News of Otsego County

Serving Otsego County, NY, through the combined reporting of Cooperstown's Freeman's Journal and the Hometown Oneonta newspapers.
 BREAKING NEWS 
 POLICE & FIRE 
 IN MEMORIAM  
 HOMETOWN PEOPLE 
 COLUMNS 
 EDITORIALS 
 LETTERS TO THE EDITOR 

 EMPLOYMENT  
 DINING & ENTERTAINMENT  
 REAL ESTATE  
 AUTOMOTIVE  
 REMEMBRANCE  
 GOODS & SERVICES

hometown history

HOMETOWN HISTORY: Dec. 6, 2019

HOMETOWN HISTORY

Dec. 6, 2019

150 YEARS AGO

Miscellaneous: There are to be ten executions for murder in the United States during December.
The very latest style of boot has the toe turned up like an old-fashioned skate.
The gay young people of Henderson, Kentucky eat peanuts in church.
“Bugmaster General” is the popular name for the state entomologist in Illinois.
Mr. Fiske, of the Galveston Bulletin, has been shot at 23 times in three years.
“Ned” a modest young man in Buffalo, has been courting 14 young ladies at once, and has got himself into trouble in consequence.
Nineteen miles of sewers have been built this year at Chicago. The total length of sewers is now 130 miles.
A Hartford man, thinking he smelt gas in his rooms, lighted a match to see about it. He was found in the street immediately afterwards, all ablaze. A policeman kindly rolled him in the gutter and put him out.

December 1869

125 YEARS AGO

The Hudson River and New York Central railroads have been consolidated under the new name of the New York Central and Hudson River Railroad Company. The roads have for some time been practically one concern with Vanderbilt and his friends controlling a majority of the stock in both. The change will have no effect either on their business or arrangements. That the ultimate result of the amalgamation will, however, be damaging to the public there can be little doubt. It virtually throws the power of those vast corporations into fewer hands, thus enabling them to use with better effect their lobbying influences, in procuring special legislation.

December 1894

100 YEARS AGO

Local: W.H. Koch, D. & H. Road Master left last evening accompanied by his daughter Dorothea, for Carbondale, Pennsylvania, where the latter will have the pleasure of attending the concert given by Fritz Kreisler, the distinguished violinist in the Town Hall at Scranton. Miss Dorothea is a violinist of unusual talent for a child of her years.
James Young, a small boy residing at 26 London Avenue, Oneonta, was struck by the River Street bus while playing last evening near the corner of Main and River Streets. As a result of the accident he is confined to his home suffering from a broken leg. It appears that the lad was playing with some other children on the corner and without looking dashed into the street and hit the side of the bus, falling down as the rear wheel passed over his leg. The boy was taken to his home and was attended by Dr. Brinkman, who found the right thigh bone had been broken and the left leg bruised. His condition is not considered serious.

December 1919

80 YEARS AGO

A new Super Market opens today at 37-39 Broad Street. Market Basket Corporation of Geneva, New York has added Oneonta to its group of more than 250 stores, largely located in New York State. The company recently took an extended lease on the former Broad Street garage, owned by J.A. Dewar. Extensive alterations and renovations have been made. The front of the first floor has been transformed into an attractive store, with a green and white color scheme, with storage space for surplus stock at the rear.
Arrangements have been made with Mettress Crandall for parking for an hour at the rear of the Twentieth Century Restaurant for customers of the market. The market is of the self-service type with groceries and packaged goods conveniently displayed with prices so shoppers may buy in a
hurry or select at their leisure as they wish. Four exits, each equipped with a calculating
register have been provided for service without delay.

December 1939

40 YEARS AGO

Oneonta High School graduate Mark May has been named as an “Honorable Mention” on the Associated Press All-America football team. May, a 6’5”, 280-pound junior at Pitt, was one of the honorable mention offensive tackles. He is the man the University of Pittsburgh’s offensive line was built around this season as he anchored the right side. May got his first start in the Gator Bowl in 1977 as a freshman and has been a mainstay ever since. He is also the biggest lineman in the history of Pitt football. “He has played extremely well for us and I would be very disappointed if he doesn’t develop into one of the best, if not the best offensive lineman in the country by the time he’s a senior,” Pitt Coach Jackie Sherrill said recently in evaluating May.

December 1979

20 YEARS AGO

Hillary Rodham Clinton attacked New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani’s policy of arresting people who sleep on the street and pledged, if elected, to secure federal funding for affordable housing and mental-illness treatment.
“Criminalizing the homeless with mass arrests for those whose only offense is that they have no home is wrong. Locking people up for a day will not take a single homeless person off the street. It will not make a mentally ill person who should be in an institution any better. It will not find a job for a responsible person who is willing to work.” Clinton’s audience of 85 black ministers interrupted her talk repeatedly with strong applause. Giuliani, who was in Houston Texas, defended the policy.
“We do more for homelessness than the city has ever done before. The only people who get arrested are wanted for crimes, or have committed a crime.”

December 1999

10 YEARS AGO

New York lawmakers rejected a bill Wednesday that would have made their state the sixth to allow gay marriage, stunning advocates who weathered a similar decision by Maine voters just last month. The New York measure needed 32 votes to pass and failed by a wider-than-expected margin, falling eight votes short in a 24-38 decision by the state Senate. The Assembly had earlier approved the bill, and Governor
Patterson, perhaps the bill’s strongest advocate, had pledged to sign it. After the vote, Paterson called Wednesday one of his saddest days in 20 years of public service. He criticized senators who he said support gay marriage but “didn’t have the intestinal fortitude to vote for it.” During debate, Senator
Ruben Diaz, a conservative Republican from the Bronx led the opposition.

December 2009

HOMETOWN History Nov. 29, 2019

HOMETOWN History

Nov. 29, 2019

150 Years Ago

A genuine Yankee at Lisbon, Connecticut, who wanted to put a water pipe through a drain tied a string to a cat’s leg, thrust her into one end of the drain, and then giving a terrific “Scat!” the feline quickly appeared at the other end. The pipe was drawn through the drain by means of the line, and at an expense of ten dollars saved by the operation.
Advertisement: New discovery in Dentistry – Dr. Peabody has purchased the right to use Iodized Rubber for dental use for seventeen years. The rubber is free from
Sulphur, and is said by six of the best chemists in the United States, if not in the world, to be the best for dental use. Dr. Peabody has within the last three months, put up a great number of sets with the Iodized Rubber. Taking the testimony of those who wear them and my own experience in the last twelve years in working Rubber. I consider it the best in use by more than one-half. All Dental work will be done in my office from fifty- to one-hundred percent cheaper than any other office in Delaware County, and warranted to give satisfaction. All in want of good work and good material, call and examine the new rubber. Dr. D. Peabody.

November 1869

125 Years Ago

More than 60 years ago it was known that illuminating oil of an excellent quality could be extracted from bituminous coal, and in 1860 there were more than three-score manufactories of it in this country. In that year it was first discovered that vast deposits of rock-oil lie under the soil of Pennsylvania and adjoining states. Throughout wide districts, wherein wells were driven, the oil flowed like water. The cost was almost nothing, and in ten years the native product could be bought in any quantity for ten cents a barrel.

November 1894

100 Years Ago

The first national convention of the American Legion in Minneapolis today started with a pronouncement of its policy declaring the organization to be non-political. The first resolution passed demanded the deportation of Victor
Berger of Milwaukee as a “disloyal citizen.” Another resolution called for an investigation of Representative Voight of Wisconsin who supported Berger in a recent vote in the House of Representatives. Endorsement of universal military training, with a small standing Army and no compulsory military service in time of peace was voted enthusiastically tonight. It was recommended that the national citizen Army be under local control and administration. Indianapolis was chosen as the site of the permanent national head- quarters of the Legion. Debate on an amendment to the Legion’s constitution that sought to admit foreigners who served with the American or Allied armies, and who hereafter become American citizens, lost by a 2 to 1 vote with many speakers objecting to admission of foreigners.

November 1919

60 Years Ago

Oneonta High School Cagers – “It would be hypocritical for me to say anything bad about these boys,” said Coach Tony Drago. “They have been looking real good in scrimmages so far. In fact, maybe too good for this time of season.” Lest they get rusty, Drago is sending them to Delhi tomorrow to scrimmage Ed Shawkey’s five for the third time. “The only trouble,” Tony remarked, “is that Delhi and the likes who we’ve been scrimmaging against cannot match our boys in height. We’ll be facing bigger teams when the season begins.” The Yellowjackets open with a non-leaguer against Frankfort this Saturday. Those in line for starting berths against Frankfort are co-captains Bob Terrell and Bill Ronovech, Ron Crosby, Sonny Carey, Jim Konstantly and Mike Lewis, all seniors. In practice, Drago deployed this offense around a triple-pivot, an innovation of the 1958-59 campaign. The coach also disclosed that for the first time Oneonta will be garbed in knee socks in line with his policy of dressing his charges as befits champions.

