In Years Past

In 1913, Mr. and Mrs. Thomas J. Walsh entertained at their home on Richmond Place in Jamestown Friday afternoon in honor of the sixth birthday of their daughter, Elaine. There were about 30 boys and girls present. During the earlier part of the afternoon, games were enjoyed on the lawn of the home. In the donkey contest the first prize was awarded to Irene Stone and the consolation prize to Virgil Samuelson. In the peanut hunt held inside the house, the first prize went to Richard Illig and the consolation prize was taken by Samuel Charles Malmberg of Detroit. At 4 in the afternoon a luncheon was served in the dining room. Little Miss Walsh was the recipient of many beautiful gifts, among them a purse of $20.

William H. Price, formerly of this city and a graduate of Jamestown High School with the class of 1895, had resigned his position as assistant professor of economics at Yale University to take a position in the department of economics of the Imperial University at Tokyo, Japan. He and his wife would be in Jamestown in August to spend a few days with his mother, Mrs. Lena Price of Grant Street and from Jamestown they would proceed to Vancouver, B.C., to sail for Japan.

In 1938, several hours after Jamestown police had found a badly smashed automobile in the pit of the A.&K. Builders’ Supply Company off Livingston Avenue, the owner of the car, Frank J. Coffaro, 319 Allen St., appeared at police headquarters to report it stolen. Coffaro told police the car was stolen from in front of 219 W. Third St. sometime after last midnight. The machine was found, damaged almost beyond repair, in the gravel pit around 3:15 a.m. Police were investigating.

In spite of almost frantic efforts to hush it up, reports reached local police that a crap game in a farm house on East Lake Road, with Dunkirk, Fredonia and Jamestown men as participants and large sums of money involved, was raided Sunday by four masked bandits, armed with sawed-off shotguns and automatic pistols. Estimates of the loot ran from $600 to $1,000. The robbery occurred outside the city limits on a much traveled highway between Silver Creek and Dunkirk. According to police reports, a particularly big play was riveting the attention of the gamesters on the rolling ivories when a loud voice was heard from a doorway: “I’ll fade you all for all you’ve got. Line up at the walls and reach for the ceiling if you don’t want a lot of slugs in your hides. This is a stickup.”

In 1963, a 20-year-old pre-med student was killed at 12:50 a.m. when his new sports car plunged off the Pennsylvania Railroad overhead bridge on Route 17J and landed in the Mayville Recreation Park. Police identified the victim as Thomas G. Hellman, of Port Allegany, Pa. He was alone in the vehicle. He was the son of Dr. and Mrs. Leo R. Hellman and the nephew of Mrs. J. Clarke Schnars and Mrs. Clarence Danielson, of Jamestown. The family had a summer home at R.D. 2, Mayville. He was the 11th Chautauqua County motor vehicle victim of the year.

A fire, which started after a lighted match was flipped into a loaded hay wagon, destroyed a 22-by-30 foot frame tool shed and several valuable pieces of farm machinery the previous afternoon on the Svintec farm on Nuttall Hill Road, Sherman. No one was injured. Authorities said the flames spread rapidly and threatened a large barn constructed of cement blocks with an all-tin roof. Mayville fire chief Thomas Spacht said one of the Svintec youngsters tossed the match into the hay wagon, containing between 75 and 80 square bales of hay.

In 1988, the United States ambassador to Canada and his Canadian counterpart were of one mind – almost. So declared Thomas M.T. Niles, the ambassador from Washington to Ottawa, in his talk Monday at the opening program of “Canada: Sharing the Future” week at Chautauqua Institution. In his opening remarks, Niles said he agreed almost entirely with Allan E. Gotlieb, Canadian ambassador to the United States, opening speaker on the program. Their lone disagreement came on the controversial issue of acid rain, which Gotlieb said had resulted in 1,400 “dead” lakes in eastern Canada and threatened more nationally.

Debt-ridden Jamestown General Hospital, perhaps on the verge of being bought out by WCA, had been spared for at least two more weeks. A local law to abolish the JGH board and an ordinance to abolish all other positions at the hospital were tabled at the previous night’s City Council meeting to allow more time for council members to consider a new proposal to save JGH. Donald Abercrombie, speaking as a consultant to the Coalition to Save JGH, outlined what he said was a $6 million offer to buy the hospital and turn it into a not-for-profit corporation.