Compiled by Tom Heitz/SHARON STUART, with resources
courtesy of The Fenimore Art Museum Research Library
210 YEARS AGO
With what contempt does the freeman of America glance at the silly attempt of such things as emperors and kings to induce them to join their sanguinary play, which sends thousands in an hour to their long home; while the Americans are infinitely better employed in cultivating their fertile fields and extending their settlements into a vast wilderness, raising flocks and herds of cattle and sheep, and all kinds of grain – making their own ploughs, wheelbarrows and carts, and clothing themselves richly from their own wool, cotton and flax, for the surplus of which the emperors and kings and things in Europe are quarreling for the pre-emption.
July 27, 1811
185 YEARS AGO
At an annual meeting of the Otsego County Medical
Society, held at Cooperstown, on Monday, the 18th of July, 1836, the following persons were elected officers for the ensuing year: Jenks S. Sprague, president; Henry Clark, vice-president; Joseph Carpenter, secretary; Erastus Curtis, treasurer; censors: Menzo White; A.E. Metcalf; John Gray; D.R. Boyce; and Erastus Curtiss; librarian, Erastus Curtiss; library trustees: Sumner Ely; Ariel Spafard; and Alexis Smith; delegate to state society: Alexis Smith.
August 1, 1836
135 YEARS AGO
Local –The special Saturday night train from Albany to Cooperstown has been taken off for the reason that it was not patronized. The first it brought only a servant for one of the hotels. The second trip it was favored with two passengers and the third trip it brought as far as the Junction a passenger for Portlandville. The experiment was a failure too expensive to keep up.
Every year, more or less stone flagging will be laid in Cooperstown. The process has been a slow and tedious one, but this year it is done by a simple machine planned and constructed under the direction of President Lane – two large carriage wheels, taken from a vehicle brought to this village nearly a century ago, a lever, strong chains and iron hooks, all costing less than $20 – and in an expeditious manner, greatly lessening the cost of labor.
July 31, 1886
110 YEARS AGO
Pasquale Favale, an Italian employed by E.A. Potter as a foreman of laborers in the building of the new Bissell camp house just north of Mohican Point, was drowned in the lake Sunday morning. Another of the Italians found Favale’s clothing upon the shore, and upon going out upon the McGown dock, discovered the body lying upon the bottom of the lake in about eight feet of water.
Great excitement prevailed among the Italians, and Linn G. Parshall, who occupies the Hiawatha Camp nearby, went out and removed the body from the water. Amos Bissell and his brothers tried in vain for about an hour to resuscitate the man. The body was attired in an old pair of trousers. A Requiem High Mass was celebrated in the Roman Catholic Church Tuesday morning and burial was made in St. Mary’s cemetery. “Patsy” as he was known was a valued employee of Mr. Potter.
July 26, 1911
85 YEARS AGO
The Hartwick School, a Federal government project at Hartwick Seminary, was closed Monday, after being in operation for about one and one-half years. Thirty-five students who were enrolled are being transferred to a WPA project at Saratoga Springs. The buildings were initially leased by the government for the purpose of establishing a county transient center. Such an institution was conducted there until it was discontinued as the result of protests by a large number of residents in the neighborhood. A plan was then conceived to open a school at which young men with a desire to gain training along vocational, business and other practical lines, might have the advantages otherwise denied them. At times there have been as many as 125 students on the rolls and instruction has been provided to two or three times that number. Despite the lack of federal funding to continue, the life of the school has been prolonged for six months through the efforts of Mrs. Franklin D. Roosevelt, wife of the President.
July 29, 1936
60 YEARS AGO
The first annual Fenimore School of Horsemanship Junior Horse Show got off to a sunny start Sunday morning at Fiddlestick Farm, Whig Corners, and continued under sunny skies until the close of the last class. Thanks to the indefatigable efforts of Suzanne Cove, the show manager, the recently enlarged dressage arena was ready for its debut, and that of its maiden dressage horses and riders. Suzanne herself gave an excellent demonstration of dressage on the Fenimore School’s “National Velvet.” Gordon Auchincloss announced the various movements of Miss Cove’s demonstration ride. Major Robert H. Dygert, of Rochester, judged the classes and critiqued each rider. Class winners were the Misses Melody Root, Carol Ann Parshall and Susan Swatling.
July 26, 1961
35 YEARS AGO
A letter penned by President Ronald Reagan and addressed to the Glimmerglass Opera on the occasion of the company’s performing William Schumann’s “Casey at the Bat” reads in part: “A baseball fan here at the White House – there are many of us – has been taking liberties with (Earnest Lawrence Thayer’s poem) Casey at the Bat, and I take the liberty of passing it along to you – ‘Oh! Somewhere in this favored land the sun is shining bright; the band is playing somewhere, and somewhere hearts are light; and somewhere families fill their lives with happiness and mirth; And that somewhere is Cooperstown, where baseball found its birth.’”
July 30, 1986
20 YEARS AGO
Bassett Healthcare has joined leading healthcare institutions in New York and throughout the U.S. in cooperation with the National Cancer Institute and the Southwest Oncology Group in the largest ever cancer prevention study. The study will focus on whether two dietary supplements, Vitamin E and Selenium can protect against prostate cancer. More than 32,000 men at 428 sites across the country will participate in the study which may take 12 years to complete. (Ed. Note: The study reached inconclusive results in 2009 and was canceled).
July 27, 2001