadership and the livestock committee, both the show and sale expanded over the years with the addition of sheep, swine and goats.

This annual event has been a highlight of the Thurmont & Emmitsburg Community Show—the largest community show in the State of Maryland. The 49th annual sale in 2023 grossed $95,000, which was the highest ever in its history. Thanks to Calvin Sayler for his vision to make this annual show and sale a reality! Any individuals or businesses are welcome to attend and support local 4-H and FFA members selling their livestock projects during this anniversary year.

In addition to the 50th anniversary of the Catoctin FFA Alumni & Supporters Livestock Sale, the 20th anniversary of The Ridenour Lamb award will be celebrated. This award started 20 years ago in memory of Rebecka (Ruby) Ridenour. Rebecka loved showing her 4-H projects, the Community Show, and helping youth with their projects. Although Rebecka showed many species of animals, her favorite project was sheep—this is the reason the Ridenour Lamb award is given to the third-place sheep overall in the show. The recipient is given a pre-determined amount by Rebecka’s daughter, Ashley Ridenour Zimmerman, and all proceeds from the sale of the Ridenour Lamb go to the Ridenour Scholarship Fund.

The Ridenour Scholarship is annually awarded at the Catoctin FFA Chapter’s awards banquet and is typically given to a student pursuing a nursing degree—to carry on Rebecka’s passion for nursing and caring for others.

Also, on Saturday, September 7, at 6:30 p.m. by the Agriculture Center barn, there will be a gathering for any previous recipients of the Ridenour Lamb or Ridenour Scholarship to celebrate the 20th anniversary. If you still have your Ridenour Lamb banner, please bring it to the gathering.  To commemorate the 20th year of the Ridenour Lamb & Scholarship, along with Rebecka’s passing, make plans to attend the Beef, Sheep, Swine and Market Goat Sale on Saturday night, September 7, at 7:00 p.m. in the Agriculture Center to support the Ridenour Lamb & Scholarship

Thurmont Grange No. 409 has partnered with the GotSneakers initiative to collect sneakers and athletic footwear to be redistributed for wear or recycled into park and track surfaces. The importance of keeping sneakers out of landfills is vital on many levels.

Most people throw away their unwanted sneakers after 250-400 miles, or every 125-200 days, without ever thinking about recycling them. Since sneakers are manufactured with materials that are not biodegradable, they remain in landfills or are incinerated, which leads to toxic chemicals in our air and soil. The EPA estimates that 200-300 million pairs of shoes are thrown into our landfills each year, contaminating our environment.

Additionally, there are approximately 600 million people worldwide who do not even own a pair of shoes. GotSneakers redistributes wearable sneakers to those in need of shoes, which reduces the need for manufacturing sneakers. The manufacturing process also produces large amounts of CO2, which contributes to the serious effects of climate change and global warming.

Last year, GotSneakers recycled and reused 1.5 million pairs of sneakers.  Over the past two years, Thurmont Grange has donated 287 pairs of sneakers to GotSneakers. With your help, we can keep sneakers out of landfills and reduce toxic chemicals in our air and soil. Let’s make a difference together!

Thurmont Grange is collecting sneakers, any size, any condition, any brand.  Simply drop them off on the Grange Hall porch (gray block building), located at 17A North Carroll Street in Thurmont, or contact Niki Eyler at 301-471-5158, or email to arrange a pickup.

Thurmont Grangers Nancy Wine and Addison Eyler prepare to bag sneakers for shipment to GotSneakers

Alisha Yocum

Bud Eyler’s love for cars began as a child, and he specifically became fond of the 1955 Chevy Bel Air Hardtop as a teenager. His brother-in-law, who was in the Navy, left his black 1955 Chevy at their family’s home during deployment. The family’s home was located close to Rt. 15, and he remembers many people stopping to ask his father if they could buy the car. 

“I knew when I got old enough that is what I wanted [to drive],” said Bud.