November 1959

40 Years Ago

Students in a high school Civics class in Vassalboro, Maine took to the streets in Waterville and Augusta with petitions urging repeal of laws they said coddle criminals and found – to their dismay – plenty of supporters. A majority of the adults they approached readily penned the document, most perhaps not realizing that it called for the repeal of the Bill of Rights. “As a history teacher, the whole thing kind of scares me,” said Bill Forstchen, who conceived the project. “It all started when I was trying to think of a way to teach the Bill of Rights so the kids will remember it six months from now.” Deleting the title, but retaining the text of the Bill of Rights word for word, the petitions urged that a proposal to repeal the entire document be placed on the 1980 election ballot. In their solicitations, students said the document “coddles the criminals.” Forstchen’s 45 students, ages 16 and 17, told respondents that they were operating under the auspices of two organizations – “The Young Americans for Law and Order” and the “Peoples’ Freedom Movement.” Both were fictitious.

November 1979

20 Years Ago

About two-thirds of all medical X-rays in the United States are captured on film. Now comes the digital alternative. Eastman-Kodak Co. plans to unveil three radiographic products next week that record X-rays electronically rather than on silver-halide-coated film. Someday, X-ray technology may be hard to find in hospitals and doctors’ offices. However, the transition to the digital era is likely to be a slow one Martin Coyne, Kodak’s health imaging division chief says.

November 1999

10 Years Ago

Otsego County residents will be able to review Otsego County’s preliminary “flood map” at an “open house” on Wednesday from 4 to 8 p.m. at the Oneonta Middle School. The event is hosted by the State Department of Environmental Conservation and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. No public presentation is planned, but flood plain managers and flood insurance experts will be on hand to answer questions. Properties located in flood plains carry a mandatory requirement for flood insurance if the structure has a federally-backed mortgage.

November 2009

HOMETOWN History Nov. 22, 2019

HOMETOWN History

Nov. 22, 2019

150 Years Ago

Country Merchants Beware – The Twenty-sixth Street gambling house has organized a campaign for the winter on an original and comprehensive system after the Baden-Baden School. The house is but a few doors west of Broadway, and not far from the aristocratic St. James Hotel. It is a five-story brownstone front and is occupied by a score of the card fraternity. Women, elegantly dressed, flutter in and out of its doors. During the early evening the flutter of silks and laces and the shimmer of jewels grow most brilliant. These women are what are termed by gamblers “elegant cappers.” They inveigle many wealthy victims into the gambling den. Some of them “frequent” the Manhattan Club. They lounge in the parlors of their respective boarding houses after dinner and mingle with the boarders. They are asked out with rich men and ask rich men gentlemen out with them.

November 1869

125 Years Ago

What is called the national cycling costume for women is in danger of going out of existence in Paris for the Prefect has caused letters to be written to some well-known women cyclists, cautioning them that they are infringing the law in wearing men’s clothes.
The Oneonta people think they have the greatest conundrum out. It is “Why is the Democratic Party like the Earth?” Because it is flattened at the polls.
Governor-Elect Morton says his election expenses were $19,790, of which $16,000 went to the State Committee; $2,500 to the State Committeeman of the Dutchess District; $500 to the Town Committee of Rhinebeck; $390 for contributions to fire and hose companies, charitable and other associations; and $400 for Pastors. It shows that rich men only are available as candidates for high positions, and that the great bulk of these contributions was used illegally.

November 1894

80 Years Ago

Acclaimed as the first man to descend in a parachute and the first to drive a motor-powered dirigible, A. Leo Stevens of Fly Creek, a pioneer in the field of aeronautics, spoke at a meeting of the Lions Club last evening at the First Presbyterian Church in Oneonta. Mr. Stevens said that while he had made 3,456 dirigible flights and carried thousands of passengers, he had never lost a passenger. In 1916, Mr. Stevens was made Chief Instructor of Aeronautics in America by President Wilson. He remained with the War Department until 1927. Mr. Stevens once took James A. Hare, known as the president’s photographer, on a dirigible flight over New York City during which Mr. Hare took 51 pictures of the city, the first ever views from the air. Mr. Stevens holds pilot’s license number two in America and number seventeen in France.
Oneonta basketball fans will see three new faces in the lineup of the Renaissance basketball team when the crack colored club plays Schenectady in the gym at the Junior High
School Friday night. Manager Bob Douglas’ new pupils include Billy Gates, Zack Clayton and Puggy Bell, all tops in New York City scholastic circles in recent years.

November 1939

60 Years Ago

It is customary to address youth in terms of challenge and opportunity, to assure them that a better world will be their oyster if only they have the persistence to open it. Too much of this talk may badly misguide the young. They may conclude, dazzled by visions of shorter work weeks and electronic gadgets that life in their adulthood is going to be easier as well as better. This is not necessarily so. Technology will lift more and more of the burden of labor from mankind, but life may be far more trying in other ways than it is now. In the opinion of Dr. James R. Killian, Jr., of M.I.T., today’s children “will live in an increasingly intricate, turbulent and demanding world, requiring a new order of resourcefulness, adaptability, and trained intelligence on the part of both men and nations.” In addition to the challenges of communism, Dr. Killian sees these factors in the more complex life ahead – rapid change, explosive population growth, rising expectations of hitherto “backward people” and a surge of irresponsible, new nationalisms.
The picture is a sobering one.

November 1959

40 Years Ago

Just as they dominated play during the regular season, the Oneonta High School girls’ soccer team dominated the Southern Tier Athletic Conference’s All-Star Team. The STAC-championship Yellowjackets, have eight players on the All-Star team as selected by the league’s coaches. They are Kim Kurkowski, Dana Stam, Karen Bettiol, Sue McCarthy, and Laurie Jaques were all first team selections while Patty Butler, Sand Perry, and Judy Gergel were named to the second team. Stam, only a sophomore, was the team’s leading goal-scorer with 12. Kurkowski team with Stam to give Oneonta a strong left side. Kurkowski had ten goals this season. “She was an excellent pressure player,” said Coach Helen Sandford. In the STAC Championship game, Kurkowski had two goals including the game-winner in overtime.

November 1979

20 Years Ago

Hartwick College field hockey player Kim Carter is an All-American for the second time. Teammate Nicole Fish joined Kim as a first time pick. Both were named third team Astro-Turf/National Field Hockey Coaches Association honorees. The two seniors led Hartwick College to a 65-18 overall record and three NCAA Division III Tournament appearances. Carter, a first-team selection last year, is the third Hartwick field hockey player to be named an All-American twice. Erin Ross (first team 1997 and third team 1996) and Jen Motyka (second team 1996 and 1997) were the others. Carter, a sweeper on defense finished as Hartwick’s all-time leading scorer (35 goals, 12 assists and 82 career points). Many of Carter’s points came off penalty corners.

November 1999

10 Years Ago

The A.O. Fox Memorial Hospital Board of Directors has approved the appointments of three members and thanked those they replaced who had stayed on during talks of affiliation with Bassett Healthcare. Outgoing members William “Bud” Pirone, Ricky O’Donnell and David Brenner were honored at a board dinner in the Levine Conference Center at Fox Hospital, Oneonta. Pirone and O’Donnell each served nine years, and Brenner, a former Oneonta Mayor, served 11 years. “They were great board members,” Fox board Chairman Michael Getman said.

November 2009

HOMETOWN History Nov. 15, 2019

HOMETOWN History

Nov. 15, 2019

150 Years Ago

The Democratic Victory and What Will We Do with It: A new and grave responsibility now devolves upon the Democratic Party, which for the first time in 17 years will soon hold all the departments of the state government, Legislative, Executive and Judicial. As we shall well or ill use this opportunity, will be our political future. Our opponents, smarting under defeat, and consequent loss of power and patronage, affect to believe that we will be made drunk with power, indulge in excesses, and speedily lose the confidence of the people. Power brings with it not only the opportunity of doing better than our opponents, but it brings also responsibility for the way in which this power is used. As a party we have condemned the corrupt and unconstitutional acts of our opponents. Let the legislators, let our leaders, let our Governor council prudence, and insist on just and constitutional legislation.

November 1869

100 Years Ago

The amount of building going on at this time in Oneonta, and along with numerous changes in ownership of city
realty apparently signify two things – one, that everybody has pretty much given up hope of there being any immediate
reduction in the cost of building; and the other, which in a sense is very like the first – that since all cannot build, they will buy, if buying at any fair price is possible. The number of residences going up gives a fair idea of the confidence which is felt in the future of the city. Along with residences, important business structures are also going up or being enlarged. There is a future ahead of Oneonta which is bright with not merely promise, but assurance of prosperity and continued growth.

