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Issue Home September 9, 2003 Site Home

Slices Of Life
100 Years Ago

Straight From Starrucca
Along the Way...With P. Jay

Slices of Life

Night Time Surveillance

I watched my young neighbor go by this evening walking her menagerie of rescued animals. The little white dog is adorable, usually with a red bow in her hair. The older dog, nearly blind, but a great watchdog when I go anywhere near his yard, was also on the walk tonight. And the cat was tagging along. As I watched them, I told Mrs. Morris, "I’m going to have to buy you a leash and collar and take you walking. What do you think?"

She gave me this "are you talking to me?" look. Maybe I should have started that earlier in her life. But back when she was young, I didn’t know there was such a thing as a cat collar.

The weather has cooled down nicely tonight and we’re out back as dusk falls. She has taken up her lookout at the bottom of the driveway. From there she can watch any movement that might happen in the bamboo. I’m sitting on a chair near the back porch thinking I might stay out long enough to catch a glimpse of the deer and fireflies if the mosquitoes will quit pestering me. But they don’t quit and eventually I come inside.

Interesting that the whole day can go by and Mrs. Morris has no inclination to go out. She might think she wants to go out from time to time, but does her statue routine at the door until I get tired of letting flies in and close the door. But let darkness fall and she’s ready to take on the world.

A case in point was a couple weeks ago when we had the fierce lightning storm. She had sensed the rain coming before I had and had insisted on going out. Then she disappeared. The rain came down in a deluge, the lightning lit up the sky and the screen door, as I stood there trying to call her in. No cat.

With the lights going on and off, I made my way upstairs and brought down the oil lamp that sits in the spare bedroom. It hadn’t been burned in years, but I lit it just in case the electricity stayed off. Then I’m back at the door calling for Mrs. Morris. I was sure she was somewhere dry, but I wanted her inside.

The lightning let up, the lights stayed on and I blew out the lamp. Bang! Off went the lights again. By this time it’s completely dark out and I’m trying to light the lamp with a match from an old book of advertising matches. Finally I’m successful. After much pacing and cringing every time the lightning lit up the house, I gave a sigh of relief when it started to calm down. The lights came on again and I’m back at the front door looking for my buddy.

Then I saw her streaking across the front step away from the house. "Mrs. Morris, why are you going that way?" I asked her, perplexed. The long white tail dragging through the water made me realize this was not my wandering cat, but the skunk that had been so aromatic on several summer nights as the reverse fan pulled the night air across my bed.

At this point, I gave up hunting for the cat. I was sure that at any moment I would enjoy the delightful smell of skunk meeting cat under the front porch. But it never happened. The skunk moved on, the storm blew over and the cat came cautiously out from under the back porch and bounded into the house.

I lose control over Mrs. Morris once she makes her way outdoors at night. I can tell she is going to tax my patience tonight. I know that because damp nights are irresistible to her. I think those conditions must get the night critters moving, and even though she doesn’t seem to catch anything anymore, the lure of the hunt is still in her blood.

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100 Years Ago

HALLSTEAD: B. W. Pease, on Monday, resigned as principal of the Hallstead public schools and Prof. Cornelius Manning, of Old Forge, former principal of the Herrick Centre schools, was elected to succeed him. Thus the deadlock that has existed all summer is broken. Also, the board reduced the pay of the principal greatly below what Prof. Manning is receiving in his present position and it is doubtful if he accepts.

NEW MILFORD: Hon. A. C. Barrett, who ably represented Susquehanna county in the State Legislature during the last session, will this fall complete five years as overseer of the State Grange. He was overseer of Susquehanna county Pomona Grange two years and lectured eight years.

JACKSON: The rural free delivery route to be established Oct. 1, will cover a large part of the township, bringing to many residents a daily mail service of which until now they have been always deprived. AND: Leroy and Velosco Leonard, of Plattsmouth, Neb., are visiting here.

KINGSLEY: Miss Alice Capron will return from New York, Sept. 15, with a full line of fall millinery and will be pleased to see all old customers and friends at the new store building. Will be at Harford Sept. 21-22. Will have a small stock of up-to-date flannel shirt waists, belts, etc.

LEONXVILLE: The annual ice cream festival, given by merchant C. G. Stephens to his customers, occurred on the evening of the 1st. It was largely attended and South Gibson band was present and dispensed some excellent music during the event.

FAIRDALE: The Terry painting company of Rush, are busy at present here, painting many roofs black. AND: The East Rush telephone line now connects with the Wyalusing line at the home at E. W. Bolles. AND: Some evil disposed person set fire to the bee house of C. Haight, located in Jessup Twp., and it was destroyed with all its contents.

