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50 Years ago august 1969

By Jim Ignasher

Army Private E-2 Anthony Caito of Greenville finished basic training at Fort Dix, New Jersey, and was to be stationed in West Germany.

Airman Richard E. Knight of Greenville was serving in the U. S. Air Force as an aviation mechanic.

Army Private E-2 Allen H. Uttley of Greenville was serving in the U. S. Army.

Senior Cadet 2/c Stephen E. Votolato of the Smithfield Junior Naval Cadets of America took a two-week trip to Italy, Switzerland, and Austria, as part of an international exchange program.

Members of the Pleasant View Aviation Club, chaired by Mrs. Thornton, a teacher at Anna McCabe School, were awarded free airplane rides at North Central State Airport as a reward for achieving the school honor roll, and for perfect attendance during the school year.

Those students included: Judith Brown, Nancy Gilman, Patricia Ledbetter, Jo Ann Scorpio, Richard Stelle, Frank Tassoni, Brian Monfils, and William Steere.

One local retailer was advertising a “fully transistorized” 8-Track stereo tape player, with mounting hardware, for $44.44. By a show of hands, how many had an 8-Track in their car? Me too.

In case one needed a car to put their 8-Track in, a local auto dealership was offering a 1965 Chevy Malibu Super-Sport convertible, with a V-8 engine and four-on-the-floor shifting, for a mere $1,295. Care to guess what that car’s worth today?

A hamburger restaurant known as Custer’s Last Stand was once located at the southwest corner of Routes 44 and 5 where ironically a Burger King stands today. In August of 1969, if one clipped a coupon from a local newspaper, they could receive a free “Wild Western – All Beef Hamburger”, “Healthfully broiled over an open flame.”

The Family Store, once located at 625 Putnam Pike in Greenville, offered back to school button-down shirts for $4, “bell-bottom” and straight-leg pants for $6, and sport coats for $15.95. It was a time when kids still dressed up to go to school.

Between August 15th and 18th the famous Woodstock Music Festival was held in upstate New York. Fun fact: the festival was named for the town of Woodstock, New York, where the event was originally scheduled to be held, but circumstances arose that required a change in venue. Therefore, the concert was actually held in Bethel, New York, located about 60 miles from Woodstock.

Julio Giammarco, and Robert Ricci, owners of The Town & Country Club once located on Farnum Pike across from the present-day Elks Club, sponsored a water show at the pool to benefit the Smithfield Boys Club.

Smithfield’s Chief of Police Arthur B. Gould, was awarded the Legion of Mary by Our Lady of Providence Presidium.

With the first manned moon landing barely three weeks earlier, NASA announced that manned space missions to Mars and Venus might be possible by the early 1980s. The estimated cost to fund the projects was 24 billion dollars. Unfortunately history has shown that this didn’t happen, but imagine if it had!

On August 30, the first “Interface Message Processor”, a device that allowed one computer to “talk” to another, went into service at UCLA. This was the world’s first baby-step towards what we know today as “The Internet”.