November 1919

80 Years Ago

Oneonta Sports – Only a small group of sportsmen interested in securing a franchise in the Canadian-American League season attended a recent meeting, but hopes have not been abandoned for the city’s representation in Minor League ball. It is now planned to gather statistical data from the three clubs willing to park their franchises. An effort will be made to have a representative of one of the teams attend the next meeting. Lights may be installed at the park next year for night baseball and football.
Over 100 high school girls will compete in the intra-mural basketball league this winter according to Mrs. Frances Bates, physical education instructor.
Mayor Frank Zuber of Norwich and Captain Dan Fox, Commanding Officer of Troop C, State Police, will act as judges of the boxing card to be presented at the Elks Club Friday night under the auspices of the American Legion. Benny Leonard of New York, retired, undefeated lightweight champion, will referee one or two of the bouts.

November 1939

60 Years Ago

In Oneonta’s art colony are persons who regard themselves as amateurs and explain that they paint only for enjoyment. Mrs. Virginia Repa, a charter member of the Oneonta Community Art Center, is one of them. She says, “I paint for fun.” Be that as it may she handles water colors with such skill and imagination that her paintings have been regarded as professional. Mrs. Repa is among those artists who, in doing pastoral scenes, likes to work directly from nature, striving to translate beauty as accurately as possible, with an occasional resort to composition for the “sake of art.” A painting titled “The Old Sycamore” that was done in early spring by Mrs. Repa is enhanced with Mrs. Repa’s memories. “It was done in early spring. My husband, Dr. Joseph Repa was fishing and I saw this beautiful old tree in a meadow. I had a very interesting audience – a herd of Guernsey cows who breathed down my neck most of the afternoon.”

November 1959

40 Years Ago

A new attitude toward illegal aliens is emerging in the American labor movement. Instead of summoning
immigration agents to get the illegal workers deported, a small but growing number of unions are trying to sign up the workers as members. For years, angry that illegal workers were taking Americans’ jobs, unions have argued that “we should close off the border and send them all back home,” says Allan Zack, a spokesman for the AFL-CIO. “But that’s a political impossibility now,” he says. “It’s also wrong. Many illegals have established residency here.” It isn’t known exactly how many illegal aliens live in the United States, or how many of them belong to unions.
The immigration service estimates the U.S. has four million to six million illegal immigrants, and other counts range
as high as ten million. Much of the labor movement, however, continues to urge a crackdown on illegal immigrants, arguing that foreign workers take jobs from members.

November 1979

20 Years Ago

Ten years after Congress ordered protections for whistleblowers throughout government, the Justice Department has set up a system to shield FBI agents – but they will have less shelter than other federal employees who report waste abuse and crime by co-workers. Under the rules, FBI whistleblowers are not protected for reporting misdeeds to Congress, in court during a trial, or to immediate superiors. FBI employees are protected only if they report to a short list of top officials and FBI internal investigators. The FBI Director will determine whether FBI employees will get a hearing. Also, FBI whistleblowers alleging retaliation will not have the right to a federal court review. Republican Senator Charles Grassley, Chair of a Senate sub-committee that oversees the FBI, said the rules “represent crafty
lawyering rather than good public policy.” Grassley said the Justice Department “interpreted the law to protect its own interests rather than the public interest in exposing fraud and mismanagement.’

November 1999

10 Years Ago

On Friday November 13, a player wearing number 13 on his jersey ended Oneonta boys’ soccer season. Marcellus senior forward Jon Schoonmaker made a baseball slide
into a bouncing ball on the right side of the penalty box and sent a low shot from 12 yards sailing past Yellowjackets’ keeper Alex Maschutt with eighteen minutes, 44 seconds left in the Mustang’s 2-1 Class B state quarter final victory at West Genesee High. “Friday the thirteenth? Maybe,” OHS coach Alex Brannan said.

November 2009

HOMETOWN History Nov. 1, 2019

HOMETOWN History

Nov. 1, 2019

150 Years Ago

(The following is quoted from an address by Dr. Orson M. Allaben to the members of the Delhi Agricultural and Mechanics Society at its Annual Fair, September 30, 1869) “It is but a few years since the first telegraph line was put in operation between Baltimore and Washington City. If the steamboat had been a wonder, and the steam-car had astonished and amazed the world, the Electric Telegraph was considered the miracle of the age.
That people could freely converse with each other and hold communications at long distances through the agency of electricity, and a simple iron wire had been considered impossible. But, the capabilities of a free intellect, as developed in the perceptions and productions of free thought, aided by the manipulations of a free hand, solved the problem, and the impossible became possible before the light of scientific investigation.”

October 1869

125 Years Ago

Normal Schools – The Hartwick Seminary Monthly tells a great deal of truth in a single paragraph – “The state spends $300,000 a year on Normal Schools for the avowed purpose of preparing young persons for the positions of teachers. Only about one-fifth of the pupils become teachers. Not one-tenth of the teachers in public schools are graduates of Normal Schools. The State pays largely for the whistle.
It has invested $2,000,000 in Normal School property. The academies of the State are preparing more teachers for their work than all the Normal Schools combined, and doing it as well. For this the State pays nothing except the pittance that comes from the distribution of the Literature Fund.”

October 1894

100 Years Ago

Wednesday afternoon, a team of horses belonging to Charles McCumber of Sidney Center ran away and crashed into the curb in Oneonta, demolishing the wagon and dumping the furniture, with which the wagon was loaded, on the sidewalk. The runaway was caused by the whiffletree coming loose and striking the horses on the legs, frightening them and causing them to get beyond control of Mr. McCumber.
The horses were not injured. It is fortunate that neither Mr. McCumber nor his wife, who was on the wagon with him at the time, were not injured. The furniture was damaged quite badly. Mr. McCumber had been to Milford for the furniture and was taking it to his home at Sidney Center.

October 1919

80 Years Ago

“A well-educated Christian leadership will provide the best possible means of restoring a spiritual balance to our distraught world,” declared Dr. Henry J. Arnold, following his induction as the third President of Hartwick College. The ceremonies were followed by an inaugural luncheon in the church parlors after which delegates witnessed the football game between Hartwick and Connecticut State Teachers College. “The College President as a Leader” was the topic chosen by Dr. William H. Cowley, President of Hamilton College of Clinton, New York, in his welcoming address to Dr. Arnold at the inaugural ceremonies. Dr. Cowley pointed out that a college president must above all else be a leader, defining a leader as “a person who is going somewhere and is able to persuade others to come along with him.”

October 1939

40 Years Ago

SUCO got over the first hurdle in its fight for a fieldhouse Wednesday when the SUNY Board of Trustees approved the college’s $629,000 request to plan the building. Now, Oneonta State’s request must be included in the overall university budget submitted to the Governor. Then, it must be included in the Governor’s executive budget and approved by the legislature prior to March 31, 1980. The fieldhouse request is part of a $1.3 million request for money to be used for construction and planning on the Oneonta campus. SUCO’s request is part of a $122.2 million SUNY capital construction budget for the 1980-81 school year. SUCO requested $539,000 for construction and $763,000 for planning. The entire $1.3 million package was approved by the trustees.

October 1979

20 Years Ago

Measures aimed at cracking down on phony school bomb threats and teenage drinking and smoking were signed into law recently by New York State Governor George Pataki. The first law makes it a felony to falsely report bombs, fires, explosions or the release of hazardous substances at a school. “It’s not a simple prank. It’s a crime,” Pataki said. “Our schools should be sanctuaries of peace and learning, not zones of mayhem and fear.” Schools throughout the state were disrupted repeatedly by bomb threats after the April 20 massacre at Columbine High School in Colorado. Penalties for the crimes include driver’s license suspension. Teenagers may also receive a youthful offender or juvenile delinquency adjudication. A second bill encourages merchants to install scanners that verify a customer’s age in stores, bars and nightclubs. The scanners can determine whether a person can legally buy alcohol and tobacco by reading a bar code or magnetic strip on the back of driver’s licenses or non-driver identification cards.

October 1999

10 Years Ago

Last Saturday in Muller Plaza about 35 community members joined people from places as far away as Kazakhstan, India and Spain to make a lot of noise. Armed with kazoos, party horns, and slide whistles, the group raised a ruckus
at 3:50 p.m. as part of a global event to call attention to
environmental issues. Students in Todd Ellis’ Global
Climate Change class at Oneonta took part in the “Global Day for Environmental Action” called “Make a Noise
about Climate Change.” The event was sponsored by 350 Org., a grassroots organization. Groups from 50 countries also made noise at 3:50 p.m. in their time zones. Pictures from these events streamed live on a billboard in Times Square. The SUNY campus “Protect Your Environment Club” approached Ellis who said he realized this event could be another teaching moment for his class which looks at the science of climate change as well as the social, political and economic issues surrounding it. “The 350 org. movement is anchored by those like environmentalist Bill McKibben who care about all facets of climate change,” Ellis said.

