In Years Past

  • In 1913, Charles Samuels, the owner of the New Samuels Hotel, the Samuels Theater and other valuable properties in Jamestown, was at the WCA Hospital, critically ill. The physicians in attendance had not given up hope, but they admitted that his condition was serious and that he may not recover. Mr. Samuels had been in poor health for some time
  • The first suggestion of winter came this day in the shape of a sticky snowstorm that whitened the ground and created a great demand for umbrellas. The chilly temperatures that settled over Chautauqua County after the rain Sunday night was the forerunner of a cold wave which, in the northwest, sent the temperature down to twenty. The weather bureau sent out storm warnings the previous day to all ports on the Great Lakes. Marine men were advised to hold their vessels in port. The storm warnings continued in force this day.
  • In 1938, damage estimated at $400 resulted from fire in the kitchen of the home of Mrs. Mary M. Mahoney, Lafayette Street, Jamestown, at noon this day. The fire was the result of her failure to disconnect an electric iron when she left home shortly before 10 a.m. to go to a Second ward polling place to serve as an election inspector. The house was filled with smoke when firemen arrived at 12:12 p.m. and the kitchen was enveloped in flames. Two firemen, Captain Bernard Swanson and Chief’s Driver Joseph LaDuke, suffered slight burns when a severe backdraft struck them as they opened a door to enter the house. Most of the damage was done in the kitchen which was virtually destroyed.
  • Mrs. Vellonia Rappole, 77 years of age, fell and broke her right hip at her home in Bemus Point. Mrs. Rappole was dressing and suffered a dizzy attack and fell. She had been in failing health for the past year or so. She was removed to WCA hospital in Jamestown where she was attended by her grandson, Dr. Albertus W. Rappole. Mrs. Rappole, formerly known as “Mother Rappole,” was one of the earliest residents of the village of Bemus Point and was a former owner of The Columbian Inn which was later operated as the Bemus Point Hotel by her son and his wife.
  • In 1963, widespread smog hampered firefighters in their continuing battle against a record outbreak of fires in New York State’s paper-dry woodlands. As the unrelenting struggle in the forests moved into its fourth week, there was still no sign of the drenching rainfall needed to break the drought that had made this the direst year on record in the state. The Weather Bureau saw only more sunny, dry weather – turning a bit cooler. And forecasters dashed hopes that Hurricane Ginny, now churning the waters off North Carolina, might deposit some rain in this sector.
  • Water, or lack of it, trickled into the three-way Jamestown mayoralty campaign when each candidate promised members of the League of Women Voters that steps would be taken to alleviate the problem. Mayor William D. Whitehead informed members of the women’s group, at the Hotel Jamestown session, that steps to correct the water shortage crisis had already been initiated. He said within 10 days drilling would begin on new city water wells.
  • In 1988, New York hospitals, in bucking a national trend toward shorter patient stays, were being hurt financially, said a top state Health Department official. Testifying before the state Senate and Assembly health committees, Brian Hendricks, executive deputy director of the department’s Office of Health Systems Management said hospitals appeared “to be concerned about getting some bad press and feelings about premature discharges. So they keep people longer.” In fact, New York had the distinction of the longest length of stay of any state with an average length of stay of 8.4 days. The U.S. average was 6.4 days.
  • The newest section of the Southern Tier Expressway would open the following week but special ceremonies marking the occasion would not take place as planned. State Department of Transportation officials said the ceremonies set for 11 a.m. Monday had been canceled. They had planned a ribbon cutting by state officials and other dignitaries to open the 7.5 mile section between Seneca Junction and Allegany. In addition, a $10 million bridge was to be dedicated as the Cattaraugus County Veteran’s Memorial Bridge by a contingency of veterans.