Scott Davis has lived in Union Bridge his entire life. Scott was a former Town Councilman and was on the Carroll County Police force.
SCOTT W DAVIS: I am Scott W Davis. I’m 79 years old. I lived in Union Bridge. I was born here and raised in Union Bridge. The only time I was away was four years in the Air Force, and 32 months up, up in Alaska, and Fort Wayne, Indiana, at Baer Field and Sioux City Municipal Airport. That’s where I got discharged from the Air Force.
I have been in a lot of jobs here in town. I’ve been a town councilman. And, uh, I was Chief of Police in the town. We had two on the police force at that time. And, uh, we annexed the Phillips property out here at the end of town, and before we did that– we coulda’ gone ahead and done it, but we wanted to know the pulse of the people of the town. We want to know how they felt about the annexation, and doubled the population of the town.
So we set up– decided to have a referendum vote. And the town people voted for that 25 years ago. And now their– they st– the mayor and the council still have not got the project started out there.
And I am so afraid we’re going to lose a store out there. And with prices of gas nowadays, and people will have to go shopping outside of Union Bridge, to, to Westminister, to Woodsboro, or Taneytown, to get their groceries. And I’m very much concerned about that. Uh, the people wanted it 25 years ago, and the town council and mayor have not listened to the people.
When I was on the Council, I, I asked myself two questions.
INTERVIEWER: What– what year was that, when you were on the Council? Do you remember?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Oh, gosh, it was in the late ss– uh, well, let’s see, it was late ’80s, because I ran for County Commissioner in ’90 right after I get out. That’s why I didn’t for the second term, because– in the town council, because I wanted to run for County Commissioner, which I didn’t make it. I spent $10,000, and Commissioner Gouge and Commissioner Dell spent $20,000. So money talks. So anywa– what was I talking about.
Oh, uh, the annexation. What I would do, I’d ask myself two questions when I was on the Council. First thing, is this what the people of Union Bridge wants? Secondly, is this the best thing for Union Bridge.
Before I voted on anything, I run these two questions through my mind. And I think if our House and our Senate would do this, I think we would have a better country than what we got right now.
INTERVIEWER: Now, where were you born?
SCOTT W DAVIS: I was born right here, up on Lehigh property, right at the south end of town.
INTERVIEWER: And your folks’ names, uh, your parents’ names?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Was Charles W Davis and Anna K Davis. Uh, when I was born– the– well, he was a superintendent, was, uh, G S La Forge. And, uh, he had two daughters. And he said, Chuck and Annie, I want you to name that boy after me.
So my mother and father looked at each other and they decided, well, they didn’t like Guy. So they went with Scott. And he said, I’m going to buy you the best baby carriage that can be bought.
And at that time, it was $20. He paid for it. And it even had oval windows in the, the side of the thing to keep the sun off of me. And, uh, [INAUDIBLE] Wilson, he, uh, said I’m buying Scott his first pair of shoes.
And I worked at Lehigh for 43 years. My father worked there 42 years. My grandfather worked there. He came over from, uh, uh, Austria, Vienna, Austria.
He stowed away on a ship. He wanted to get to United States so bad, he stowed away on a ship. Three days out, he was mighty hungry, and they caught him trying to get something to eat. And then he worked his passage out, the rest of the way. And, uh–
INTERVIEWER : This is your grandfather?
SCOTT W DAVIS: My grandfather. Um–
INTERVIEWER:Well, what– what was his name? What’s his name?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Joe Zugley.
INTERVIEWER: Joe Zugley. That’s your mother’s side?
SCOTT W DAVIS: It’s on my mother’s side, right.
INTERVIEWER :And where did he settle?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Settled right here in Union Bridge. He worked out here at the cement plant. This, this is some– Lehigh, when, when you got in there, you was in there for life, it used to be.
INTERVIEWER: Did we say how old you are?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yes, 79. I gave that. And my father worked there, as I said. My uncles worked there. I had cousins working there. This was a family affair.
And uh, Lehigh treated us nice. When I moved out of that house that we lived in, in, uh, ’55, we was paying $13 a month rent. Lehigh never charged us any more than $13 a month. And in ’55, that was wonderful, I’ll tell ya. It’s cheaper to rent then than it was to buy.
So, uh, I’ve had many jobs. I have– the county commissioners keep me busy. Right now, I’m presently Chairman of the Board of Property Tax Assessment Appeals Board. I was first appointed by Governor Glen Denning. Then Governor– after five years, you got to be reappointed. So then five years time, then, uh, Governor Glen Denning appointed me.
And now, I have 10 years in, so I don’t know if I’ll be appointed by, uh, Mr. O’Malley or not, but we will see.
INTERVIEWER:What was it like going to school?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Going to school? Well, I– I want to bring one thing up–
SCOTT W DAVIS: That Ray and, uh, [INAUDIBLE] forgot. Uh, the principal of the school would let us off from school to go to fires. And the fire alarm, we could hear the siren out of school. And that was one long alarm, was for a town fire. And four short alarms was for a country fire.
And one thing that stood out in our fire company is we had cat whistles on our– both trucks. Our fifth 31 Seagrave and our 53 Seagrave. No, 38 Seagrave. We didn’t have one on the 53.
