STAN MUSIAL PLAQUE EVENT 2022

Stan "The Man" Musial Historic Marker at 600 Meldon Avenue or the corner of Sixth Street and Meldon Avenue as of July 30, 2022
STAN “THE MAN” MUSIAL
Pennsylvania Historic and Museum Commission (PHMC)Historical Marker Plaque Dedication
Saturday, July 30, 2022
SCHEDULE OF EVENTS FANS and FRIENDS of STAN “THE MAN” MUSIAL nighttime gathering: Friday evening, July 29 at 6:00 p.m. - Donora’s Croatian Club, 329 Castner Avenue (Fourth Street and Castner Avenue) - Mingle with other Musial fans and share stories. Some food will be provided while other food and beverages will be available for purchase. Join other club members for their monthly drawing night.
HISTORICAL PRESENTATION - Stan "The Man" Musial: Saturday at 10:00 a.m.Donora Borough Building Banquet Hall, 603 Meldon Avenue (Sixth Street entrance) - There was a time in America when it seemed as though even the most casual baseball fan knew that Stan Musial was from Donora, Pennsylvania. That's a testament to the personality and character of Stan Musial, who made it his business to intentionally tell people that his hometown was Donora. A few days after the St. Louis Cardinals defeated the New York Yankees in the 1942 World Series, the 21-year-old Musial was back in Donora, clerking at Labash's Store on McKean Avenue. Even though Stan lived most of his life in St. Louis, he never forgot his roots in Donora. Stan loved Donora and he remained connected to it throughout his life. This historical presentation is not so much a statistical review of Stan's career, but rather the arc of his life. The presentation itself will contain photos, game footage and stories from Donora Historical Society archivist and curator Brian Charlton. Allow 1 hour.
Q&A and STORYTELLING: Saturday at 11:00 a.m.Donora Borough Building Banquet Hall, 603 Meldon Avenue (Sixth Street entrance) - After the Historical Presentation, through audience participation, all will have the chance to share their Stan Musial memories, stories or memorabilia. Allow 1 hour.
PHMC MUSIAL HISTORICAL MARKER PLAQUE BLESSING: Saturday at 12:00 p.m. - 600 Meldon Avenue (Meldon Avenue and Sixth Street) - The “Stan ‘The Man’ Musial” PHMC Plaque will be blessed by Fr. Kevin Dominik of St. Andrew the Apostle Catholic Church of the Mid-Mon Valley (Donora, Monongahela and Charleroi). Fr. Dominik is also a Polish American who studied in Krakow, Poland while in seminary.
PHMC MUSIAL HISTORICAL MARKER PLAQUE DEDICATION: Saturday at 12:05 p.m. - 600 Meldon Avenue (Meldon Avenue and Sixth Street) - The “Stan ‘The Man’ Musial” PHMC Plaque will be unveiled and dedicated with comments by the Donora Historical Society, the PHMC, Donora native Wayne Stewart and the Musial Family.
MUSIAL / DONORA BOOK AUTHORS: Saturday at 12:30 p.m.Donora Borough Building Banquet Hall, 603 Meldon Avenue (Sixth Street entrance) - Various book authors that have written about Stan Musial, the Musial family or the history of Donora will be on hand to answer questions and sign and sell their books that include Donora native Wayne Stewart who wrote "STAN THE MAN - The Life and Times of Stan Musial" and Kathleen Shoop who wrote "The Strongman and the Mermaid" and "The Magician." Other books and authors may be on hand.
RECEPTION: Saturday at 12:30 p.m.Donora Borough Building Banquet Hall, 603 Meldon Avenue (Sixth Street entrance) - After the PHMC Plaque is unveiled, we’ll return to the Donora Borough Building Banquet Hall for a Musial plaque dedication reception to mingle with other Musial fans, talk to the book authors and share refreshments and food.
FOOD: Donora Fire Department, 605 Meldon Avenue - additional food prepared by the Donora Fire Department with their food truck and grill outdoors will be available for purchase.
SMOG MUSEUM OPEN HOUSE: Saturday at 1:00 p.m. - 595 McKean Avenue - Visit the Donora Historical Society and Smog Museum to see our Stan “The Man” Musial memorabilia and other Donora artifact collections.
RSVP: If you’re interested in attending any of the above events, please send us your name, number in your party, email address and phone number to be added to a list so that we can start to get a head count. The indoor events may have an attendance limit.
HOTELS: If you’re interested in staying in a hotel local to Donora, we have a blocked room rate of $70.00/night for July 29, 30 and 31 at the Holiday Inn Express & Suites at 181 Finley Road, Belle Vernon, PA 15012 which is 3.5 miles away. When booking your reservation, tell them that the Group Name is Stan Musial Event. Other hotel choices can be found here: Donora Historical Society and Smog Museum - Smog Museum.
STAN “THE MAN” MUSIALPHMC Plaque Fundraising Drive
PHMC IN DONORA: Donora currently has two blue roadside plaques with raised yellow lettering commemorating the “1948 Smog” and “Cement City.” The "1948 Smog" plaque stands in front of the Donora Public Library on Meldon Avenue and the "Cement City" plaque stands to the left of Chestnut Street and the Donora Veterans Memorial off Route 837 close to the Stan “The Man” Musial Bridge. These plaques were cast and erected years ago by the Pennsylvania Historic and Museum Commission (PHMC) to recognize two things that give Donora incredible historic depth, but as we all know, Donora’s historic depth is deeper than just these two subjects. With your help, Donora is now about to get a third plaque.