October 2009

HOMETOWN History Oct. 18, 2019

HOMETOWN History

Oct. 18, 2019

150 Years Ago

It was supposed when the law was passed that about 1,200 of the veterans were still living in this State, and that the $50,000 appropriated would be sufficient to pay off the certificates of all the survivors. But it seems that 2,700 of the old soldiers were alive and filed their certificates with the Adjutant General. Many are still living to whom certificates were never granted. The result of this mistake on the part of our lawmakers is that the amount appropriated is only sufficient to pay about thirty-six percent on the principal of the certificates, saying nothing about the interest. The pro rata distribution has been made, and the soldiers are now being paid at the State Hall. The deficiency in the appropriation rendering a pro-rata distribution necessary, and the great difficulty in gathering in these certificates with the proper proofs, has given some of the state’s departments an immense amount of extra labor. The brave old veterans have long waited for the small amounts they are now receiving. We trust the next Legislature will see that justice is done.

October 1869

125 Years Ago

A girl balloonist lost her life at a fair in Franklinville, New York last Saturday. As the balloon started it was noticed that the girl held the trapeze by only one hand. Her strength was not equal to the effort of getting a grip with the other hand. When she reached a great elevation she lost her hold and fell to the earth. She struck on her head and shoulders and her body dug a hole in the ground a foot deep and three feet long. Her neck was broken and her body terribly crushed. She was only 18 and had promised her parents that this should be her last trip.

October 1894

100 Years Ago

A United States census will be taken commencing on January 2, 1920, and ending in cities and villages that had 2,500 or more population in 1910 in two weeks and in all other localities in one month. The fifteenth district of the State of New York is composed of the counties of Broome, Otsego, Chenango and Delaware and has been divided up into enumeration districts small enough so that the work can be done in the allotted time. An enumeration of the population and also of the agriculture will be taken.
Applications for appointment as enumerator were supposed to be filed with the supervisor on or before the fifteenth day of October, 1919. Persons between the ages of 18 and 70 are qualified, providing they have the other necessary qualifications.

October 1919

60 Years Ago

Two hundred shares of capital stock of the International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) valued at about $81,000 have been donated by Mrs. Charles W. Collins of Cooperstown to the State University College of Education at Oneonta to purchase rare books, unusual collections and special supplies, not normally provided from state appropriations. Mrs. Collins made the donation in honor of Dr. James M. Milne, the first principal of the Oneonta State Normal School for whom the college’s new library has been named. She was one of Dr. Milne’s students while attending the school. After graduation, she continued her education at Vassar. Raised in one of the oldest families in Oneonta, Mrs. Collins is the former Florence Ford, whose original family home stood where the Acme Market now is located. Her grandfather, Elaikim Feed Ford was one of the first merchants to settle in the village of Oneonta.

October 1959

40 Years Ago

The menu of the Otsego County Nutrition Program for the Aging the week of October 22-26 will be: Monday – Pineapple-grapefruit juice, Chop Suey with pork on rice sliced carrots, onion-dill bread, ice cream, coffee, tea, milk served with each meal daily. Tuesday – Cran-apple juice, stuffed peppers with tomato sauce, wax jellied fruit-cottage cheese salad, oatmeal bread, mixed fruit cup. Wednesday – Salmon loaf with white sauce, baked potato, broccoli, whole wheat bread, chocolate tart. Thursday – Tomato juice, roast beef and gravy, mashed potatoes, Brussel sprouts, tossed salad, popover apple. Friday – Grapefruit juice, cheese strata, Harvard beets, lime gelatin salad with shredded carrots, apricot halves. Meal locations: Nader Towers, Cooperstown First Baptist Church, West Oneonta Fire House, Worcester American Legion Hall, Unadilla Methodist Church.

October 1979

20 Years Ago

The Ku Klux Klan sued New York City and its police department alleging that its First Amendment rights to wear the traditional white hoods would be violated if the group was denied a permit to rally. The permit was denied on the grounds that the wearing of hoods violates a state statute that prohibits groups from congregating in public places while wearing masks or disguising their faces except for authorized masquerade parties or entertainment. The law has been on the books 150 years but is rarely used, officials said. New York Civil Liberties Union Executive Director Norman Siegel said “This is an important First Amendment case. Regardless of the message, the First Amendment says people have a right to express their views. They have a right to anonymous political activity.” The KKK contends its members wear the hoods to protect their identities because they have been subjected to retaliation because of their views. KKK National Imperial Grand Wizard Jeff Berry has also said that the hood is part of the group’s “religious attire.”

October 1999

10 Years Ago

The affiliation of A.O. Fox Memorial Hospital in Oneonta
with Bassett Healthcare in Cooperstown is expected to be completed by January 1, 2010, officials at both organizations confirmed at a media conference at the FoxCare Center in Oneonta. Following the unanimous approval by the boards of both Bassett and Fox, the decision only needs the approval of regulators and the completion of a management and medical services agreements. Under the agreement, Fox will become an affiliated hospital in the Bassett Healthcare Network according to Bassett President and Chief Executive Dr. William Streck. “Any time health care is delivered in a more coordinated fashion, access, quality and efficiency improve and there is a reduction in the fragmentation of patient care,” Streck said. As part of the agreement Bassett will provide management and medical services to Fox.

October 2009

HOMETOWN History Oct. 11, 2019

HOMETOWN History

Oct. 11, 2019

150 Years Ago

The great storm which occurred here on the second and third of the month extended over several States – south beyond Washington and north and west into the British territory. Property to the amount of millions was destroyed and quite a number of lives lost, while shipping along the coast suffered very much. Hundreds of cattle, sheep and swine were carried into the streams and drowned, In the Hudson and other navigable rivers the boats were obliged to lay by on account of the great quantities of logs, timber, &c., floating down. Last Sunday, the third successive Sunday, it again rained all day. The streams and river here were high Monday morning, but not a flood. We see by the Albany papers that the rise in the river before twelve o’clock Sunday night was five feet, and the merchants began to move their goods to the upper stories.

October 1869

125 Years Ago

Local & Regional: H.G. Bishop, formerly of Oneonta, has bought off the Oneonta Press, and took possession last week.
Stamford now has a local telephone line with 21 subscribers. The subscribers not only have the advantages about the village, but they all connect with the Delhi, Grand Gorge, Harpersfield and Jefferson lines.
Ex-Governor Cornell is out with the
usual anti-election statements about the fearful increase of taxation under Democratic rule. He alleges that the state taxes have been increased nearly 100 percent. This is the annual chronic nonsense of Republican leaders. However, Delaware County is not weighted down with Democratic misrule. In 1882, the tax budget for Delaware County was $17,600. Under Republican rule it steadily increased, until in 1893 it was $63,800, an increase of nearly 400 percent. Meanwhile the increase in population has risen only about 5 percent.

October 1894

80 Years Ago

Speaking to members of Oneonta’s Rotary Club at the Hotel Oneonta yesterday afternoon, Bishop G. Ashton Oldham of the Episcopal Diocese of Albany said “With the determination to stay out of Europe’s conflict, I am in complete agreement – but for a different motive than that advanced by some of our leaders who seek the protection of our skins and our possessions, but rather because I want to see America ready to serve after the war in the leadership toward a lasting peace.” The Bishop commented further on the war and its effect on churches saying “the effect of war on our churches is feared by many who point out that they suffered during the last war because each side claimed that the church was on its side. However, that there is any war simply demonstrates that the church does not have the influence it should have upon governments, for every church and every denomination is most active in the cause of peace. Perhaps the fault lies in large part with the church which is too material and not sacrificial enough.”

October 1939

60 Years Ago

Bradenton, Florida – The home an elderly Negro woman was building in a new white neighborhood has been damaged by fire and authorities say the blaze was set deliberately. The woman, 67-year-old Elizabeth Jenkins has owned a 2.5 acre tract west of Bradenton since 1916. She has lived in one house there for 43 years and was building a new frame house nearby. She planned to move into the new house in a few weeks. Miss Jenkins’ property is surrounded by a fashionable white neighborhood which has been developed during the past two or three years. Sheriff Roy Baden said the woman had asked $20,000 for her land. But, when developers offered to meet her price, she hiked the figure to $40,000 and later to $50,000

October 1959

40 Years Ago

Hartwick College has received a $100,000 federal grant to establish a continuing education program for registered nurses. The grant, provided by the Health, Education and Welfare agency will fund classes, seminars and workshops for three years for nurses in Otsego, Delaware and Chenango counties. Hartwick College nursing department chair Mary Sees said the project is intended to provide additional training to as many as possible of the 1,300 nurses employed in the area. The exact line-up of programs will be determined in a survey of nurses. A coordinator will be hired.

October 1979

20 Years Ago

A wallet stolen during a recent robbery was recovered according to Oneonta police sources. In the past three weeks, three incidents of armed robbery were reported to police, compared to two robberies in all of 1998. “To have this number reported in this short a time is alarming,” said Oneonta Detective Sgt. Joseph Redmond. “People should exercise caution as in everything they do in life.” No one was hurt in the armed robbery incidents, during which wallets, cash, and keys were stolen, police said. At about 3:20 a.m. October 2, three people walking near 218 Chestnut Street told police they were robbed by two ski-masked men with handguns. Minutes later on West Street, another man was accosted by two men, one with a handgun. And, a man near Potter and Maple streets reported being robbed about an hour later, police said. Previously, a man told police someone had held a knife to his throat at about 3:15 a.m., September 23 while he was walking on Myrtle Avenue.

