News of Otsego County

Serving Otsego County, NY, through the combined reporting of Cooperstown's Freeman's Journal and the Hometown Oneonta newspapers.

Cooperstown news

Stars Abound At HOF Classic At Doubleday Field


MLB Stars Abound 

At Doubleday Field

Jeff Idelson, Baseball Hall of Fame president, left, and Hall board Chairman Jane Forbes Clark, right, stand with members of 30 Major League Baseball teams who made up the roster for the 2019 Hall Of Fame Classic game at Doubleday Field this afternoon in Cooperstown. Despite some sprinkles, professional ballplayers gave their fans a great game as well as T-shirt give-aways, children’s competitions, as well as signing autographs and memorabilia. At right, Maria Noto, Cooperstown, backed by the Cooperstown Sign Language club, sings the National Anthem at the beginning of the afternoon’s game. (Ian Austin/

You Like Baseball Cards? ‘Shoebox’ Show Has ’em All


You Like Baseball Cards?

‘Shoebox’ Show Has ’em All

Cooperstown’s Pete Henrici, the retired CCS teacher and proprietor since the 1970s of the Baseball Nostalgia shop in the Doubleday parking, points out one of his business cards from the early days, which is part of Shoebox Treasures, a new exhibit – two years in the making – that opened this morning at the Hall of Fame.   Inset is this morning’s ribbon cutting, with Hall President Jeff Idelson and Chairman Jane Forbes Clark flanking Bill Janetsheck and two other main donors to the exhibit.  Hall of Famers visible in the background are, from left, Barry Larkin, Rollie Fingers and Bert Blyleven.  Other locals attending included the father-son partnership Will and Willis, who run Willis Monie Books, and helped curator John Odell assemble the exhibit, which Jane Clark noted included as least two one-of-a-kind cards – a 1923 Casey Stengel and the rarest of all, the Honus Wagner card from 1909.  The 11th annual Hall of Fame Classic, featuring Hall of Famers and MLB stars, stars at 1:05 p.m.  Tickets available at Hall. (Jim Kevlin/

They’re Off!  BASE Race Starts Day Of HoF Fun


They’re Off!  BASE Race

Starts Day Of HoF Fun

From the starting line in front of Doubleday Field a few minutes ago, Cooperstown’s Frankie Panzarella, top photo, center, and his pal Justin Wolfe, left, led the 8th annual BASE Race 5K “Fun Run” now underway through the streets of the village, the first activity in a day of Hall of Fame offerings.  At 10 a.m., ribbon-cutting on the new exhibit on baseball cards, “Shoebox Treasures,” will happen at 25 Main.  The 11th annual Hall of Fame Classic, featuring six Hall of Famers and many MLB standouts, begins at 1:05 p.m. at Doubleday; tickets are still on sale at the Hall.  Between Frankie and Justin is Bradley Weldon of Cooperstown, who is running with Ashlyn Wolfe, an assistant Otsego County Dairy Princess.  Inset, the Hall’s Shirley Tyler, who is emceeing, chats with the two celebrity starters, Grant Balfour, who played with four teams, from the Twins to the A’s, and, with back to camera, Ryan Rowland-Smith, who played with the Mariners and Diamondbacks.  Both are rare Australian players who made it into the Majors.  (Jim Kevlin/

Main Regatta Leaves Monday From Brookwood



Main Regatta

Leaves Monday

From Brookwood

The four-day 57th General Clinton Regatta – the related carnival and flea market begin today in Bainbridge – will build to a crescendo Monday with the 70-mile endurance races between Brookwood Point, north of Cooperstown, and the finish line 40 miles south in Bainbridge’s General Clinton Park.   The Memorial Day races start at 6 a.m., with the pro-class setting off at 6:30 a.m. This photo, from last year’s race, shows Oneontans Trevor LeFever, front, and Benedict Schlimmer on the Susquehanna River at Emmons, near Fortin Park.  ( photo)
Fingers, Gossage Manage Teams In 11th  HoF Classic

Fingers, Gossage Manage

Teams In 11th HoF Classic

Saturday Game Starts at 1:50 in Doubleday Field;
BASE Race Leaves Doubleday Parking Lot At 9
Goose Gossage high-fives Hall of Fame Chairman Jane Forbes Clark at the start of the 2018 Classic. Tomorrow, Gossage and Rollie Fingers are managing this year’s Classic teams. (Ian Austin/

COOPERSTOWN – The first pitch of the 11th Hall of Fame Classic Legends Game, bringing six Hall of Famers and other MLB stars to town,  will be thrown at 1:05 p.m. Saturday (tomorrow) in Doubleday Field.

