Step Back in Time features community news from The Daily Star 25 and/or 50 years ago.

25 years ago

July 12, 1983

COOPERSTOWN _ It took 144 years, but the birthplace of baseball finally has a company manufacturing bats for the national pastime.

Don and Sharon Oberriter of Fly Creek have established the Cooperstown Bat Company, which is turning out regulation hardwood bats for baseball, softball and Little League competition.

It is the first time a commercial bat operation has started here since the game was said to have been invented in Cooperstown in 1839 by Abner Doubleday, according to local sources.

The Oberriters have opened a retail outlet on Pioneer Alley, where all steps in the manufacture of a bat are demonstrated.

The company buys its billets, or unfinished bats from Winchester Manufacturing Company of Wells Bridge. When wood, which is ash, comes to Cooperstown Bat Company, it looks like a dowel.

Design work for the company has been done by Bruce and Lena Guyot of Fly Creek, including the company logo, which also appears on T-shirts, glass mugs, aprons and related items in the company line.

In addition, Jim and Eileen McCormack, owners of the Waterwheel Woodworks, Fly Creek, designed a collection of wooden stools, pencil holders and bookends, featuring a baseball glove, which are being marketed by the bat company.

50 years ago

July 12, 1958

DELHI _ Five little Delhi girls, comprising the full cast of "The Second Street Follies," voluntarily staged a hour-long performance for the benefit of Delhi's new hospital, this week.

Playing before a packed house of 27, including babes in arms, small children and adults of the neighborhood, they collected $8.50 for the hospital.

The performance was staged on the rear screened-in porch at the home of Dr. and Mr. Sheldon G. Edgerton. The bill consisted of ballet dancing, singing of popular songs and solo numbers.

In the cast were Nancy and Ellen Hutchison, daughters of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Hutchison; Barbara Kunsela, daughter of Dr. and Mrs. William R. Kunsela; Audrey Vandercook, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John W. Vandercook, and Sue Edgerton, daughter of Dr. and Mrs. Edgerton, all of Second Street.

Dr. Edgerton, a former trouper, who some 30 years ago, toured the United States and Canada with a name band, has as much fun in helping put over the production as did the little girls.

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