October 1999

10 Years Ago

When Chad Hall, a farmboy from Walton, was studying electrical mechanical design at SUNY Delhi, he figured he get a job as a draftsman, maybe in a some local firm. And he did, at Oneonta’s Custom Electronics. But instead of a job, Hall had found himself a launching pad.
Today, a mere 34, he’s COO of Custom Electronics’ spinoff Ioxus, jetting all over the country, to Korea, to Europe, pressing the cutting edge of ultracapacitors, a technology that, quite simply, could change the energy world as we know it.
The possibility is being recognized Thursday, Oct. 10, at the Otsego County Chamber’s 10th annual Small Business Banquet at The Otesaga, where Hall – and Chief Technical Officer Thor Eilertsen – will be accepting the chamber’s Breakthrough Award on their company’s behalf.

Oct. 9, 2009

HOMETOWN History Sept. 27, 2019

HOMETOWN History

Sept. 27, 2019

150 Years Ago

The Erie Railway Company announces that “on and after Monday, September 30,” they will reduce the running time to Chicago seven hours by means of the thirty-hour train, to be known as the “Great Pacific Express.” The westward traveler, taking his seat at ten o’clock on any given morning in one of the superb Drawing Room Coaches of the Erie line at Jersey City, may thus enjoy a ride rendered comfortable by all the accessories of Epicurus and Somnus, and alight in Chicago at 4 p.m. the next afternoon, not wearied and hungry with travel, but fresh as if awaking from a quiet snooze after dinner.

September 1869

125 Years Ago

Captain John Crawford of Davenport died suddenly at his residence about 2 a.m. Friday morning. On Thursday he had attended the Oneonta Fair and in the evening retired apparently in good health. Mr. Crawford has been a very active man, and at the time of his death was carrying on a very large lumber and manufacturing business. In 1862 he enlisted and was elected Captain of a Company in the 144th Regiment. In 1879, he was elected Sheriff of this county. He was 66 years old and leaves a wife and two sons, William and Henry, proprietors of the carriage factory in the Village of Davenport. Captain Crawford’s funeral was held at his late residence in Davenport on Sunday. Large delegations from the Masonic Fraternity and the G.A.R. of Oneonta were present.

September 1894

100 Years Ago

Will the Flu Return? Probably, but by no means certainly, there will be a recurrence of the influenza epidemic this year. Indications are that should it occur, it will not be as severe as the pandemic of the previous winter. The fact that a previous attack brings immunity in a certain percentage of cases should allay fear on the part of those affected in the previous epidemic. It is not yet certain that the germ has been isolated, or discovered, and as a consequence there is yet no positive, preventive, except the enforcement of rigid rules of sanitation and the avoidance of personal contact. A close relation between the influenza pandemic and the constantly increasing pneumonia mortality rate prior to the fall of 1918 is recognized. It is now believed that the disease was pretty widely disseminated throughout the country before it was recognized in its epidemic state. This failure to recognize the early cases appears to have largely been due to the fact that every interest was then centered on the war.

September 1919

80 Years Ago

That revolutions and dictatorships follow similar patterns through the ages of history may be the result of a system of society that cannot keep pace with public conceptions of rights, opportunity and justice, was the message of
Rev. Boyd McCleary, minister of the First Presbyterian Church in his address titled “Patterns in Dictatorships” at the meeting of the Oneonta Rotary Club at the Hotel Oneonta. Dr. McCleary said that an understanding of world unrest in our time can be gained through a study of a pattern into which earlier revolutions and dictatorships may fall. The speaker observed that peoples never break with their past save by cruel wrenches and then the pendulum swings to extremes. Dr. McCleary cited the earlier English and French revolutions and the Russian and German revolutions following the World War in his talk. Once the ball of unrest starts rolling it must finish its course, the Left of today becoming the Right of tomorrow as people search for justice which they feel the integrated systems of society under which they live will never provide. Dr. Cleary reviewed the lives of dictators such as Cromwell, Napoleon, Lenin and Hitler. In closing, Dr, McCleary expressed the conviction that in the development of society the time will come when force will no longer prevail and right and justice
will be enthroned.

September 1939

60 Years Ago

Memories of a lively portion of Otsego and Herkimer County history flew thick and fast yesterday as former employees of the Southern New York Railroad staged their first reunion since 1922 at the Milford American Legion Home. On hand were about 60 former employees of the now long-vanished electric line which once served commuter and freight needs between Oneonta and Mohawk. Chairman for the reunion, now to be an annual event, was Claude Tilley of Milford. Some of the individuals on hand can trace their memories of the railroad to its beginnings. Among those is Sherman Stone of Oneonta. Mr. Stone drove the first passenger trolley to operate under its own power between Oneonta and Hartwick. Mr. Stone worked on the construction of the line in 1902. He is now a prominent Oneontan and a member of the city’s Public Service Board.

September 1959

40 Years Ago

A resolution recommending no practicing homosexual be ordained by the 3-million member Episcopal Church was approved Tuesday night by the church’s House of Deputies, and is now official church policy. The resolution was approved Monday by the 239-member House of Bishops at the church’s Sixty-sixth General Convention. The vote followed lengthy debate. Among lay members in the House of Deputies, the vote to concur with the House of Bishops vote was 77-18 with 13 divided. Among clerics the vote was 70-29, with 11 divided. The divided tallies signify dioceses that were split on the question. On Tuesday, 21 bishops issued a strong “Statement of Conscience” saying they would not accept nor implement Monday’s resolution.

September 1979

10 Years Ago

State University of New York Distinguished Service Professor Gretchen S. Sorin, Professor of Museum Studies and Director of the Cooperstown Graduate Program of SUNY Oneonta, has been named the 2009 recipient of the Katherine Coffey Award, the top honor presented by the Mid-Atlantic Association of Museums. The Coffey Award is presented to a museum professional who demonstrates superior professional accomplishment; a record of service to the profession on state, regional, national and/or international levels; and a proven record of service to the community in which the museum is located. Sorin has been active in the museum field for 35 years, having served as Director of the Cooperstown Graduate Program for the
past 14 years.

September 2009

HOMETOWN History Sept. 20, 2019

HOMETOWN History

Sept. 20, 2019

100 Years Ago

An Assemblage of “Fat Men” – A convention of fat men has recently been held in
Norwalk, Connecticut at Gregory’s Point Hotel. One hundred and forty of the fattest men of New England and the adjoining states assembled. The names and weights of the various individuals are recorded. The weights ranged from two hundred to three hundred and fifty-eight pounds. The 358-pounder was John A.P. Fisk of New York who was elected president of the society for the ensuing year. James A. Lincoln of Springfield, Massachusetts, weighing 329 pounds was elected vice-president. The aggregate weight of the six heaviest was 1,922 pounds giving an average of 320 and one-third pounds each. The aggregate weight of the whole 140 men was 31,385 pounds, being an average of 224 pounds each. They feasted on shell fish, scale fish, fish without scales and a great variety of vegetables. They devoured thirty bushels of oysters, 47 bushels of clams, 359 pounds of bluefish and eight barrels of sweet potatoes. Due to the intense heat the foot races were cancelled.

September 1869

125 Years Ago

Celestial Photography – Celestial objects can be photographed that will never be seen by the keenest eyes, aided by the most powerful telescope that can be made. One reason of this is that the photographic plate is sensitive to a far greater range of vibrations than the eye. Not only is it acted upon, to a slight extent, by the visual rays, but by those as rapid as 40,000,000,000, a second. Another reason is that, while the human retina can only retain an impression for about one-seventh of a second, the feeblest light that falls upon the sensitive plate is not lost, but is stored up. The countless millions of waves of light striking persistently upon one point of the plate must, in course of time, produce an image of the star. In this way, apparently blank parts of the heavens
have been shown to be crowded with stars. The total number of stars visible to the naked eye is only about six thousand. With our large telescopes this number becomes more than 50,000,000, while with the photographic eye it cannot be less than 160,000,000.

September 1894

100 Years Ago

Anti-Divorce Experts Advice: Kiss your wife three times before each meal. Don’t argue with her about her mother’s disposition. Don’t hide the change in your trousers pocket when retiring, but put it under your wife’s pillow. When she reads Shakespeare, forget the American League averages and read it with her. Don’t test the quality of her raised biscuits with your heel. Wipe your feet seven times before crossing the family threshold. So runs the advice of the anti-divorce experts. The City of Norwich, New York does not believe in issuing a series of impeachments on how to avoid divorce. It goes straight to the heart of the problem. For seven weeks, Norwich, through the medium of a summer school, has been teaching its girls how to become successful wives. It has taught them how to cook and sew. It has taught them how to make a successful home. It has taught them how to buy judiciously and how to make the pennies count.

