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News of Otsego County

hometown history

HOMETOWN HISTORY: May 6, 2021

HOMETOWN HISTORY

May 6, 2021

Compiled by Tom Heitz/SHARON STUART, with resources
courtesy of The Fenimore Art Museum Research Library

135 Years Ago

The wretches who flaunted the red flag and hurled dynamite with fatal effect in Chicago Tuesday evening are not to be confounded with the honest workingmen there, or anywhere else, who seek to better their condition by agitation within the law. They were anarchists – cranks whose proper place is the lunatic asylum. Your anarchist is against all order, all existing institutions – the law, the schools, religion and the Ten Commandments. If this does not qualify him for the insane asylum then his proper place is the state prison. The country has tried ridicule long enough. It is time the anarchist was summarily wiped out. It will not be a difficult matter. Anarchism is a foreign plant with very little hold in American soil. Were it not for dynamite it might be left to die of itself. But unfortunately, that invention makes even one anarchist formidable.

May 1886

HOMETOWN HISTORY: April 29, 2021

HOMETOWN HISTORY

April 29, 2021

Compiled by Tom Heitz/SHARON STUART, with resources
courtesy of The Fenimore Art Museum Research Library

110 Years Ago

Since spring is here interest revives in the national game, and at Gildersleeve’s and other centers of baseball interest there is talk in plenty of what’s doing and speculation as to what later will be done. A worthwhile team in Oneonta in 1911 is assured. At Elm Park considerable improvements to the grounds have already been made. Though the diamond itself has always been pretty good, the outfield has been rough and uneven – a condition which it is now proposed to remedy. The field has accordingly been ploughed, and later will be leveled and rolled, making a park surpassed by few in the state for ball purposes. There is need too of a new and larger grandstand, but it is not likely to be built this year. “Bobby” Vaughn, whom everybody in Oneonta recalls as a Stamford boy and the manager of its club two years ago, is doing good stick work this season with Montreal. Vaughn is under contract to the New York Americans, but is farmed out to Montreal. His
many friends expect to see him “breaking in” with the big leagues.

April 1911

HOMETOWN HISTORY: April 22, 2021

HOMETOWN HISTORY

April 22, 2021

Compiled by Tom Heitz/SHARON STUART, with resources
courtesy of The Fenimore Art Museum Research Library

135 Years Ago

Richard Rice, a character generally known throughout the counties of central New York as “Dicky” Rice, died at Mt. Vision on Sunday, at the residence of Mr. Harrison, after about a week’s illness. For a period of about 30 or 40 years Mr. Rice has been a familiar figure throughout this section of the state as astride his trusted charger, he has wandered aimlessly about, volunteering adjuration and scriptural advice to all with whom he came in contact. Mr. Rice was known to be a harmless, inoffensive old man with a shattered intellect, and he usually found a resting place in any house where night overtook him. He had a great penchant for Bible study and could quote from the Bible by the hour from a singularly retentive memory. Mr. Rice was born in the northern part of the county in 1802. He studied medicine with Martin Gardner at Portlandville in 1838, practiced for awhile, was taken sick and became mentally unsound, and has since been a wanderer. His horse, his companion for the past 18 years, has been taken in charge by the poor officer of Laurens.

April 1886

HOMETOWN HISTORY: April 15, 2021

HOMETOWN HISTORY

April 15, 2021

Compiled by Tom Heitz/SHARON STUART, with resources
courtesy of The Fenimore Art Museum Research Library

135 Years Ago

Home & Vicinity – Wm. McCrum has bought the house and lot on Centre Street at the head of Dietz Street from Wm. Peck. Mr. McCrum owns a plot of several acres north of Centre Street and it is his intention to open a street through it, thereby throwing upon the market about 20 building lots, some of them most desirable. The new street will start from Centre Street, a few rods east of Dietz Street, running directly through the center of Mr. McCrum’s property.
A change in the school law requiring one-half of the public monies to be divided among the districts equally causes the amount to be distributed much larger in the rural counties this year than formerly. As a result, every school district which furnished a public school the required number of weeks received for that purpose this year $66. The balance of the school money is apportioned according to the school census and attendance, as formerly.