And, uh, when we went to a fire, a mutual aid, they could tell when we was coming. Those cat whistles would go through the air, heavy air and everything, very good. And, uh, they could say, well, Union Bridge is on their way in. They could hear us coming.
And those cat whistles are still on the 31 Seagrave that was just here in the parade the other day. And I’m anxious to hear it again. It’s been a long time since I’ve heard it.
Uh, about the, the mail, uh, the other two fellows brought up. Mr. Spurrier used to go down to the railroad and pick up the mail in a wheelbarrow. And then he would run it up the street, wouldn’t run it, but he’d bring it up. He’d walk briskly. And he’d get up there and he’d slam it down, and it would slide two or three feet. Then he’d grab the mail bags off of it and take it into the post office.
And uh, Ray Wilson and I have been friends for years, and years, and years. Uh, we would run these fires together. We’ve been– he was in the fire company 63 years, and I had been in the fire company 62 years. He went in in ’46, and I went in in 40– yeah, ’47.
INTERVIEWER:How old were you then?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Just, uh, had to be 16 years old to get in. They wouldn’t take you in the fire company. And uh, I remember all the things they did, about Mr. Tubman would come here, the magistrant and trial the cases.
Uh, they did omit– we had a five and ten cent store also in town.
INTERVIEWER:Where was that?
SCOTT W DAVIS: That was right, uh, up from EJ’s on Main Street, on the north end of town.
INTERVIEWER: EJ’s is what– where is EJ’s now?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Up from the track. Two, two, two apartments– two houses up from the railroad track.
INTERVIEWER:And who worked in the five and ten? Do you remember anyone?
SCOTT W DAVIS: No, I don’t remember them.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Uh, Burton girls, I did remember, worked in there. But other than that. And uh, Lehigh has been the biggest industry in Union Bridge, and it has changed quite a bit.
INTERVIEWER:What kinds of activities did you do as a kid?
SCOTT W DAVIS: I didn’t hear you.
INTERVIEWER: What kind of activities did you do as a kid?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well–
INTERVIEWER :Like, maybe– maybe a 12-year-old kid.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, one of the main activities I had– and I’m very, very proud of it– we had a Boy Scout troop here in town, Troop 330. And I will never forget a lot of things that I learned in scouting. And I hope more people put their children, boys and girls, in the scouting. I’ll never forget, a scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent. I will never forget that, and it’s burned into my mind.
And we used to have a camp up in Middleburg. And it was so nice in the morning to get your frying pans out, and throw the bacon in the pan first, so you’d get some grease for your eggs. And they– that eggs and bacon taste so much better outside and when you did it yourself. Uh, Cook Bankers was our scout master. I will never forget him. He taught us a lot.
INTERVIEWER:Did you, uh– what else– where’d you go Friday nights, Saturday nights?
SCOTT W DAVIS: I worked at the movie hall.
INTERVIEWER: Tell me about that.
SCOTT W DAVIS: I used to sell– uh, well, I used to take tickets, and then I would, uh, sell tickets when an opening came up, I sold tickets there. Uh, Paul Eichman owned a movie, and, uh, him and Ed Eichman would run it, the projectors. And, uh–
INTERVIEWER:Where– where was that exactly? Where–
SCOTT W DAVIS: That’s right up here next to the funeral home.
SCOTT W DAVIS: And it’s apartments now. And my father helped build that building. They made their own blocks, cement blocks, at that time. And, uh, my father had to make some extra money on the side, so.
SCOTT W DAVIS: He helped make that movie hall.
INTERVIEWER:Well, now. Well, on weekends, did you– did you go fishing? Or what did do you as kids when you were–
SCOTT W DAVIS: Run after girls, mainly. That was my favorite sport, running after girls.
INTERVIEWER:Well, what girls did you go out with back then?
SCOTT W DAVIS: What’s that?
INTERVIEWER:Which girls did you out with back then?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, I had a steady, uh, it was Betty Lou Brandenburg. And we were together for years. And then when I went to Alaska, that broke off. And she went to college.
I’ll never forget, we went by train, from Union Bridge to Baltimore. We caught a train from Baltimore to St. Louis. Got on another train from St. Louis to California. We was a day late in getting there.
INTERVIEWER:You and her?
SCOTT W DAVIS: No, no, no, no, no.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Ray– Ray Wilson was with me.
INTERVIEWER:Ray Wilson was with you.
SCOTT W DAVIS: We joined the Air– we have been like brothers. Pardon me. And, uh, we would run around together. Dated together. And then we went in the Air Force, as I said, and he was in my squad. I was the First Squad Leader.
And then we went up to Alaska together. And I’d fly down– I was on flying status in about every year field up in Alaska. And I would fly down to him and we’d see Ray– he was at Elmendorf, and I was at Fairbanks.
INTERVIEWER: Can you tell me about any of the other towns in Carroll County that you just– you think about, what made them special, or?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, I got associated with a lot of the towns. I was– the commissioners put me on Parks and Recreation and I was on the board of directors of that. I was on the board of directors of Carroll Transit Systems. And then the senior center. For all the senior centers in Carroll County, I was on the board.
The commissioners keep me busy. And I enjoyed it. Most of the jobs, I didn’t get a cent in money. No compensation, no gas or anything. But I enjoy doing it for the county and for the people.
