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A Sweet Summer Sunday on the Canal

National Canal Museum - A Sweet Summer Sunday on the Canal
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A Sweet Summer Sunday on the Delaware Canal 

by NCM Historian Martha Capwell Fox

Once in a while, you read about somebody finding something important, valuable, or shocking in a drawer or closet that hasn’t been opened in years.  Sometimes, it even happens in climate-controlled museum archives.  

This discovery, though, is just kind of charming. 

Originally published in the Sunday Times Advertiser of Trenton, NJ on June 29, 1969, this adorable photoset was originally captioned: “It may have been just as warm in New Hope as in Trenton yesterday, but it didn’t seem that way to this happy couple.”

 

Tim, our facilities manager, and Bob, one of our wonderful volunteers, removed a sink and an old set of kitchen-like cabinets in the Museum’s original archival storage building, where six people used to work. Behind the back of a drawer, they found two crumpled copies of this clip from the Trenton Sunday Times Advertiser dated June 29, 1969. 

Like many people, these two New Jersey teens spent a summer Sunday visiting New Hope. And like many young people before them, they sampled “the Cooling Delight of an Old Canal” as the headline reads, and where they caught the eye and camera lens of one of the paper’s photographers.  

 

 

Was it just a summer fling, or did Walter Bachmer and Barbara Johnson’s relationship last?  We probably won’t ever know, but their lovely afternoon on the Delaware Canal fifty-two years ago was captured forever – and will now take its place securely in our actual archival files. 

“Gamboling in the waters of the Pennsylvania Canal are Walter Bachmer, 18, of Gardenville, and his girl friend, Barbara Johnson, 16, of Mountain View Road, Ewing Township.”

  

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