In 1968, at age 17, Bud fulfilled his dream and bought his own 1955 Chevy Bel Air. However, his mother was not pleased and refused to let him get his driver’s license, even giving him the silent treatment for nearly a month. Patiently, Bud waited until he turned 18 to obtain his license independently.

The Bel Air was part of Chevy’s lineup that featured a bold stylish design with smooth, clean lines and a distinctive front grille. The 1955 Bel Air quickly became an icon of the 1950s, celebrated for its combination of style, power, and affordability.

Soon, he would be driving “The Circuit” in Thurmont with his high school friends, who also owned ’55 Chevys. It was during this time that Bud would ask his friend’s sister if she would go on a date with him. Nena agreed and soon the two would start dating, later marrying in 1972. Nena’s family also had a passion for classic cars, sharing Bud’s enthusiasm.

In 1973, the Eylers sold the car. Nena knew how much the car meant to her husband, and a few years later, she tracked the car down. The new owner lived in Emmitsburg and was using the car on their farm. Nena worked out a deal and soon Bud would be reunited with his beloved first car. However, a lot of work needed to be done to it, and the couple had the car restored to what it is today.

After being reunited with his first car, there was another ’55 Chevy that Bud had his eye on—a Nomad. Inspired by a concept car from the 1954 General Motors Motorama, the Nomad features a sleek, sporty design with a sloped tailgate and unique roofline, differentiating it from other station wagons of the era. It was one of the iconic Tri-Five Chevrolets, known for their innovation and popularity.

Nena, once again, went on a search and found a rusted-up Nomad in nearby Lewistown. While the couple jokes that the Nomad is “her car,” it was together that they decided to have a full restoration done on the Nomad. Two-and-a-half years later, the car was fully restored and is one that turns heads at car shows. In fact, the car has won top awards like third place in the Timonium Indoor Eastern Nationals and was named a top ten builds in the Good Guys Car Show in York, Pennsylvania.

The Eylers continue to attend as many local car shows as possible, proudly showcasing their ’55 Chevys.

Bud and Nena Eyler with their 1955 Chevys.

The hardtop when Bud first purchased it in 1968.

The Nomad when the Eylers purchased it in 2013.

No doubt, many Emmitsburg residents and business owners have already noticed the community’s newest fire and rescue vehicle traversing area roadways while being used for driver/operator training in recent weeks. Solely due to wonderful ongoing community-wide support, the men and women of the Vigilant Hose Company (VHC) are proud to announce that a Dedication Ceremony for the new Tower 6 (pictured above) is scheduled for Monday evening, June 3, at 6:00 p.m.

Members of the public are welcome to join with VHC personnel and their families for a time-honored fire services tradition of a “Push-In” event, where all interested can together “push” the new vehicle into the stationhouse at 25 West Main Street.

Featured on the new Tower 6 is a unique graphic (pictured above) of a Pull-Tab with a Serial Number that represents the actual purchase price of the Tower, a Bingo Card, and a “6 of Hearts” playing card, symbolizing the three most community-supported fundraisers that made it possible for VHC to pay for Tower 6 outright upon delivery. Manufactured by Pierce Manufacturing of Appleton, Wisconsin, and purchased through Atlantic Emergency Services near Hagerstown, the new rig replaces the original Tower 6 originally placed in-service in 1995.

Tower 6 features include a 100’ aerial platform, an Enforcer Chassis, an Allision 4500 6-speed automatic transmission, a full complement of ground ladders, a stokes rescue basket, and dozens of specialty tools and accessories necessary for all manner of emergency calls.

The entire Emmitsburg community is encouraged to stop in to see the new vehicle, plus to also be on the lookout for it heading to and from emergency calls and training details.

Additional photos of the Tower 6 can be seen on the VHC website at and on VHC’s Facebook Page.

Alisha Yocum

The Washington County Board of County Commissioners awarded John Krumpotich and the Ritchie History Museum with the 2024 John Frye Historical Preservation Award on May 16.