INTERVIEWER: What, uh, you– what do you remember about the, the town itself when you were like, uh, in, in Elmer Wolfe, for instance, going to school? What was that like?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, the town was very unique. It was awfully quiet. And as I was a policeman here in town, I– as Ray and [INAUDIBLE] said, I knew everybody in town.
INTERVIEWER: When were you a policeman, now. What, what– how– what year was that?
SCOTT W DAVIS: In the late, late, uh, ’70s.
INTERVIEWER: Late ’70s.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yeah. No it– Yeah, in ’70, yeah.
INTERVIEWER: And what– tell, tell me about your police work.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, I went to the Police Academy at, uh, Prince George County at Forestville. And, uh, then it was, uh, Officer Smith and I, as I said. And we got the first police car. It was in Union Bridge. We had to use their own car on policing. And, uh,
INTERVIEWER: Go ahead.
SCOTT W DAVIS: And, uh, I was the chief, as I said, because Smitty had a little trouble, and, uh, they didn’t want him to be cheap. So they asked me if I’d be chief. I said, all right. Also, I’ve been the chief of this fire company here in Union Bridge. And I went on the ambulance a lot. And I have delivered three babies in the ambulance.
INTERVIEWER: What’s that like?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, it’s very unique, and it puts you on the spot. You have to be– have a little finesse with you when you talk to the lady, and you say, I’m here to help you. I am trained. But if you want me to sit here and look forward, I certainly will. And they have to ask for my help.
And I was lucky enough to be– have one of them that was the first one in Frederick County. And it was an African-American boy that was born in the ambulance, that I helped deliver. I had a big time getting him to breathe, but I finally got him.
Jim Wolf was in the back with me, and they had our picture in the paper, and the baby. And she named the baby James Scott Hill. So I just wondered a lot of times if that boy is still around. It was the day I took over as chief of the fire company. I had a big day, the first day as chief.
INTERVIEWER: What was that like? When, when you say a big day, what do you mean?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, I had delivered a baby, and I took over as chief of the fire company.
INTERVIEWER: Oh, yeah.
SCOTT W DAVIS: So I had a lot of responsibility, and I started off working, and it required a lot of work.
INTERVIEWER: Did you have pretty good rapport with the people, as far as giving them a ticket? Or–
SCOTT W DAVIS: Oh yes, well the people was wonderful. Like on that case, on that baby of– the father– his car, the tires was bald. The cord was showing through, and he was afraid to take her to Frederick, on that January 1st. But, uh, he decided to call the ambulance. So it– I guess the best thing was what he did.
So the people of the town are wonderful, as I said. And I think it’s a wonderful town. And I have been in all 50 states, and here I am back in Union Bridge.
INTERVIEWER: Why do you think you’re back in Union Bridge?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, I’ll tell you, in Indiana, the people are so cordial out here. I was– you’d walk down the street, the people would holler, from setting out on their porch, Good evening. I mean, th– those was good days.
But now the people don’t do that. You don’t have the rapport that we used to have. And I love the people in Union Bridge, and I’m here for the people, and also Carroll County.
INTERVIEWER: And what’d, uh– your dad, uh, what did you and your dad do? You told me something the other day of, uh–
SCOTT W DAVIS: We built model airplanes together.
INTERVIEWER: You built model airplanes. Well, tell me about that.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, it started out with U control, that just had two wires to them. And you’d walk around in circles. And then we got into radio control model airplanes.
And– well, free flight first, and then we went into radio control. You just had an Austin timer in the bottom of them. You’d throw them after you got the gasoline engine started. They would go for so many seconds, and then cut all. And then, uh, it would land itself.
INTERVIEWER: Uh-huh. Now, you, you went all the grades through Elmer Wolfe?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yes I did.
INTERVIEWER: You did? Yes.
SCOTT W DAVIS: First, 11th.
INTERVIEWER: First through the 11th.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Right.
INTERVIEWER: And they had– was that the year they had– they had graduation then?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Oh, we had a graduation every year, certainly.
INTERVIEWER: Every year.
SCOTT W DAVIS: We had, uh, prom. And we had, uh, class night.
INTERVIEWER: OK. What was, what was the prom like? I mean, it it– was it any different than now? Or–
SCOTT W DAVIS: No, no. You’d get yourself a girlfriend, and–
INTERVIEWER: Uh-huh. And where would you go?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, you, you would have a dance right there, at the school, in the auditorium.
INTERVIEWER: What would you dress like? What did you dress like?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Oh, you’d dress up in a suit. You’d be– and the girls wore nice-looking dresses.
SCOTT W DAVIS: And then we’d go away. We’d go out to a, a restaurant or something afterwards.
INTERVIEWER: Where– what restaurant would you go to around here?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, you could go to [INAUDIBLE] You could go over to Taneytown.
INTERVIEWER: Uh-huh. What kind of restaurant was in Taneytown at that time? Do you remember?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Uh, Baumgartners on the corner was about the only one around, big one around.
INTERVIEWER: What happened to Baumgartners? They’re not there anymore, are they?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, uh– well, Mr. Baumgartner died. And it was sold and made into apartments now.
