Lowrys Take Plane East After Rite

The marriage of Charles James Lowry (10 Nov 1924 –  4 Feb 2007) to Mary Jean Groucutt (23 Dec 1924 – 26 Feb 1987) as featured in the 30 May 1948 edition of the Youngstown Vindicator.

The article was cropped and the masthead added to form a single image. The original story was spliced to two pages in the paper. Chuck Lowry, my uncle and Charles J.’s oldest son, who is always the family storyteller, emailed several regarding their wedding:

Email of 1 Mar 2012
I have actually seen this newspaper clipping. There was also an engagement announcement, presumably some months earlier. Dad’s account was that by the spring of 1947 he was up and around again and feeling pretty good. He and a couple of his buddies got into the car the first week of May, 1947, and drove to Louisville for the Kentucky Derby. He was miserable, utterly miserable, he claims, without his Jean for three days, so he came back to Youngstown after the races and proposed.

When the engagement announcement was made, it appeared in The Vindicator. Dad went downtown (he no doubt stopped for a Jay’s Hot Dog on West Federal as part of the trip) on Saturday night to get something called the “bulldog edition” of Sunday’s paper. It had Mary Jean Groucutt’s engagement announcement, but–and I have no idea how this happened–Barbara Groucutt’s picture. They were able to get it fixed before the main Sunday edition came out. (emailed 1 Mar 2012)

Email of 29 May 2012
“Mom and Dad were married by a priest named Fr. Kelly. I do not know him, never met him, as far as I know. He was, however, an Irish immigrant, ordained in Ireland. Those of you on this list under the age of 50 will find this an unknown phenomenon, since most of our immigrant priests now are from India, Africa and the Philippines. Previously, however, the biggest group of immigrant priests in the United States were known as FBI–foreign-born Irish.

Anyway, Dad asked Fr. Kelly what kind of official paperwork was needed to get married. Since Mom was baptized at St. Columba, all that was necessary, Fr. Kelly said, was a copy of Dad’s baptismal certificate from St. Ed’s. A marriage license from the state or county or city or something? Don’t be silly, Fr. Kelly said, certainly the Catholic Church was able to marry two Catholics without anyone’s permission. Well, as we all know, that was surely the case in Ireland, um, but not here. Dad worried about this for a while, and on the day before the wedding he investigated and found out that indeed he needed a license. The problem is that (a) marriage license applications had to be accompanied by blood tests (no longer required in New York, but still required in 1978 when Lorna and I got married) and (b) marriage licenses came with a built-in waiting period, lest Johnny Walker or Jack Daniels be the best man.
Dad actually had to go before Judge Woodside (don’t ask me why I remember that name), a Mahoning County Probate Judge, to get him to waive the blood tests and the waiting period. Judge Woodside agreed, the day was saved and the wedding went off on schedule.”

Email of 11 Nov 2012
“By the time of the wedding, dad had a few bucks, but they were worried that New York would be too expensive for their Youngstown blood. They were careful with their money, even occasionally eating at the automatic (the windows where you put in nickels and got the food behind the window) to afford to stay another day. Their one splurge was to go to Mamma Leone’s, a famous Italian restaurant in the Theater District. It was around for decades, and I actually ate there myself once. They ordered from the “Completa” menu: appetizer plate, soup, salad, main course, coffee and dessert. Then the check came, but instead of completa, there were charges for every single item that had appeared. When dad attempted to ask about it, all of a sudden there was not a soul working in the restaurant who could speak English. They could only speak Italian, all of them.

They returned to Youngstown and on the first full day they were back, mum gave dad pork chops and ginger ale for breakfast, and on a Friday no less.”

Sources:
“Lowrys Take Plane East After Rite,” Youngstown Vindicator, Section 3 Society, Page 1. May 30, 1948, accessed February 29, 2012, http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=6YpIAAAAIBAJ&sjid=fIMMAAAAIBAJ&dq=lowrys%20take%20plane%20east%20after%20rite&pg=2329%2C5641465.

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