STAN MUSIAL: The exploits of Donora and St. Louis baseball great Stan “The Man” Musial need no explanation as they speak for themselves. To recognize an individual for a PHMC roadside plaque, that person would not just need exemplary qualifications, but be deceased for at least five years. When Stan Musial died in 2013, the requirement at that time was that a person need be deceased for ten years. In 2020, the Donora Historical Society learned that requirement had changed to just five years, so we decided to submit an application to nominate him for a PHMC plaque. This application process is extremely comprehensive and resulted in us submitting 20 copies of a 20-page application documenting why Stan Musial is worthy of his own PHMC roadside plaque among the 2,300 others that already exist throughout the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
OUTCOME: In March of 2021, we learned that out of the 39 applications submitted to the PHMC in 2020, our application was accepted among a group of 22 others that included people like Pittsburgh artist Andy Warhol. While the PHMC reviews and approves the applications and casts the plaque, they do not pay for it.
FUNDRAISING: Now that our application was accepted, our next order of business will be raising the necessary money needed to have the plaque cast, in this case $2,150.
Our goal is to not only raise the necessary money for the plaque, but also host a nice reception for those attending the plaque dedication. Any monies in excess of the $2,150 for the plaque, will go towards some sort of refreshments and food for the reception. Any additional monies above that will be used to print a souvenir postcard to commemorate the day and to give donations to Donora organizations that Stan would have supported like he did in the past. While ambitious, we hope we can honor Stan and give those in attendance a nice experience in Donora.
The Donora Historical Society is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit educational organization that is eligible for tax deductible donations to the fullest extent allowed by law.
If you’re interested in helping with a donation toward the plaque and dedication festivities, please send a check with a note saying the donation is for the “Stan Musial plaque.”
Please make checks payable to: Donora Historical Society
Please mail to: Donora Historical Society P.O. Box 522 Donora, PA 15033
THE RESULTS


Friday, July 29, 2022
FANS and FRIENDS of STAN “THE MAN” MUSIAL
CRO CLUB: Donora's Croatian Club on Castner Avenue was the venue of choice for our FANS and FRIENDS of STAN "THE MAN" MUSIAL gathering. The IC Light sign shown below was hung on the fence facing Castner Avenue to promote the event. The Cro Club dates to 1951 and is a time capsule of sorts with all club fixtures original to 1951 that include the bar area and ballroom in the upper level (Fourth Street entrance) and duckpin bowling alleys in the lower level (Castner Avenue entrance.) The Donora Historical Society uses this venue on occasion for sports related historical presentations, but we normally use the ballroom to give people the opportunity to sit, order food and drinks and enjoy our historic presentations usually dealing with Donora High School football.
FANS and FRIENDS of STAN “THE MAN” MUSIAL: This scheduled nighttime gathering was held the night before Saturday's festivities where fans, friends and even relatives of Stan Musial did a "meet and greet" at Donora’s Croatian Club. Memorabilia and stories were shared along with food prepared by the Cro Club and paid for by the money raised for this plaque event. Fans and relatives came from as far as California, Texas, Mississippi and Ontario Canada.
MAIN BAR: In the photo to the left, cousins Mary Kay Pawelec Sidary (originally from Donora) and Terry Musial Dalton (Mississippi) were in town for the Stan Musial Historic Marker dedication. They are in the pool table area of the main bar where we had our FANS and FRIENDS of STAN "THE MAN" MUSIAL gathering.
In the photo to the right, 1953 Donora High School classmates Vinnie Valeri, Ted Musial (from Mississippi and not related to Stan) and Bob Rosborough caught up and reminisced. Ted and Bob both attended the Stan Musial Historic Marker dedication on Saturday.
DUCKPIN BOWLING: In the photo to the left, cousins McKenzie Perdok (Texas) and Terry Musial Dalton (Mississippi), who were in town for the Stan Musial Historic Marker dedication, tried their hand for the first time at duckpin bowling in the lower level of the Cro Club.
In the photo to the right, Ted Musial (Mississippi) and Troy Perdok (Texas) rolled a few on the duckpin bowling alleys.
NOTE: The duckpin alleys do NOT have mechanized pin setters. The pin setting and ball return are accomplished the way they were done in 1951, manually with humans. For those not familiar with duckpin bowling, the pins and balls are of a smaller profile that allow almost anyone to easily bowl. The Cro Club runs their own bowling leagues in the winter months for club members with an occasional open night for non-members. The annual club membership is a very affordable $8/year.
Saturday, July 30, 2022
STAN MUSIAL HISTORIC PRESENTATION
HISTORIC PRESENTATION: Saturday's indoor festivities took place at the Donora Borough Hall which was rented with money that we raised for this event. We started the day at 10:00 a.m. with a historic presentation on Stan Musial. The Borough Hall is about 100 feet from the Smog Museum down Sixth Street.
PRESENTATION SYNOPSIS: There was a time in America when it seemed as though even the most casual baseball fan knew that Stan Musial was from Donora, Pennsylvania. That's a testament to the personality and character of Stan Musial, who made it his business to intentionally tell people that his hometown was Donora. A few days after the St. Louis Cardinals defeated the New York Yankees in the 1942 World Series, the 21-year-old Musial was back in Donora, clerking at Labash's Store on McKean Avenue. Even though Stan lived most of his life in St. Louis, he never forgot his roots in Donora. Stan loved Donora and he remained connected to it throughout his life. This historical presentation was not so much a statistical review of Stan's career, but rather the arc of his life. The presentation itself contained photos, game footage and stories.
