Clock shop now has artifacts of war

NEIGHBORS

October 20, 1993|By PAT BRODOWSKI

If you've visited Roy's Clock Shop in Hampstead, you've heard the great chimes bonging from the forest of grandfather clocks, or been charmed by the latest beer-drinker's cuckoo, in which wooden men in lederhosen tip a brew on the hour.

Each visit is an adventure into the art of decorated timekeeping in porcelain, veneer and brass.

New at Roy's is a collection of artifacts of military conflicts from the Civil War through Vietnam.

Items are for sale by Steve Ashe, whose father, LeRoy, has passed the store to him.

On a visit, you'll likely find Steve's niece, Kari Criswell, delicately cleaning the brass flywheels of an old clock in her tiny workshop to the left of the front door.

But she's ready to stop and give a knowledgeable tour of the military display.

Prominent are Civil War guns and ammunition. Mr. Ashe, she said, participates in re-enactments of the Civil War and began collecting guns to trade with friends.

"It's amazing those guys hit anything at all," said Ms. Criswell, "these guns are so heavy."

She enjoys them because, "Guns are a lot like clocks, being mechanical. You take them apart and put new parts in."

Old guns are found in attics or basements and, unless cleaned, will deteriorate.

"The black powder eats the metal," she explained. "The gun should be cleaned every 10 or 12 shots because the black powder is corrosive."

Smaller artifacts include canister shot. Metal balls the size of a cat's-eye marble were poured into a can to be shot from a cannon. The shot at Roy's was found on the Antietam battlefield.

There's a knife with a handle made from a deer's hoof, brass insignia, arrowheads and uniforms. Every piece was once a possession of someone at war -- fighting to defend his beliefs. Touching these things, you feel as if that soldier's beliefs have seeped right into them. It's like reaching into history, like meeting a person from the past.

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Ghosts, mummies, mermaids and monsters will be on parade in Lineboro at 7:30 p.m. Friday. The parade begins behind the fire hall and proceeds under the street lights on Main Street to circle back to the firehouse.

Any child can parade and march to tunes by the Alesia Band.

That evening, the fire company begins its annual indoor fair, which also runs Saturday from 4 p.m. until late evening.

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Every year, the children of the Hampstead community enjoy a lion-sized party, given by the Hampstead Lions Club.

This year's is from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 29, at Spring Garden Elementary School. Children from Hampstead through fifth grade are invited. You'll find a notice about the party with your child's schoolwork.

"There will be age-appropriate activities and games," said the Rev. John Smaligo, of St. Mark's Lutheran Church, who volunteered to be chairman of this year's party. The number of children has increased every year, so they'll be divided into groups by age to decorate treat bags and listen to a storyteller.

It's a chance to show off costumes, enjoy refreshments and sing a "pumpkin carol" or two. You'll recognize the melodies from familiar Christmas carols.

Trick-or-treat will be held in Hampstead from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Oct. 31 for children age 12 and younger. Leave a porch light on to bring the pint-sized spooks and monsters to your door.

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Manchester also holds a big Halloween party, sponsored by the Northeast Rabbits and by the town for children of the Manchester area. Parents will be sent a flier with children's schoolwork.

This year's party will be held from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 30, at Manchester Elementary School for children 12 and under.

Costumes are the highlight, of course. There will be costume judging in three age groups. Bring your carved pumpkin for a competition of jack-o-lanterns.

KayCee the Clown will entertain, and door prizes will be awarded in three age groups.

A howling contest will be held. Every child, whether howling or not, gets a treat bag.

Manchester does not sanction a treat-or-treat night.

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