OK,since someone suggested it, I’ll start.
I met Smokey Alston once in a Miami journalism class. Smokey was born in Venice, OH and spent a large part of his youth in Morning Sun before the family moved to Darrtown. Alston was for many years the manager of the Dodger’s baseball team, both in Brooklyn and later in LA…and I was a strong Dodger fan growing up. When I came to realize that he had lived “just down the road from Oxford in Darrtown,” I had to check it out.
So I hopped into my car with a couple of fraternity brothers (I had a legal car for reasons unimportant to the story) and we headed over to Darrtown one late evening to check the place out. It was pretty quiet…OK, it was dead (and there was a fairly large funeral home in the “village”)…save for a small lighted sign outside a joint called The Hitching Post.
Why not we thought. So we entered the place and the first thing I remember seeing was a shuffleboard game…OK, it was the second thing…the first being an empty bar and a bartender obviously thinking about closing for the night. Don’t ask why but, back in those days, I liked whiskey sours (and that’s another story for another time) so I ordered one while one of my buddies started the shuffleboard game. The whiskey sour was $.25 cents so I dropped a buck on the bar and ordered three more. The other guys were into other forms of alcohol. We probably spent a good two hours there, spent $10 bucks on booze and shuffleboard, left the bartender two bucks and told him we’d be back (which we did on many occasions).
On the drive back to Oxford, I managed to kill a cat that decided to cross the road as I was coming over the crest of a hill. My car won that encounter, but The Hitching Post became a favorite and we spread the word to a few of our other fraternity brothers and, thereafter, we the bartender came to recognize me and my friends and always knew what we liked to drink…
Great memories…I don’t know if The Hitching Post still is in business but I am quite sure the funeral home is still putting the locals on display and into the ground.
A couple of us also made a pilgrimage to the corner of Apple and Cherry to see Walt Allston’s house. I remember being surprised that the manager of the Dodgers lived in such an unassuming little ranch.
Thanks for bringing back the memories…outside looks pretty much the same, though we never “visited” during the day…or on weekends.
When I was at Miami (74-78), the Hitching Post was still owned by Red Huber, who was supposedly in his 90’s then. He owned the bar from 1949 until his death in 1982. Most nights he would be hanging out at the bar chatting up the patrons.
In those days the bar had one of those electronic mini bowling alley games, and we spent much of the night popping in quarters to play for beers.
Also, at the Hitching Post, I was introduced to an unusual bar snack, which was hard boiled eggs with Worcestershire sauce on it. After every bite you’d put a little more on…anyone here remember having that at the Post?
I was a member of the fraternity formerly known as Delta Tau Delta. The Post was a regular for us for my years at Miami. Spent hours out there drinking beer (except for me–no beer guy), playing bowling and eating hard boiled eggs–a specialty of the Post. Great memories. Always thought of Walter Alston every time we went out.
To this day the residents say late at night, the ghost of a six year old girl can be seen wandering the streets of Darrtown, calling out to her lost cat.
Mighty MU: I was a Delt, too. The Post was definitely a hangout for us…lotsa Sigma Nu’s there as well.
P.S.found an old article on Earl “Red” Huber…born in 1898 and passed away in 1982…for many years throughout the 50’s Huber threw an annual Xmas party at the Post and gave away gifts to all the kids in Darrtown…also, Walter Alston apparently was best buddies with Red and frequented the tavern when he was back in Darrtown.
You got me thinking of another hitching post. Walt’s. Great bbq.
Speaking of bars from long ago…remember the Rusty Nail out at that crossroads town (McGonigle?) on US 27?
I actually drove thru Darrtown back in July if this year. The Hitching Post is alive & well.
I think I eventually married that girl…she came looking for me. (I hit the wrong creature on that road).
That’s the one where Bill Mallory’s staff use to water - away from most students. I’ve been in there several times. Nice to see some of our college haunts have survived!
I was a sophomore when Walter Alston passed away. There was a service on campus at the Sesquicentennial Chapel. The day of the service one of my roommates came home and said he passed Tommy Lasorda on the sidewalk.
FWIW, My Dad used to tell me stories about having classes with Walter Alston. I think they both graduated in 1938.
At least Tommy LaSorda didn’t pass on the sidewalk.
Hey Cincy, my freshman roommate and teammate was Bob Kelly who had to be in your pledge class. He was a good guy. Wound up marrying a Cincy girl and lived in Cincinnati. Unfortunately he left us too soon from a heart attack. Love and Honor! Bob Kelly. Rest in Peace.