In Years Past

In 1914, Arthur C. Wade, able lawyer, successful businessman, earnest farmer, devoted friend and counselor, died at his home on East Fifth Street in Jamestown shortly after 5 o’clock in the morning. The news spread rapidly and caused universal sorrow throughout the city and county. In the death of Wade there passed from the scene of action one of the ablest lawyers in the state of New York, a man of forceful character and strong likes and dislikes, which made for him many warm friends and some enemies. Wade was a man of generous impulses and he was unquestionably misunderstood by some in the community. This was because he did not advertise his benefactions and many kindly and generous deeds were known only to the persons benefiting by them.

The eclipse of the sun, which would occur this day, might perhaps be responsible for the severe electrical storms which for the past few days had caused many disturbances in this region. The storm Thursday caused more trouble in Chautauqua County. In Jamestown the chimney of W.G. Myers’ home on Langford Street was struck by a bolt of lightning. The shower of bricks on the roof quite badly damaged the slate, tearing it in a number of places, while the soot and smoke forced down the chimney passed through the entire house which was three stories high. During the severe storm of this morning lightning struck a tree on the property of N.E. Costello at Belleview and tore up about 20 rods of fence.

In 1939, intense diplomatic and military activity throughout Europe this day created an impression in political circles the stage was being set for developments pointing the way to peace or war, possibly before the end of the week. Many observers viewed trends of the past several days as indicating that from certain quarters might come a concrete proposal for a formula of negotiation whose rejection or consideration would decide whether Europe’s problems were to be decided at the conference table or on the battlefield.

Only the English believed war was to come soon, Dr. George E. Raiguel declared at Chautauqua on Saturday as he concluded his series of lectures on international affairs. Elsewhere, he said, while there is “tension and nervousness,” the people were inclined to discount the probability of war. “There is tension and nervousness everywhere in Europe but the peoples of the central European nations do not think that war is actually coming,” the traveler said. “The alliances all over Europe are not satisfactory. Germany is not at all certain that she can count on Italy’s help in the event of a showdown nor is France entirely confident of her British ties.”

In 1964, theft of a large quantity of merchandise early Thursday from Damond’s Food Market in Jamestown resulted early this day in the apprehension of two youths who had been charged with third degree burglary. The market was located at 188 Falconer St. The pair of boys, aged 16 and 17, appeared in City Court and the case was adjourned until the following day on their request to secure counsel. Detectives said other youths might have been involved in the theft of some $800 worth of merchandise. They added they expected to make more arrests soon. It was believed that most of the loot had been recovered.

Requests of the Jamestown Retail Merchants Association for permission to use 50 new street light standards in the business district for display of holiday decorations during the Christmas season was approved by the Board of Public Utilities at its monthly meeting. The board also agreed to provide electric service for the new decorations from Nov. 21 to Jan. 1 when they were scheduled to be illuminated.

In 1989, police were still trying to figure out a freak chain reaction accident on a movie set that took the life of the film’s producer-director-star, Toby Halicki. Halicki, 48, of Gardena, California, and a native of Dunkirk, was killed the previous day when a 141-foot water tower that was set to be toppled as part of the movie “Gone in 60 Seconds II,” unexpectedly came down shortly before 6 p.m. Halicki was in Jamestown the past week working on a 10-minute segment of the movie. “A preliminary investigation indicates the water tower fell prematurely, causing an attached cable to knock over a telephone pole,” said Tonawanda Police Officer Michael Thorp. “The telephone pole then fell on Mr. Halicki.” The stunt took place in an abandoned industrial park on the Buffalo-Tonawanda line.

Five resolutions, calling for expenditures of $128,940 in connection with improvements at its electric generating plant and one for $9,850 relating to the District Heating Division, had been approved by Jamestown’s Board of Public Utilities.