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Old Photos - Chewton PA

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The photo is marked as “One of First trains in Chewton.” This is rather curious as the freight car is marked as the “P, McK, & Y RR” – the Pittsburgh, McKeesport, and Youghiogheny Railroad (PMcK&Y) better known as the P-Mickey – which operated primarily east of Pittsburgh. Perhaps the locomotive of the Pittsburgh & Western (P&W) is pulling the P-Mickey coal car to its destination? UPDATE: I found an article that mentions the the P-Mickey loaned freight cars to help out the P&W in late 1897, but that is much later than when the first trains rolled through Chewton. Also, notice what appears to be a station house at the extreme right of the photo. (c1884) Full Size

Identified as the Lawrence Limestone Quarry in Chewton. (c1900)

An early 1900’s photo taken at Keystone Livery Stable on Cement Hill. There are five men in the photo but only four are identified by name as George Cook Sr., Frosty Galbreath, Pete Cook, and Ed Downey.

A photo taken at the old racetrack in Chewton. Front row from left: B. Walters, D. Grinnen, F. Galbreath, D. Hergenrother. Back row from left: C. Staff, unknown, G. King, J. Dunn, J. Galbreath, H. Fox, A. Cunningham, W. Shaner, D. Steiner. (1910) Full Size

A photo of the old Chewton Brewery, an alcohol producing facility that went under with the advent of Prohibition in 1919. It was sold in March 1919 to become the soft drink manufacturing plant known as the Crystal Springs Bottling Company. (c1905)

A group of local residents attending a wedding in Chewton. Sam Grangi is in car at right. (1913)

A view of some of the original homes in Upper Chewton. (1894) Full Size

The LaPatka family at their home on Plum Way/Katherine Street in Chewton. Back row from left: Uncle Mike LaPatka, father John LaPatka, unidentified relative holding Mary LaPatka, mother Mary (Brinczkova) LaPatka. Front row from left: George, Ann, and Mike LaPatka. Mary came from Austria-Hungary in 1899 to live with her half-brother Mike Burik in Chewton. She soon went to Pittsburgh, “married” fellow countryman John LaPatka, and returned to Chewton to start a family. They had thirteen children that survived into infancy. (c1908) Full Size

A photo marked as “Sunday school” class from Chewton. The woman in the back right is Mary LaPatka and the girl in front of her (with head bowed) is her daughter Mary – who later married Robert Aiello in 1936 and lived in Wampum for many years. To the left of young Mary is her sister Ann LaPatka, and at the left bottom of the photo are brothers George and Mike LaPatka. The rest of the individuals are unidentified. (c1910) Full Size

I believe this photo – probably from the 1930’s – is from Chewton. The back is marked simply as “Zak & Kosior families.” I would love to have any info about the people in this photo, the location (of the house), and a more exact date. Full Size

Maid of honor Mary Sobczak (on left) and newlywed bride Anna LaPatka – on the day Anna married Erie-native Frank Concilla at St. Monica’s in June 1926. Anna had a tumultuous life and died when she fell out of a second-story floor window in Pittsburgh in 1943. Mary married Anthony Buchalski in 1928 and spent most of her life in the Chewton area. (June 1926)

Johnny LaPatka Jr. and Nellie Dytko on their wedding day in August 1939. The LaPatka’s and Dytko’s had neighboring farms on what later became Tony Dytko Road in Chewton. Johnny and Nellie had two kids and made their longtime home on Golf Avenue in Ellport. (Aug 1939)

My great grandmother Mary LaPatka on the farm of Tony Dytko Road. Give that poor cow a sandwich already! (c1949) Full Size

Various LaPatka family girls enjoying a summer day on the LaPatka farm in Chewton. (c1948) Full Size

A view of what I believe is William Street, where my mom grew up. (Aug 1963)

Another view of William Street – with who I believe is Jo Kelley walking a dog. (c1963)

This photo was taken on the LaPatka family farm on Tony Dytko Road in the 1948. That’s my grandfather George DeMarc’s car. From left its Ronnie Teck (with flag), Shirley Migut, Patty LaPatka, and Carol Grace Aiello. My grandparents had recently returned from living in Detroit and apparently brought a Tigers pennant along. (1948) Full Size

Josephine (LaPatka) Teck, John Teck, Eddie Teck, and George Migut in the old Connor house (the white house with the pillars still standing on upper Oswald Street) in May 1955. Full Size

What an awesome photo! This is probably my favorite of the thousands of family photos I have acquired. My aunt Kay (LaPatka) Migut prepares to snap a photo of her husband George Migut. I have the resulting photo she took as well. How cool is that!! This was taken on the LaPatka farm on Tony Dytko Road. (c1947) Full Size

A young Ronnie Teck poses proudly in his red wagon. Ronnie attended the Chewton Schools for grades 1-2, St. Teresa’s Catholic School in Koppel for grades 3-8, and then attended Lincoln High School in Ellwood City where he graduated in May 1964. (c1949) Full Size