MUSIAL IMAGES: Used to accompany the Historic Presentation were enlarged images from our vast collection of Stan Musial photos. These photos were expertly enlarged by Badzik Printing Services, Inc. of Donora and arranged by the Donora Historical Society.
STAN MUSIAL PRESENTATION: Various images and videos of Stan Musial were projected onto a screen for the presentation that highlighted Musial's life and career. Master storyteller Brian Charlton of the Donora Historical Society led the presentation which is one that we've given in the past at various locations throughout southwestern Pennsylvania including the University of Pittsburgh.
Photo courtesy of Jeff Helsel of the Mon Valley Independent.
PRESENTATION PANEL DISCUSSION: Brian Charlton (Donora Historical Society archivist and curator) led a panel that included book authors: Donora High School class of 1969 grad Wayne Stewart (STAN THE MAN - The Life and Times of Stan Musial - 2010) and Kathleen Shoop (AFTER the FOG - a Novel - 2012, THE STRONGMAN AND THE MERMAID - 2019, and THE MAGICIAN - 2021) writer of the Donora Story Collection of historical fiction
MESSAGE FROM ST. LOUIS: The St. Louis Cardinals were contacted prior to our historic marker dedication to see how they might like to participate in our event. We worked with their Manager of Alumni Relations Larry State who had Cardinals President Bill DeWitt III make a video connecting St. Louis to Donora on our special day. Bill is the son of St. Louis Cardinals owner and CEO Bill DeWitt Jr. DeWitt's video opened up our presentation with a message all the way from St. Louis.
To view the video, click St. Louis Cardinals President Bill DeWitt III.
BEFORE HE WAS "THE MAN": Before he was known as "The Man", we called him Stashu (Stushu - a Polish nickname for Stanley) in Donora (see the photo to the right.) Getting his athletic start with the Polish Falcons in gymnastics and track and field, Stashu progressed in baseball locally, first with the Heslep All-Stars and then with the Zincs mill team and Donora Dragons. And also progressed in basketball with the St. Mary's Saints, Donora Dragons and then later with the Monongahela Garagemen.
AFTER DONORA: The presentation continued with Stan Musial being discovered in Monessen and his ascension through the minor leagues that included teams like the Rochester Red Wings before he landed permanently with the St. Louis Cardinals where he became "The Man." See the photo to the left.
MUSIAL CROWD: Family and friends visited from as far away as California, Texas, Mississippi, Missouri, Virginia and Canada to learn more about the early years of Stan Musial growing up in Donora.
Stan Musial's immediate family attended from California and Missouri and included daughters: Gerry Musial Ashley, Janet Musial Schwarze and Jean Musial Edmonds, along with their families.
Other family members came from California, Virginia and locally. One of the best compliments that we could have received this day was from a Musial daughter Janet Musial Schwarze who said, "I’m teary eyed, I didn’t think I would learn more about dad, but I did.”
MUSIAL IMAGES: Stan Musial’s daughter, Janet Musial Schwarze, and grandson, Brian Schwarze, both of St. Louis, look at historic photos of Musial on display during the Stan Musial historical presentation in the Donora Borough Hall. They are looking at Stan's Donora High School basketball team photo.
Photo courtesy of Jeff Helsel of the Mon Valley Independent.
STAN MUSIAL STORYTELLING
STORYTELLING: If there's one thing we've learned from our many years of discussing Stan Musial at the Smog Museum is that everyone has their own stories about "The Man", and they all want to share them. Following the historical presentation, we gave everyone that wanted the opportunity to do just that.
The unexpected bonus that we had this day is that Walter C. Kosakowski (Kosa) showed up to share his Musial stories. Originally from Donora and graduating in 1946, Walter was one of the batboys that replaced Stan Musial as a batboy for the Donora Zincs when Musial started to play as a regular player when he was a teenager. Musial would have been eight years older than Walter at that time. Among other stories, Walter recalled his experiences of stopping the trolleys at Americo Park in Donora when Stan was up to bat so he wouldn't hit them as they drove by.
93-year-old Walter Kosakowski is shown in the photo to the right with 12-year-old Cogan Schuster who were both in attendance. This was the perfect picture that reflects that baseball in general and Stan Musial in particular are enjoyed by both young and old.
Photo courtesy of Jeff Helsel of the Mon Valley Independent.
HISTORIC MARKER DEDICATION
DEDICATION: Following the indoor Stan "The Man" Musial historic presentation at the Donora Borough Hall, all in attendance made their way outdoors and down Sixth Street, the street where Stan Musial was born, to the corner of Meldon Avenue directly across the street from the Police and Fire Departments for the Stan "The Man" Musial historic marker dedication.
GETTING STARTED: Now outside, the crowd gathered on the nearby lawn area and sidewalk at the intersection of Sixth Street and Meldon Avenue in anticipation of the historic marker unveiling.
The cloth covered Stan "The Man" Musial historic marker awaits everyone in the photo to the left.
OPENING REMARKS - DONORA HISTORICAL SOCIETY: Dressed in Cardinal red in the photo to the right, Donora Historical Society volunteer Mark Pawelec made a few opening remarks and introduced each of the speakers for the Stan "The Man" Musial historic marker dedication. The Stan Musial plaque is to his left covered with a cloth created by Donora Historical Society volunteers.
The BOSE sound system that was used was generously donated in 2020 by Steve Acai of Raleigh, North Carolina whose father Steve graduated from Donora High School in 1933. The sound system was powered by a portable silent generator loaned by Donora resident and volunteer.