INTERVIEWER: Oh, OK. And tell me a little bit more about your– about Carroll County back then. Back in– when you were, uh, still in, uh, the grades. What, what did you, what did you– did you travel anywhere?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Oh, yes. We, uh– basketball, we would go to different schools, and they would come to our school, and we’d have games.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Soccer the same way.
SCOTT W DAVIS: About the only sports we had was soccer, basketball, and, uh, softball. And we used to have a field meet over at Taneytown that, uh, used to be the fairgrounds over there, in Taneytown. And they’d have track and everything there. All kinds of meet. Relays and stuff.
INTERVIEWER: And you were in sports?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Oh yes, yes.
INTERVIEWER: What was your, what was your– what did you excel at?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, what– I didn’t excel too great in any of them. But, uh, basketball was one of my favorites. I like basketball.
INTERVIEWER: Where was the rivalry? Uh, rivalry– who was your biggest rival?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, we had Manchester, I believe. And Westminster. And, uh–
INTERVIEWER: So you went up there to play some games, too?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Oh, yes. We always went to the schools. We– the bus, the school bus would take us.
INTERVIEWER: Tell me at the game. What, what was it like? Did they have a band? Or did they have music?
SCOTT W DAVIS: No, they, they wouldn’t have no band at, uh, basketball, or anything like that. Pounding our feet against the flour was the only noise that was made.
INTERVIEWER: Oh yeah, yeah.
SCOTT W DAVIS: We played the deaf school up here in Taney– uh, at Frederick. And they amazed me. They could feel vibrations. And what they would do– they couldn’t talk– they would take their foot and hit on the floor. And they had signals. And they communicated that way.
INTERVIEWER: Isn’t that interesting.
SCOTT W DAVIS: That was very interesting. I love to see them.
INTERVIEWER: Yeah, yeah.
SCOTT W DAVIS: And we had, uh, two people from Union Bridge here that taught up there. Uh, Mr. Burns and his wife. They, they worked at Fredrick’s, and taught at Frederick Deaf School.
INTERVIEWER: Who was your favorite teacher?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, as Ray said, Miss [INAUDIBLE]. I’ll never forget it was during the war again, you know.
INTERVIEWER: What year was that? I mean, how– what grade were you in?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Uh, we was about junior and senior.
INTERVIEWER: Junior, senior.
SCOTT W DAVIS: I was a junior. I think Ray was a senior. And, uh, it was during the war with Germany, in World War II. So about six of us boys decided we would like to learn how to speak German language.
So we talked to Miss Floss. And she could teach it. And she was very good. I can still remember, eins, zwei, drei, vier, funf– counting. She– that’s about all the further we got, because the principle got word that she– well, she would do it on her study period, and we would take the class on our study period. So the principal found out that she was giving us these German lessons. So he stopped it.
SCOTT W DAVIS: He said, no, we’re not having it.
INTERVIEWER: Who was the principal?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Mr. Schwartz.
INTERVIEWER: Richard Schwartz. Did he live in town? Or–
SCOTT W DAVIS: No. Mr. Schwartz lived up in Pennsylvania.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Up close to Hanover. And, uh, I hated to m– miss that, I’ll tell you, because we were just starting to learn.
SCOTT W DAVIS: To count in German.
INTERVIEWER: What, what, what was– why did you like her? I mean, what was– what were her characteristics that made you like Miss [INAUDIBLE]?
SCOTT W DAVIS: She was just a, ah, a four foot something. She was a very short little lady. And she drove a coupe to school. I’ll never forget her. And she was just as nice as she could be. And Mrs. Helen Bowman, I liked her very much. And also, uh, Mrs. Banker, out here– Cook Banker’s wife was– well, I told you about the scout master.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, that, that was his wife.
INTERVIEWER: What did she teach?
SCOTT W DAVIS: She taught fourth grade.
INTERVIEWER: And, uh, Mrs. Bowman, uh, what’d she teach?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Mrs. Bowmans, uh, taught English.
SCOTT W DAVIS: English.
INTERVIEWER: And is that– is she related– was she related to Denny Bowman? or, uh–
SCOTT W DAVIS: No, I don’t think there’s any relation there, no. But, uh, school was a great thing. I’d always wait for my girlfriend to get off the bus. And we would see each other in the morning.
INTERVIEWER: So you’d take a bus from here, or to school–
SCOTT W DAVIS: No, I, I walked most of the time.
INTERVIEWER: Where’d you live, right in town?
SCOTT W DAVIS: I lived up on Lehigh property, up where the college– close to the college.
INTERVIEWER: OK, OK. Uh, right close, let’s see, where would that–
SCOTT W DAVIS: That’s South Main Street.
INTERVIEWER: South Main Street.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yeah. Extended, I guess.
INTERVIEWER: So you lived on South Main Street then?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yes. I was born on Lehigh property.
INTERVIEWER: Oh, OK.
SCOTT W DAVIS: I’ve been on Lehigh almost all my life.
INTERVIEWER: Is that right. And what was it– what did you do for Lehigh? Well, you worked at Lehigh, didn’t you?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, I worked in the laboratory as a tester. I worked as a maintenance man. And, uh, I work– I retired from there as a machinist, A rating machinist. And as I said, 43 years I spent there.
SCOTT W DAVIS: And when I was policing, I was working 16 hours a day. I would work at Lehigh, and I would work 4:00 to 12:00 for the town as a policeman.
