Remembering Downtown Shopping

By Vern Ruppert

     Hello! Just wanted to commend you on your site! Wonderful .... brought back lots of memories for me.

     I'm Born in the thirteen hundred block of N. Washington Street 61 1/2 years ago. I remember the streetcars that went to the then great shopping district called "Gay Street". My mom would drag me to the streetcar and every saturday we'd go "shopping". Stores like Epstein's, Woolworth's - all those great bargins!

     We'd come home stacked with bags .... I would even get a dime to spend on me!!! My memories even include the smell of the streetcar's electric motors, the clack-clack of the tracks and the motorman's footbell! Those indeed were the days.

     I wonder how many of your readers will remember the old Palace theatre at Wolf & Gay streets?

     How about the saturday matinee? Us kids would line up at 8am to get in for the serials and Lash La Rue or Charles Starrett - yes, The Durango Kid. Smiley Burnette AKA Frog .... Sandy McKnight and let's not forget Hoppy, Lucky and Gabby Hayes!

     Truly, I've enjoyed the visit and sharing this information .....

     Good luck and fondest wishes .....

Mr. Ruppert lives in Hampstead Maryland. He can be reached at, or use the comment link.

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