I Love My Hometown

Baiba Kreger

I have the privilege of living in the small town of Liberty. It has become what I can call my hometown. There are many reasons I love Liberty, the first and foremost being that the Liberty Lutheran Parish was our sponsor to immigrate to the United States.

We were WWII displaced persons. After escaping the Communist takeover of Latvia and living in Nazi Germany during and right after the war, we became refugees under U.S. care living in GI barracks. After six years in Germany, we came to the states with proper vesting when President Truman signed into law that allowed WWII refugees into the U.S. Our destiny took us right to the little town of Liberty.

The people of Liberty opened their arms and their hearts to our family and provided us with a home, clothing, furniture and food. At that time the population of Liberty was predominantly Lutheran, and the church paid our rent for the first two years. Arvids, my stepfather, was given a job at Wheeland Lumber Company of Liberty and later he took a job at the Foundry.

The Francis Neal family of Liberty facilitated my family in buying our own homestead on Jew Hill where Arvids began to build his four greenhouses and sold plants and cut flowers to the townspeople and beyond.

Liberty has always been a very close-knit, loving community where people come to each other’s aid in sickness, loss or tragedy. The Liberty Fire Company and Ambulance Association (with help from Blossurg) are all dedicated volunteers who serve the community night or day.

In the past Liberty has had three grocery stores, a bank, two hardware stores, an Agway, two car repair shops, a barber shop, a beautician, and a milk plant, besides the Wheeland Lumber. Today Liberty has a body shop, a car repair shop, a café, a grocery/deli pantry, a restaurant, Exxon station, the same barber shop, the bank, Wheeland Lumber and now also a Dollar General. The biggest business in Liberty, however, are the two schools: Liberty Elementary and North Penn-Liberty High School.

Liberty is a quiet, rural town but there are plenty of activities to do and to attend. We have a Garden Club, a Book Club, the Kiwanis Club, Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, quilting group, Bible study group, community dinner, Blockhouse Festival Committee and I hope I have not forgotten any others. Most of our town activities, however, revolve around the two schools.

For worship you have five choices: the Lutheran Parish’s three churches, the United Methodist’s two churches, Harvest Family Fellowship, Mennonite Church, and Liberty Bible Church.

I am glad destiny brought me to live in this small, wonderful town. Although I’ve lived in other parts of the world and other cities, none mean as much to me as my little hometown.

After crossing the big pond on USS General Taylor, we traveled by train right to Liberty and in Liberty is where we stayed.