Mary (My Oldest Sister) Live In Mahanoy City - The Pool Room 1916


After Mary and John Grazel were married they lived an a rented house in Mahanoy City. During the day John worked in the mines as a contract miner. John also played the accordion and mastered a band that played locally. Such a musician could be assured of extra income. These bands were treasured by the locals where both saloons and church halls offered good times and dancing on week ends. This is where the various ethnic groups met for socialization and bonding. Eventually such clubs as the Elks Club and the Moose Organization also emerged. Each ethnic group had their favorite destination. This is where the early residents bargained for wives. Everyone carried pictures and letters from sisters, female cousins etc. who were still living in the olde country. Later as the population increased they were the meeting place for families and courtship. House parties were also popular and a good accordionist was always in demand.

As small as it was Mahanoy City was the hub of activity for the region. All the churches, businesses and banks etc. were there. Mike was quick to see this and began to board with Mary as he continued his huckstering and his more lucrative business of hauling coal, in his new 4 ton wagon. The wagon, his team of horses along with his surrey and his fancy horse, Jimmie, were housed in a rented stable.. Mary worked hard and had two other boarders. In many ways she was a lot like Mike, she was ambitious and always eager to better herself.

In 1916 John heard about a pool room that has for sale. It was on Center Street and next to a saloon--an ideal location! Mary was more than pleased with what she heard, “John, it's a great opportunity to run our own business but we will need a partner. I'm sure the down payment will be beyond our means. I know Mike will also be interested.”

Mike thought It was a great idea. He'd been saving money hoping for such an opportunity A partnership was formed.