New Local History Books Publishing This Week

This week, several exciting local history books are hitting the shelves, offering a glimpse into the past of your community. 


Farrell's Ice Cream Parlour by Patrick J. Baker

Farrell's Ice Cream Parlours was an iconic restaurant chain that originated in Portland, Oregon. Originally opened by Bob Farrell and Ken McCarthy in 1963, the family-friendly chain would become known for classic ice cream sundaes and birthday party celebrations. The restaurants were designed using a turn-of-the-20th-century theme with a marble-topped soda fountain, Tiffany lamps, and waiters dressed in colorful vests and skimmer hats. While continuing to open new stores in Portland, Farrell and McCarthy developed a franchise program to expand Farrell's into other cities in Oregon, Washington, and Northern California.
Patrick J. Baker worked at Farrell's Ice Cream Parlours in Greendale, Wisconsin, from 1981 to 1985 and later became an investor in Farrell's when the chain was revived from 2003 to 2019. Taken from numerous personal interviews and correspondence with Bob Farrell and Ken McCarthy, Baker shares the history of the chain up to the 1972 sale to the Marriott Corporation. This book uses photographs from the author's extensive collection of images of the Farrell's in Oregon, which were commissioned by Farrell and McCarthy in the 1960s.

North Portland Odd Fellows by David D. Scheer and Bruce Haney

The Odd Fellows of North Portland were ordinary blue-collar workers who were able to have an extraordinary impact on their community through the tools they learned from organizing as a lodge. Lodges were a safety net for these workers, as they were one of the only sources at that time for insurance and sick pay. William Killingsworth, a charter member of Peninsula Lodge and whom Killingsworth Street is named after, believed this to be true, so he formed an investment company that began connecting the other North Portland communities via rails. As these communities were connected, Odd Fellows lodges sprang up. First was Peninsula Lodge No. 128. Then there were Woodlawn, Laurel Lodge, and Kenton Lodge, which later became Star Lodge, a lodge for police officers. Over the years, other lodges formed as well. Now, they have all closed except for Peninsula, which thrives because it was able to adapt to a modern approach for operating a lodge.

Florida in Flight: An Aviation History by Joe Knetsch, Nick Wynne & Robert J. Redd

Join a trio of Florida historians on this exploration of Florida by air. Few states can claim an aeronautical heritage as rich as Florida's. From early flights in tiny cloth-covered planes to the latest rocket ships, and from the first passenger flights to journeys that span the globe, Florida skies have seen the most primitive forms of aviation evolve into the most technologically advanced. In 1910, Lincoln Beachey won $1500 at the Orange County Fair for staying in the air for five minutes, just three years before Domingo Rosillo made the 90-mile flight across the Florida Strait in two hours and eight minutes, setting world records for both distance flown over water and altitude attained. A couple decades later, Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan left Miami on the first leg of their around-the-world flight that ended in disaster.


Vintage Georgia Signs by Tim Hollis

Author Tim Hollis celebrates classic Peach State signage. Many Georgians have never stopped to realize how many of their fond memories involve advertising signs. Although these neon spectaculars, billboards and even signs painted directly onto brick walls were created expressly to persuade customers or tourists to patronize businesses, many such signs remained in place for so long that they became landmarks in their own right. From a bevy of signage for Georgia's own Coca-Cola to tourist attractions from Okefenokee Swamp Park in the south to Tallulah Point in the mountains, revisit the signs that have wormed their way into the collective memory.


Franconia Notch by Erin Paul Donovan

In 1805, a member of a survey crew working on building a road through New Hampshire's Franconia Notch walked down to Ferrin's Pond (today's Profile Lake), gazed up the side of Cannon Mountain, and was mesmerized by what he saw--the state's most iconic symbol, the Old Man of the Mountain profile. A few years later, the Flume Gorge, an 800-foot-long natural gorge, was discovered. These natural curiosities quickly gained national attention, and by the mid-1800s, Franconia Notch was a tourist mecca; the limited stagecoach travel through the notch became daily, and the simple overnight accommodations were replaced with the Flume House and the Profile House, two grand hotels that could accommodate hundreds of overnight guests. After fire destroyed the Profile House in 1923, the property was put for sale. A joint effort between the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests, the State of New Hampshire, and the New Hampshire Federation of Women's Clubs led to the creation of the Franconia Notch Forest Reservation and Memorial Park (today's Franconia Notch State Park) in 1928. This book takes readers on a journey through the rich and fascinating history of Franconia Notch during the mid-19th to late 20th century.


Eerie Delaware by Josh Hitchens

Uncanny stories, local legends and ghostly encounters from the First State. Delaware may be small, but every corner of it is filled with strange and unusual history. Horrifying tales of ghosts haunt places both old and new. The Castle contains many stories of mysterious specters, but the mystery of the house's first owners is the truly creepy tale. The legend of the Devil's Road, called a myth by some, will chill your bones and make your spine tingle. In a state so close to the sea, stories of murder and mayhem include tales of piracy and maybe even cannibalism. Delaware native and paranormal historian Josh Hitchens invites you to join him on a journey through the spooky side of the First State.


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