INTERVIEWER: Oh, OK. That’s quite a day.
SCOTT W DAVIS: So I did that for seven years, all together.
INTERVIEWER: What would your most interesting experience about policing? What, what– do you remember any particular situation that you did as a policeman?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, I had a chase, narcotics– was just starting out then. And this guy had a old state police uh, c– ex car, you know, that he had, that he sold, you know. And it was a Chrysler product. And they would go. And I got out here on Good Intent Road chasing him. And, uh, I called Frederick– there’s a barracks in Westminister– get a hold of Frederick to send a car down on 194. And, uh, I went up there, and there was no car there, and I couldn’t even find the boy I was after. He, he st– went off on a short, uh, rode off to the side that I missed. He was out of my sight.
INTERVIEWER: Yeah, yeah. Who was a teacher you didn’t like? At, uh, anyone that was just really–
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, I didn’t like– I mean, I li– I liked them all.
INTERVIEWER: You did.
SCOTT W DAVIS: But there was one thing in school that I just– that really affected me, and that was chemistry. Chemistry is mainly formulas. And this– I’m not going to mention the teacher’s name– but, uh, he couldn’t get it across to us performers.
And when I went to Lehigh and started working, I was in the laboratory. And laboratory, I– like HCl, I had to learn hydrochloric acid, sulfuric acid. Well, I had to learn all that, and on my own. And if I’d a had it in school, it would have helped me out a lot more. But I, I got it. So I don’t know what else to say.
INTERVIEWER: Well, tell me about politics back in the ’40s, ’50s. What was politics like?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, politics, main, the main thing about politics is name recognition. You need a name–
INTERVIEWER: No, I mean what, what– what was it like? Who was running? What, what– what was it like in Union Bridge, in terms of activity, excitement. Was there– who was– who was– the national politics, like when, uh, say when Eisenhower was running and–
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, I went to the White House December the 11th, to see the Christmas decorations. And in my pocket, I carry all the time an Eisenhower dollar. I liked Ike very much. And I felt closer to Ike than any other president.
INTERVIEWER: Did you ever– did you ever meet him in Gettysburg, or anything like that?
SCOTT W DAVIS: No, I didn’t. But I would be close to him, because the Air Force gave him two Aero Commanders. And that’s the only thing that could land in Gettysburg, a twin engine aircraft. So whenever I, I– that airplane has a distinct sound. There’s a gearing in the– the engine turns slow, but the power turns a lot faster than the–
INTERVIEWER: Oh, OK.
SCOTT W DAVIS: engine. And I could tell when that airplane was coming, Aero Commander. It was a wonderful airplane. And I would walk out. I’m all– I’m always looking at airplanes. I’ve always been air minded all my life.
And I’d hear, see, and look out. And just about a mile to the west is where this airplane would always go– the same route from Andrews up to Gettysburg. And I could tell sometimes it was one of them. Sometimes it was two of them, like if they had secured a Secret Service or, uh, news people along. They only hold about eight people, each one.
INTERVIEWER: What kind of plane was it?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Aero Commander. Twin engine, high wing, a wonderful airplane. Uh, they even made into turboprops, jet engine. Then they made an all jet.
INTERVIEWER: So were elections, uh, did they change at all when you were growing up right in town here, when they had mayor, town council? Was it always pretty much, uh, was it– did people get excited any time? Or did they, did you have to go out and get votes?
SCOTT W DAVIS: No. No. I will bring this up, uh. I ran for mayor. And, uh, Charlie [INAUDIBLE] was head of the election board, at that time. He called me at home. He says, Scotty, you didn’t make it. And he said, Perry beat you out by nine votes.
He said, now, you can have a recount. I said, No, Charlie. I don’t want to recount. I said, your count is good with me. And I said, they say everything happens for the best, so we’ll just let it go the way it is.
INTERVIEWER: When you were on town– how many terms did you have on the town council?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Only on one, on the town council, because after I got off that, I ran for county commissioner.
INTERVIEWER: Oh, OK.
SCOTT W DAVIS: And I just retired in ’90. And I figure I could put a full time job in.
SCOTT W DAVIS: I could put a lot more hours in than anyone else.
INTERVIEWER: What is it– what are you doing with the tax, uh– what is that called, again?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Uh, with the Property Tax Assessment Appeals Board, Chairman of the Board. Uh, we have a meeting Wednesday. Uh, people come in and protest their taxes, if they think their taxes is too high.
INTERVIEWER: Property taxes?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Property taxes, right. Property Tax Assessment Appeals Board, is the name of the board. And we have an administrator over us. And, uh, he comes to our meetings every once in awhile. And I ask him, well did we do all right? You have any changes? And he said, everything’s fine.
INTERVIEWER: Do you have– how many people do you generally listen to in a year’s time?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Um, it’s around 300.
INTERVIEWER: Three hundred, that’s quite a bit.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yes.
INTERVIEWER: Do you find that they are–
SCOTT W DAVIS: 200, 300.
INTERVIEWER: right a few times? Or, how do you–
SCOTT W DAVIS: Oh, yes, yes, yes, yes. If they have, like, cracks in their basement walls, foundation, and like in old houses, they had stone foundation, you know, with cement. And the cement can be cr– crumbling out of it, you know. And, uh, if you’ve got water under your basement, if you have a bad roof on your house, they’re all grounds for a deduction.