PLAQUE BLESSING: Aside from Stan's love for his family and baseball, two other things that were extremely important to him were his Polish heritage and Catholic faith. Father Kevin Dominik from St. Andrew the Apostle Roman Catholic Church of the Mid-Mon Valley (with his residence in Donora) is obviously Catholic but is also Polish American just like Stan. Father Kevin said a few words of spiritual encouragement in both English and Polish and blessed our plaque with holy water setting the tone for the rest of the dedication. It was a nice touch and tribute to Stan and the Musial family who are seated in the photo to the left of Father Kevin.
Photo courtesy of Jeff Helsel of the Mon Valley Independent.
PLAQUE DEDICATION - WAYNE STEWART: Donora High School graduate Wayne Stewart (class of 1969) represented our Donora community, both locally and from afar, with dedication remarks before the Stan "The Man" Musial historic marker was unveiled. Wayne summarized his career both on and off the field. Wayne has done extensive research on Stan for a book that he wrote back in 2010.
Wayne also played on Donora's baseball team with another guy from Donora - Ken Griffey Sr. and wrote a book on Ken Sr. and Ken Griffey Jr.
The Musial family is to the left of Wayne in the photo.
PLAQUE DEDICATION - HEINZ HISTORY CENTER: One of our more important partnerships at the Donora Historical Society that we formed years ago, is with the Heinz History Center of Pittsburgh. The Heinz History Center (HHC) is Western Pennsylvania's history museum. The Donora Historical Society is an Affiliate member through their History Center Affiliate Program (HCAP). Our Affiliate Manager Robert Stakeley was on hand and said a few words about our partnership but more importantly what Stan Musial means to Western Pennsylvania.
In 2019, the Donora Historical Society was one of five HCAP sites chosen out of over 400 to help teach the second HHC sponsored Osher Lifelong Learning Institute's (OLLI) program at the University of Pittsburgh (Pitt.) The sold out five-week HHC-Osher class was titled History 412: Discover the Sites and Stories That Make Our Region Unique. The Donora Historical Society's Brian Charlton, along with author and Stan Musial researcher Kathleen Shoop, taught the fourth week of the Pitt-Osher session class on April 3, 2019, on the Pitt campus in Oakland in the English Nationality Room of the Cathedral of Learning. That evening's session was titled, Stan "The Man" Musial.
AMERICAN LEGION: Stan Musial never forgot his military roots, especially in Donora, where he was a long-standing member of Donora's Ernest E. Jobes American Legion - Post 212 who he generously supported over the years up until his passing. As a way to reciprocate Stan's generosity, current members of Post 212, Ernest E. Jobes American Legion (women's) Auxiliary - Unit 212 and the Donora Veterans Council were in attendance to recognize him. See the photo to the right.
The Donora Veterans Council takes on the responsibility of maintaining Donora's military banners displayed throughout town that include a banner for Stan Musial usually displayed at the corner of Sixth Street (the street where Stan was born) and McKean Avenue in front of the Union Pharmacy and just across the street from the Smog Museum. The banner is also just a block away from his historic marker.
DEDICATION CROWD: Most of the attendees from the indoor historic presentation were joined by even more people on the corner of Sixth Street and Meldon Avenue in anticipation of the unveiling of the Stan "The Man" Musial historic marker.
UNVEILING: Stan Musial's three daughters - Gerry Musial Ashley, Janet Musial Schwarze and Jean Musial Edmonds (left to right in the photos) were on hand to do the honors of unveiling their father's historic marker. Gerry traveled from California and Janet and Jean traveled from St. Louis, Missouri.
Many Musial family members were here this day to not only honor their father and grandfather Stan but also their mother and grandmother Lillian Labash Musial. For some of these family members, it was their first visit to Donora.
With the many plaques, awards, statues, bridges and boats that have been unveiled over the years to honor Stan Musial, the Donora community was extremely grateful that the Musial family travelled from all over the country to unveil Donora's Stan Musial historic marker.
STAN "THE MAN" MUSIAL HISTORIC MARKER: Below is the historic marker from the Pennsylvania Historic and Museum Commission (PHMC) that was unveiled on July 30, 2022.
MUSIAL SPOKESPERSON: After the plaque was unveiled and with Stan's daughters Gerry Musial Ashley, Jean Musial Edmonds and Janet Musial Schwarze by his side, Janet's husband Dr. Marty Schwarze spoke on behalf of the Musial family and discussed how important Donora was to both Stan and Lillian Labash Musial. See the photo to the left.
IMMEDIATE MUSIAL FAMILY: After the historic marker was unveiled, the Musial family posed for photos for the press, TV stations, friends and fans. Their relationship to Stan Musial is noted in italics and in parenthesis.
From left to right: David Edmonds (Jean's husband and Stan's son-in-law), Jean Musial Edmonds (daughter), Camille Ashley Pinkerton (Gerry's daughter and Stan's granddaughter), Gerry Musial Ashley (daughter), Brian Schwarze (Janet's son and Stan's grandson), Janet Musial Schwarze (daughter), Marty Schwarze (Janet's husband and Stan's son-in-law), Julie Schwarze Linihan (Janet's daughter and Stan's granddaughter) and Ron Wagner (Stan's nephew - mother was a Musial).
EXTENDED MUSIAL FAMILY: Three generations of the Musial and Labash families made the pilgrimage back to Donora for the Stan Musial historic marker dedication.
