In Years Past

  • In 1913, Pittsburgh was contending with the biggest flood that it had had in seven years. Miles of streets in the sections lying along the Allegheny, Mononghela and Ohio Rivers were under water. From the Western Penitentiary in Woods Run district on the Ohio, north to the Herr’s Island stock yards, the north side flats were a lake. Residents of this district were navigating the streets in skiffs. Some of the downtown skyscrapers were dark the previous night. A flood stage of 29 feet had backed up the sewers and had put out the fires in dozens of mills and factories along the front. Power plants supplying the downtown theaters were menaced all evening by the rapidly rising waters.
  • The much-discussed question of dancing in Jamestown City Hall claimed the attention of the Central Labor Council at its meeting Wednesday evening, and by a unanimous vote, the 70 delegates in attendance, representing every labor union affiliated with the council, adopted a resolution requesting the common council to permit the use of City Hall for dancing under proper restrictions. There had been an effort to procure the prohibition of dancing in City Hall.
  • In 1938, Franklinville’s first “cattle rustling” case in some time had been cleared up through the efforts of state troopers and local police. Troopers took into custody Floyd H. Putt, Eugene K. Bearfield and Elwin and Theron Woodward, on a charge of larceny to which all pleaded guilty before Peace Justice Hoyt. Putt was fined $25. Bearfield $50 or 50 days. Theron Woodward was given 90 days and Elwin Woodward was sentenced to $50 or 50 days in jail. According to allegations, Bearfield and the two Woodward boys went to the hill pasture of the Lester Williams farm in Franklinville and stole three calves on the night of Oct. 19, 1937. Putt furnished the truck and the calves were taken to the Putt farm for fattening.
  • The Jamestown branch office of the Chautauqua County auto license bureau would be opened Monday at 503 West Third St. for the issuance of 1938 license plates. It would be opened through January 22 in the charge of John F. Miller, deputy county clerk. Plates to be distributed to Jamestown and motorists of this locality started with the series H-3201 and ended with H-9800. Mr. Miller expected to issue approximately 6,600 passenger car plates and 900 commercial car licenses here during the next two weeks. In 1937, 9,000 licenses were issued at the local bureau.
  • In 1963, a troublesome fire whipped through a pipe shaft running the height of the 102-story Empire State Building, shooting flames into offices an eighth of a mile above the ground. Firemen closed two floors of the building – the world’s tallest – as they continued finding and fighting smoldering blazes. No injuries were reported. The building was evacuated twice, the first time before dawn, the second time when the bulk of the 16,000 people who manned the 910 offices in the super-skyscraper, had begun to arrive for work. In all, 60,000 persons normally moved through the man-made colossus each day.
  • Butted by a bull while feeding him, Fred Cochrane, 61, of W. Lake Road, was listed in good condition at Westfield Memorial Hospital a spokesman stated. The accident occurred at about 5 p.m. according to the victim’s brother, William, who operated the farm with him. As the bull swung his head, it struck Cochrane in the stomach and pinned him in the stall momentarily. It was later in the evening when it was discovered that Cochrane was more seriously injured than first believed. Cochrane submitted to an emergency operation at 11 p.m. for a ruptured intestine.
  • In 1988, fire investigators were continuing to probe the origin of a fire estimated to have caused more than $1 million damage to a Kill Buck sawmill. The fire at Donver Inc. on County Route 49 near Route 219 was discovered about 4:30 P.M. Friday by a person in the yards outside the mill complex. Kill Buck firemen were first on the scene. Chief Michael Robison immediately began calling in tankers from several nearby fire departments to battle the fire. Intense heat and smoke kept firemen outside the two-story block structure for nearly two hours. Fire tankers shuttled water from nearby Great Valley Creek for nearly four hours before the fire was under control. About 40 people were employed at Donver working four days per week. The cause was under investigation.
  • A new computer program at Jamestown High School could help determine what kinds of jobs students would like best. It was called Discover and it was meant to help students and even some adults decide which career and educational paths they should follow. In the words of the local expert on the program, high school guidance counselor Julie Zaffalan, it was meant “to get the students thinking so they can learn more about themselves and their options.”