HARMONY: A week ago Saturday, Mr. Kessler's spirited black team took a play spell by cantering away from the freight car at the Brandt station, while their driver, A. Lee, was loading the wagon to which they were hitched. At a lively pace they sped over the track and across the bridge, making some graceful curves and obtuse angles on their way to the barn where they landed, without injury. Frank Efner, Jr., a boy, was run over, but not seriously hurt. AND: Several stone cutters from here are employed in New York at a reported wage of $5.75 per eight hour day.

THOMPSON: The Free Methodist campmeeting brought the usual number of people and the usual amount of rain. 120 tents were occupied.

LAWTON: Bids for building the Lawton grange hall, will be received until Saturday at 1 p.m., Sept. 19. Plans and specifications can be seen at G. L. Pickett's.

SOUTH MONTROSE: A. S. Allen and son are erecting a large number of their very popular silos for the farmers of the surrounding country.

MONTROSE: The young men of the High School are organizing a football team for the purpose of coping with the amateur teams of this section of the state. There is good sturdy material to form an eleven and with Prof. Sipple as manager and coach, who by the way held for four years a prominent position one of the "big four" teams, we may expect to see some games this fall that will start the most sluggish blood bounding.

MOTT'S MILL, Bridgewater Twp.: The following persons are busily employed at this factory, turning out cloth and other wool products: Misses Emma Mott, Ethyl Smith, Belle Patrick and Samuel G. Raynor.

BROOKLYN: Have been told that in Brooklyn township there is not a licensed place where intoxicating drinks are sold. All honor Brooklyn for such a temperance position. If Christian sentiment and action were more prevalent every town in the county could present like results. The satanic clause, "and to sell spirituous liquors," ought to be stricken out of every application for a tavern or hotel license and no township ought to have twelve men willing to sign a request for such whiskey corruption in their midst.

FOREST CITY: Another handsome brick block will shortly be built by Ike Joseph, the popular clothier, who has purchased the lot between H. M. Joseph's new store and the post office.

UNIONDALE: P. R. Barriger, our popular harness maker, has one of the finest up-to-date harness shops in Susquehanna county. Step in and look at his fine harnesses, whips, lap blankets, etc. and then come and tell me that I told you no lie. AND: Mr. Osgood, of Forest City, the popular telephone man, was in town to-day, looking after the interest of the company by putting in a new phone in the house of Rev. Davies. By the way, Mr. Davies can talk with the phone or without, now, but just go and hear his sermons and you will say he is O.K.

LANESBORO: While walking across the great Starrucca Viaduct, at an early hour Sunday morning, Sept. 6, with a number of companions, Ray Larrabee, of Susquehanna, was struck by Erie express train No. 5 and hurled from the Viaduct and the body, which was terribly mangled, lodged on a telegraph pole under the bridge. Mr. Larrabee was a son of Oscar G. Larrabee. He is survived by a wife and one son. He was about 30 years old and was employed in the Erie boiler shop. County Coroner Goodwin deemed an inquest unnecessary.

GREAT BEND: Outing parties and picnics are being enjoyed every day by the people of Great Bend and Hallstead, who never cease to admire the beauties of the picturesque "Rocks," which through the generosity of Hon. Jas. T. DuBois, is free to all admirers of nature. He is having the roads improved and the ruins of the fire cleared away, and it should be a pleasure as well as the duty of every one of us to help preserve the grandeur of this ideal spot.

HOPBOTTOM: President Roosevelt passed through here early Monday morning, on his way to the Syracuse fair.

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A NICE GESTURE – St. John’s Catholic Church’s Pro-Life Organization recently made a donation of $100.00 to "Mom’s House," of Endicott, NY. Mom’s is a nonprofit, state licensed day care center which provides free service to single parents. It has helped many to graduate with degrees. Starting on the weekend of September 13 through September 27, a box will be placed in the vestibule of the Church where you can kindly place donations of the following items needed by this organization: paper towels, large cans of Juicy Juice, animal crackers, graham crackers, Ritz Bits, or large cans of vegetables. These items must be in by the weekend of September 27. Mom’s House will be much appreciative of any help that we are able to give them.

ABORTED To Be Honored – A cornerstone memorial – in Memory of Aborted Babies – will be placed by St. John’s Church, on Main Street in Susquehanna at a location to be announced.

SCHOOL IS OPEN. OBEY THE LAW! – The school bus law, that is. School is open. Many children will be walking to and from school. Many others will be riding the bus. Remember, you CANNOT pass a stopped school bus with its lights flashing – either way. It’s the law. Please stop. Watch the kids. Give them a chance to get on and off the bus. Who knows, one of the kids may be one of yours. Furthermore, the fines are very excessive and may also bring a jail sentence. Please be patient – the busses stop for only a couple of minutes. Don’t you believe it’s worth it? Also, slow down near schools and residential areas.