Krumpotich purchased the old army base in 2021 with the intent to preserve the historic buildings as part of the development process. The museum opened in 2023 and includes exhibits that highlight the history of the base. One of those highlights being the efforts of the “Ritchie Boys” who were trained in intelligence and helped defeat Hitler during World War II. It is estimated that 8,000-10,000 visitors have gone through the museum in the past year.

Katy Best, director of the museum, said, “John, his family, and his team are successful because they genuinely care about Fort Ritchie’s history. They did not wish just to come in and redevelop the property and tear things out as some companies did before, but they focused on breathing life back into these old structures.”

The museum is located at 14319 Barrick Avenue in Cascade and is open Tuesday through Saturday, from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Visit the website at

Washington County Commissioners present John Krumpotich with the 2024 John Frye Historical Preservation Award.

James Rada, Jr.

While the stories of war are usually told from the perspective of the big picture—the generals, the strategies, the armies—Frederick County may soon have a museum dedicated to telling the stories of the Veterans who are seen only as numbers in the big picture.

“I think there will be a lot of interest in stories of the local men who were there,” Priscilla Rall said.

The Frederick Military Museum of the 20th Century is the brainchild of Priscilla Rall, a Rocky Ridge resident who worked for years documenting the stories of Frederick County Veterans as part of the Frederick County Veterans History Project.

“We want to be a museum built around the voices of Veterans,” said Rall. “Every exhibit will be from their view and will tell their stories. We have five guys in Frederick County who came ashore on D-Day. What was that like? What did they see? What did they do?”

Rall explained that besides the exhibits, there will also be a research area and a lending library of military books. She is also currently lining up experts to give monthly lectures at the museum. In addition, she sees hosting booksigning and art shows tied to the military.

The non-profit museum seeks to educate visitors about the Frederick County Veterans who fought in WWI, WWII, Korea, Vietnam, and the Gulf Wars. 

The more than 300 Veteran interviews in the Frederick County Veterans History Project will be the foundation of the museum. These were conducted over years and video-recorded for the most part.

“It was therapeutic for many of the Veterans to tell their stories,” Rall said.

In addition, the museum organizers have pictures, letters, and other ephemera from local Veterans.

The current goal of the organizers is to find a location in downtown Frederick for the museum.

If you would like to participate in helping the museum grow, email or call 301-271-2868.

The Catoctin Furnace Historical Society (CFHS) is proud to announce it has won the 2024 Award for Outstanding Stewardship of a Maryland Historical Trust Easement Property. CFHS was selected for its restoration of the Forgeman’s House, a 19th century ironworker’s home. The historic cottage, built in the winter of 1820-21, likely using enslaved labor, was owned by the furnace operation and rented to its employees.

The restoration and stabilization of the Forgeman’s House took four years and was funded by a State of Maryland General Assembly bond bill, a Maryland Heritage Areas Authority (MHAA) grant from the Maryland Historical Trust, and grants from the Tourism Council of Frederick County Tourism Reinvestment in Promotion and Product (TRIPP) and the Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area. The process included removing non-historic additions and returning the house to its original condition. CFHS tore out drywall, repointed and plastered the original stone walls and fireplace, installed a standing seam metal roof, replaced non-period windows with historically accurate reproductions, and furnished the home with antiques that showcase the simplicity of life in the 1800s.

During the restoration, CFHS uncovered more than 30,000 artifacts, including period clothing stuffed into walls as insulation. Now a living museum, the house offers overnight stays and exhibits, such as “Everyday Treasures: Bringing History to Life at the Forgeman’s House,” a collection of archaeologically derived domestic artifacts that span the homes’ 200+ year history and are a testament to the many families who called it home. Another exhibit “Under the Floorboards” features a secret chamber beneath the floor that gives visitors a glimpse into the history of the house, revealing some of the items discovered during the archaeological investigations.

