In Years Past

In 1914, Edward Beardsley was still barricaded behind the boarded-up doors and windows of his house and the police power of Chautauqua County was, as yet, powerless to serve a warrant for his arrest charged with shooting John G.W. Putnam. Activities on the Summerdale hills had not served to dislodge Beardsley, although information was at hand that he had made positive promise to give up the children and then come out and surrender. With no reporters permitted closer to the Beardsley house than the Bradshaw schoolhouse a mile away, stories of what had occurred at the site of the siege this day were hard to obtain.

Four persons lost their lives in an apartment house fire at Brocton this day and five others were injured by jumping from upper stories. The dead were: Mary J. Moynihan and her son, W.B. Moynihan; A.C. Lininthal and an unidentified man who lodged in the Lininthal home. The burned building was a three-story brick structure on North Main Street in the Montello section. The blaze was discovered at about 3 a.m. by a neighbor. When the firemen arrived, exit by way of the stairway had been cut off and life nets were stretched. There were many thrilling escapes. When the ruins were searched, the bodies of the dead were found in their beds. They had died from suffocation.

In 1939, the government denied the right of the International Railway Company of Buffalo, N.Y. to rebuild without specific authority from Congress, the Falls View bridge at Niagara Falls, destroyed by an ice jam the past winter. Answering a suit brought in District Federal Court to compel the secretary of war and the chief of army engineers to approve the company’s plans for a new bridge, the government declared the two war department officials lacked authority to grant such approval except by an act of Congress. The railway company contended it had the right to rebuild the bridge under authorizations obtained from the state of New York and Canadian governments more than a half-century ago.

Alleging that he was injured when assaulted at a South Stockton barn dance last August, Henry J. Johnson, 43, Frewsburg-Kennedy Road, was the plaintiff in a $700 damage action against his brother, Paul Johnson and Herman Crandall, being tried before Judge Lee Ottaway at Mayville. Johnson, who worked about the dance hall, assisting his brother, claimed that he was slapped by Daisy Condon and that when he asked his brother to have her removed from the place, Paul Johnson and Crandall secured a piece of rope which they tied about his neck and dragged him out from the floor. The plaintiff said that Crandall held his arms and he was taken to the basement of the place and beaten up. Then he claimed the two other men tied his arms and legs and placed him in a truck.

In 1964, details concerning Jamestown’s growing water demands and shrinking supply would be relayed to the Federal Government for possible future grants to aid projects estimated at $3.5 million. Information on the water problem would be sent to Rep. Charles E. Goodell who recently assured local officials he would investigate possibilities of obtaining federal aid. At a meeting of the Board of Public Utilities, William A. Taylor said little more could be learned about the city’s chances for government financial aid until the board received a report from Goodell.

Injured in a 15-foot fall, Frank Brink, 23, of 60 Chautauqua Ave., Lakewood, was in “satisfactory” condition in WCA Hospital. He received head and left wrist injuries. A hospital report stated Brink fell from a ladder to asphalt paving while washing a window at Chautauqua National Bank’s Spring and Fifth Street branch office. He was employed by Jamestown Window Cleaners.

In 1989, January usually meant harsh winds, bone-chilling temperatures and lots of snow, but not this year. From the Midwest to Maine, snowfall had been below normal and temperatures had been above normal. “Looking at the weather map and temperatures across the nation … one would never realize that it is the middle of January,” the National Weather Service said in a statement the previous night after the mercury climbed into the 40s and 50s across much of the country. The relatively mild season had been a boon to motorists, joggers and municipal budgets but a bane for snowmobile dealers, winter festival organizers and ski resort operators.

Assemblywoman Patricia K. McGee, R-Franklinville, reminded new police officers of the importance of their training and a commitment to equal justice during remarks to the 34th graduating class of the Chautauqua County Sheriffs Academy. “One of the most basic tasks of government is the protection of its citizens against violence,” McGee told graduates of the basic law enforcement course, quoting John Foster Dulles, secretary of state to President Eisenhower.