Hall of Famers Rollie Fingers and Goose Gossage will manage their respective teams, while Hall of Famers Bert Blyleven, Trevor Hoffman, Tim Raines and Alan Trammell will lend a hand in the dugout and in the coach’s boxes.

Tan Van Sought After Cooperstown Hit, Run

Tan Van Sought After

Cooperstown Hit, Run

Bystanders said a tan van was being sought after a collision at 6 p.m. this evening at the intersection of Susquehanna and Beaver in front of Bassett Hall. The driver of the maroon Ford, in photo, that was hit broadside by the van was inside the Cooperstown EMT ambulance being checked, but his parents, standing outside, said he seemed to be uninjured. They said both drivers were trying to signal each other to take the right-of-way at the four-way stop; the Ford then moved into the intersection, but so did the van, driving by a female, which struck the Ford, denting the passenger side and setting off the front and back seat airbags.  Behind the car, Cooperstown Fire Chief Jim Tallman confers with fire and police officials at the scene.  (Jim Kevlin/
2 Cooperstown Girls Win Boys Sectional Tennis Title

2 Cooperstown Girls Win

Boys Sectional Tennis Title

NYSPHSAA Section III officials today confirmed two girls on the CCS Tennis Team, sophomore Lindsey Trosset and eighth-grader Bradley Weldon, made history this week by becoming the first female doubles team to win a sectional title in Section III boys tennis.  They are the daughters of Mike and Sally Trosset, and Bill and Jeanette Weldon.  Lindsey’s sister, Kate, was the second girl to do similarly in boys singles.
Regatta, BASE Race, Hall of Fame Classic Weekend Highlights

Regatta, BASE Race,

Hall of Fame Classic

Weekend Highlights

It’s a wet and wild weekend
as the annual General Clinton Canoe Regatta brings everyone out to the shores – and waters – of the Susquehanna River. Though races run all weekend, the big one kicks off at 6 a.m. Monday, May 26. Follow the racers down the river, then enjoy a barbeque in
Bainbridge. Brookwood Point,
6000 State Hwy 80, Cooperstown.

The 11th annual Hall of Fame Classic has six HOF legends and players from all 30 MLB teams playing a 7-inning game. Tickets $11-12.50. Pregame Home Run Derby at noon. Afterwards, kids can do the Doubleday Dash around the bases. 1:50 p.m. Saturday, May 25, Doubleday Field. Info 607-207-9519,

Live music and delicious food and wine parings from local restaurants, all to benefit the Catskill Symphony. 7 – 9 p.m. Saturday, May 25, Oneonta Country Club, 9 Country Club Dr, Oneonta. Info

The best way to show you support healthy lifestyle choices is to run a 5K race! The annual BASE race benefits the Baseball Hall of Fame’s “Be A Superior Example” programs. Registration begins 8:30 a.m.
Saturday, May 25. Info 607-547-0329

Bring paper to shred and help support the Cooperstown Food Pantry, then stay to enjoy Barnyard Swing and Mini Golf activities. 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. Saturday, May 25, 4604 State Hwy 28, Milford. Info 607-547-8330.

BOUND VOLUMES May 23, 2019


May 23, 2019


Advertisement – New School. The subscriber gives notice that he has opened a Private School, at his dwelling house in Fair Street, where he will devote his time, and use every exertion in his power to facilitate the improvement of the pupils entrusted to his care – whilst strict attention shall be paid to their manners and morals. His number will be select and limited. The advantages of such a school every person is capable of appreciating. The subscriber hopes, by his exertions, to merit the patronage of the people in this vicinity. He will be pleased by having his employers and friends visit his school, as often as they may find it convenient, that the true merits or demerits thereof may be known. His terms for tuition are $2 per quarter, and no extra charges. Israel Day. The Watch Tower.

May 24, 1819


The timid in politics, fair weather Democrats, have been panic stricken, caused by the brag game and hurrahs of the Whigs. But the sky is clearing up, even to their vision; and as the hour approaches for the decision of the Democratic National Convention in regard to a Presidential candidate, the blood warms with devotion to the Cause, and all doubts of success are thrown to the winds. Although great efforts have been made at Washington to detract from Mr. Van Buren’s popularity with the masses and bring the Delegates against him, we have reason to know that they have utterly failed, and are sure that his name will this day be presented to the Democracy of the country as their standard-bearer in the great struggle for political supremacy, and that complete success is certain to await the count of the ballot boxes.

