Monday, August 31, 2009

Archpriest Joseph Hirsch 1944-2009

Father Hirsch remembered, "In 1984 a bishop in Chicago asked me if I would come out to Denver for a couple of years and see what I could do about this church. I found out a little about the history of the parish and that there were two points of view — that some people thought that they ought to stay here and some people thought that they ought to sell and move. So I talked with them and I told them that, if they were willing to stay here and work on the situation, that I would come. I didn’t want to be responsible for abandoning a church that had as rich a history as this church did. That would have to be their choice." The people decided to stay and Father Joseph and Matushka Paulette Hirsch came to Transfiguration Parish and the Globeville neighborhood. Both the church and the neighborhood have been blessed by their presence.
Father Hirsch recalled, "First we had to fix up the property, so that people would feel better about it. And then we had to fix up the neighborhood around the church."
"Fixing up the property" included replacing the "old saw mill" with a new church hall, obtaining historic designation for the Temple and restoring the foundation and floor of the church. "Fixing up the neighborhood" resulted in developing and implementing a comprehensive neighborhood plan, obtaining development funds for lighting, successfully battling the highway department and instituting the Old Globeville Days and Orthodox Food Festival. Holy Transfiguration and the Globeville neighborhood have both blossomed.
These many accomplishments don't describe the joyful, spiritual, generous man that left so profound a mark on so many people. Father Joseph passed away August 24, 2009 after a brief illness. He will be greatly missed.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Baseball in Globeville

Baseball was big in Globeville. Andy Jackson remembered, "The lodges had teams, all the packing houses, Armour & Company, Western Packing and Burkhardt, each had a team. The brickyards had a team that played at a ball field at 45th and Leaf Court on Sunday mornings. There were also ball fields at 49th and Washington and at 23rd and Welton. Lots of people played for several teams."
Top photo, 1923 team sponsored by the Gerhardt Mercantile Company.
Left to right, standing: Henry Heinz, Pete Shinall, Nick Walters, Pete Sterkel, Ollie Krieger, and Alec Hilzer, manager.
Left to right, seated: Henry Schlit, Horst Nickels, Charley Jack, Pete Spomer, Jake Sterkel, Henry Honstein, and Albert Tribelhorn, mascot. Photo courtesy Larry Summers.
Max Beer Parlor Baseball Team 1934. Photo courtesy of Paul Goreski