September 1919

80 Years Ago

Village of Sidney Named for British Admiral – Once a part of the Indian conference grounds of Unadilla and later part of the Town of Franklin, Sidney, in the early nineteenth century, acquired the name Sidney Plains. When the village was incorporated in 1888 the name was shortened to Sidney. Tradition says that the name Sidney Plains was given in honor of Sir Sidney Smith, famous British Admiral who had gained much fame for his naval victories of that period. The name was first applied by John Mandeville, an English schoolmaster then living in Sidney Plains. Jay Gould, in his history of Delaware County published in 1856 confirms this origin of the name.
Unadilla was the original name that once applied to the whole region where the
counties of Delaware, Chenango and Otsego meet. The first settlement on the
site was established when Rev. William Johnston and his family arrived about 1790. For a time the area was known as Johnston’s Settlement and later called Susquehanna Flats before that name was replaced with Sidney Plains.

September 1939

60 Years Ago

The Oneonta Yellowjackets will host Ilion in their 1959 grid opener. Coach Lloyd Baker’s Yellowjackets who last year ran up a 6-2 record, have last year’s line practically intact but the backfield is missing three big fellows – Chuck Sweeney, Denny Weir and Mike Syros. Returning linemen are George Lynch, Charlie Hamwey, Tony Coraro, Pete Van Woert, Co-Captain Mike Zagata, Joe Rizzo and Skip Knott. Jim Konstanty will return as the starting quarterback. Pete Van Woert, who took over at center the second game of the season and remained there doing a fine job is back again. Pete is 6’ 1” and weighs 190 pounds. Big Jim Konstanty (6’ 2” 200 pounds) will share the quarterbacking with Pat Delaney, a promising sophomore.

September 1959

20 Years Ago

A recently published book about Yankee slugger Joe DiMaggio includes an article written by SUCO history professor William Simons. In the book, “Joltin’ Joe DiMaggio”
Simons describes how DiMaggio’s place in American history extends well beyond baseball. Titled “Joe DiMaggio and the American Ideal” follows DiMaggio from his start as a baseball rookie in 1936 through his marriage to Marilyn Monroe, to his success as an advertising pitchman. DiMaggio became a role model for Italian-Americans and a model for masculinity
for 60 years.

September 1994

10 Years Ago

Meizhu Lui, Executive Director of United for a Fair Economy will present “The Color of Wealth” at 7 p.m. Tuesday in the Center for Multi-cultural Experiences in Lee Hall at the State University College at Oneonta. Lui’s group is a national nonprofit organization that helps build social movements for greater equality, according to officials. In her presentation, Lui will explore why the distribution of wealth in the United States is so uneven and whether public policy, even when well-intentioned, reinforces existing inequalities, and whether race and ethnicity continue to play a pivotal role in defining the haves and have-nots in society.

September 2009

HOMETOWN History Sept. 14, 2019

HOMETOWN History

Sept. 14, 2019

150 Years Ago

Temperance – If the temperance question could be withdrawn from the areas of party politics it would be far better for the morals of the rising generation. We have urged the same views in relation to Sabbath observances. The claims of truth upon the conscience are weakened by alliance with the demands of warring political factions. If faith in the Supreme Being were made the test of political orthodoxy, there are many who now reverence the Creator that would become infidel in the excitement of a party contest. The Springfield Republican comes out decidedly in favor of substituting moral suasion for the machinery of the statute. No moral progress was ever made by legal force. Temperance is a moral virtue, and can only be promoted by reason and argument.

September 1869

125 Years Ago

Architecture of the Future – The Eiffel Tower, built wholly
of metal, is an example, and a good example, of a step in the direction which architects will be forced to follow in the future. The great railway stations, exhibition buildings and other structures of steel, concrete, paper and glass, which the needs and inventions of our day have called into existence, show which way flows the stream of tendency. The new building material has come to stay. In another century houses may not be merely built with steel girders. They may be made of metal frames bolted together and gripping walls of paper. Then the age of the tent will return. A man will buy his house from a manufacturer and will hire a site to set it upon. When he moves from one place to another, he will take his home with him. Building leases will die a natural death. Towns will wander about and a great many curious results will arise.

September 1894

100 Years Ago

The Oneonta Electric Lighting Company’s pond at East End claimed another victim Friday when Clayton Anderson, a colored man, aged about 26 years, was seized with cramps while swimming. Anderson, who was a member of a section gang working on the D. & H. tracks near the pond, had gone in for a swim before he was to resume work at one o’clock. He had been swimming about for a short time when he gave a loud cry and sank out of sight. The other members of the gang, most of them Italians, were apparently somewhat confused. But, after finally reaching the scene they were unable to render any assistance because of the absence of any boats or other means of reaching the
unfortunate man. After about three hours search by policemen and others the body was located about 40 feet from shore in 20 feet of water. Anderson had no relatives in this vicinity. Others of his race said his home was in the south where his mother lived. He had lived in Oneonta for a year or two and had been employed on the section gang only five days before his death.

September 1919

80 Years Ago

Contrary to public belief, the majority of automobile accidents in Otsego County in 1939 have occurred during the daytime. Authority for this statement is Corporal W.E. Cadwell of Sidney, assistant to the Head of the New York State Police Traffic Division. Corporal Cadwell has addressed
many area organizations since being promoted to the post two years ago. The accident chart reveals that most of the crashes in Otsego County have occurred between the hours of 12 to 1 and 2 to 3 in the afternoon and from 6 to 7 in the evening. Since January 1, 1939, Otsego County has had 134 highway accidents involving injuries or deaths. Corporal Cadwell said 103 people have been injured and 10 killed. Of five accidents involving pedestrians, one resulted in death.

September 1939

40 Years Ago

Puerto Rican terrorists are freed by President – Four defiant Puerto Rican nationalists granted clemency by President Carter left U.S. jails Monday where they spent at least a quarter century for terrorist acts in Washington, D.C. All four were heading to a Chicago rally to renew pleas for independence for their Caribbean homeland. Three of the four nationalists were convicted in a 1954 shooting in the U.S. House of Representatives that left five Congressmen wounded. The fourth was jailed four years earlier for attempting to assassinate President Harry Truman. Released for the House shootings were Lolita Lebron, 59, Irving Flores Rodriguez, 54, and Rafael Concel Miranda, 49. The fourth nationalist, Oscar Coliazo, 65, told reporters, “The fight for freedom is always a long fight and always a hard fight. I have nothing to be disappointed about.” Steve Guerra, a spokesperson for Chicago’s Puerto Rican Cultural Center said the four would be brought together for a rally outside Roberto Clemente High School on the city’s northwest side, a home for many of Puerto Rican heritage.

September 1979

20 Years Ago

If legislators had passed the state budget sooner, the Oneonta school district probably would have its first universal pre-Kindergarten educational program in place. Classes must begin by October 6 in order for students to complete a 180-day school year. On October 1, the district will send applications to area childcare agencies that would provide pre-K services for the rest of the year. The state has awarded $51,300 or $2,700 per pupil, to fund 19 universal pre-K slots in Oneonta this school year. Exactly how the district will choose the 19 students has not been decided but “economically disadvantaged” students will be considered first. Experimental pre-K, the sister program to universal pre-K began this week with a class of 32 students. That program is reserved for students and families with special needs. Any child not in the experimental program would be eligible for universal pre-K.

September 1994

10 Years Ago

The eighth anniversary of the terrorist attacks of 9/11 was remembered Friday night at the State University College at Oneonta. “Eight years ago Americans united to show that they would stand tall in the face of the terrorist threat,” said Student Association President Rick Heil as he addressed the crowd. “It was important because without a sense of unity and purpose, the terrorists would have achieved their purpose.”