The Maryland Historical Trust is presenting 11 awards recognizing outstanding preservation projects and individual leadership in honor of Preservation Month this May. The Forgeman’s House award ceremony will take place on the premises at 12525 Catoctin Furnace Road, Thurmont, Maryland 21788 on Thursday, May 2 at 11:30 am. All are welcome.

The 49th Annual Maryland Preservation Awards selected by MHT’s Board of Trustees will be livestreamed on MHT’s social media beginning on May 2 and continuing through early June. A complete list of times and locations can be found at

Throughout the year, the Catoctin Furnace Historical Society shares the history of ironmaking through special events. The 6th Annual Maryland Iron Festival will take place on Saturday, May 18 (10 am to 6 pm) and Sunday, May 19, 2024 (10 am to 4 pm) in the village of Catoctin Furnace, Cunningham Falls State Park, and Catoctin Mountain Park. For more information, contact or visit

Alisha Yocum

If you happened to pass through Thurmont’s square on Friday, May 17, you might have been surprised by the sight of elegant derby-style hats adorning attendees as they wandered the streets for the Thurmont Main Street Art & Wine Stroll—with a touch of Preakness flair!

Balloon arches adorned the doorways of local businesses to help guide attendees through the event. Businesses hosted wineries/breweries, food trucks, artisans, and musicians, allowing for an enjoyable evening for those of all ages. 

Paco, “The Beverage Burro,” and his owner Becky Clarke and daughter Tayor were on hand to keep attendees hydrated with bottles of water.

The vineyards, breweries, and distilleries that were set up at the event included Catoctin Breeze Vineyard, Fordham Lee Distillery, Kind Vine Teacher Wines, Links Bridge, Mazzaroth Vineyard, Rosie Cheeks Distillery, Six Wicket Vineyards, Springfield Manor Winery & Distillery, Twin Valley Distilling, and Uncle Dirty’s Brew Works. Attendees could sample a variety of beverages along their stroll.

Of course, you can’t have an event without food! Event-goers had a variety of food trucks to fulfill their appetites. Thurmont’s own, Sauced Savage, was serving up their delicious BBQ, while Cracken Catering was offering their cajun inspired menu and Dop Pizza had the wood-fired oven going.

As the evening unfolded, the sounds of live music cascaded through the streets, offering a diverse range from jazz duos to classic rock. Local artisans were also set up throughout the event, showcasing their talents. Beautiful paintings and handmade jewelry were just some of the pieces that were being sold, as attendees sipped their preferred beverage and shopped. The night ended in a spirited hat contest hosted at 10Tavern, bringing a delightful end to the festivities.

The following Thurmont businesses hosted vendors in their spaces: Center of Life Pilates & Holistic Studio, Anything From the Trolley, Senior Benefits, CLIMB Properties Real Estate, Studio 24E, Gateway Flowers, Cuddles Cat Rescue, Long & Foster – Greg Salley Real Estate, 10 Tavern, Thurmont Barber & Styling, Thurmont Historical Society, Tracie’s House of Hair, Beautiful You Salan and Spa, Thurmont Main Street Center, J&B Real Estate, Catoctin Mountain Massage, Alex Uphold State Farm Insurance, and Pam’s Rusty Treasures.

Rebecca Jackson poses with her Preakness Hat and artwork.

Greg Elliott and Nina Tate-Elliott, owners of Studio24E, pose in their Preakness attire.

Becky Clarke and her daughter, Taylor,  pose with Paco “The Beverage Burro.” Paco provided bottled water to event attendees as they strolled the streets of Thurmont.

Attendees enjoy a local favorite, The Sauced Savage BBQ, at the Stroll.

Uncle Dirty’s Brew Works in Thurmont serve their hand-crafted beer throughout the event.

(left) Katy Bowers, a Thurmont resident, strolls the streets in her Preakness hat.

Links Bridge Vineyards in Thurmont gives attendees samples of their wines.