May 27, 1844


Base Ball – On Saturday last a match game of ball, the third and last of a series, was played by the Olympics of Hartwick Seminary, and the Clinton Club of Clintonville, which resulted in favor of the Olympics by a score of 29 to 27. The match consisted of the best two out of three games. The following is the complete score: Tuesday, April 27,
9 innings – Olympics 50, Clinton 18; Monday, May 10,
9 innings – Olympics 40, Clinton 42; Saturday, May 15,
6 innings – Olympics 29, Clinton 27. Totals: Olympics 119, Clinton 87.
The late Col. Prentiss. We feel very much indebted to Mrs. John H. Prentiss for a fine photographic likeness of her deceased husband, who established The Freeman’s Journal 61 years ago and remained its distinguished editor for 40 years. At our solicitation it was kindly presented to the office, to remain a permanent fixture, we trust, so long as the Journal shall continue to be published. The Colonel was a remarkably fine-looking gentleman of the old school, and this picture, enlarged by W.G. Smith from an excellent daguerreotype is recognized by all who have seen it as a life-like portrait.

May 21, 1869


The Danger of Sectionalism – The result of the Civil War in this country was in favor of a race of freemen, involving the abolition of slavery, and the maintenance of the Union. It was the strongest possible declaration against Sectionalism, after a contest that cost thousands of lives and untold wealth. We came out of that memorable contest with the old motto on our banners: “United we stand!” It was the common remark – “North and South, East and West – There will never again be an effort made to overthrow or divide this Union.” There are events occurring today which challenge the correctness of this hopeful declaration – and observing men, who closely observe the signs of the times, cannot fail to recognize them.

May 24, 1894


Newest Wrinkle to Dislodge Car – A resourceful motorist whose car has been stuck in the mud does not always have to fall back on a pair of mules to get free. For such an emergency the United States Tire Co. offers a suggestion that may prove valuable. This calls for having stored away somewhere in the car a stack of old newspapers. When the car gets stuck and the wheels refuse to take hold, feed in some of the old papers between the tires and the mud. Usually, only a few will have to be worked in before the wheels begin to grip and the car will start forward.

May 21, 1919


More than 20 Rotary International Exchange students who are spending a year in the area encompassed by Rotary International District 717, attended classes at Cooperstown Central School on Friday and were guests of Cooperstown students at over the weekend.
The temperature hit 82 degrees here Saturday afternoon, making it the warmest day of the year so far. On Sunday, the mercury touched 81 for only the third time this year temperatures have topped 80 or more.
Lieutenant and Mrs. David A Sanford of this village left May 12 from McGuire Air Force Base, New Jersey, for Augsburg, Germany, where Lt. Sanford will be stationed with the Army’s 34th Field Artillery Battalion.

May 21, 1969


The Cooperstown girls took the Center State Conference’s East Division Championships on Tuesday, May 17. The girls’ team finished in first place, while the boys
placed second. As she has done all season, Megan Sanford helped lead the girls’ team to the championship with a
four-event winning performance. She took the 100 (13.0), the 200 (27.2), the 400 (1:01.7) and was a member of the winning 400 relay team (54.5) along with Betsy Roesch, Lisa Alicino, and Annie Winslow. Megan Sanford had a tremendous day and has had a tremendous season, Cooperstown Coach Connie Herzig said.

May 24, 1994


After a first sighting a few days ago, a “big cat” or mountain lion has been reported again. Maureen Wren, a DEC spokesperson said it is possible that a former pet may be ranging the west side of Otsego Lake. She also said the animal could have been a fisher cat or a bob cat. The last verified sighting of a wild cougar or mountain lion in New York State dates to 1894.

May 22, 2009

Trustees Should Help, Not Hinder Downtown Revival

Trustees Should Help, Not

Hinder Downtown Revival

To the Editor:

In last week’s newspaper, Cooperstown Village Trustee Richard Sternberg penned a column in which he went to great lengths to point out all the various village projects that need to be completed.  Included on the list such things as the roads, not to mention other infrastructure needs, and the wastewater treatment plant as well as the Doubleday Field upgrade.

When added to this list of needed undertakings, a new, and very expensive, aerial ladder truck for the fire department and the problematic almost-100-year-old water and sewer pipe system, there would seem to be little doubt that the village is facing some rather overwhelming projects ahead.

