In Years Past

In 1914, Orrin Kelley of Ellery Center narrowly escaped serious injury Tuesday. He was at work in Ernest Caskey’s saw mill in Earl Hall’s woods at Driftwood and while adjusting a belt to machinery in operation, his clothing was caught in the shaft. In an instant he was stripped to his waist and the only covering left on his arms was the wristbands of his shirt. Mr. Kelley suffered from the wrenching he received and was taken home, but it was believed that he did not sustain permanent injuries.

The Gitche Gumee Campfire Girls of America entertained a large audience in the auditorium of the Y.W.C.A. building in Jamestown Tuesday evening. The manner of presentation of the numbers was unique in the extreme and it was not until things actually happened that those present were at all enlightened as to what the entertainment was to bring forth. As the curtain rose on the first part of the program, the Sixteen Sibylline Sisters were disclosed, their costumes concealed by long kimonos. Madame Makinah charmingly presided, making a few introductory remarks concerning each character as she made her debut. The second part of the entertainment was an amusing farce on the servant problem.

In 1939, Harold E. Hopwood, 16 years old, son of Mr. and Mrs. Robert C. Hopwood of Westfield, died in the Jamestown General Hospital the previous morning from a bullet wound in the forehead received while shooting in Chautauqua gulf near his Westfield home. Coroner William Crandall, in his investigation, learned that the youth was in the habit of going two or three times a week to the gulf to shoot crows. He used a .22 caliber rifle, the safety device of which was so difficult to operate that he removed it and it was believed because of this the accident happened.

Further conferences with city officials and local businessmen on the plan to lease the new Jamestown Airport to the White Aviation Corporation, Inc. brought an announcement from Donald G. White, president of the aircraft company, that he had full confidence that the negotiations would be completed successfully within a week. If an agreement was reached, the White Company immediately would take over the operation of the airport and would move its manufacturing operations to Jamestown. “Our first step will be to start production of ten White Amphibian planes,” said Mr. White.

In 1964, Democrat Village Board candidates Mearl Cramer Jr., and Mrs. Caryl VanderMolen won a landslide victory the previous day in a Lakewood Village election which brought out record crowds to the voting booth. A total of 1,420 votes were cast in the election which resulted in some other firsts: The first time a woman had ever held a seat on the Village Board and the first time in over a quarter of a century Democrats had held a board majority. The Lakewood election was the climax of a heated campaign centering around the rejection of a zoning change to permit Niagara-Mohawk Power Corp. to build a $100,000 commercial building in a residential district.

A veteran Jamestown Dept. of Public Works employee chose to stay with his runaway vehicle on the Sprague Street Hill the previous afternoon and averted what could have been a highway disaster. The employee, Robert Jones, Jr., of Washington St., was seriously injured and was in fair condition at Jamestown General Hospital. Officials highly praised Jones for his courage. They said he had a chance to leap from the cab of the vehicle but chose to run it off the road rather than let it careen freely down the hill into the path of heavily traveled Steele Street. The vehicle, a 10 ton loading machine, lost its brakes going down Sprague Street.

In 1989, Jamestown was the home of one of the world’s most successful manufacturers of diagnostic test kits, Clark Laboratories. The business filled a building on Pine Street. It employed 25 Jamestown area residents, many with technical skills learned at the State College at Fredonia. Six of the newest employees formerly worked in the lab at Jamestown General Hospital. Begun in 1981 by Donald and Connie Clark and David Hansen, Clark Labs produced a variety of kits used to test for various diseases.

The American Legion Post in Falconer would host a meeting Sunday morning to discuss the recent approval of a site at Arlington National Cemetery for a memorial to women veterans. “This memorial is a long-awaited acknowledgment of women veterans,” said Shelley Larson, service officer with the Chautauqua County Veterans Service Agency. “It’s taken many years for people to recognize the fact that women veterans have played a significant role in the military service of their country,” Ms Larson said. An architectural and engineering survey of the proposed memorial site was under way and a competition for design of the memorial would be opened soon.