April 1886

HOMETOWN HISTORY: April 8, 2021

HOMETOWN HISTORY

April 8, 2021

Compiled by Tom Heitz/SHARON STUART, with resources
courtesy of The Fenimore Art Museum Research Library

135 Years Ago

Home & Vicinity – On Tuesday evening, George Ingalls of this village displayed a collection of gold coins, consisting of twenty-six one-dollar pieces, four five-dollar pieces, and one twenty-dollar piece, all bright and new.
What was particularly interesting was that the money was paid Mr. Ingalls for his services during the first year of the rebellion and which he has retained ever since.
The committee appointed to arrange a law-and-order league hope at an early day to make public their plan of operation. Since the movement was inaugurated, drunkenness has entirely disappeared from our streets on Sundays, and the dealers evince a disposition to observe the letter of the law – the bars being all closed on the Sabbath. It will be much better for all concerned if no further step is necessary.

April 1886

HOMETOWN HISTORY: April 1, 2021

HOMETOWN HISTORY

April 1, 2021

Compiled by Tom Heitz/SHARON STUART, with resources courtesy of The Fenimore Art Museum Research Library

135 Years Ago

The report of the Wilber National Bank of Oneonta gives some idea of the immense business interests which it represents. The surplus of $92,500 gives evidence of its financial prosperity and soundness, and its nearly $280,000 of deposit certificates (at three percent we suppose) shows a large amount of capital in the country which finds no desirable investment in business at this period of democratic prosperity, marked by financial depression and laborers’ strikes.

April 1886

HOMETOWN HISTORY: March 25, 2021

HOMETOWN HISTORY

March 18, 2021

Compiled by Tom Heitz/SHARON STUART, with resources courtesy of The Fenimore Art Museum Research Library

135 Years Ago

M. & L. Westcott, who are about to begin the construction of a four-story brick block to contain four stores on Main Street near the fire building, have arranged to open a new street between the proposed block and the residence of Dr. Hamilton, to be called Hamilton Avenue. The street will run from Main to Front Street and will be paved. As an easy grade can be obtained from the freight depot, it will doubtless prove a popular thoroughfare for teamsters and others. (Ed. Note: The area once occupied by Hamilton Street is today a parking lot)

March 1886

HOMETOWN HISTORY: March 18, 2021

HOMETOWN HISTORY

March 18, 2021

Compiled by Tom Heitz/SHARON STUART, with resources courtesy of The Fenimore Art Museum Research Library

135 Years Ago

Home & Vicinity – A meeting for the purpose of taking steps toward organizing a village law and order league was held at the M.E. Church on Tuesday evening, at which there was a good attendance. Prof. N.N. Bull was chosen chairman and A.L. Kellogg secretary. Short addresses were made by the chairman and by Rev. Mssrs. Allen, Lee, Gleason, Richardson and others, the sentiment of the meeting being that the law governing the sale of intoxicants must hereafter be respected. The license laws were read for the information of those present. The following resolutions were unanimously passed – Resolved: that the pastors of the village churches prepare and distribute 2,000 copies of a circular containing the points of law regulating the sale of intoxicating drink; and Resolved: that the pastors and five committeemen named by them be authorized to organize a law and order league. The committee consists of Geo. Reynolds, N.H. Briggs, George Kirkland, A.A. Whitcomb, and T.W. Stevens.

March 1886

HOMETOWN HISTORY: March 11, 2021

HOMETOWN HISTORY

March 11, 2021

135 Years Ago

Home & Vicinity – Joe Lee, a very mild-mannered Chinaman, with his pig tail neatly coiled under his hat, was in town Tuesday with the intention of starting a laundry here. Upon looking the field over he was induced to visit Cooperstown, where they have no laundry. Joe Lee was chaperoned about town by Mr. G.W. Ingalls, who took a great fancy to the almond-eyed wanderer and bestowed upon him innumerable courtesies. Joe was a great curiosity to the small boys, who thronged about him and vainly endeavored to excite his ire by shouting “rats!” but Joe only broadened his smile at this and appeared to take it as a very good joke. He is, we believe, the first Chinaman ever in town.

March 1886

HOMETOWN HISTORY: March 4, 2021

HOMETOWN HISTORY

March 4, 2021

100 Years Ago

Oneonta & Vicinity – General Manager C.S. Sims of the Delaware & Hudson Railroad, said today that the purpose of removal of the headquarters of the Susquehanna Division, now located at the Delaware & Hudson building at Steuben and Pearl streets in Albany, to Oneonta, is to bring the superintendent of the division and his men in closer touch with the work. It will necessitate the relocation of about 15 men, including the superintendent, J.C. Rosenstalk, who recently succeeded F.H. Wait, along with several clerks, train dispatchers and time keepers. The Susquehanna Division is devoted mostly to the freight business. Between 35 and 40 trains pass over the road each way every day, including the freight trains from the coal fields and those carrying merchandise, which connect with the Boston & Maine railroad at Mechanicville for New England. Most of the freight trains are made up at the freight yards in Oneonta.