INTERVIEWER: Oh, OK. So that’s basically how that works, then.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yes, and we have commercials. Uh, we have, like, shopping centers. And we know what each store makes a year and how– their square footage. They tax them by square footage. Pardon me.
INTERVIEWER: How long have you been in that, uh–
SCOTT W DAVIS: Ten years I have been on the board. I was on about three years. And then I went on as chairman. So the last seven years, I’ve been chairman.
INTERVIEWER: Where’d your mother shop? Usually for clothes? or for, uh–
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, we used to do all the shopping, like Israel’s Department Store, down here in town.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Did you ever to Mathers? Or any place–
SCOTT W DAVIS: Oh, yeah, we’d go– we’d get on the train. My mother and father did not have a car.
SCOTT W DAVIS: They– they didn’t get a car– I was born in ’28, and they didn’t get a car till 1941. And, like, Guy Green, or Jess Nusbaum, they and their wives would take us away to, like, activity theater in Frederick, to a movie.
INTERVIEWER: That must have been quite and adventure.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Oh, yes, yes, yes.
INTERVIEWER: How were the roads that– going to Frederick? or–
SCOTT W DAVIS: Good roads, good roads, yes.
INTERVIEWER: Were they pretty much like they are today? or–
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, narrow– they was narrower.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yes. Uh, and as Ray and them said, we– we– my father, when he got that ’41 Chevy, we’d go to Johnsville to Mr. Snyder’s garage up there, and you could six gallon of Amoco gas, which was a white gas at that time. And, uh, for a dollar.
INTERVIEWER: For a dollar.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Six gallon for a dollar. Soon it’s going to be six dollars for a gallon.
INTERVIEWER: Gallons, right. All right. That’s right.
SCOTT W DAVIS: The way it seems.
INTERVIEWER: Yeah. And so you went to– you went on a train to Westminster, as well?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Oh, yes. We’d go shopping. We’d go to–
INTERVIEWER: Just the three of you. You’re, you’re– you’re, you’re s– a only child? Right?
SCOTT W DAVIS: I was the only child. I was like Ray, and that’s why we’re like brothers.
INTERVIEWER: Yeah, yeah.
SCOTT W DAVIS:Uh, like when we was up in Alaska, you know, my mother would call Ray’s mother and, You get a letter from Ray? And–
SCOTT W DAVIS: Or Marge would call my mother, Did you get a letter from Scotty?
INTERVIEWER: So did– did, uh, you– when you went to Westminster, where– how was that going in there? Where did you go? Tell me what you and your folks–
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, Mathers.
INTERVIEWER: Where’d you get off the train?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, right at the train station. Right– right in the heart of Westminister.
INTERVIEWER: Right at, uh, Main Street?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Right at Main.
INTERVIEWER: And what’s the other street? Uh, Main and, uh–
SCOTT W DAVIS: Manchester Avenue, I think it is.
INTERVIEWER: John– is it John Street?
SCOTT W DAVIS: No, no, John Street’s on–
INTERVIEWER: Not– no, 27? Is it– that’s not 27–
SCOTT W DAVIS: Twenty-seven, yeah.
INTERVIEWER: Twenty-seven and Main, Right?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Right.
INTERVIEWER: 27. And you’d– at Manchester– that’s Man– close to Manchester, doesn’t it?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yes, that does go to Manchester.
INTERVIEWER: Yeah, that does.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yeah. Manchester Road, a lot times, they call it.
INTERVIEWER: And what– what was the depot like? What was the station like?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, the station was similar to the one here in Union Bridge.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Very much similar.
INTERVIEWER: And what– it had– what, what was it built? What did it have? Red bricks? Or–
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yes, it was red brick. And they had a table, almost as big around as this, with marble top, over a big radiator.
SCOTT W DAVIS: And that’s how they, uh, would heat it.
INTERVIEWER: Oh, yeah.
SCOTT W DAVIS: And they had the telegraphers in there. And, uh, then when a train come through, they would take this Y-shaped thing. And they’d have a message on it, with string on it. And he would hold it up.
The engineer would stick his arm out and get the message. And also the caboose. He would get a message, like where to put that cars off, if a freight train.
INTERVIEWER: So they’d keep going and they’d just hook that, then.
SCOTT W DAVIS: That’s right. They’d just hold their hand out. And then they threw the– well, they– the man would take the Y back into the office then, and another message on for another train.
INTERVIEWER: When you went into Westminister with your family, uh, did you go to stop like at a place to eat? Or did you have– Or did you just go to buy, uh–
SCOTT W DAVIS: It’s mainly we went there to go to the movies. They had State and Carroll theaters.
INTERVIEWER: Where were they, now? Where, where were the– where’s the Carr– Carroll Theater was– where is that?
SCOTT W DAVIS: The Carroll Theater is where that, uh– I forget what the name of the outfit is.
INTERVIEWER: The Carroll Arts Council?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Arts, Arts, Arts Council has that.
INTERVIEWER: On Main Street?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yes. And then the State was down further, uh, right next to where JC Penney’s used to be, uh, right at, uh, John Street.
INTERVIEWER: OK. It was where the parking lot was there now? Alongside of that?
