In Years Past

In 1914, the mystery over the disappearance of Ephram M. Wright from his home near Abbotts Corners near the village of Sugar Grove Feb. 5, was partially solved by the finding of the remains of a man which had been identified as Mr. Wright. The body was found lying in a hollow, still partially covered by snow, behind the orchard in the rear of some farm buildings. As soon as the discovery was made, a description was telephoned to Mr. Wright’s relatives and the description fitted that of the missing man. Owing to the silly superstition that seemed to exist in Pennsylvania, no one dared to touch the body until the arrival of the coroner.

The Beardsley case was up before the court again when District Attorney Sterns advised the court that Ethel Austin had been held in custody as a witness for 60 days and that, under the law, she was entitled to compensation. The court remarked that the law provided allowance up to $3 a day and said that in her case he would make half that amount. He made an order allowing her $90. Justice Bissell said he wanted to go on record as denouncing the town officers of the town of Chautauqua for the action in allowing the Beardsley children to be removed into the state of Pennsylvania and given into the custody of that dissolute grandmother to be brought up where they would be more likely to turn out as criminals instead of having them committed to a proper institution where they might be brought up as good citizens.

In 1939, Thomas J. Burke of North Warren, Pa., a mail truck driver on the route from Warren to Jamestown, died in the WCA Hospital this day a few hours after apparently being stricken with a fatal heart attack about a mile south of Stillwater on the Kiantone Road. Mr. Burke appeared in good health when he left home at 6 in the morning. Eldred Griffin, Kiantone, a driver for the Endress Ice and Coal Company, found Mr. Burke in an unconscious condition in his truck by the side of the road at 7:45 a.m. With the assistance of another man, who had also stopped when the mail truck was discovered, stopped partially off the pavement. Mr. Griffin took Mr. Burke to the hospital, where he died without regaining consciousness.

On the eve of the third anniversary of Jamestown’s record snowfall of 26 inches on St. Patrick’s Day which paralyzed the city in 1936, the weatherman once again forecast lower temperatures and probably snow flurries in this section of the state. The sharp change from Wednesday’s spring-like weather to the blustery condition of this day was in direct comparison to the conditions in 1936 – except in respect to the amount of snowfall.

In 1964, schools from Pittsburgh, Pa., and Montrose, N.Y., won the two-day weekend Tri-State High Schools’ eighth annual Robert H. Jackson debate trophy contest at Jamestown High School. The program attracted 44 teams from 24 high schools in Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York. There were about four members to a team. Central High School, Pittsburgh, took first place. The school would hold possession of the Robert H. Jackson Debate trophy for one year. The other Pittsburgh school, Taylor Allderice High School, won second place. Third place went to Henry Hudson High School, Montrose, N.Y.

Baton twirling and modeling were included in the spring term of Jamestown YWCA youth classes. Miss Linda Barnes would teach baton twirling. The modeling course would be taught by Mrs. Wilbur Jones. This was for girls 14 to 18 who wished to learn to be models or to study poise and good grooming for modern teenagers. Tap dancing and ballet would also be offered.

In 1989, many area employers who had traditionally paid new employees minimum wage were finding they had to pay more to attract the number and quality of employees they needed, according to Hugh Tranum, coordinator of the Jamestown Area Labor Management Council. Fewer and fewer employers were paying minimum wage, Tranum said. Employees of Quality Markets were among those who started at more than minimum wage, according to Jack Henry, vice president for personnel. “We have been (starting employees at more than minimum wage) for more than two years now,” Henry said. New Quality Markets employees earned $3.50 per hour. After 30 days they earned $3.70 per hour, he said. The minimum wage had been $3.35 per hour for eight years.

Area highway department employees and the motoring public undoubtedly would say “Amen” at this time of the year, to an old Cornish prayer. It went: “From ghoulies and ghosties and long-legged beasties, and things that go bump in the night. Good Lord, deliver us!” Those things in the night might be potholes resulting from poor drainage or the freeze-thaw cycle. And trying to control them was sometimes more than a full-time job for crews of the Chautauqua County Highway Department. “They can happen overnight,” according to Donald Maloney, assistant construction maintenance supervisor. “It’s really a hard job to keep up with it,” Maloney said.