In Years Past

In 1914, the members of the Jamestown South Side Thimble Club paid a surprise visit, for their regular club meeting, to the home of Mrs. Richard Toothill on East Sixth Street. Toothill was not a member of the club but she had been a visitor at some of the meetings and was a friend of all the members; hence the visit, which proved to be a very special occasion for the hostess and guests. The day was spent as usual: a business meeting before dinner, dinner at 1 p.m. and sewing and sociability during the afternoon.

The Rev. Dr. Isaac T. Headland gave another of his series of lectures on the Chinese in the Jamestown First Congregational Church. His theme on this occasion being The Chinese Woman. Despite disagreeable weather, the attendance was excellent. According to Headland, woman was the most fascinating interesting and incomprehensible subject in the world – a perpetual conundrum. When one had decided what she was, something else came up and she was not. “However, a Chinese woman is just a woman.” That statement, Headland defined as “profound.” The speaker made it as a discovery of his own. The Chinese woman was described as a labor-burdened, oppressed creature, a puppet to her husband. Headland first began to take active interest in the question of the education of Chinese women upon reading, in one of the works of Dr. W.A. Martin of Peking, that not one in 10,000 Chinese women could read.

In 1939, a veteran riverman suggested that an aviator play “boogie man” to scare flocking wild swans from the treacherous eddies above Niagara Falls. William (Red) Hill, for years a close observer of life and death along the Niagara River, his specialty was recovering bodies of persons swept over the falls, asserted: “Apparently neither the Canadian nor the United States governments are concerned about the swans. If either sent an airplane to swoop over the flocks, the birds could be forced back upriver to safety.” A number of the swans had, within the past several days, been drawn to destruction over the falls.

The Great Northern pioneer locomotive, William Crooks, and two passenger cars, which were en route from Chicago to New York City, to appear in the World’s Fair pageant, Railroads on Parade, would pass through Jamestown over the Erie railroad lines the following Wednesday, making a half-hour stop here. Interested members of the public were invited to inspect the train. The engine, which was built as a wood burner in the 1860s and later converted into a coal-burning type, travels over one division a day under its own power at the rate of 15 miles per hour. The train would stop here for coal and water on its 103-mile trip from Meadville, Pa., to Salamanca. The 77-year-old locomotive and the ancient passenger coaches would be on exhibition near the Erie passenger station on West Second Street at the foot of Lafayette Street.

In 1964, final cost of building and equipping the new addition to Jamestown General Hospital was estimated at $416,919 in a financial report on the project presented to the Hospital Board by Mark W. Lyons, superintendent. Joseph J. Valone, chairman of the Buildings and Grounds Committee, reported that all four floors of the new wing were in service. Noting that only landscaping and a few minor items remained to be done, he pronounced the project 98 percent completed. With the first floor of the new wing occupied by the Municipal Laboratory, the upper three floors had a total of 28 rooms equipped with 63 beds, which gave the hospital a capacity of 165 patient beds.

A statewide state police raid on gamblers and bookmakers netted six arrests in Dunkirk. No other community in Chautauqua County or Cattaraugus County was visited by state police. The Western New York raid was directed by Troop A. State Police Commander, Capt., John P. Nohlen, Batavia. The zero hour for the simultaneous raids was 2 p.m. throughout the state. Participating in the Western New York drive against gamblers included members of Falconer and Westfield state police patrols. They raided two places in Dunkirk. Charges of bookmaking were filed against each man. They each posted $200 cash bail at Dunkirk police headquarters and each was set free pending arraignment before Dunkirk City Judge August R. Jankowski.