In Years Past

  • In 1913, the Chautauqua Lake outlet claimed another victim shortly after noon this day when a rowboat containing three men capsized and Robert Bergren of Pullman Street, Jamestown, was drowned. The other occupants of the boat Oscar Anderson and Robert Erickson of Washington Street, were rescued. The three young men went to Celoron and rented a boat from the Erickson boat livery and started down the outlet for Jamestown. They had lines and bait and intended to fish. Near Clifton the boat was upset but what the cause was remained unknown. The two who could swim reached the shore, after which Anderson discarded his trousers, sweater and hat and entered the water again to help Bergren. In spite of his efforts, he was obliged to give up and let Bergren go, being barely able to keep himself from sinking.
  • Owing to the fact that 1913 marked the 50th anniversary of the turning point of the Civil War, as the star of the Confederacy gradually waned after the Battle of Gettysburg in 1863, an effort was being made by James M. Brown post, G.A.R., to make the Memorial Day exercises on May 30 in Jamestown more elaborate than ever before in the history of the city and to this end every military organization in the city was invited to participate in the parade to Lake View Cemetery in the afternoon.
  • In 1938, truckmen rolled up their sleeves and settled down to their hardest day’s work of the year as thousands of New York families packed household belongings and gave themselves up to the annual spring madness of swapping addresses. Although May 1 had been the traditional moving day since grandma was a girl, the fact that New York state law forbade moving on Sunday, “except when absolutely necessary” resulted in most movers beating the gun by at least 24 hours this year. In general, trucking agencies and real estate brokers reported a brisk turnover, but estimated that fewer families were on the move than a year ago.
  • The fine weather in Stockton the past week started vigorous activities of the Chautauqua County Firemen’s Fraternity grounds. Firemen of Stockton and all parts of the county headed by Blair Simmons of Fredonia, had set out 10,000 evergreens of six different varieties and 100 nut bearing trees of several varieties. This would make the place a fine bird and game refuge. They had placed on the grounds, 1200 cement blocks, 10,000 bricks plus sand and cement for the construction of the 30-by-60 foot pavilion and several four-way fire places. Work on the baseball diamond was fast nearing completion so the opening game could be played May 1.
  • In 1963, Jamestown’s Dr. Roger Tory Peterson, world-renowned ornithologist, told the Federation of New York State Bird Clubs, Inc., in convention here, that birds were being killed by the millions through insecticide spraying. Dr. Peterson said conditions were far worse than pictured by Rachel Carson in her book, “Silent Spring.” He begged the group and the Jamestown Audubon Society to take more breeding bird census in order to have the facts to fight the insecticide program. He said insecticide companies were spending millions fighting Rachel Carson. “I am worried about this spraying business,” Dr. Peterson said. “It is more threatening than we realize. I have been shocked with what I have seen.”
  • Voting in Jamestown’s referendum on returning to the partisan election system crept along at a pace so slow, one election inspector termed it “fantastic.” A spot check by The Post-Journal of the city’s 30 election districts shortly before 1 p.m. showed that just slightly more than 10 percent of the nearly 14,000 eligible voters had gone to the polls to signify how they wanted their municipal leaders elected.
  • In 1988, the seconds were ticking down for the castle that once kept the world running like a clock, a victim of changing times. Herstmonceux Castle, the home of the Royal Greenwich Observatory, went on sale for an estimated $11.2 million. The observatory where Greenwich Mean Time was once calculated as the reference point for the world’s time zones was expected to move into Cambridge University in 1990. Greenwich Royal Observatory clocks, first at Greenwich and then at Herstmonceux, once calculated Greenwich Mean Time for the world. But in the past decade, Britain had only been a minor contributor to a Paris-based international time service that used 250 clocks around the world. The observatory was founded in 1675 by King Charles II.
  • The appointment of 14 people as initial members of the Chautauqua County Solid Waste Task Force had been announced by County Executive John A. Glenzer. He said the group would be advisers to him and help make recommendations to the County Legislature regarding the future of its solid waste program that would include volume reduction and recycling, among other considerations.