From left to right: Julia Mislo (yellow top - Cindy's daughter, Stan's grandniece), Cindy Mislo (light blue top - Stan's niece - mother was a Labash), Tom O'Lenic (blue shirt - nephew of Stan - mother was a Labash), Chris Anne O'Lenic (black dress - Tom's wife), Bryan Wilson (sunglasses - Tom's nephew, Stan's great nephew), Laurel Grimes (red/white top - Stan's niece - father was a Labash), Marty Grimes (light yellow shirt - Laurel's husband), David Edmonds (blue shirt/white pants - Jean's husband and Stan's son-in-law), Jean Musial Edmonds (blue dress - daughter), PLAQUE POLE, Camille Ashley Pinkerton (white top/sunglasses - Gerry's daughter and Stan's granddaughter), Gerry Musial Ashley (white top, blue/white skirt - daughter), Brian Schwarze (red shirt - Janet's son and Stan's grandson), Janet Musial Schwarze (white/blue dress - daughter), Marty Schwarze (white shirt/sunglasses - Janet's husband and Stan's son-in-law), Julie Schwarze Linihan (white/pink/blue dress - Janet's daughter), Aiden Wagner (teen boy/blue shirt - Ron's grandson, Stan's great grandnephew), Ron Wagner (red shirt - Stan's nephew - mother was a Musial), Aubrey Wagner (teen girl/white top - Ron's granddaughter, Stan's great grandniece), Mike Wagner (green shirt/sunglasses - Ron's son, Stan's great nephew), Hannah Wagner (red dress - Ron's granddaughter, Stan's great grandniece) and Megan Wagner (black and white dress - Mike's wife).
DEDICATION RECEPTION
RECEPTION: Following the dedication of the Stan Musial Historic Marker, all attendees returned back to the Donora Borough Hall for a reception of fellowship, food and additional storytelling.
SOUVENIR POSTCARDS: One of the things that we promised our attendees was something they could take home to remember this special day. When the Stan Musial Bridge dedication took place in 2012, the souvenir that day was a postcard. We followed that lead and created a new postcard for the Stan Musial Historic Marker dedication. As before, this project was completed in Donora and was accomplished by Badzik Printing Services, Inc. that is conveniently located just two city blocks from the Stan Musial plaque. Owner Tim Urda used his artistic flare to create the postcard image that far exceeded what we initially envisioned, and since the plaque arrived in Donora just a week ahead of July 30th, Tim was able to complete this project by working long hours with just two days to spare.
TABLE FAVORS: Stan Musial themed Mason jar table favors decorated the tables of our reception. Each had a flag adorned with Musial's jersey number 6 and a baseball card-sized photo of Stan Musial from his playing days. These table favors were created by Donora Historical Society volunteers.
These favors are now for sale at the Donora Historical Society and Smog Museum for $5.00.
RECEPTION FOOD: Anytime we have food at Historical Society events, we try to keep that business in Donora. Our reception was no different as we asked the Donora Fire Department to prepare our food which consisted of hot dogs, hamburgers and linguini salad. There was no charge for the reception food for all attendees which was expertly grilled by the Fire Department just a flight of steps below since they occupy the same Borough Hall building (see their grill in the photo to the left.) This event also gave the Fire Department the opportunity to sell additional food of BBQ pork chops and hot sausage to our attendees and to the general public. The Donora Historical Society paid the Fire Department with money raised from this event.
SWEET TREATS: A new partner for the Donora Historical Society starting with this event was the Salvation Army Mon Valley Worship and Service Center that relocated to Donora in 2022. The Historical Society was looking for another way to help introduce them to our community and they stepped right up to supplement our reception with their share of baseball-type sweet treats that consisted of popcorn, snow cones and cotton candy. See the reception photo to the right.
We also served a Stan Musial cake decorated with his customary number "6".
AP DELSANDRO MEMORIAL: Just a bloop single away from the Stan Musial historic marker is the AP Delsandro Memorial that sits just to the left of the Donora Post Office. We thought that with Stan's military service, we would like to partner with them and give their foundation the opportunity to introduce themselves to the community and promote their new initiatives and upgrades for the memorial park that honors all Donora veterans that gave the ultimate sacrifice. Their new military banners give a lot of color to the memorial.
SMOG MUSEUM OPEN HOUSE
OPEN HOUSE: Donora has a rich history in general and in baseball in particular. The Stan Musial Historic Marker event gave us an opportunity to showcase a lot of our other baseball memorabilia that is not always on display. All attendees were encouraged to continue their afternoon after the Borough Hall reception at the Smog Museum for a special Open House before departing Donora.
The presentation area of the museum, that usually holds our seating area, was transformed into an additional display space when chairs were swapped out for tables and display cases all filled with baseball memorabilia.
MUSEUM DISPLAY 1: Donora baseball was the theme on this display table with photos of Donora High School, American Steel & Wire Mill League and other Donora players like Bob Coulson, Maxie Davis, Joe Barbao and Steve Filipowicz. There was even a Link's Dari-Delight softball jersey. The featured piece was a panoramic photo of Bob Coulson and his fellow Brooklyn Superbas (soon to be Dodgers) with the Boston Rustlers (soon to be Braves) for Opening Day in Boston in 1911. Bob Coulson was Donora's first Major League baseball player. Cy Young would join Boston later in the season.
