Baldwinsville History Mystery: June 21, 2017
Question: The people in this photo are enjoying a ride on one of the first “daredevil” amusement rides. No, it is not at Coney Island! Do you know what the ride was called and where this one was located?
Last week’s answer: Last week’s photo is dated September 1897. The house is the William H. O’Brien, Sr., home at 13 North St. Posing for the photo are the O’Brien children; from left to right are Charlie, Margaret and Willie. A few years after this photo was taken the family moved to larger quarters at 9 Virginia St.
The children grew up in a home where politics, business and civic affairs were part of everyday life. After college, the three of them returned to Baldwinsville where they each became engaged in community matters and achieved prominence in their own right.
Charlie (D. Charles O’Brien), a graduate of Syracuse University and Columbia Law School, practiced law in Syracuse, served 25 years as chairman of the Lysander Democratic Party and was active in the American Legion and local sports.
Willie (William H. O’Brien, Jr.), was a graduate of Syracuse University School of Law and served as Baldwinsville postmaster from 1936 until 1948. It was during his time as postmaster that the “new post office” at 1 Charlotte St. was built.
Margaret L. O’Brien entered the teaching field and later served as acting postmistress in Baldwinsville. She was also politically active in the town of Lysander. For many years she served as chairman of Baldwinsville’s annual March of Dimes campaign.
The Virginia Street residence was home base for the O’Brien siblings until shortly before Margaret’s death in 1990. She passed away at the age of 95 and is interred with her parents and brothers in the family plot at St. Mary’s Cemetery on Tappan Street.
Contact Editor Sarah Hall at firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a message at 434-8889 ext. 310 with your guess by 5 p.m. Friday (please leave the information in the message; we are not generally able to return calls regarding History Mystery responses). If you are the first person to correctly identify an element in the photo, your name and guess will appear in next week’s Messenger, along with another History Mystery feature. History Mystery is a joint project of the Museum at the Shacksboro Schoolhouse and the Baldwinsville Public Library.