ANOTHER REMINDER – It has been happening with alarming results. Children left in a "hot" car, while the mother goes shopping or the father is at work. So far this year, 36 children have died in the United States – with the windows rolled up, the youngsters die in the heat. In Texas, an eight month old child was found dead in a car; the heat outside at 100 degrees, meaning inside the car the heat had to be around 135 degrees.

DON’T MISS Jury Duty – That is unless you are ready to pay a fine. Recently, several potential jurors failed to show in a Middle District court. They were rounded up by sheriffs, appeared in court and were fined up to $100.00.

WATCH FOR E-mail Scam – Pennsylvania State Police have issued a warning against a scam from England that may now include victims in the United States. The victims receive e-mail stating they have won money in a lottery being run by International Lotto UK and are asked to pay money to receive the prize. If you think you have been a "scam victim," call police in Dunmore, PA, 963–3156.

NO TRUER WORDS – In speaking about the national debt – which will be in the trillions – the following remark was made, "Blessed are the young, for they shall inherit the national debt."

"FEDS" ALSO HUNGRY – US Attorney Michael Sullivan said he is considering filing charges against officials of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Boston for covering up sexual abuse over the years. What else do the country and state legislators want? The Catholic Dioceses have already paid millions of dollars to those that were sexually abused, making it harder for small and large parishes to survive. Evidently the feds want part of the money being paid out. (Let the feds concentrate on the terrorists with their spare time.)

BISHOP MARTINO To Be Installed – Bishop Joseph Martino, newly appointed bishop of the Scranton Diocese will be installed as the ninth Bishop of Scranton at an installation Mass in St. Peter’s Cathedral, Scranton on Wednesday, October 1. Bishop Martino was the Auxiliary Bishop of Philadelphia prior to being named Bishop of Scranton. He is succeeding Bishop James C. Timlin, who had served the Diocese for the past 19 years.

BACK SEAT Saves Children – The lives of more than 1,700 children have been saved since 1996 because they were sitting in the back seat, away from the air bags in the front seats. The rear seat is considered the safest in accidents.

PETE GRAY HONORED – Pete Gray, former Nanticoke resident is the ultimate example of how to overcome adversity and realize your dream. Mr. Gray, who died last year at 87, lost his right arm when he was six years old. He never gave up hope of playing major league baseball and in 1945 played 77 games for the St. Louis Browns, in the outfield. He had a knack of quickly removing the glove after a catch and throwing the ball. In honor of his accomplishments the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission dedicated a historical marker, to be placed on Front Street in Nanticoke where he lived. Not being able to serve in World War II, he contributed to the war effort by visiting Army hospitals and speaking with amputees. Pete was known as the "One Arm Wonder," with a book written about him.

GASOLINE SHOCK – The current gas prices are the highest in 50 years – for no apparent reason – says a Lundberg Survey. And why? Well, a broken pipeline caused severe shortages in Arizona. The blackout did little, for it didn’t last that long. The pipeline is also fixed. Why the high prices? Lundberg said the prices "should fall." There is no big reason for them to escalate. The refineries are going at full blast.

LISTEN UP, MEN! – "Exercise may prolong your sex lives," so say national researchers. "Protect your heart and your potency" by exercising. As men aged, the odds rose that they would have "problems." The problems can be "slowed" by physical activity.

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Straight From Starrucca

It was gratifying to see about 50 people in attendance at the Methodist Church last Sunday to witness the Baptism of Andy and Jennifer Bennett’s two daughters, Courtney and Taylor. The ceremony was performed by Brian Lucas, Pastor of the Church.

Following the Baptism, a picnic was held at the home of Andy and Jennifer, on King Hill for about 100 people.

Also on Sunday, Robert and Lillian Buck entertained the Buck Family at a picnic at their home in Starrucca. Attending were: Melanie and Paul Lee, Blaine and Ranee, Harrisburg; Don Walker and family, Vestal, NY; Francis Buck, Jeff Rhone and girlfriend, Delhi, NY; Leann Rhone, Julie Hargett and girls, Kirk and Alice Buck, Grandma Albertson and of course, the hosts.

Arrington and Marlene Washburn and Thelma stopped by for a few minutes after attending the Levchak get-together.

About 70 family and friends gathered at the Levchak home on Sunday for their annual Labor Day get-together. The whole Levchak Family was there. Cindy Brown, Sunderland, Mass. and Don and Eleanor Smith, Brooklyn, NY stayed over for a couple days.

My grandson, Matt Chesik, Mt. Cobb and a friend stopped by on Monday. He doesn’t get up this way very often.

Brent Upright and Mary Pat called on his parents, Virginia and Carl Upright on Monday.