MUSEUM DISPLAY 2: The Donora baseball theme continued in a display to the right of the first table with additional photos of the American Steel & Wire Mill League and Donora native Arnold "Pope" Galiffa that appeared on the cover of LIFE Magazine in 1949 while playing baseball for West Point (Army.) Other photos featuring the Donora Polish Falcons Nest 247 teams (non-baseball) were also displayed to show where Stan Musial got his first athletic experience and uniform before baseball too precedence.
MUSEUM DISPLAY 3: Directly across from the first two displays was another display dedicated to Stan "The Man" Musial. The featured piece on this display table was a ticket stub and scorecard from Stan's very last baseball game in St. Louis in 1963.
MUSEUM DISPLAY 4: People donate a lot of different artifacts to the Donora Historical Society, some of which includes Pittsburgh sports teams. This display case included mostly Pittsburgh Pirates related memorabilia, some of which date back to Forbes Field, like ticket stubs from the 1960 World Series against the New York Yankees which Pittsburgh won. Some Ken Griffey Jr. memorabilia was also displayed.
OUTDOOR MUSEUM DISPLAY 1: This Stan Musial display was created in 2021 when we took over the old pharmacy storefront next door to the Smog Museum in anticipation of our Stan Musial Historic Marker event. The artifacts in this window were moved from our "Rotating Display Area" inside the museum that we assembled to recognize Stan Musial's 100th birthday on November 21, 2020. This display was created in the middle of the pandemic so not many saw it before we had to shut down just like everyone else. A replica Stan Musial Donora High School baseball jersey from 1938 is on display, along with a 1940s era American Steel & Wire Mill League jersey and Donora baseball letterman's sweater from 1938 from a teammate of Musial.
OUTDOOR MUSEUM DISPLAY 2: This is a continuation of the Stan Musial outdoor display in the photo above and was created in 2021 when we took over the old pharmacy storefront next door to the Smog Museum in anticipation of our Stan Musial Historic Marker event. A featured piece in this part of the display is a Stan Musial model baseball glove from the 1950s is on display.
PERMANENT MUSIAL DISPLAY: Before we left for an impromptu Stan Musial tour of Donora with members of the Musial family, Gerry Musial Ashley, Jean Musial Edmonds, Camille Ashley Pinkerton (Gerry's daughter), David Edmonds (Jean's husband) took a photo in front of our permanent Stan Musial display in the Smog Museum. Janet Musial Schwarze and her family also visited the Open House but had left prior to her sisters Gerry and Jean.
THEMED COOKIES: Additional sweet treats were provided by the Donora Historical Society to honor Stan Musial with orange Donora Dragon cookies and red St. Louis Cardinal cookies.
These Dragon and Cardinal themed cookies were baked by Donora Historical Society volunteers.
END OF THE DAY - MUSIAL TOUR OF DONORA
MUSIAL TOUR: At the end of the day at the Smog Museum Open House, some in the Musial family requested a brief tour of Donora to see some of the sites that influenced their father Stan Musial - his birth home, Donora High School and baseball field, Stan's mother Mary Musial's home, Stan's parents Lukasz and Mary Musial graves, Labash family graves, the Stan "The Man" Musial baseball field and the site of the Zinc Works where Stan worked in the offseason early in his baseball career.
STAN "THE MAN" MUSIAL BASEBALL FIELD: The field dedicated to Stan Musial sits in Donora's Palmer Park. Stan was on hand in 1994 for the dedication.
Two of Stan's daughters took the time to have their picture taken with the baseball field sign.
In the photo on the left is Gerry Musial Ashley and daughter Camille Ashley Pinkerton.
In the photo on the right is Jean Musial Edmonds and husband David Edmonds.
CASTING OUR HISTORIC MARKER
CASTING THE ACTUAL PLAQUE: After working with the Pennsylvania Historic and Museum Commission (PHMC) to decide on the wording of our Stan "The Man" Musial historic marker, we were turned over to Sewah Studios, Inc. from nearby Marrietta, Ohio to actually cast the plaque. Historic markers are the only thing that Sewah Studios does, and they do them extremely well.
Sewah Studios was started in 1927 by E. M. Hawes (Sewah in reverse) to develop roadside markers in his metal foundry for a new phenomenon called automobile tourism. Around that same time, state and local historical societies confined most of their activities to research and compiling data. History was being preserved but not publicly shared. That was all about to change by Mr. Hawes with his roadside markers that could tell a tale while you travelled through the countryside. This activity slowed during WWII.
After WWII, more people were traveling more than ever before and each of our 50 states was doing its upmost to entice vacationers by making highways as attractive as possible. A study had proven that informative and interesting markers was one of the surest ways of achieving this goal. The value of marking historical sites was widely recognized and a large number of states adopted such programs, including Pennsylvania.
Mr. Hawes retired in 1953 and sold the company to Gerald E. Smith who he met while making propellers for the war effort when business slowed during WWII. Gerald's son David ran the foundry next and now his son Brad has run the foundry since 2003. Brad is who we worked with.
Today, Sewah Studios produces more than twelve hundred historic markers per year for 44 states including our state of Pennsylvania.
All Sewah Studio plaques are made using cast aluminum which proved to be more practical and durable than bronze (too expensive), wood (rot) and ferrous metals (rust). They are still made the same way that Mr. Hawes did them in 1927 by typesetting each plaque on a foundry mold and casting them double-sided with molten aluminum.
The photo above shows the proof that we had to approve of the typeset mold that would be used to press into the casting sand to make our Stan Musial plaque.
After casting, each plaque is powder coated in each state's paint colors, in our case yellow letters on a blue background.
Click Sewah Studios Plaque Process to get an in-depth look of the work and effort involved with casting our Stan "The Man" Musial historic marker.