As spring comes to an end and gardening season has begun, it is a great time to start planning for your entries for the Thurmont & Emmitsburg Community Show, Maryland’s largest community show! The Thurmont & Emmitsburg Community Show will be held Friday-Sunday, September 6-8, at Catoctin High School. The event was started 68 years ago with the intent to highlight agriculture, a strong part of our community’s heritage.

The show offers residents who live within the Catoctin feeder area the opportunity to showcase their best vegetables, fruits, flowers, arts and crafts, and baked goods. Offering youth and adult categories, judges determine the best from each category, which are awarded ribbons at the Show, and premium checks are mailed to the winning exhibitors after the Show.

The cream of the crop (pun intended!) are selected and highlighted on the table of grand and reserve champions during the event. So, as you plant your garden and flowers or are working on your next craft project, consider entering your items in the Community Show.

Look for Community Show books with details on all the categories and requirements at local businesses throughout the community starting in late July.

Entries can be submitted on Thursday evening, September 5, from 5:30-8:30 p.m., as well as on Friday morning, September 6, from 8:30-11:30 a.m., in the gymnasium and the agriculture department area of the school.

The Community Show’s new website is currently under construction. For more information, view the advertisement on page 34.

Catoctin residents submit entries of vegetables for the Annual Thurmont & Emmitsburg Community Show each September.

On Saturday, April 20, Apples United Church of Christ dedicated its Meditation Trail at a community event. The one-tenth-mile-long trail was a vision of Roger Troxell after the church was given a connecting 2.25-acre tract by the Harbaugh family several years ago.

Mr. Troxell wanted to make the church and its grounds a place for people to come to any time, not just Sunday mornings. The trail was built by volunteers Bryant Despeaux, Brian Boyer, Tom Erfurdt, Sean McCormack, Chuck Riggs, Ken Stitely, and Ed Johnston, who are part of the H&F Trolley Trail Association. The trail is open to the public.

Ribbon cutting: Bryant Despeaux AUCC (center), Wayne Hooper Thurmont Commissioner (center, left), Bill Blakesley Thurmont Commissioner (center, right), President of AUCC Council Mike Mathis (back, right), Pastor Beth Firme AUCC (left of Mr. Hooper), Thurmont Green Team Emily Darling (left of Pastor Firme), Trail Builders: Chuck Riggs, Tom Erfurdt, Sean McCormack, Ed Johnston (back row).

Over 50 participants gathered around Lake Royer in Cascade for the annual Fort Ritchie Community Center’s Bass Fishing Tournament on Saturday, May 18.

The event was sponsored by Cobblestone Hotel & Suites and included prizes for the largest bass caught by youth and adults. The winners were:

Adult Winners:

Steven Pinkley—17 ¼”

Steve Christian—16 ½”

Jason Saunders—15”

Youth Winners:

Ryan Rosenberry—15”

Carter Gauff—14”

John Gossard—13 ½”

Adult Winners: Steven Pinkley (center), Steve Christian (right), and Jason Saunders (left).

Youth Winners:  Ryan Rosenberry (center), Carter Gauff (left), and John Gossard (right).

Thurmont Mayor John Kinnaird swore in two new Officers to the Thurmont Police Department in May.

“Officer Hayden Glunt and Officer Brett Sharp recently graduated from the Police Academy and will begin patrolling this week. I want to give a warm Thurmont welcome to both of the Officers and thank them for serving our community,” stated Mayor John Kinnaird.

Antietam Camp #3 Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War and Antietam Auxiliary #3 Auxiliary to Sons of Union Veterans are planning a Grave Marking Ceremony for a Union Civil War Veteran, buried in Mount Bethel Cemetery in Garfield, Maryland.

They are seeking any descendants or relatives of the Civil War Veteran Thomas H. Shelton (1842-1938), who will be honored at a grave-marking ceremony at Mount Bethel Cemetery in Garfield.

If you, or anyone you know, are related to Thomas H. Shelton (1842-1938), please contact Karl Woodcock by calling 301-663-5056 or at

by becky dietrich     Submitted by Joan Bittner Fry

This article appeared in the December 5, 1975 edition of The Record Herald.

