In Years Past

In 1913, Labor Day in Jamestown was marked this day by one of the best arranged and best carried-out celebrations of recent years, which celebration was still in progress in the afternoon. Failure to secure a speaker caused an announcement that there would be no platform, meeting or speaking. The Labor Day committee contented itself with the carrying out of one of the best parades in the city on a similar occasion and a program of races and other sports in the afternoon. Big crowds lined the streets over the entire line of march and stores, factories and business places generally closed in respect to the custom of the day and in honor of the workers who made the stores and factories of Jamestown the most prosperous in their history.

A day on the farm by a party of 15 or 20 men who were only “boys a little older grown” was a rare privilege in days when the weather was ideal, when fruit was ripening and when spring chickens were in their prime. Such privilege came the past Saturday when such a company paid a surprise visit to Obed E. Ostrander, former supervisor, at his home in the town of Gerry. The visit was on account of the observance of the host’s birthday. Ostrander’s wife had been let into the secret of the visit and with the assistance of her daughter, Leslie E. Woods of Jamestown, her mother, Mercy Brown and Mrs. Mason J. Wilson of Gerry, prepared and served a bountiful and delicious chicken dinner with all of the satisfying accompaniments of a harvest home celebration.

In 1938, a start on the actual construction of the remaining stretches of the rerouted and repaved East Lake Road before cold weather could set in was practically assured, it was learned from Chautauqua County highway officials. Three sections of the road between Jamestown and Mayville where the road was to take new courses, remained to be finished. The work had been held up during the summer while the highway committee of the county Board of Supervisors sought to secure rights of way for the new course of the road that would take through traffic around Bemus Point beginning at Shore Acres and returning to the old road route just south of Maple Springs.

The Four Laddies would give a thrilling aerial act on lofty apparatus at the Chautauqua County Fair opening Labor Day in Dunkirk. The act was an importation and was highly rated in the outdoor amusement field. The aerialists had a routine which differed from anything previously attempted, on specially designed apparatus. Their stunts would bring continual thrills to the crowd.

In 1988, more than 100.000 people would have visited the Veterans Moving Wall by the time closing ceremonies began at 9 p.m. this day, according to Richard Lawson, president of the Dunkirk Historic Lighthouse and Veterans Park Museum. The Vietnam Memorial Wall was located on the grounds of the Dunkirk Lighthouse and was available for public viewing free of charge. The wall was a half-scale replica of the Vietnam memorial in Washington, D.C., measuring 6 feet tall and 250 feet long. It was inscribed with the names of more than 58,000 American service men and women who died in the Vietnam War including 39 veterans from Chautauqua County.

Tax rates were in for Southwestern Central School District and Ellicott residents would pay more. Busti residents would have to wait for their bills to find out how they had fared. “This has been a very difficult task,” Superintendent Donald Ogilvie said. The school district had been on edge since spring waiting for the final estimates on Busti’s revaluation to find out how those residents and the ones in Ellicott, would be hit by the new assessments.