The photo to the right shows our plaque crated in Marietta, Ohio and ready to be shipped to Donora.
Our plaque and pole arrived on Thursday, July 21, 2022, from Ohio. The pole went into the ground that day and the plaque was mounted on Sunday, July 24, 2022. All the work of digging the hole, concreting the pole into the ground and mounting the plaque on the pole was performed by Donora Historical Society volunteers.
The plaque resides on private property graciously approved by property owner Dan Gorman.
IN THE NAME OF STAN MUSIAL - PAYING IT FORWARD
DONATIONS: As stated above, our first goal all along was to raise the necessary monies for the plaque, to host a nice reception at the Cro Club, to host a nice reception at the Donora Borough Hall, and to print souvenir postcards.
We not only met that goal but exceeded it in a big, big way.
Our other goal was that once we covered our expenses and collected our own stipend to support the ongoing efforts at the Donora Historical Society and Smog Museum, any additional monies would be funneled as donations back into the Donora community to organizations that we think Stan Musial would have supported like he did in the past.
Over the years, Stan Musial quietly gave back to the Donora community, often supporting Donora veteran and youth groups without most people knowing. In that same spirit, the Donora historical Society did the same thing but in his name. We think this is one of the final ways to honor Stan Musial in his hometown by giving these donations. Without the extreme generosity of multiple donors, this would not have been possible. We feel fortunate that we were able to pay that generosity forward…
With the money raised through individual donors and a corporate donation, we distributed $3,700 in donations across four different categories to eight Donora organizations:
FIRST RESPONDERS - $1,000
  • Donora Fire Department

VETERAN GROUPS - $1,000
  • Ernest E. Jobes American Legion - Post 212
  • Ernest E. Jobes American Legion Auxiliary - Unit 212
  • Donora Veterans Council

YOUTH GROUPS - $1,000
  • Mon Valley Youth & Teen Association of Donora
  • Donora Youth Baseball Association

HUMANITARIAN NEEDS GROUPS - $700
  • Saint Andrew the Apostle Parish Food Bank
  • The Salvation Army Mon Valley Worship and Service Center of Donora

NOTE: With these $3,700 in donations and the $2,800 that we donated after the WWII Exhibit in 2020, we donated a combined $5,500 to ten Donora organizations in just two years.
FIRST RESPONDERS
Donora Fire Department – volunteer firemen Isaac Petroske and Rhys Taylor (Fire Department President) - $1,000
The Donora Fire department is perhaps one of Donora’s oldest organizations since it was created shortly after the town's founding in 1901. They were considered to be the “first responders” during the 1948 Smog rescue effort and continues to play a vital role today in protecting our town.
The Donora Fire Department provides fire protection and emergency response services to the Donora community with a mission to prevent the loss of life and property. In addition to responding to calls for fire suppression, the Donora Fire Department responds to medical emergencies, incidents involving hazardous materials, rescue calls, motor vehicle or other accidents, and river rescue.
As we approach the 75th Anniversary of the 1948 Smog in 2023, we are fortunate that we could support Donora's first responders - Donora's Bravest.
To donate: Donora Fire Department, P.O. Box 811, Donora, PA 15033
VETERAN GROUPS
Ernest E. Jobes American Legion - Post 212 - Commander Bill Leckie - $600
The Donora American Legion - Post 212 was chartered in 1921 and named after Donora’s first casualty of World War I - Ernest E. Jobes, a twenty-year-old sailor whose ship was torpedoed off the coast of France and was lost at sea in 1918. Jobes was an employee at the Donora Wire Works in the Rod Mill.
Post 212 eventually absorbed Donora’s African American American Legion – the William E. Owens Post 695 that was chartered in 1946, but closed years ago (visit the Smog Museum to see the Owens Post 695 flag.)
Working in partnership with the Donora Veterans Council, the Donora American Legion organizes the annual Memorial Day services that take place at three Donora cemeteries (St. Dominic’s, St, Michael’s and Mon Valley Memorial Park) and two memorial sites (Donora Veterans Memorial and AP Delsandro Veterans Memorial) and the placing of military markers and flags at two Donora cemeteries.
To donate: Ernest E. Jobes American Legion - Post 212, 513 Meldon Avenue, Donora, PA 15033
Ernest E. Jobes American Legion Auxiliary - Unit 212 - member Flora Gibasiewicz - $200
Chartered in 1935, the American Legion Auxiliary - Unit 212 is the group that supports the Donora American Legion – Post 212.
Aside from supporting Post 212, the American Legion Auxiliary also supports organizations like the Veterans Administration Hospital, Veterans Affairs and Rehabilitation, Washington City Mission - Patriot House for homeless veterans, Sharing and Caring – Veterans' river cruise on Gateway Clipper, and Gift to Veterans.
To donate: Ernest E. Jobes American Legion Auxiliary - Unit 212, 513 Meldon Avenue, Donora, PA 15033
Donora Veterans Council – Mike Beresh and treasurer Ron Janney - $200
Years ago, the Donora Veterans Council was established by the late Ernest “Babe” Cerini, a WWII veteran and founder of Cerini’s Harley Davidson motorcycle shop in Donora. Working in partnership with the Donora American Legion, it organizes the annual Memorial Day services that take place at three Donora cemeteries and two memorial sites: Donora Veterans Memorial and AP Delsandro Veterans Memorial, and the placing of military markers and flags at two Donora cemeteries.