Why do people drink beer in a place called “Chocolate Park?” Because there was once a man named Jansen, from Germany, who made delicious chocolates in his home to sell. An investor from out of town was impressed with the quality of the candy and built the factory for quantity production. Blue Mountain Candy was well known to the many people who summered in this resort area.

Next to the candy company a small concession and park, complete with swimming pool, opened up sometime in the late 20s or early 30s. There, the soldiers at Camp Albert C. Ritchie would have sandwiches and milk shakes during summer encampment breaks. Now for those of you too young to recall, don’t snicker at the thought of soldiers drinking milk shakes. The only other thing to drink came from the moonshiner, Old Man Poole (remember Prohibition?) up on the reservoir road who, no doubt did a booming business.

It wasn’t until 1933 that 3.2 beer was sold legally and then the former Chocolate Park concession stand became a popular “R & R” spot. Sometime in the late 30s the chocolate company, which by this time had gone out of business and converted to a textile company, burned to the ground. Very shortly thereafter the present Chocolate Park was built on the concession spot. Various owners tried to change the name and call it the “Three J’s” or the “Knotty Pine Inn,” but the original name stuck. Its much-frequented bar gave hearty competition to “The Red Hen” up in Pen Mar and “The Blue Goose” on McAfee Hill (which was then the Germantown Road).

During the war a captain at Post Headquarters was finally alerted to a mass deception that had worked for weeks. Every time he sought a certain sergeant or corporal he was told “Sorry, sir, he’s just gone to the CP (Command Post).” One day during duty hours when Chocolate Park’s bar was well lined with beer and men, the captain’s jeep pulled quickly behind the building – and there was a mad dash for the exit. Too late! To the amazement of all conspirators the captain walked in, ordered a beer and said. “So this is the new CP.”

A hush prevailed until he’d finished his beer, gone to the door, and turned to say, “Gentlemen, finish your drinks and report to my office!” A disquieted group soon reported in to hear the ultimatum “In the future there had better be only ONE CP! Dismissed!”

My mother, Helen Miller, was working at Blue Mountain Chocolate Company in 1931, the year she and my father, Harold Bittner, were married. J. Fry.

James Rada, Jr.

May 9 marks 75 years since a group of concerned citizens formed the Rocky Ridge Volunteer Fire Company in 1949. Marshall Fishpaw was the first president. Although formed to fight fires, there weren’t many fires to fight. Even into the 1960s, the company responded to less than 15 fire calls a year.

So the company was also charged with other duties in its early years. A light company formed around the same time, and the fire company maintained the street lights in Rocky Ridge. Members also took care of the pond that the fire company drew water from to fight fires.

The fledgling company also had to store its equipment in available space.

“It was housed in the garage of one of the members,” said Dennis Mathias, who has had four generations of his family serve in the fire company.

Their first fire engine wasn’t purchased until 1951. It was a 1931 Model A Ford that was purchased from the Vigilant Hose Company in Emmitsburg for $1,000.

Although there wasn’t a great demand for a fire company in those days, when it was needed, residents were glad to have a company close by to help minimize the damage from fires. They supported the company, both financially and with their labor. The fire company has become a family tradition for some families in Rocky Ridge with multiple generations of families serving their community.

Kenneth Mathias was the first generation of his family to join the Rocky Ridge Fire Company in 1954, and this past March, his great-grandson, Brody Mathias, became the fourth generation to join the fire company when he turned old enough to start riding in the engine and responding to calls. Some of his early memories were of Bingo nights at the fire hall, where family would stay after to clean up and then talk. He got so tired that he would curl up and go to sleep on the floor.

“Back then, the fire company was the big thing to do in Rocky Ridge,” said Dennis. “It was about the only thing to do.”