September 2009

HOMETOWN HISTORY: Sept. 6, 2019

HOMETOWN HISTORY

Sept. 6, 2019

150 Years Ago
Brutal Outrage in Hartwick – A young Irishman, one James Kelley, was passing through the Village of Hartwick, on his way from Cherry Valley, where he had been
employed as a laborer to the Midland road. He had money with him, which was seen by several of the citizens, also a watch, razor, and tobacco. He was intoxicated, and soon fell among thieves. The village plug-uglies, who for years have held undisputed sway in that place, soon detected by professional scent, the game ahead, and no time was lost in securing the unfortunate fellow. He was induced, in his intoxicated state to visit the Lodge of Good Templars, assured that it was a brothel kept in the place. As a consequence, the victim was thrown down the stairs by members of the Lodge. He was enticed away by those having him in charge, and upon the four corners of the streets, in a clear moonlit night, he was garroted, his money, watch, razor and tobacco taken away from him, and the poor fellow left bleeding upon the ground. His hair was sheared from his head in a barbarous manner and he was left to seek refuge in an out building.
August 1869

125 Years Ago
Baseball English as she is wrote for the edification of the public is luridly picturesque. The other day, I went up to the Polo Grounds to a prettily played game and enjoyed it. Later, I glanced over a published account of the same game and found that my impressions of it, formed on the grounds, were entirely wrong. In the first place, players who were supposed to have family names hadn’t any such. In the paper, one was “Midget.” Another was “Spud.” There
was a “Fatty” with “Skeleton” to keep him company.
The first man who came to bat did not make a base hit.
He “walloped out a single.” The next batter did not do anything so tame. He got real demonic and “fungoed to center.” The centerfielder wasn’t a bit terrified either, “for he hugged the musty fly.” What I had taken for a three-base hit was nothing of the kind. It was worse than crying twins. It was a “whistling triplet.”
August 1894

80 Years Ago
The communities of Fort Plain and Cooperstown joined Saturday afternoon in observance of Alexander Cartwright Day on the Baseball Centennial All-Summer Program. The Centennials defeated the Fort Plain team at baseball on Doubleday Field 8-5. The program opened with a parade through Main Street to the field, headed by the Cooperstown band, augmented with musicians from Fort Plain. The $5 prize for the best costumes in the parade was won by the Red Men’s organization of Fort Plain. Little Mary VanDeusen of Portlandville won the second prize of $2.50, wearing a beaded Indian costume. A life-size photograph
of Alexander Cartwright was autographed by Cooperstown Village and Centennial officials and the participating ball teams. It will be returned to members of the Cartwright
family in the Hawaiian Islands. Ceremonies included a
10-minute pantomime in which America Russo, representing
Cartwright and five other young men, depicted the laying out of the dimensions of the playing diamond. Members of the two ball teams were decorated with floral leis sent to Cooperstown by the Hawaiian Chamber of Commerce.
August 1939

60 Years Ago
Ruth Ray, daughter of the Rev. and Mrs. Mark S. M. Ray, 2 Walling Avenue, has been appointed as a special term missionary by the commission on Ecumenical Mission and Relations of the United Presbyterian Church. She has been assigned to the American College for Girls in Cairo, Egypt, where she will teach music. This instruction includes violin, voice, theory and appreciation, general music classes and choir. The school consists of study from the first grade through the second year of college. Nine tenths of the student body of more than 1,000 are Egyptians. About one-third are Christians, while the remaining students are Muslims. Fourteen of the teachers in the school are Americans. The college was founded by the United Presbyterian Church in 1910 and since then has aided in the education of upper class Egyptian women who include the daughters of royal parents, cabinet ministers and foreign ambassadors.
August 1959

40 Years Ago
Latches have been removed from refrigerators behind Dundam’s Furniture on Chestnut Street following an inspection according to City of Oneonta engineering aide Bruno Bruni. City enforcement officials checked the site recently to find most of the machines were tied shut with string, a closing that would not meet with safety regulations if the locks were still in place. When re-checked, officials verified that the locks had been removed. John Dundam said the refrigerators are stored temporarily in back of his store while waiting for repairs or to be junked.
August 1979

20 Years Ago
Although formal campaigning is banned at the New York State Fair, elected leaders from the governor down to local lawmakers have become a common sight strolling the fairgrounds over the years. Governor George Pataki extended that tradition again this year when he helped officially open the 1999 fair on Thursday. He was joined by more than two dozen state, county and local elected office holders – even a few Democrats – looking for a chance to be seen and heard
by the public. “I don’t think people go to the fair to see politicians. But I do think the public has come to expect that politicians come to the Fair,” said Tom Young, the State Fair’s Director for a decade and a two-term Mayor of Syracuse.
August 1999

10 Years Ago
The start of classes at Hartwick College on Tuesday, Sept. 8, will mark the beginning of its “Three-Year
Bachelor’s Degree Program” option that has won nationwide attention and interest, saving participants $40,000
on a college education.
September 2009

HOMETOWN History Aug. 30, 2019

HOMETOWN History

Aug. 30, 2019

150 Years Ago
Delaware Academy – The fall term of this institution opened very favorably last week. The gentlemen in charge are men of large experience in teaching, and we can assure parents and scholars that an opportunity is now offered for a thorough and complete course of education. The corps of teachers in the Academy excel in scholarship, and are fully prepared to give scholars a full and complete Academic course. The buildings have been refitted and are in perfect condition. The library is the largest and best selected in the county, and the laboratory is in complete order, and the boarding halls are open for boarders on reasonable terms. We know of no institution so complete and perfect in all respects and so desirable for scholars seeking education.
September 1869

125 Years Ago
Stamford was visited by a big fire last week Tuesday evening. The Tanner House, just below the Village of Stamford, was discovered to be on fire. The fire was in the top of the house and spread rapidly. It was soon beyond control and all that could be done was to save furniture from the lower stories. Only one stream of water could be turned on the flames and what could be done had to be done very quickly. By midnight the building was burned to the ground.
September 1894

100 Years Ago
Two automobiles collided late Saturday afternoon at a sharp turn of the state road just west of Davenport Center. One of the cars was a large Auburn sedan driving west from Kingston, and the other a Buick six. The Auburn car skidded
on the slippery road in making the turn and sideswiped the Buick, itself landing on the bank. The driver, in righting the car, sideswiped a tree and then ran head-on into another tree, practically demolishing his car. The Buick was less seriously damaged and taken to the local garage for repairs. Of the occupants of the cars two women and a man were injured but none seriously. The occupants of the Auburn car, who were from New Jersey on their way to Norwich, were taken to Oneonta, where they caught the evening train.
September 1919

60 Years Ago
“All the little boys look the same with short haircuts and long trousers.” That was the observation of John Milsome, exchange teacher from England who will teach sixth grade at Chestnut Street school this year. Mr. Milsome, the assistant headmaster at Roe Green Primary School, Kingsbury, England replaces William Swain, who will teach in England.
The swap was made possible through the U.S. Office of Education and the Ministry of the United Kingdom.
Mr. Milsome along with his wife and daughter are living at 7 Cleveland Street. Mr. Milsome anticipates no problems with American youngsters. “I don’t know baseball but I’m sure the youngsters will teach me. I could tell them about cricket and football (soccer),” he said. Mr. Milsome in concluding the interview remarked that Bill Swain, the Oneonta teacher who replaced him in England, was probably being interviewed by one of our reporters.
September 1959

40 Years Ago
A federal judge on Thursday ordered the virtually all-male New York State police force to give half of its job openings for years to come to women and members of minority groups. U.S. District Judge James Foley set quotas for future hiring by the police division at 40 percent of all new trooper positions to blacks and Spanish surnamed citizens and 10 percent to women. The ruling will remain in place until the 3,400 member force reflects the racial make-up of the population it serves – a process estimated to require at least five years at current hiring and staffing levels. The civil suit originated with the U.S. Department of Justice in 1977. Judge Foley said he had found no evidence that the past hiring practices had been purposely discriminatory or to any extent selected and continued because of adverse impact upon Negroes, Spanish-surnamed Americans or women. However, he said they had a discriminatory effect in violation of federal law and that must change.
September 1979

20 Years Ago
The Upstate Home for Children opened a new home on Glens Bridge Road in the Town of Oneonta last week. Five people will live in the home which will be staffed by about 10 people on rotating shifts. The home meets a housing demand for adults with mental and physical handicaps. The home provides a home-like environment where residents are involved in cooking meals and other chores said Bill Twasutyn, Director of Adult Services at the Upstate Home. There is a similar home for six people under the age of 21 in West Oneonta. The residents at the Glens Bridge Road home will range in age from 23 to 29 and will attend programs at the Upstate Home Center on Water Street in Oneonta or a program with the Association for Retarded Citizens, Twasutyn said.
September 1999

10 Years Ago
Standing in the lobby of the 1897 Chestnut Street theatre, state Sen. Jim Seward, R-Milford, announced a $10,000 senate grant to help the Friends of the Oneonta Theatre reopen the theater.”.
The money is an operating grant. Under an agreement with the new owner, Thomas Cormier of Burlington Flats, proprietor of Information Technologies, the Friends will manage the theater portion of the complex.
“The Oneonta Theatre has played an important role in local history and the downtown Oneonta economy,” said Seward in making his announcement. I am excited that the role will continue and expand in the future,” he said.
Septermber 2009

HOMETOWN History Aug. 23, 2019

HOMETOWN History

Aug. 23, 2019

150 Years Ago

Tell Your Wife – If you are in trouble or quandary, tell your wife – that is, if you have one – all about it at once. Ten to one her intervention will solve your difficulty sooner than all your logic. The wit of woman has been praised, but her instincts are quicker and keener than her reason. Counsel with your wife, or mother, or sister, and be assured light will flash on your darkness. Women are too commonly adjudged as verdant in all but purely womanish affairs. No philosophical student of the sex thus judges them. Their intuitions, or insights, are subtle, and if they cannot see a cat in the meal, there is no cat there. In counseling a man to tell his troubles to his wife, we would go further, and advise him to keep none of his affairs secret from her. Many homes have been happily saved and many fortunes retrieved by a man’s full confidence in his “better-half.”