Also, if you are aware of the military banner program in Donora, then you know how beautiful they look. At the Historical Society, we often get comments from out-of-town visitors who like Donora's banners and the whole concept of honoring our veterans. But with this program, what isn’t apparent, is the ongoing maintenance of these banners that includes one for Stan "The Man" Musial. The Borough of Donora takes on the responsibility of hanging and taking down the banners every year, but the Donora Veterans Council assumes the responsibility with the expense and labor in maintaining the banner’s frames and brackets. A strong windstorm can easily compromise a few banners each time. Some of the recently damaged banners are shown in the photo including one for Ken Griffey Sr. Thanks to the Donora Veterans Council, they will be restored and rehung in 2023.
To donate: Donora Veterans Council, 513 Meldon Avenue, Donora, PA 15033
YOUTH GROUPS
Mon Valley Youth & Teen Association - Executive Director Mary Anne Bandalo - $600
Established in 1994 and based in Donora, the Mon Valley Youth & Teen Association is dedicated to the community and youth of the Mon Valley through their various programs, such as:
Kids Connection - An after-school program for K-4 students that provides children with a nutritious meal, assistance with their homework, arts & crafts, and opportunities to play games.
Youth Groups - Boys and girls, grades K-9 meet during the school year and learn the value of goal setting, gain an appreciation of nature and the environment, develop social skills, complete community service projects, develop a meaningful set of values and, in turn, make valuable contributions to society.
Day Camp - A fun, energetic Day Camp located at Palmer Park in Donora consisting of a week of adventures, arts & crafts, new friendships, short hikes, and games.
Camp Watakamini - Established over 75 years ago, Camp Watakamini hosts children from Donora and the Mon Valley where they spend a week in the mountains at Forbes State Forest and Laurel Hill State Park.
Food Bank - Mon Valley Youth & Teen, in partnership with the Pittsburgh Food Bank, hosts a monthly drive-by food distribution in Donora.
To donate: Mon Valley Youth & Teen Association, 160 Thompson Avenue, Donora, PA 15033
Donora Youth Baseball Association - Colby Perrotta and Rick Rodriguez - $400
Donora Youth Baseball has been providing baseball opportunities for Donora youth for decades. Once large enough to have their own Donora Little League, it now fields teams that play other community teams at five different age levels: Shetland (4-6), Pinto (7-8), Mustang (9-10), Bronco (11-12) and Pony (13-14 years old). Their home games are played at the Ken Griffey & Joe Perrotta Baseball Fields at the Donora Annex.
The Ken Griffey & Joe Perrotta Baseball Fields also host the Joseph Perrotta Memorial All-Star Pinto Tournament - a weekend tournament held each June since 2015, providing all participating teams with jerseys, refreshments, food, umpires and trophies (winners and runners-ups) free of charge.
Colby and Rick have their donation earmarked for new equipment to ready the fields for game play replacing older, cumbersome equipment.
To donate: Donora Youth Baseball Association, c/o Rick Rodriguez, 1137 Meldon Avenue, Donora, PA 15033
HUMANITARIAN NEEDS GROUPS
Saint Andrew the Apostle Parish Food Bank - Father Joe Uzar and Deacon Al Poroda - $200
Saint Andrew the Apostle Parish is comprised of the Roman Catholic faithful from the Mid-Monongahela Valley of Southwestern Pennsylvania that includes the towns of Donora, Monongahela, Charleroi, and neighboring communities. Since January of 2020, the Parishioners of the Mon Valley have been worshipping together as a new parish, and have been living a Christian Life of Faith, Hope, and Love.
The Food Bank of Saint Andrew the Apostle Parish serves the communities of Donora, Monongahela, and Charleroi with a monthly drive-by food distribution and in person drop-offs. The Food Bank is organized by Deacon Al.
See above. Father Kevin Dominik from St. Andrew the Apostle Parish participated in our Stan Musial Historic Marker dedication by blessing our plaque.
To donate: Saint Andrew the Apostle Parish, c/o Food Bank, 1 Park Road, Donora, PA 15033
The Salvation Army Mon Valley Worship and Service Center - Captain Susan Thwaite - $500
The Salvation Army Mon Valley Worship and Service Center relocated to Donora in 2022 serving both the Donora and Monessen communities. Housed in a former church, it offers comprehensive social services, youth and senior programming, weekly Sunday worship, women's and men’s ministry programs, and more. The basement has a commercial kitchen that prepares food for their mobile feeding truck and allows The Salvation Army to offer on-site feeding for parishioners and in-house programming. In partnership with the Westmoreland County Food Bank, they host monthly drive-by food distributions in Donora and Monessen.
Sue has their donation earmarked for a Veterans Day breakfast.
To donate: The Salvation Army Mon Valley Worship and Service Center, 800 Thompson Avenue, Donora, PA 15033
SPONSORS
FUNDRAISING DONATIONS: Numerous individuals made donations to make this entire weekend not only possible but a success. In some cases, the donations were substantial. All are a testament to the love and respect for Stan Musial. All will remain anonymous unless they would like recognition.
We didn't solicit very many corporate donors for this event since so many individuals stepped up early on.
We did have one corporate sponsor that has a plant in Donora's Industrial Park that continues to support our events:
QUESTIONS: Please contact the Donora Historical Society with any questions, ideas or interest in volunteering for this particular event, by contacting us by phone 724-823-0364 and leave a message or email DonoraHistoricalSociety@gmail.com.

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If you would like to add a note along with your donation, please consider sending an email to:donorahistoricalsociety@gmail.com