While residents now have choices for things to do that are relatively close, the drawback has been fewer people are willing to volunteer for their local fire companies. Rocky Ridge has felt that need for volunteers as well, but so far, residents continue to support their fire company.

Charles Brauer moved from New Jersey, where he had helped form a fire company there, to Rocky Ridge in 1962. He joined the Rocky Ridge Fire Company, the first of three generations of his family that have served to date.

Although he was too young to answer fire calls, Charles’s son, Alan Brauer, started helping out around the company when he was just 10 years old. He would help take care of the equipment and train with the others so that he was prepared to join when he was old enough.

Today, when volunteer fire companies are struggling to stay volunteer, family connections and traditions like those in Rocky Ridge allow the fire company to stay volunteer and provide a valuable service to area residents.

“I joined to help out the community, but I also joined for the excitement,” said Dennis.

Jamison Mathias added, “Yes, there’s excitement, but there’s also pride in being a part of something.”

The Rocky Ridge Hall Association provided the company with its first fire hall on Long’s Mill Road just south of town in 1950.

The first new fire engine was purchased in 1955. It was a Dodge truck with an American Fire Apparatus body that had a 400-gallon booster tank and a 500 GPM front mount pump. The engine and the equipment for it cost $1,175.

In 1964, the fire company purchased 1.5 acres north of the town square on Motters Station Road. The land already had a house on it, which the fire company rented. Construction of a new fire hall on the land began in October 1965 and the building was dedicated a year later with Congressman Charles MacMathias and Maryland Comptroller Louis Goldstein attending.

The Rocky Ridge Volunteer Fire Company Ladies Auxiliary was formed in 1955.

Alan remembers responding to a house fire on Christmas Day in 1968. There weren’t enough fire helmets, so he just wore his hat. At one point, he was on the hose line and water was running off the roof onto his head.

“When I got back to the building, I had to break the ice off the front of my coat,” he said.

What sticks in his mind about that fire was how poor the people were, and they lost what little they had on Christmas.

“In the fire service, you see people on some of their worst days,” Alan added.

A more recent major fire happened in 1993. According to Rocky Ridge Fire Company website, “The blizzard of 1993 took its toll on fire calls, the company had a diabetic call where the ambulance crew came on snowmobiles, and then the company had to watch a house burn down, because the road was blocked and the engines could not get there.”

Dennis remembers that call. “The roads were drifting. We were on the state road with the snow plow ahead of us. It hit a drift and went off the road, and we couldn’t make it to the call.”

The company purchased land on Motters Station Road in 1994 for $35,500. The following year, the fire company purchased a Morton building for the new hall, a 90- by 81-foot engine room and a 30- by 102-foot office area. The new fire hall’s total area was 10,350 square feet and cost $255,000.

The Rocky Ridge Fire Company now responds to nearly 300 calls a year and remains all volunteer.

Over the years, the company and its firefighters have seen many changes. It has been in four locations. Equipment has increased the safety of firefighters and has become more effective in fighting fires. It has also grown more expensive. Firefighters also go through more training.

It all comes down to the people who are willing to serve though, and Rocky Ridge has shown that it has had those people, generation after generation.

View Rocky Ridge Fire Company’s advertisement on page 19.

Rocky Ridge VFC’s first fire engine. It was a 1931 Model A Ford that was purchased from the Vigilant Hose Company in Emmitsburg in 1951. Although no longer used, it is still kept at the fire company and used in parades.

(left) Alan Brauer; his daughter, Juliann Frantz; and Gage Frantz are members of the Brauer Family, which has had three generations in the Rocky Ridge Volunteer Fire Company. Alan also holds a picture of his father, Charles, who was the first member of the family who joined the company in 1962.

Jolene Mathias, Kelsey Mathias, Jamison Mathias, Brody Mathias, Andrew Mathias, and Dennis Mathias are three generations of the Mathias Family who have served in the Rocky Ridge Volunteer Fire Company. Kenneth Mathias, deceased, was the first generation of the family to join the fire company in 1954.