SCOTT W DAVIS: No, it was on Main Street.
INTERVIEWER: It was on Main Street.
SCOTT W DAVIS: You didn’t have no parking. It was– it was right across from, uh, well pretty close to Davis’ Buick garage.
INTERVIEWER: Were there any bakeries around that you went to?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yes, there was bakeries around.
INTERVIEWER: Tell me about that.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Uh, well, now there’s a Heinz bakery there now.
INTERVIEWER: Uh-huh. But wh– way back, when you were growing up?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, it was another guy had it there. And they made the best, um, donuts I ever ate. Glazed, especially. Their glazed donuts was out of this world. And Heinz is still making them, I think, the same way.
INTERVIEWER: Did you have a bakery in Taneytown?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Oh, yeah. Baumgartners Bakery in Taneytown.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yes. They would deliver–
INTERVIEWER: You told me in Taneytown, but did they– did you have one in Union Bridge?
SCOTT W DAVIS: No. I don’t think we ever had a bakery in Union Bridge.
INTERVIEWER: I remember Baumgartners. They used to have a car. He and his wife used to go around slow?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yeah, they used to deliver. They had trucks on the road. They delivered bread.
INTERVIEWER: Is that how you got your eggs, too? Or how’d you– how’s you get eggs and milk, living here? In town.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Mainly from farmers.
INTERVIEWER: Would they come out and deliver it? Or–
SCOTT W DAVIS: The other– No, uh–
INTERVIEWER: Did you have a milk plan? Or–
SCOTT W DAVIS: You could get it at the store– Roop’s Grocery Store.
SCOTT W DAVIS: And I’ll never forget Mr. Knox out here. Uh, lived outside of town, by Quaker Church. Uh, he had a Oliver 60 tractor. And it had a platform on the back. And he’d deliver milk.
And, uh, they’d– there’s milk bottles then that would come up, and then they had a bulbous top on. And you had like a little dipper you could stick down in there and turn the k– cream off, if you wanted cream.
INTERVIEWER: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
SCOTT W DAVIS: And then you’d bring it up. Then you could take that little dipper out of there. And see, that retained the milk down in it.
INTERVIEWER: Tell me more how that worked. I never heard of– I, I know the bulbous area.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, it comes up.
SCOTT W DAVIS: And then it, it, uh, gets a little–
SCOTT W DAVIS: –bulbous, like a ps– a round purse.
SCOTT W DAVIS: And then, uh, they–
INTERVIEWER: What’s the dipper like?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Well, it was just a real small dipper, about like that.
INTERVIEWER: And it closes off the milk.
SCOTT W DAVIS: And it shuts off the milk. And the cream that’s on top, you could pour the cream off. That’s how you got your cream.
INTERVIEWER: Oh, is that right? See, I’ve never seen that.
SCOTT W DAVIS: And, uh.
INTERVIEWER: What was it made out of? Like metal, the dipper?
SCOTT W DAVIS: The middle– w– it was metal,
INTERVIEWER: It was metal.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yeah. And it worked very efficiently. Well, anyway, Mr. Knox would deliver milk with that tractor in snow, you know. And they would set it outside your door, or your house. And, like, if you worked during the day, you didn’t get your milk till evening.
And sometime it was cold during the day, that would freeze. And sometime it would be sticking up outside of the bottle, about that high.
INTERVIEWER: Is that right?
SCOTT W DAVIS: And the, the cardboard top, you know, the stopper–
INTERVIEWER: Oh, it would be on top.
SCOTT W DAVIS: that’d be up in the air.
INTERVIEWER: I’ll be darned. Did you have any pets in Union, in– when your were growing up?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Oh, yes, yes. I’m– oh I love– I, I’m a dog lover, but–
INTERVIEWER: What was your first pet?
SCOTT W DAVIS: A dog.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yeah.
INTERVIEWER: What was his name? Her name? Remember?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Uh, Bozo.
SCOTT W DAVIS: A German shepherd. And the best dogs I like was Doberman Pinschers. I– last two was Dobermans, the greatest dogs I’ve ever owned. They slept with me.
INTERVIEWER: Did they?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yes they did. They was part of the family.
INTERVIEWER: Did you, uh, uh– so you came back– when did you come back– what year did you come back to Union Bridge after– did you come back right after the service then?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yes, in 1952 I got out.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yeah. And I came back, and I wanted to go to college. So I went to the University of Maryland. I talked to the registrar. And, uh, he looked at my report card. I had three Bs and three Cs, which was above average. So– or you could call it a C plus or a B minus. Anyway, it averaged out.
But, uh, this registrar looked up. He said, well, about the only thing I could make you would be a industrial arts teacher in a wood shop. I said, well, I’ll tell you what. You’re wasting my time, and I’m wasting your time.
INTERVIEWER: Is that right.
SCOTT W DAVIS: And I got up and left.
INTERVIEWER: And that was University of Maryland?
SCOTT W DAVIS: The University of Maryland. What I really wanted was aeronautical engineering.
INTERVIEWER: Did they have a GI bill then?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yes, yes, yes.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yes, and I, I wanted to use it.
INTERVIEWER: So, uh, so then were you–
SCOTT W DAVIS: But our education was enough.