MISSION in TOKYO BAY: MacArthur Wanted Surrender – And To Hear Army-Navy Game


MacArthur Wanted Surrender – 

And To Hear Army-Navy Game

Walter Low, Janet Rigby’s father and a frequent visitor to Cooperstown, was a sergeant in the radio unit assigned to transmit news from Tokyo Bay of Japan’s surrender at the end of World War II. His son-in-law Bill Rigby and grandson Will Rigby are also veterans. (Jim Kevlin/

By LIBBY CUDMORE • Special to

MacArthur, seen here at Japan’s surrender, had a reputation as imperious, but Sergeant Low got a chance to see him as a human being.

COOPERSTOWN – At the end of World War II, Sgt. Wallace Low remembers a particular assignment while stationed with his communications unit in Yokohama Bay to handle communications during the Japanese surrender.

“General (Douglas) MacArthur wanted to listen to the Army-Navy football game,” he said. “Our orders were to set up the receivers so that he could get the entire game – in Alaska, San Francisco, Hawaii and Australia. If one started to fade, we switched over to the other!”

MacArthur was able to listen to the whole game, and afterwards, went by to meet the men who made it possible. “He shook all our hands and thanked us personally,” said Low. “And even though he did not drink, he served us all whiskey!”

Low, 94, the father of Janet Rigby and a frequent visitor to Cooperstown from his home in Boonville, served in the Pacific Theater, from his 1942 enlistment until January 1946.

He should feel at home in the Rigby home at Elm and Delaware: his son-in-law, Bill, was a Vietnam-era Cee-Bee 1969-75; Grandson Will, now studying computers at SUNY Cobleskill, served for four years aboard the USS Ronald Reagan.

 “I enlisted in the Reserve Corps right after my birthday,” said the family’s patriarch. Age 18, “I was a private, but I could go to school.”

Main Street In Trouble, Yet Housing In Demand

Main Street In Trouble,

Yet Housing In Demand

To the Editor:

Your editorial about Main Street is timely.

When CVS and the General Store closed, businesses that remained experience a plunge in traffic and revenue.

We are in a tragic situation with no apparent leadership equipped to deal with it.

My advice to Matt Hazzard at the time was to go all out nationally to determine interest in the CVS space.

Parking revenue is probably restricted to municipal infrastructure work.

All parties should be feeling utmost concern about the health of Main Street.  State government is a joke with taxes and regulation that stifle business.

We are in serious trouble on Main Street. Yet, demand for affordable housing remains strong.



Native Fled Iroquois HQ Year Before Dam Blew Up


Native Fled Iroquois HQ

Year Before Dam Blew Up

By JIM KEVLIN • Special to

Gen. James Cllinton, who built a dam at Cooperstown in 1779, blew it up, and his 200-bateauz flotilla rode the waves 100 miles to Onaquaga, only to find it deserted.

COOPERSTOWN – The more than 3,000 paddlers in this weekend’s 59th annual General Clinton Regatta can compete with a clear conscience.

Its namesake Gen. James Clinton, who blew up the dam at Cooperstown in 1779 so the waters could carry his 200-bateaux flotilla swiftly down the Susquehanna to Onaquaga, didn’t destroy the Iroquois village there.

He found one building standing, owned by a British sympathizer, a man name Clagford, and Clinton’s troops did destroy that.

But “Clinton didn’t really do much on the way down,” said Bill Starna, the Oneonta historian who spoke on the period Sunday, May 19, at the Cooperstown Village Library.

The actual destruction of Onaquaga was done the year before – in October 1778 – by a contingent of 250 Colonial troops out of Middle Fort (now Middleburgh), led by a Lt. Col. William Butler. (Not to be confused with two feared Tory guerrilla commanders, John and Walter Butler.)

Even William Butler’s troops, who had come down Oullette Creek and razed the Indian village at Old Unadilla (Sidney), found Onaquaga’s population – learning in advance the Americans were on their way – had abandoned the settlement.

Jean Huntington, 86; Wife Of Trolley Line Road Developer

IN MEMORIAM: Jean Huntington, 86;

Wife Of Trolley Line Road Developer

COOPERSTOWN – Jean C. Huntington, 86, wife of the late Donald C. Huntington, developer of the Trolley Line Road neighborhood, Hartwick Seminary, died early Sunday morning, May 19, 2019, at Woodside Hall in Cooperstown. She was 86.

Born Feb. 25, 1933, in Oneonta, Jean was a daughter of Raymond J. and Cassie (Fowler) Cower. Jean grew up in Oneonta and graduated from OHS in 1951.

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