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Mr. O.K.: 1942

Mr. O.K.: 1942

November 1942. Lititz, Pennsylvania. "Mr. O.K. Bushong, express agent. Two trains a day pass through Lititz on the Lancaster-Reading Railroad. He says that passenger trade has increased 100 percent since war." Photo by Marjory Collins, Office of War Information. View full size.


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Been Here Many Times

I've been over this RR crossing many times in my life, this being maybe 15 minutes from where I live. Lititz is my dad's hometown, and most of his side of the family lived there. For many years, being there meant the ever-present aroma of Wilbur's Chocolate wafting throughout the town, now just a memory. Same goes for most of the relatives who once lived there. Lititz is a quaint town with many nice little shops, well worth visiting. The Wilbur's building is a nice hotel now, fortunately retaining most of the original factory part of the structure. Many locals, myself included, considered the chocolate once made there, especially "Wilbur Buds," superior to Hershey's.

Railroad Rationing

Rationing did impact the railroads in many ways and just about anything that could be moved was pressed into service as a result. As big users of steel, many alloys simply weren't available, and the War Production Board limited locomotive production to existing designs for freight or dual-service engines. Railroads were also obliged to locate and provide parts for these new engines from suppliers or make substitutions. Passenger ridership skyrocketed, but production of new cars was prohibited after 1942. Dining cars were subject to the same food restrictions as consumers. Freight cars weren't immune either, with "war emergency" boxcars and hoppers built with wooden sides.

What is he leaning on?

That thing with the words ROAD PILOT cast into it, what is it?

["The perfect highway signal." - Dave]

OK hairpiece

Would you call that a rug? Glad he is proud of his work. I guess railroads were not hurt by the wartime rationing?

Something's not right

Shouldn't the sign read " Stop Look Listen"? It's things like this that keep me awake at night.

[When your sign is a circle, the longest word has to be in the middle. - Dave]

How times change

I was taught "STOP, LOOK, LISTEN." Progress, I suppose.

Over his shoulder

Home of the Wilbur Chocolate Company

Nice story about the property here:

Stop Listen Look

Makes a lot of sense to keep you ears as well as your eyes open for a train. I’ve found listening is very important in some other aspects of driving. There’s a curving hilly road I park and drive on once a week, and whole flocks of cyclists come whizzing down the hill after doing the challenge of going up. When I pull out into traffic from parking at the curb, I can hear the pack coming before I see them coming around the bend, and I always leave my window open and tune my ears to the street for the sound of the speeding bikes.

Railroad Rhetoric

You want to look and listen, not listen and look, because the light arrives before the sound.

In any case "Stop, look, and listen" is hendiadys - substitution of conjunction for subordination. The original would be "Stop to look and listen."

O.K. Not O.K.

Name: Ohmer King Bushong
Age: 57
Born: 1885
Died: Feb. 20, 1945
Education: 2 years high school
Employment: R.R. Station Agent
Address: 202 S. Broad St. Lititz, Pennsylvania
Wife: Gertrude

O.K. Bushong died at age 60 about 27 months after this photo was taken.

Looks like the same spot.

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