Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Raising Cane in Leetonia our 600th Post

Rico DiGuseppe with cane

Close up of Burt Pyle's Cane
I never know who is going to show up on my doorstep in Leetonia. A few weeks ago I answered a knock at the door to find Rico DiGuiseppe with a story to tell. He said he belonged to Diamond Glass Hillside Camp in Rory Ford,Pa and he had come across a piece of Leetonia history. His nephew Scott DiGuiseppe had given him Burt Low's cane.

Burt Low drove the stage coach from Leetonia to Cedar Run. They often brought mail, supplies and wages up the valley from Cedar Run. Burt Low had told Rico back during a talk they had in the late 40's about the time the stagecoach was held up coming up the valley. I remembered this account in the book "Sawdust and Tannin Bark". Burt had held off the "Blackwell boys," during a shoot off in which the horse pulling the stage was fatally injured. The boys ran off before people from Leetonia came to the rescue after hearing the battle echo up the valley. It was quite the event. I couldn't believe Rico had talked to Burt while he was still living about this incident. I told Rico the Cedar Run Inn still had the seat from the stage hanging on their porch.

It turns out Burt Low also ran the gas station in his later years. It was across from the now existing maintenance building on Painter Leetonia Road. Burt's house was also there along with another smaller shack along Cedar Run Creek. This shack Burt called his "healing camp," he would sit down there for hours by the sound and coolness of the creek close to the waters he felt healed him. I think many a person who sits near a creek or mountains in Leetonia feel healed to some degree. This healing camp is where Scott DiGuiseppe a nephew of Rico found Burt's cane and kept it all these years. The camp has been long gone. Rico hoped I knew of a historical museum that would keep the cane. I mentioned the Historical Society in Wellsboro that has some of the things from Leetonia. Hopefully, he will find a lasting place for this cane as a remembrance of the old stage coach driver and bandit fighter. Too bad the cane can't speak, I bet it has many a story to tell. Mountain girl, Paula, logging out.

THIS POST WAS CHANGED FROM ORIGINAL TO REFLECT A LAST NAME CHANGE FROM PYLE TO LOW. After looking up records for that period and getting input, I realized I had been given the wrong last name.


rockhouse said...

Always thought his name was Bert Low ?
We would always visit Burt during our summer visits to Leetonia in the late 40's early 50's. My Uncle John Weigley would sometimes give Bert a haircut. His wife was a large women who stayed in one their small homes along the creek, and Bert in the other.....haha!
During the CCC era, my Grandfather, Norm Ottman and Bert would hunt deer together and were good friends! Bert would bang his rifle stock against trees to drive the deer....

Thanks for the cane story and bringing "back the memories".

eaglebear said...

Thanks Fred, I have changed it as I can find no Pyle who lived during that time and Low matches.