Roger and Barb Glover, along with sister, Marilyn and husband, Dave Czapnik drove to Harrisburg to visit brother, Douglas and wife, Millie, who is in the hospital and is very ill.

The Civic Assoc. met on Wednesday night and the first order of business was to change the meeting night to the first Tuesday of the month, hoping for a larger attendance. There were nine present at our last meeting. Also, on Oct. 18, we will be hosting a Blue Grass band. Final arrangements are yet to be made. We will be selling tickets for the Thanskgiving basket, as we’ve done in other years as well.


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Along the Way...With P. Jay

Memories Are Made Of This

If you think Tommy James and the Shondells gave you some Hanky Panky in the ’60s, just Hang on Sloopy because I have a Do Wah Diddy Diddy to unfold for you that just might make you Twist and Shout.

It is happening in the Forest City Regional School District and it’s enough to get The Little Old Lady From Pasadena All Shook Up.

So quit Tossin’ and Turnin’ and Wake Up Little Susie because here is The Nitty Gritty.

For a number of years, Kenneth Goben resided at 803 Hudson Street in Forest City. For some of those years, he represented the taxpayers of the Regional School District’s Eight District that encompasses the north end of the borough from Grand Avenue to the Clifford Twp. line.

Ken’s term is up at the end of this year and he cross-filed reelection petitions. He was unopposed in the primary elections and, of course, won the endorsement of both parties. A week after the election, a "For Sale" sign was observed on his front lawn and the word was out that he was building a new home in Clinton Township, Wayne County. Great Balls Of Fire! He must have known when he filed for another term that he was no longer going to reside in the district. Good Golly Miss Molly, you don’t make up your mind in a couple of days on such an important decision as selling your home and building a new one. He certainly must have purchased the lot where his new home is being built.

A deed transfer at the Recorder of Deeds office in Montrose revealed that, on July 29, Kenneth and Bobbi Jo Goben sold their Hudson Street home to Margaret Zory. At this point, there was still plenty of time for Goben to ask the Susquehanna County Board of Elections to remove his name from the ballot. He might have been on a Sea Cruise or on the Last Train To Clarksville because he did not submit a letter of resignation to the School Board and he did not ask the election board to remove his name from the ballot.

It wasn’t long before there was a Whole Lot of Shakin’ Going On and plenty of Yakety Yak in Region Eight. Some taxpayers felt that not having representation on the school board was a lot of Wooly Bully.

At a regular board meeting on Aug. 11, Board President Joseph Lucchesi, said Goben’s letter of resignation is in the mail and that he will call a special meeting to act on it when the board’s receives it. Until then, Goben remains the third district’s representative on the board.

At a special meeting on Aug. 25, the Leader of the Pack said he still had not received the letter of resignation. But he did say he had not checked his mail box in recent days. Sounded like a lot of Jive Talkin’ to me. When asked if the board is playing politics with the vacant seat, Lucchesi said the board is not smart enough for that. That’s not the way I Heard It Through The Grapevine.

Before the meeting ended, the board of education did declare a vacancy in the Eighth Region. In last week’s Transcript, a legal ad suggested that residents of Region Eight who might be interested in being appointed to fill the vacancy should submit a letter to the board by Sept. 10. The board’s regular monthly meeting is Sept. 8. As of Sept. 4, there were two applicants, Barbara Mihelc and Leroy Rotherforth, a former transportation coordinator in the school district.

Also last Thursday, I called the business manager at the school and she said Ken Goben had just faxed her a copy of his letter of resignation. She said the letter was dated Aug. 11 and was addressed to Lucchesi at the school. She said she faxed a copy of the letter to the Board of Elections. I then called Michael Giangrieco, solicitor for the Board of Elections and he said the Board of Education may have declared a vacancy, but it’s Easier Said Than Done.

"They may have a vacancy there," Giangrieco told me, "but, by law, as far as we are concerned, we do not have a vacancy on the ballot. We do have a candidate, Kenneth Goben."

So there you have it. As far as the election board is concerned there is a candidate for the office and it is too late to remove his name from the ballot.

Giangrieco said the school board has some options. He said the board could petition the court, explain what happened and have the court authorize removal of Goben’s name from the ballot. This would allow the chairmen of both political parties the opportunity to pick candidates for the office. Whomever they select would appear on the ballot and any challengers would have to run write-in campaigns.

And finally, the board could leave the situation as it is, letting Goben’s name remain on the ballot and, if he is elected, refuse to appoint him because he no longer resides in the district. The board would then appoint someone who would serve until the next municipal election which would be 2005.

The Leader of the Pack said the board isn’t smart enough to play politics. C’mon Joe, What Kind Of Fool Do You Think I Am.

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