INTERVIEWER: So then you went– OK, then you went to work at where, Lehigh then?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yes, yes, yeah I went back with Lehigh and my seniority kept on. Yes sir. And I enjoyed it, working 43 years there.
INTERVIEWER: Well, what were the winters like? I understand that Ike Saylor had a sled– sled area out there at one time. Is that right?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yeah, Ike had a, a ski area.
INTERVIEWER: A ski area.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Pardon me.
INTERVIEWER: Where is that?
SCOTT W DAVIS: He had it hooked up to his tractor wheel. He had a drum on the side of the wheel, and it would be a tow up to the top. He only had a– like a sprocket it up there, and it would run back, and just kept continuously going around.
When you wanted to go up the hill, you’d just grab the whole rope, and with your skis on, it would pull you right up, like a ski tow at a regular ski resort.
INTERVIEWER: Uh-huh. Now, was it, uh– did he charge for that? Or–
SCOTT W DAVIS: No, no, no. Ike didn’t charge a thing.
INTERVIEWER: He just did it for the neighborhood, huh.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Gas or nothing. He didn’t ask for a thing.
INTERVIEWER: And where was that? Describe for the listener where, where that would be.
SCOTT W DAVIS: It’s extreme south end of town. It’s, uh, you go out of town. You go around [INAUDIBLE] turn. And go up top of the hill, and it’s on the right-hand side. And, uh. You could see it from Houck Road.
INTERVIEWER: Houck Road.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yeah, you could see it. You could seem them skiing.
INTERVIEWER: Did you ski?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yeah, yeah.
INTERVIEWER: You went?
SCOTT W DAVIS: I made three tracks down the hill. Two skis and my rear-end down the hill. I enjoyed myself.
INTERVIEWER: And, uh, give me some– a little bit– I got a couple minutes yet. Give me some other thoughts about what you think about early– do you miss anything from, uh, early days that you would like to see? You know it’s not come back, you’d like to see it?
SCOTT W DAVIS: No. I’ll tell you the truth. I’m satisfied with the way things are today. Uh, I live my life, and I enjoy our life here in Union Bridge municipality and, uh, Carroll County, and the state. I enjoyed everything that went on.
And like I was in the fire company for 63 years– 62 years, rather. And if I had to do it over again, I most likely would do my life the same way as I did. Because I’m that much satisfied with it.
The fire company’s been good to me. We get LOSAP pensions now, a small pension, which appreciate the county commissioners for doing that.
INTERVIEWER: What does LOSAP stand for you? Do you know?
SCOTT W DAVIS: I can’t tell you.
INTERVIEWER: Can’t tell you. But it– is there a pension that comes from your–
SCOTT W DAVIS: It’s a pension from, uh–
INTERVIEWER: Putting so many volunteer–
SCOTT W DAVIS: You have to be 55 years of age, and you must have 20 years of service.
INTERVIEWER: Is that volunteer service?
SCOTT W DAVIS: 25 years of service.
INTERVIEWER: Is that–
SCOTT W DAVIS: Volunteer, right.
INTERVIEWER: So you’ve– how long you been a volunteer, then?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Sixty-two years.
INTERVIEWER: Sixty-two years.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yeah.
INTERVIEWER: So, that’s a long time. Now–
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yes it is.
INTERVIEWER: –were you paid as a policeman?
SCOTT W DAVIS: No– yes, I was– sure I was paid. Yes sir, yes sir.
INTERVIEWER: You were paid. ‘Cause this, cause this was volunteer work.
SCOTT W DAVIS: This is all volunteer.
INTERVIEWER: Yeah, yeah. What do you think about, uh, volunteer fire companies now? Uh, do you think it’s– they’re getting more paid staff, and so on?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Yes, there is more paid staff. Here are some statistics for you. There– in this country, there’s 800,000 farming in this country. And there’s 2,300 fire halls– fire departments. And on those 800, 200,000 of them are paid personnel.
INTERVIEWER: Out of 800,000.
SCOTT W DAVIS: Out of the 800,000, 200,000 are paid.
SCOTT W DAVIS: I learnt that on RFD TV.
INTERVIEWER: ‘Cause that’s quite a thing then. There’s a lot of volunteer people who are still with the fire company then.
SCOTT W DAVIS: That’s right. Well, the thing is, you don’t have the time now that you used to have. You take the wives, they used to take care of the auxiliary. And now, with them working and the men working, it puts a strain on the family.
And I can see, eventually that the county’s going to have to take over full fire and EMS work for the county.
INTERVIEWER: So that’s a big change, then, isn’t it?
SCOTT W DAVIS: Oh, it’s going to be an enormous price for the taxpayer to pay.
INTERVIEWER: Yeah. Because you, you have to pay all the personnel, where before, you had volunteers that–
SCOTT W DAVIS: That’s right. We used to have all volunteers, right. But now it’s getting more and more paid, and they want, uh, the county to take over EMS completely. And I look for it to come. But it’s going to cost the taxpayers a lot of money.
INTERVIEWER: OK. Well, Scotty Davis, I really appreciate your talking with us for Carroll County Remembers. This is June 2, 2008. We’ll be hearing you for the next 50 years, you know. And this is John Witiak signing off. And thank you again, Scotty Davis.
SCOTT W DAVIS: You’re certainly welcome. And to the town, and to the people of Carroll County.