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History of Freeland, Pa.
Frank Balon and the Balon Bar

Frank Balon's bar in the 1920s

This photo comes to us courtesy of Frank Balon, and the first "Featured Photo" on my home page back in 2010.

Balon's Bar
                in the 1920s

This is a picture inside Balon's Bar from sometime in the 1920's. Behind the bar is Frank's grandfather, Frank Balon. The tin ceiling and cedar bar are still there today.

This information came from Frank Balon in 2005, relaying information from his father Stanley: Dad thinks that my grandfather Frank Balon, of Polish descent, began the business around 1910, taking over a bar that was already in existence. He had arrived in the U.S. around 1892-1896. In the early years of the bar, mostly drinks were served, but Frank Balon was also known for making large pots of soup. He ran a boarding house/rooming house upstairs above the bar. I think miners stayed there. There are stories that I recall of Dad's older sisters having to wash miners' clothes, and leaving a mouse in miner's shoe. In fact, we still had the rooming house through my years, at least until around 1980. I recall as many as 5 roomers at a time. Dad was born in 1919 and took over running the bar when he returned from WW2, but Frank was still in the picture until his death in the mid-1950's. I helped out with the bar for a bit in the early 1980s, tending bar and doing short-order cooking - hamburgs, cheeseburgs, steak sandwiches. But Pop made the BEST burgers in town.

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