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Issue Home May 27, 2003 Site Home

Slices Of Life
100 Years Ago
Straight From Starrucca

Slices of Life

Finding My Way

For someone whose husband always did the distance driving, I have had an education these past four years. Reading a map was, and is, an enigma to me. It’s about as confusing as backing up using mirrors. The main highway is displayed all right, but what they don’t show are all these little extraneous roads that pop up which may or may not be the turn you are looking for. I had a good example of that this morning.

Heading for a doctor’s appointment in Scranton, I had the written directions highlighted in fluorescent yellow on the seat beside me. Because I rarely come to Scranton except for an occasional appointment with a specialist, I do not know the city at all. If I’m going shopping I have a tendency to head north, even if I do pay tax on clothing in the Triple Cities.

I was amazed at how soon I arrived at my exit off Interstate-81. Now it was time to really pay attention. I made my right turn at the bottom of the ramp, but the next right turn was a little confusing, and I found myself about to go back north, the same direction I’d just come. This must not be the next right I was to make. Then I saw the street I needed to be on a short distance in front of me, so having pulled off on a handy island and gotten re-organized, I made the correction and was at my destination in no time.

This had worked out better than my trip a few weeks ago. That was a clothes-shopping trip to the Oakdale Mall. With a co-pilot guiding me, there was some disagreement about the exit I wanted when we left the mall. All too soon we were past the exit and I knew I’d missed my one chance to head back toward Vestal. We were now on I-81 heading north. It was rush hour and the traffic was horrendous. Not knowing that area I was not aware that I-81 north and south were splitting right ahead of me and before I could jockey to change lanes, the exit was gone. So here we are sailing around kamikaze curve at 70 miles an hour. Also missing the next exit back to civilization, we’re on a long, and now slow ascent, toward Syracuse. Traffic is one lane and about thirty miles an hour. This went on and on until we finally came to an exit. My co-pilot said, "Now you can get back on 81-S."

"No way," I answered. "I’ve had enough interstate for today. Just get me back through Binghamton on Route 11." And she did.

In comparison, today’s drive was a piece of cake. But, it was not over. Having arrived safely, now I had to get home. I decided to go Route 11 and maybe stop to do some shopping on the way. In no time, I see that trail of red brake lights in front of me that mean major disturbance up ahead. You guessed it. A tractor-trailer was jackknifed across the road and a nice state policeman was going car to car giving directions. "Cross the double line and turn down this road into Factoryville. Take the first left and then the first right and you’ll come back on the highway beyond the accident."

Sounds easy, doesn’t it? I came to the first left and it looked like a road going back onto the highway where I had just come from. I took it and that’s exactly where it went, but a right turn was nearby and I took that. It went right back to where I would have been if I had gone straight when I left the highway. Hum...

"OK, find your own way," I said to myself. And a few miscues here and there and I was on my way to Tunkhannock. I knew how to get home from there. But, as I headed down the highway, I thought why go clear into Tunkhannock when I could go the back way to Lake Carey? I had been on that road exactly once in my lifetime and I had no idea how many choices of back roads there were in those hills. After winding around for some time, I finally saw a human being going into his house and stopped to ask directions. But he had already disappeared and I was greeted by a cacophony of barking dogs who liked me well enough to jump up with dirty paws onto my khaki pants. I knocked on the door. A friendly man informed me I was about half a mile from Route 29. Yeah!

Will I try again? Of course! As the advertisements say, "Getting there is half the fun." (To say nothing of getting back.)

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100 Years Ago

SUSQUEHANNA: The Canawacta Water Supply company, will in a few days, begin the work of bringing the water of Comfort’s Pond, in Thompson township, to Susquehanna, a distance of 5 miles. AND: In the high school building on Tuesday evening, the pupils produced "Cinderella in Flower-land." There was an exhibit of school work. AND: Rev. Father Miles J. Millane, curate of St. Thomas Aquinas’ Church, in Archbald, Pa., died on Wednesday morning, May 27, 1903, at 12:20 a.m., of paralysis. Father Millane was born at Susquehanna 43 years ago. He was educated in the public school of his native place, and after graduation he entered St. Bonaventure’s College to prepare for the priesthood. After finishing school Bishop O’Hara adopted him for the Scranton Diocese and after ordination he was assigned a place at the Cathedral. In 1901 he was sent by Bishop Hoban to Archbald to assist Father Comerford. Father Millane is survived by his father, a brother and a sister, all of Susquehanna.

HALLSTEAD: The following young people picnicked at Loomis Gorge, Friday – Mary Perry, Grace Read and Maud Trowbridge of this place; Virginia Alden of Conklin, and Jeanette Holdrich of Binghamton, and Emmet Osterhout, Simeon Fish, William Schibbly, Archie Fisk and William Harvey.

