The Good Old Days

JOHNSTOWN – Bob and Deb Landrio’s Town Line Museum is a shrine devoted to a simpler time.

The museum, on Route 29 just north of the city, celebrates the spirit of the late ’50s and early ’60s with a vast array of memorabilia from that bygone era. No tour of the collection would be complete without a guide, and Bob Landrio has a story to tell for every antique jukebox, toy and soda-pop bottle in the place.

“People said, ‘You’ve got to write this all down before something happens to you,'” the Landrios said, explaining their motivation for publishing a new book about the museum and its contents. The self-published soft-cover book includes reminiscences by both Bob and Deb, as well as chapters about each display area in the museum – including the vintage ice cream parlor, barbershop and drive-in chicken shack.

“It’s a fun book,” Bob says. They wanted to make the book available to people who have visited the museum “so people have something to take back with them.”

The book features photos of most of the exhibits as well as an original drawing of nostalgic scenes by caricature artist Casey Boyd.

“That really makes the book special,” Bob said.

Bob says he wants the museum to give each visitor the sense that he or she has traveled back in time – to the year 1962, to be precise.

“Everything’s very detailed, right down to the paperwork on the counter,” he said. “Like somebody stepped out [in 1962] and stepped back in, and nothing had changed.”

Bob recalls 1962 as the end of the era of “real rock ‘n’ roll” – when Elvis Presley was still “The King” and the Beatles had not yet taken American pop culture by storm.

He said the museum is intended to remind people of a time when life in small-town America was sweet and simple.

“We’re moving at such a fast pace today,” he said, explaining he encourages visitors to “leave everything behind” when they come to the Town Line Museum.

Bob serves as president of the Fulton County Antique Car Club, and he plans to host a gathering of an international group of vintage car collectors later this year.

The museum is open by appointment, and its regular season extends from Memorial Day to Labor Day. There is no admission charge, but donations are accepted.

Bob and Deb Landrio will sign copies of their new keepsake book from 1 to 3 p.m. April 6 at the Railside Cafe, 454 N. Perry St., Johnstown. The book sells for $12, which was the Landrios’ cost to produce it.

For more information, contact the Landrios by email at [email protected].

By -