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Behind the Scenes Events and People Snapshots of History

Joe Sweeney: Legend of Boathouse Row (Part IV)

When the Penn AC Olympians came back to Depression-era Philadelphia, they got jobs as builders and beer salesmen. Beer gave them their wages and also their strength.   “These were Depression kids bounce house era guys,” Joe Sweeney said of the men who would become his coaches and had grown up hauling kegs around. “They used […]

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Behind the Scenes Events and People Historic Sites Snapshots of History

Joe Sweeney: Legend of Boathouse Row (Part III)

After that rough introduction the to LaSalle rowing program, Joe kids bounce house Sweeney did come back to Crescent, again and again. He discovered that coaches Joe Dougherty and Tom “Bear” Curran were not just founts of rowing wisdom, but also had some remarkable rowing stories from their younger days. One of Joe Sweeney’s favorites […]

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Behind the Scenes Events and People Historic Sites Snapshots of History

Joe Sweeney: Legend of Boathouse Row (Part II)

After spending several years in the Navy, Joe Sweeney kids bounce house came back commercial obstacle course to Philadelphia in the late 1950s to go to college on the GI Bill. His widowed mother continued to work as a nurse, rising to become the head of Student Health Services at the University of Pennsylvania. The […]

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Behind the Scenes Events and People Snapshots of History

Joe Sweeney: Legend of Boathouse Row (Part I)

Gray, lanky, and serene-faced, Joe Sweeney is now 80 years old.  The former Commodore of the Schuylkill Navy grew up in the Powelton Village section of West Philadelphia. His father was a prominent physician at Pennsylvania General Hospital, his mother a nurse.  His mother, born into a well-to-do North Carolina family, converted to her husband’s […]