August 1869

100 Years Ago

With four gold service stripes on the sleeve of his uniform, Private James H. Harrison, once mourned as dead, returned to Oneonta Friday, after 23 months service overseas. He is at the home of his sister, Mrs. H.C. Whitcomb, 50 Spruce Street. Private Harrison was a member of the famous Second Division, which was made up half of regular infantry and half of Marines. The division made for itself a most gallant record. It played an enviable role in five great battles in which American troops were engaged – Chateau-Thierry, Soissons, St. Mihiel, the Champagne and the Argonne. It was shortly before the signing of the Armistice that Mrs. Whitcomb received official notification that her brother had been “killed in action” in October. Having received letters from him after the date on which he was “killed,” Mrs. Whitcomb thought that some error had been made. She notified the Red Cross Service Bureau and also asked the War Department for an investigation. In a few weeks it was established that Private Harrison was in good health. However, another soldier by the same name and in the same company had been killed and the notification sent to Mrs. Whitcomb by mistake.

August 1919

80 Years Ago

President Roosevelt addressed appeals for peace to Adolf Hitler and President Moscicki of Poland, suggesting three methods for avoiding war. These methods were 1. Direct negotiation. 2. Submission of the controversy to impartial arbitration. 3. Agreement to adopt the procedure of conciliation, selecting a conciliator or moderator. President Roosevelt told Hitler: “The people of the United States are as one in their opposition to policies of military conquest and domination. They are as one in rejecting the thesis that any ruler, or any people, possess the right to achieve their ends or objectives through the taking of action which will plunge countless millions of people into war and which will bring distress and suffering to every nation of the world, both belligerent and neutral….Because of my confident belief that the cause of world peace – which is the cause of humanity itself – rises above all other considerations, I am again addressing myself to you with the hope that the war which impends and the consequent disaster to all peoples everywhere may yet be averted.”

August 1939

60 Years Ago

Oneonta’s first foreign-exchange high school student has arrived here. Miss Marketta Karkinen, 18-year-old honor student, who hopes to become a doctor, is now settled with Dr. and Mrs. Carroll E. Rusch, 35 Cedar Street, her foster parents for the year. The Finnish miss was selected as a foreign exchange student by the American Field Service and will attend Oneonta High School. She will be a senior. Miss Karkinen is the daughter of the headmaster of the Commercial School at Lahti, Finland, a city of 60,000 population north of Helsinki. Marketta, who has already studied four years of physics, geometry, algebra, two years of biology, and one each of zoology and botany, said it is not uncommon for a Finnish woman to become a doctor. In her application to become an exchange student Marketta wrote: “I think America is a free and progressive country which has already achieved great things in many fields and is a land of the future.”

August 1959

40 Years Ago

Despite double-digit inflation, stagflation, recession and depression, Beth Walter’s business is picking up. She’s a janitor. And every morning, when the city is fighting to come awake, she’s in the parking lot of the Clinton Plaza sweeping up after last night’s revelers. On the job since mid-May, she took over when her brother-in-law quit. “He got a job with SUCO,” she said. “Now, he’s going to go to work for the railroad.” Beth’s job consists of sweeping sidewalks, cleaning up the parking lot and picking up garbage. She doesn’t do lawns. “But, I’d like to,” she said. A college-trained janitor (she worked on the maintenance crew at Cornell University), she said she has no bigtime janitorial ambitions. “I’m really into horses,” the 18-year-old said. “Someday, I’d like to own some horses and teach riding.”

August 1979

20 Years Ago

When plans were announced to convert the Perkins Family Restaurant in the Town of Oneonta into a Denny’s restaurant, the new owner was eager to get started. As a result, the restaurant’s menu and a few signs were quickly changed, and Denny’s opened within a couple of weeks. But the speedy opening prevented major changes to the overall look of the place. Now that the business has established itself, plans are being made for some further dramatic improvements. “We’re basically going to be bringing a whole new look to the place, both inside and outside,” said Kristin Murphy, a manager at the restaurant. “It’s going to be really, really nice.”

August 1999

HOMETOWN History Aug. 16, 2019

HOMETOWN History

Aug. 16, 2019

150 Years Ago

The total eclipse of the sun which occurs this week Saturday, will not only be a most imposing spectacle, but also one of the most important of astronomical phenomena. Among barbarian tribes it ever excited apprehension, while among cultivated nations it is recognized from the exactness with which the time of occurrence and the various appearances answer to the prediction, as affording one of the proudest triumphs of astronomy. Although such an eclipse occurs nearly every year somewhere on the earth, yet the area within it can be observed is so smallish, it happens to few persons to witness one in the course of a lifetime. Two total eclipses only have been visible in the United States since the beginning of the present century, those of 1806 and 1834.

August 1869

125 Years Ago

The first annual convention of the Otsego County Fireman’s Association met in the Exchange Hall on Dietz Street, Oneonta Wednesday at 11 a.m. Some fifty delegates were present at the business meeting,
representing the fire companies and
departments of Morris, Schenevus, Cooperstown, Unadilla, Richfield Springs, Otego, Gilbertsville and Oneonta. In the evening a banquet in honor of the visiting delegates was given by the executive committee of the local fire department at the Windsor Hotel. The menu was very elaborate and the good things provided were partaken of with a gusto which was in itself the banquet’s best praise. Thursday occurred the first annual parade and tournament of the Otsego County Firemen’s Association. The parade started at about 11:40 a.m. from the foot of Broad Street.

August 1894

100 Years Ago

Otsego County is now represented in the American Legion. This is the first post to be organized in Otsego County despite the fact that many other counties with smaller population and considerably less number of service men have several posts in operation. At American Legion state headquarters it is believed that additional posts will be formed in Cherry Valley, Cooperstown, Edmeston, Hartwick, Otego, Richfield Springs, Unadilla, Worcester, and many other towns as sufficient service men reside in those localities to start good posts. Only fifteen men are required to sign an application, which should be mailed to the County Chairman, George W. Augustin, of Oneonta.

August 1919

80 Years Ago

Three Oneontans will be among the ten musicians who will compete for cash prizes of $15 and $10, as well as merchandise awards, in the “Old-Time Fiddlers’ Contest”
on Wednesday evening in front of the Townsend Hardware Co. where the public can gather in the street to witness the competition. Contestants will be Charles Ellis, Floyd Wheeler, and Robert O’Brien
of Oneonta; Ferris Layman of Otego; Clifford Hess of Sydney; William Kellogg of Portlandville; L.H. Wheat of Mt. Vision; Charles Couse of Sidney Center; Omar Spooner of Richmondville; and Russell Alger of Masonville. The evening’s program will open with a half-hour concert by Keeton’s band.

August 1939

60 Years Ago

It was all through the assistance of Huntington Memorial Library. Chris Spingola, 15 Main Street, was one of 15 applicants who passed the examination to receive a Federal Communications license as second class radio telephone operator. Mr. Spingola pointed to literature from various schools offering courses leading up to such a license
at fees up to $1,000. He also showed courses offered leading to a high school diploma. Last year he was granted his High School Equivalency diploma after passing examinations at Oneonta High School. For both examinations, he emphasized, his sole source of study, was Huntington Library. “It’s a wonderful thing for a city this size to have such a library, and librarians who are so helpful,” he declared.

August 1959

40 Years Ago

The Main Street viaduct over the D&H tracks, connecting downtown Oneonta
with the Sixth Ward, will be opened with
a ceremony August 24 at 11 a.m. The ceremony is being coordinated by James T. Catella and the Oneonta Lions Club. Catella is the city’s former Parks and Streets Superintendent and also the father of the contractor’s chief engineer on the job. He is also the city’s official liaison person with the D&H Railroad. Family connections will loom large at the ceremony. Among other guests will be Duncan Briggs, whose grandfather was President of the Oneonta Village Board which authorized the viaduct about 1900. Also, William H. Lunn, whose grandfather was Mayor of Oneonta when the original bridge was completed will be present. Speakers will include Mayor James Lettis, Sixth Ward Alderman Jean Scarzafava, and a representative of the state’s Department of Transportation. D & H. Vice President Thomas O’Brien of Albany is expected to attend. The new $2.1 million bridge, begun in 1978, was finished two months ahead of schedule.

August 1979

20 Years Ago

The Pentagon updated its “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy for gays in the military on Friday to require mandatory training on anti-harassment for all troops, beginning with boot camp. “There is no room for harassment or threats in the military,” Defense Secretary William Cohen said in issuing the guidelines. Michelle Benecke, co-director of the Service-members’ Legal Defense Network, the leading advocacy group on the issue of gays in the military, praised Cohen’s statement but with reservations. “The real issue is whether leaders will be committed at every level to stop anti-gay harassment,” she said.

August 1999

Posts navigation

21 Railroad Ave. Cooperstown, New York 13326 • (607) 547-6103