AUBURN CORNERS: P. C. Bushnell has purchased a new road wagon and Glen Voss a new buggy.

HOPBOTTOM: We have several octogenarians in this place namely, Mrs. Emily Reese 86, Mrs. Pease 82, Miss Cynthia Davidson 82, Wm. P. Crandall 80, Philino Crandall 80.

MONTROSE: Leo Mahon, for several years a clerk in J. L. Quailey’s store, has relinquished his position there and on Monday started to learn the glass cutter’s trade. James Mahon succeeds his brother as clerk. AND: The marriage of John Hefferon to Miss Abbie D. Lester, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. George Lester of Montrose, occurred in Binghamton, N.Y., on Wednesday, May 20, 1903. Rev. Charles M. Olmstead of the Chenango St. M.E. Church, performing the ceremony. Mr. and Mrs. Hefferon will reside in this place, where the groom holds a responsible position in J. E. Barney’s harness shop. AND: C. F. DeLong, Clarence Swink, John Rutan, Jacob Rice and William Lenox were among those who went to Scranton, Monday, to see Barnum & Bailey’s circus. The last named gentleman, who is an excellent horseman and driver, secured a position with this famous company.

FRANKLIN FORKS: The Franklin Forks district school base ball team played with what was nick-named the county nine, composed of players from Silver Lake, Mud Lake and Lawsville Centre, with a score of 7 to 16 in favor of the county nine. AND: Mrs. D. D. Turrell has ice cream for sale at her home every Saturday evening, and it is fine ice cream too.

ARARAT: Mrs. Anna Mumford, of Thompson, for many years a missionary in Bulgaria, gave a Bible reading at the home of Mrs. Nellie Wallace, Friday afternoon, to several friends who gathered to hear her.

GLENWOOD: By the collapse of the upper Glenwood bridge, usually called the old tannery bridge, G. N. and W. G. Bennett had several cows hurt, none seriously, but a narrow escape. Now a petition is being circulated through Lenox for an iron bridge to take the place of the old wooden structure, which is badly needed.

HEART LAKE: Boy Lost - Left home Friday, May 18, boy 14 years old, weight about 130 lbs. When left home wore everyday clothes. Also had a dark blue suit and soft brown hat. Information gratefully received by C. M. Bullard, Heart Lake, Pa.

HARFORD: Henry Jeffers, who some time ago purchased the buildings formerly occupied by the Harford Orphan School, recently bought farm and buildings owned by Prof. H. S. Sweet and expects to take possession next spring.

DIMOCK: J. M. Calby, was calling on friends in Montrose on Friday. He is an expert carpenter and is engaged on the Ballantine residence.

WELCOME HOME TO GROW: A huge celebration is being planned to honor the homecoming of Galusha A. Grow. A letter sent to Theodore Roosevelt, President of the United States, reads: "Susquehanna County, the home of Hon. Galusha A. Grow, desired, in the most fitting and public manner, to extend to him a cordial and hearty "Welcome Home" upon his retirement from the scenes of his active labors in the Legislative Halls of the Nation, labors that have not only crowned his name with honor, but have made him a benefactor of mankind. Our Country believes that nothing is too good for Mr. Grow and we voice the unanimous wish of our people – that the President of the United States would honor the occasion – not only by his presence, but by aiding them to make this a memorable event in the life of their loved and honored neighbor. (The letter elaborates more and ends "With an earnest hope that you will accept our invitation.")

NEWS BRIEFS: There are graduated from colleges in the United States from 10,000 to 12,500 physicians. The actual needs of the country call for only about 2,500 annually. AND: Henry Waterman, the man who issued the first postage stamp, died recently at Woonsocket, R. I. He was a postmaster in 1839 when no stamps were used and invented one, the die of which was made in Boston. These stamps are now so rare that collectors pay $1,000 each for them. AND: As to naming the farm – if there’s nothing about the place to suggest a nice name, the probability is that it doesn’t need one.

The following is a list of birds seen in Susquehanna County between the 1st and 16th of May, 1903: Purple Finch, Junco, Robin, Tufted Titmouse, Chickadee, Catbird, Black & White Warbler, Myrtle Warbler, Oven Bird, Maryland Yellow Throat, Redstart, Yellow Throated Bird, Barn Swallow, Scarlet Tanager, Chipping Sparrow, Song Sparrow, Chewink, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Purple Grackle, Blue Jay, Phoebe, Chebec, Redheaded Woodpecker, Bobolinks, Bluebird, Wilson’s Thrush, Lark (meadow), Nuthatch, House Wren, Yellow Warbler, Black-throated Green (and Blue) Warbler, Red-eyed bird, Warbling bird, Cedar Waxwing, Chimney Swift, Gold Finch, Field Sparrow, White Throated Sparrow, Indigo Bunting, Red-winged Blackbird, Baltimore Oriole, Kingbird, Wood Pewee, Downy Woodpecker, Sandpiper and Flicker.

