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Hometown History

May 4, 2023

135 Years Ago
C.M. French announces his readiness to receive visitors and patrons at his portrait and art studios, rooms Nos. 12 and 13, Ford Block, opposite the post office. In addition to his portrait work, Mr. French will open a school for the study of industrial and fine art in room 13, which will be fitted up with the necessary studies, antique casts, etc., for a thorough course of study in drawing and painting. Mr. French has been a student of the art students’ league of New York and a pupil in painting of Mr. George H. Smillie, A.M.A. He will be assisted by Miss Anna M. Case, who for several seasons has been a student of the league and is a young lady having the necessary faculty of imparting her knowledge to others.

May 1888

90 Years Ago
As Colgate’s football squad hustles through fast practice sessions this spring and Coach Andy Kerr and his assistants mold the 1933 edition of the Red Raiders, a tall, lithe athlete as graceful as a toe dancer, but powerful and well-muscled, leads the first team into action. This is Winston D. Anderson, of 61 Center Street, Oneonta, who is Captain and left end on the eleven that next fall will go to the football wars to continue the winning tradition of the unbeaten, untied, and unscored-upon team of last fall. ”Winnie” Anderson is one of the best athletes to play on Colgate teams in recent years. He is a good basketball player, working at either center or guard, and he might be on the baseball team, too, if he were not playing spring football. Football, however, is his game. Only one end in the history of Colgate football has been superior. That is Johnny Orsi, present end coach, who was picked on the All-America teams in 1931. In Anderson, Colgate may have another All-America end, and, in fact, Anderson was picked on several “All Elevens” last fall. At six feet tall and weighing 180 pounds, “Winnie” is an ideal type for an end on offense or defense.

May 1933

70 Years Ago
Seven juniors and 14 seniors were inducted yesterday into the Oneonta High School chapter of the National Honor Society. New members of the society, selected by vote of the student body and faculty, on the basis of scholarship, leadership, character and service are: Seniors – Judy Beckley, Anne Cleaveland, Ann House, Mary O’Connor, Dorothy Anne Ray, Susan Rosenheim, Nancy Swift, Joseph Perger, Peter Gregory, William Holtz, Robert W. Moore, Carl Myrus, Bruce Shove, and Leslie Stewart. Juniors – Jean Christman, Emily Curtis, Dorothy Kerper, Louis Colone, Walter Grill, James Norris and Mark Ray.

May 1953

50 Years Ago
Ten men have been meeting Thursday nights for the past few weeks to learn, practice and perfect their gourmet cooking skills. The meeting place has been the Home Economics foods laboratory at SUCO. This pilot course was offered by the Home Economics Department in conjunction with the College Union. Also involved in the program were Phi-Upsilon Omicron members, who served as teachers and assistants. Miss Eileen Bonner, a foods teacher at SUCO acted as supervisor. On the agenda for preparation were fruits and vegetables, desserts, and casseroles. The prevalence of the sweet tooth was evident when the overall favorite desserts, pies, cakes, and ice cream were made. The culmination of the class was a turkey dinner with all the trimmings.
A $649,096 government contract for electronic supplies has been awarded to Astrocom Electronics of Colliersville. The contract was awarded by the Defense Supply Agency’s Defense Electronics Supply Center at Dayton, Ohio. The contract calls for 13,021 microphone headsets.

May 1973

40 Years Ago
Workmen will enter the Ford Block on Oneonta’s Main Street to begin transforming the three buildings into a retail and office complex under the city’s urban renewal program. The site has been vacant for the past seven years. Donna Haynie, a spokesman for Citizens Developers of Oneonta, the private developer which owns the buildings, said a clean-up of the Ford Block interior will start immediately. The general contractor for the $1.1 million project will be the Charles A. Gaetano Construction Corp. of Utica. The clean-up crew will remove old partitions, plumbing fixtures, and debris from a leaky roof for the time being. So far, inspections of the Ford Block indicate that its structural frame is sound and should not require major repairs. Vacant since 1976, the Ford Block, 180 to 186 Main Street, was once slated for demolition to make way for mall projects planned by a series of potential developers. The city finally signed a purchase agreement in March with Citizens Developers to turn over the Ford Block, plus the nearby Hoffman Building at 214 Main, for $35,000. Renovations began with the Hoffman Building and just last week U.S. Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan (D-N.Y.) moved his upstate regional offices into the Hoffman Building after signing a six-year lease.

May 1983

30 Years Ago
The Oneonta Common Council chambers at city hall were filled with a standing-room-only crowd Tuesday night as the Council reviewed two sorority house special permits. The Council passed the special use permit for Phi Delta Chi sorority at 61 Elm Street after a lengthy discussion between neighbors and sorority members of some of the historical problems the area has had with the sorority house’s occupants. The Council tabled the special use permit application of Sigma Gamma Phi sorority at 27 Cedar Street pending submission of a formal alcohol policy, fire safety procedures, and an engineer’s review of the structure’s condition.

May 1993

20 Years Ago
The nation’s unemployment rate swelled to 6 percent in April, returning to an eight-year high as employers slashed payrolls even deeper. The ailing economy has lost half a million jobs in the past three months. Employers are handing out pink slips, not job offers, and that’s not likely to change soon. “For those who are out of work, finding a job is getting tougher,” said David Rosenberg, chief economist at Merrill Lynch. April’s 48,000 job losses marked the third consecutive month, which never occurs outside of recessions, he said.

May 2003


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