HOMETOWN HISTORY, May 23, 2014
125 Years Ago
The Local News – A son of John Yager left home suddenly some time Saturday night. He left a note saying he had gone to Canada. A valuable horse and buggy, belonging to his father, is missing.
One of the best acts of the legislature of 1889 was in amending Section 290 of the penal code making it a misdemeanor to sell cigarettes to children. The law reads as follows: “A person who sells, pays for or furnishes any cigar, cigarette or tobacco in any of its forms, to any child actually or apparently under the age of 16 years, is guilty of a misdemeanor.” This law went into effect only a few days ago.
An Italian track laborer, name unknown, was hit by the engine of Train Four Tuesday afternoon between Bainbridge and Sidney. His companions all left the track as the train approached, but he remained and kept at work with his pick, paying not the slightest heed either to the shouts of his comrades or to the oft-repeated alarm sounded by engineer Perkins. The engineer reversed when he saw the man was not going to leave the track, but too late. He was thrown in the air and struck against a car of a passing freight train, falling back between the tracks. He was alive when picked up, but his legs were both broken and he was otherwise badly injured. He did not live long. It looked like a case of suicide.
100 Years Ago
Local News – Good progress is being made in excavating for the new building of the Oneonta Department Store. Considerable of the dirt removed has been used to fill Benton Avenue and soon that street will be passable from Chestnut Street. The new street to be opened from Dietz to Chestnut is graded to the Windsor Hotel barn and can be extended no further until the expiration of the lease to the hotel barn in May next, at which time the shed will be removed, and the street continued to Chestnut. The change will make a decided improvement to that section.
John Kohn, recently employed as clerk at Laskaris, left Sunday for New York City, whence he sails to spend the summer at his old home in Greece, stopping en route at Liverpool, Paris and other places of interest. He will spend much of the time at Petras and will return in the fall.
80 Years Ago
Wallace Van Buren, 13 years old, son of Mr. and Mrs. Guy Van Buren, of 5 Knapp Avenue, was drowned yesterday afternoon in the Susquehanna River near the New York Central depot on Railroad Avenue. The body had been in the water between 25 and 40 minutes before it was located, and despite efforts of a volunteer group of workers to resuscitate the lad, life was pronounced extinct by Dr. A.F. Carson about 1:45 o’clock. Wallace disappeared under the water in view of his brother, Jessie, seven years old, with whom he had been playing on the bank of the river for several minutes. Failing to see his brother appear, Jessie, with tears streaming down his face, ran to the McKnight home on Railroad Avenue, and told persons there his brother had fallen in the river. Police were notified and a search begun with two boats. The body was found in ten feet of water less than 25 yards from where he fell in.
60 Years Ago
The Oneonta Dairy Company observed the 50th anniversary of its founding last night with a dinner at the Rex Restaurant, attended by employees, competitors and representatives of organized farmers and organized labor. Robert F. Robischon from the NYS Department of Commerce was the major speaker. He reviewed the history of the firm which was founded by the late Earl Hall. “Through fat years and lean,” he said, “the Oneonta Dairy Company succeeded in rendering a vital service to this community and made a reasonable profit for its owners. This, too, is the story of what we sometimes too glibly refer to as the American enterprise system. The company’s record for good human relationships is illustrated by the fact that Henry Francis has been with the concern for 35 years; Louis Baker, 30 years; Joseph Orlando, 32 years, and others for 28, 27, and 25 years.
40 Years Ago
The Oneonta Common Council has again tabled a motion by Alderman George Waddington to open all meetings to the press and general public. Alderman Helen Baldo is still examining the resolution – particularly a provision which would authorize the chairman of a meeting to dictate what items could be reported by the press. According to Mayor James Lettis, Waddington’s motion is unnecessary. “I feel that all scheduled meetings should be opened to the press. This includes workshop sessions,” said Lettis. Waddington noted that the city spends large sums of taxpayers’ money and they should be informed about all areas of expense. Lettis explained that he can issue an executive order to open all meetings but has chosen not to do so. “The only time we need closed meetings is when we are discussing personnel problems, or a person’s financial situation,” the mayor explained.
30 Years Ago
Tenants are still being sought for a single room housing project for people living on a limited income managed by the Otsego Urban Rural Association (OURS), the project’s sponsor. So far, three tenants have moved into the house at 3 Grand Street which eventually will become home for 11 single adults who do not wish to live alone. The project was financed with a $67,185 state grant to purchase and remodel the building up to state specifications.
20 Years Ago
Police in Denver, Colorado, Sunday night arrested a Morris man suspected of gunning down state police invesitigator Ricky J. Parisian, who was trying to foil a supermarket robbery at Oneonta’s south side shopping mall. The suspect was identified as Colin Hyde, 23, a construction worker whose father lives on Harris Hill Road. Parisian, 34, was unarmed and off-duty when he died of a shotgun blast to the chest.
President Barack Obama, the 44th president of the United States, made history in Cooperstown Thursday, May 22, by becoming the first sitting president in modern history to visit the Birthplace of Baseball. He delivered an message on the economic importance of tourism as the 75th anniversary season of the National Baseball Hall of Fame was due to begin Saturday, May 24, with the annual Hall of Fame Classic.
May 22, 2014