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DRIVER’S LICENSE Fee Increased $1 – It will cost a buck more the next time to renew your Pennsylvania driver’s license. The price went to $26 effective April 7.

The additional fees, PENNDOT said, will help offset the costs of driver licensing enhancements implemented since September 11, 2001, and additional changes planned for the near future.

Later this year PENNDOT plans to establish an electronic connection with the Social Security Administration to allow instant verification of Social Security numbers on applications for initial driver’s licenses and identification cards. Electronic verification of residency is also planned.

In another change, the state will no longer issue driver licenses to an out-of-state address, except in the case of an employee of federal or state government, armed forces personnel, or their families, whose workplace is located outside of Pennsylvania.

Another change affecting drivers is a new law requiring that they must turn their vehicles’ headlights on when traveling through a work zone. Failure to do so could result in a $25 fine.

SAVING VET STORIES – There are 19 million war veterans living in the United States today, but every day we lose 1,500 of them.

Motivated by a desire to honor our nation’s war veterans for their service and to collect their stories and experiences while they are still among us, Congress has created the Veterans History Project.

As part of the project the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress is collecting and preserving audio and videotaped oral histories, along with documentary materials such as letters, diaries, maps, photographs, and home movies of America’s war veterans and those who served in support of them.

The Veterans History Project covers all wars beginning with World War I and includes all participants in those wars – men and women, civilian and military. It documents the contributions of civilian volunteers, support staff, and war industry workers as well as the experiences of military personnel from all ranks and branches of service – the Air Force, Army, Marine Corps, and Navy, as well as the US Coast Guard and Merchant Marine.

Veterans, active military personnel and civilians have been invited to join the program’s volunteer corps. Volunteers are the individuals who interview war veterans and identify documents to donate.

DID YOU KNOW that Indoor Volleyball became an Olympic competition in 1964; Beach Volleyball made its first appearance in 1996; that the United States won its first medals in volleyball in 1984, when the men captured the Gold and the women the Silver.

DID YOU READ Betty Smith’s "100 Years Ago" column in the May 14 issue of the County Transcript? If not, you missed a very "newsy" column, in addition to a paragraph concerning Great Bend Borough, which is a "must" read for any one interested in "comical" writings.

"KIDS" Please Don’t Try This: A 17-year old girl was killed after she tried to slide down the railing of a staircase inside a museum. She lost her balance and fell, Chicago police said.

CAN THIS HAPPEN? State troopers and Texas Rangers were ordered to track down 59 Democratic lawmakers who would not attend a meeting. GOP House Speaker Tom Craddick locked down the chamber so lawmakers present could not leave. After roll call, he ordered the police to arrest the missing lawmakers and bring them back to the chamber. (Wow! What is this coming to? Miss a meeting and you get arrested!)

HOMERS COMING In Bunches – Two more major leaguers, Sammy Sosa and Rafael Palmeiro have hit 500 home runs, making the total now 19. (With today’s caliber of pitchers and increasing the teams to 30 in both leagues, I do believe that the Babe, Mickey, Ted, Willie, Joe and other old timers playing an extra eight games each year – say ten years more for 80 games – they probably could have reached the 1000 mark.)

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Straight From Starrucca

Over a hundred people showed up last Sunday, May 18 at the Community Hall to attend a surprise birthday party for Marie Swartz. And surprised she was, when her sister, Joy Mead got her there on one pretext or another.

Last Saturday, May 17, Alice Rhone accompanied by son, Jeff and friend, Amber motored to Princeton, NJ and cheered Theresa Covert on to first place in the hurdles competition at an E.C.A. event.

Election day again saw only a small turnout of voters. Forty-four Republicans voted and fourteen Democrats.

Marilyn and Dave Czapnik and granddaughter, Carli went with Barb and Roger Glover to Sayre last week to pick up their Winnebago motor home, preparing for a trip to Alaska this summer.

Pauline Davidson, Binghamton, NY visited her sister-in-law, Doris Davidson recently.

Last Sunday, Madeline Thorn was up, and after Marie’s party we zipped around the area, just enjoying the lush beauty of the spring countryside.

Everyone is gearing up for the holiday. By the time you read this, Memorial Day will have come and gone. Regardless, we should hold in our memories those who sacrificed their lives and give thanks for the blessings that we, the living now hold dear, because they struggled so hard to preserve them.


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