Wayne Township’s own James W. Cunningham (1840-1909), the son of Joseph & Jeanette Cunningham, was a teacher, soldier, cotton plantation operator, and farmer. He also served as Lawrence County Treasurer from 1894-96. (c1900)

I believe this photo depicts John & Mary (Walukiewicz) Modliszewski, who had three children together and were the longtime owners and operators of the Hennon Greenhouses. (1926)

Shirley Migut and Ronnie Teck standing on Oswald Street in the northern reaches of Chewton. Shirley, the daughter of George Migut and Kay LaPatka, went on to marry Michael Perry Sr. of Ellwood City – the longtime owner and proprietor of Michael’s Furniture store. Full Size

John Biega Sr. and Emma Butkevitz on their wedding day on June 23, 1943. John was a longtime employee of Mathews Conveyer and together they had three children together. (1943)

My maternal grandmother Irene LaPatka, at the family farm on Tony Dytko Road, upon her graduation from Lincoln High School in late May 1942. Miss you Grandma! (1942)


  1. The picture of the “Sunday School” class on this site from Chewton with Mary LaPatka on the right..the lady on the far left is my grandmother Anna McQuiston Kelly. The little girl in the first row to the far right appears to be my Aunt Hazel Kelly Winegar. This picture has to be taken around 1917 or 1918 because she was born in 1916.

  2. (EDITOR’S NOTE) Tammy, It’s cool to know your grandmother is in the “Sunday School” photo! Mary LaPatka is my great grandmother. This photo is marked as 1910 but I’m not sure who marked it or when. But I am certain this photo is from c1910 because of the apparent age of the four LaPatka children in it. Young Mary LaPatka, with her head turned down, was born in June 1907, and looks no more than four years old. Other than the girl sitting on the far right Mary looks like the youngest kid in this photo. Mary’s sister Anna (born July 1902) and brothers George (May 1901) and Mike (November 1903) all appear to be the right age for this to be a mid-1910 photo. The young girl you mention as your Aunt Hazel must be someone else? Jeff

  3. If you look at the adults in the back row and it is hard to tell by the year of the photo but if this photo was late 30’s and these folks were late teens or early 20’s then here is a guess because they look familiar … my mom, Stella Zak would be able to positively identify, Harmony Baptist Road …

    back row, adults only, left to right

    7th – Sophia Zak
    8th – Anastasia Zak (?)
    9th – Josephine Zak
    11th – Albert Sokoloski (who married Mary Zak)

  4. (EDITOR’S NOTE) Joseph, thanks for the info on the Zak & Kosior families photo. If you find out any other info please let me know. Also, keep in mind I just guessed on the approximate year/timeframe of this photo. Thanks. Jeff

  5. In regards to the Zak/Kosior photo, the lady on Albert Sokoloski’s right is my Aunt Sofie Modliszewski Kosior and the lady to his left is my Aunt Stella Modliszewski Zak. They both had large families (about 12 children each). I believe that the photo was taken at the Kosior home which is at the corner of Eliza and Anthony Streets.

  6. I worked at Hennon Greenhouse in Chewton for John. We just called him John Molly. He was wonderful boss. Someone who will unmanned meant to fake throwing a pichfork at me missed grabbing the end . It was going to strike my face upon then I put my hand up and it went thru my hand.This was about 1951 or earlier.i still have the scar.

  7. I grew up in Chewton. My grandparents are Emma and John Biega Sr. My pappy use to run the Polish Club for many years. Thank you for sharing my grandparents wedding photo. They are very much missed by all of us.

  8. Nice looking at the photos. I spent my grade school years living in Chewton. I never knew thee was a race track ln Chewton. Where was it located?

  9. Love seeing the old pictures of the tecks! Especially pictures of my aunt jo teck.

  10. The photo of the little boy with the girl, is that the Ronnie Teck who served in the Vietnam War in 1968-69?

  11. The houses showing views of William Street are actually on Eliza Street. The tall standing house on the right was originally Darl Allens, and is currently mine Dan Allen’s his grandson. The building on the far right with the red hanging sign I believe to be the late Mr. Hill’s Shoe Shop.

  12. (EDITOR’S NOTE) Christopher Sager, Ronnie Teck from the Chewton area served in the U.S. Air Force for several years beginning in 1964. I don’t believe he was ever assigned to Vietnam. Jeff

  13. I believe the girl walking the dog is me. The year is about 1967. My cousin Jo had long beautiful curly fiery red hair. I also owned a red dachshund. My husband looked at the picture and he can tell it is me by the legs.

  14. I lived in “lower” Chewton and went thru 3rd grade in the Chewton schools. Most of the children in the first row of the Zak/Kosior photo were classmates of mine. Ozzie Kosior was one. That makes the photo about 1942-43. The two girls on the left in the first row were sisters, the one on the right, Helen Rysinski.(sp?) They lived right next to the school.You can compare faces to the school pictures on your site.


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