March 1911

HOMETOWN HISTORY: February 25, 2021

HOMETOWN HISTORY

February 25, 2021

150 Years Ago

Editorial: The Temperance Question – We are ever ready to do all in our power for the advancement of that noble virtue – Temperance. A virtue, without which, man is not certain of a foothold to life. There is no evil that drags such countless thousands to poverty, unhappiness and early graves, as drinking intoxicating liquors. We have good laws – which provide that no liquors can be sold. What we need is MEN. The recent action of certain “Good Templars” in this place, met with our disapproval – and we believe very justly. In the first place, if societies desire to elect strict men, let them hold a caucus in the ordinary manner, and make temperance an issue – it is a commendable one. The instigators of the “third party” did not do this, but instead put out a ticket which had no advantage over the Republican ticket. It was not one whit better, although it was very good.

February, 1871

HOMETOWN HISTORY: February 18, 2021

HOMETOWN HISTORY

February 18, 2021

150 Years Ago

Learn All You Can – Never omit an opportunity to learn all you can. Sir Walter Scott said that even in a stagecoach he always found somebody that could tell him something that he did not know. Conversation is frequently more useful than books for purposes of knowledge. It is therefore a mistake to be morose and silent among persons whom you think to be ignorant, for a little sociability on your part will draw them out, and they will impart wisdom, and will be able to teach you something, no matter how ordinary their employment. Indeed, some of the most sagacious remarks are made by persons of this description respecting their particular pursuit. Hugh Miller, the Scotch geologist, owes not a little of his fame to observations made when he was a journeyman stone mason, and working in a quarry. Socrates well said that there was but one good, which is knowledge, and one evil, which is ignorance. If there is a moment’s leisure, spend it over a good book or in instructive talking with the first you meet.

February 1871

HOMETOWN HISTORY: February 11, 2021

HOMETOWN HISTORY

February 11, 2021

150 Years Ago

Home & Vicinity: It is fortunate for people desiring to locate in Oneonta that plenty of desirable building lots are in market at reasonable prices. Buyers can take their choice as to streets and localities. E.R Ford, T.D. & H. Watkins. S. Huntington, S. Wood, C.L. Michael. H. Wilcox, J.H. Peters, H. Baker and S. Parish all have good lots ready for purchasers, many of them finely located. All of these men are ready to sell lots for cash or on time, and we hear of sales every week, most of them for immediate occupation. This is the true policy for the speedy growth of the village.
It is now the universal rule with newspapers that the name of an author should accompany his communications. It is required as a guarantee of good faith, and not for a public or needless use
of the name.

February 1871

HOMETOWN HISTORY: February 4, 2021

HOMETOWN HISTORY

February 4, 2021

150 Years Ago

Home and Vicinity – Donnati’s Great Comet will be again visible in the year 3858. Those who wish to see it may cut out this paragraph for reference. (Ed: 1,837 years hence as of 2021)
H.P. Skinner has done another good thing. This he has placed a large and attractive street lamp in front of his store door. Call in for he won’t skin[er] you on a deal.
Morris Brothers pay more for freight every week than all the other merchants in town – and everybody seems to be doing a good business. They frequently pay $1,500 and $2,000 a week.
Mr. Wallace, a gentleman in attendance at the Teachers’ Association last week, is the “school teacher” who E.P. Weston in a 50 mile walk at Cooperstown last fall. We are glad he is satisfied with teaching and not ambitious for pedestrian honors.
Sleep – Every man must sleep according to his temperament. Eight hours is the average. If he requires a little more or a little less he will find it out for himself.

February 1871

HOMETOWN HISTORY: January 28, 2021

HOMETOWN HISTORY

January 28, 2021

150 Years Ago

In the Village of Oneonta during the year 1870 the mortality was as follows: Total number of deaths: 9; of which 5 were women, 1 man, 2 boys and 1 girl. Ages: Under 1 year and under: 2; between 1 and 5 years: 1; 15 and 20 years: 1; 30 and 40 years: 5. Diseases: Bronchitis: 1; Cancer: 1; Consumption 1; Dysentery 1; Hemorrhage of Lungs 2; Killed by Cars (Railroad) 1; Scarintina 1. Deaths to population: Eight-tenths of one percent.
In reference to the Musical Convention held at Schenevus recently, Miss Emma Gates of Oneonta had probably the fullest and best cultivated soprano voice of any of the female singers present. Her delineation is broad and fluent, her execution full of delicacy, and her rendition of impassioned music – “vehement.”

January 1871

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