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Cupid’s arrow struck mail carrier

125 Years Ago, 1896

Taken directly from the Youngstown Vindicator:

“Carrier Cossler secures a short vacation. Quietly married to Miss Jennie Ballantine. Surprised all his friends. The Post Office a very successful matrimonial bureau.

“Cupid, the God of Love, has transferred his headquarters from McNaughton’s Troy laundry to Uncle Sam’s domain on Market Street, and his string of arrows, let loose in that spacious apartment where so many young, athletic and handsome fellows were wont to gather at such regular hours, has had unusual effect and a surprising good result follows the change of Cupid’s location.

“Henry J. Cossler, collector No. 13, of the mail carriers, asked permission yesterday for leave of absence today. It was granted. To only one carrier did he confide his intention. Bright and early this morning he appeared at the probate office and secured a marriage license for himself and Miss Jennie S. Ballantine, a handsome young lady.

“After the marriage, which occurred this afternoon at the residence of Hamilton Harris in Haselton, the happy pair went to housekeeping at once in No. 635 Mill Street and Cossler will be at work as a collector in the morning. It was intended the wedding was to be a quiet one, and no news was given out, but late in the day Cossler’s absence created some suspicion and the truth was discovered by a confidant.

“The marriage leaves Tom Duffy of the carrier force the only single man among the clerks and carriers whose love has not yet been plighted, at least so ’tis said, and the boys say Duffy is actually bullet proof. But he is handsome and will yet, no doubt, get corralled.”

75 Years ago, 1946

Four young women were on their way to Youngstown from Europe, bound for their husbands. Edith Alice Cardelein, Catherine Domer and Gwendoline A. Skeldon were all aboard the Queen Mary while Ivy Domhoff sailed via the Zebulon Vance. Air Corps Capt. James R. Skeldon had not seen his wife, Gwendoline, since before D-Day on June 6, 1944. “I married the best looking girl in England,” he noted while adding that he had been overseas for 33 months. The two met at a Red Cross dance and were married on March 11, 1943.

Frank L. Domhoff, a first lieutenant in the Eighth and Ninth Airborne Division, met his wife Ivy when she was stationed at the British Torpedo School in Brighton, England. They were married on Jan. 22, 1945, and planned to relocate to Los Angeles after visiting family in Youngstown. Lewis J. Cardelein married his wife, Edith Alice, in 1942 after meeting in her hometown of Nottingham, England. He had not seen his wife, or their young son Lewis Jr., in several months.

Air Corps 1st Lt. Clarence H. Domer met his wife, Catherine, while he was stationed in Cheshire, England, where she worked for the British Ministry of Health. Clarence was relocated to North Africa and then to Italy before securing leave back to England for their wedding in November 1944. Fifteen months had passed since he had seen his wife but he planned to travel to New York City to be there when her ship docked.

40 Years Ago, 1981

Students in the senior millwork-carpentry class at the Mahoning County Joint Vocational School completed a unique and challenging project for the Pioneer Village at the Canfield Fairgrounds. Their task was to restore two baggage carts to their original condition. The iron-wheeled baggage carts greeted crowds near the front of the old Erie Railroad station as folks imagined valises, trunks, hat boxes, and cases atop their wooden planks. Their age, though, was showing and nearly 100 years of use caused rot, rust, and missing parts.

Chuck Sittig, instructor of the millwork-carpentry department at JVS, approached the Canfield Fair Board with a proposition to have his students restore and repair the carts. The project joined a long list of other work done by the students, except this one offered an indoor option on cold days. If the temperature dropped below 15 degrees, the students would work indoors. On those so-called warmer days? They continued work on their outdoor tasks. Sittig believed this helped the students become acclimated to any future working conditions.

The students spent three hours each school day in the laboratory learning basic woodworking and cabinetmaking skills. Their work on the vintage carts including removing loose rust, coating each nut and bolt with a rust-proof primer, and applying finishing coats to all of the metal workings. The rotten wood was replaced and treated for weather before the carts were reassembled. After a few months of work, the carts were returned to their home at Pioneer Village, ready for their debut a few months later. Sittig hoped that the students would point out their involvement with pride, saying “we did that!”

• Compiled from the archives of The Vindicator by Traci Manning, MVHS Curator of Education.

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