Main News
County Living
Church Announcements
Dated Events
Military News
Subscribe to the Transcript


Call Toady To Place Your Ad In Our Bridal Special Running March 14th

Please visit our kind sponsors

Issue Home March 7, 2007 Site Home

100 Years Ago
Along the Way...With P. Jay

From the Desk of the D.A.
The Healthy Geezer
Straight From Starrucca
Veterans’ Corner

100 Years Ago

AUBURN TWP.: Wm. D. Schoonmaker was born in Sullivan Co., N.Y., May 24, 1824 and died Jan. 18, 1907, at his home in Auburn, Pa., where he had lived for 49 years. May 1st, 1851, he was married to Eliza Smith, daughter of Stephen and Lavina Smith, of Brooklyn, Pa. They lived in Brooklyn about 6 years. They then moved to Auburn, living in a one-roomed log house for a time, enduring all the hardships of early settlers. He was never too busy to help others in sickness and trouble of any kind. He was a great worker, working early and late, singing as he worked, the songs of Zion. The last time we heard him sing “Beulah Land,” he was in his 80th year, his voice was very weak then, but now he can sing it with a strong, triumphant voice. The sudden death of his youngest daughter, Elmira Howard, July 2, 1905, was a great shock to him, from which he did not recover. Also, the death of his beloved wife, June 22, 1906, left him very lonely, and he only seemed to be waiting to join the loved ones in the Better Land. Out of a family of seven children, four remain for a little while longer, when they too, will join father, mother and loved ones waiting to welcome them. AND: The memorial windows for the new Jersey Hill church have come and they are extra fine.

FRANKLIN FORKS: Carroll R. Tiffany left Monday for a trip through West Virginia, where he expects to introduce his patent tree trimmers.

MONTROSE: It is now known definitely that Becker & Wilson, the cut glass manufacturers, intend to locate in New Brunswick, NJ. They have some of their machinery ready for shipment, although they will continue to run the factory for several weeks yet, about 20 employees being at work at present. This means that when the factory closes down the employees will seek other places where they can pursue their vocation, as no opportunity will exist here. It means that young men who have always lived here, now drawing remunerative wages, will be forced to leave in order to keep from idleness. It also means that $20,000 annually is going into the hands of merchants in other towns, which might better remain here. Many of the employees are waiting in the hope that the factory will be continued and it would seem that with one man alone, offering to take $6,000 of the capital stock, that the two or three remaining thousand necessary to finance it would be rapidly forthcoming.

BROOKLYN: Much excitement was caused last Friday by the announcement of the death of Irene Palmer, only daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Wm. Palmer, who bought the T. F. Reynolds farm last spring. The girl, who was about 15 years old, was a scholar of the Brooklyn High School, riding from home a distance of about four miles each morning in the “kid wagon or sleigh.” She had been earnest in her studies and attendance until Feb. 20, when she came to school as usual but did not feel well and had to leave school before noon, going to the home of Mrs. J. S. Wright, where she stayed until night. She said she did not want to miss a day, but never came back to school. On Thursday of the following week word came to the school directors that she was very sick and as her people were Christian Science, no medical attendance had been provided, and requesting the directors, who in the county are the board of health, to look into the matter. Arrangements were made for a committee to take Dr. A. J. Ainey and go up on Friday morning, but it was too late. Death claimed its own before morning. The directors found that two healers of the faith had been in attendance, one from Kingsley and one from Scranton, but no physician had been called.

FAIRDALE: Two loads of poles were delivered Tuesday for the extension of the Bell Telephone line, which will pass through Taylor Hollow to Forest Lake Center.

SPRINGVILLE: The fire fighters at the high school building had a rather rough experience one day last week. In playing the rescue act Lloyd Johnson missed connection and fell with Perry Mills under his arm. When picked up Lloyd was insensible and Mills had some cracked ribs. Everyone is wondering what the next move will be.

GIBSON: A sleigh load of young people from Upper Lake visited at the Gibson House recently.

LENOXVILLE: Clarence G. Stephens, the Lenoxville merchant, went to Wyoming to dismantle a grist mill, the machinery of which he purchased and will move it to Lenoxville and place in the mill, which he is erecting. The machinery is about new, having been used only a short time when the owner of the mill failed.

GREAT BEND: A great many from here attended the beautiful play of J. Q. Adams Sawyer, in Clune’s Opera House, Monday evening, and it was a rare treat.

DIMOCK: Revival meetings are being held at the Baptist church by Elder Cleaver.

HARFORD: A. H. Mead wishes us to announce that in regard to the five birds shot in one day that they were secured one day last November. (No stretches of imagination could picture Andrew huntin’ out o’ season. He is too much of the true sportsman for that).

FOREST CITY: Mrs. Annie E. Wilcox died two weeks ago at the home of her granddaughter, Mrs. J. F. Biggart, in Carbondale, at the ripe age of 96 years, six months and eleven days. She was born in Connecticut and was a niece of General Zachary Taylor, the noted American leader in the Mexican war and later president of the United States. She had many remarkable anecdotes to tell of her early days and her distinguished relative, with whom she had been brought much in contact. Mrs. Wilcox was a woman of remarkable memory and possessed her faculties almost to her death.

UNIONDALE: The farmers are taking advantage of the good sleighing and the road is full of teams every day drawing props to Forest City.

NEWS BRIEF: The Service Pension bill, recently passed by congress and signed by the president, insures a pension to all soldiers who served in the Civil war or in the war with Mexico, without fees to pension or claim agents. In case such person has reached the age of 62 years, $12 per month; 70 years, $15 per month; 75 years or over $20 per month.

BACK ISSUES of “100 Years Ago” can be found on our website,

Back to Top


Along the Way...With P. Jay


Is the political pot boiling over?

The appointment of Laura Watts as voter registrar was doomed from the onset.

On the day she was hired, word spread through the courthouse that she was very good friends with the wife of Commissioner Jeff Loomis. And despite the fact that some county employees said “so what” it was enough to launch a rather rocky beginning for her.

Then, too, anyone who got the position was due for some criticism in the wake of the county commissioners’ refusal to hire Gary Wilder, who possessed all of the credentials that the other applicants had to offer. In fact, Gary was a step above the rest by virtue of his military service.

When Mrs. Watts got the position, Gary filed suit against the county and that case is still pending. Commissioner Roberta Kelly tried to kill two birds with one stone but neither Commissioner Loomis nor Minority Commissioner Mary Ann Warren would second her motion to appoint Wilder to the vacancy, a move that might have ended the lawsuit.

Mrs. Watts didn't waste any time introducing changes in her office. Municipal voter registration lists that were readily available at no charge were removed from the familiar place where they could be found and one set was available at no charge to candidates but additional copies were 25 cents a page and a countywide list of voters now costs a bundle. While many, including this writer, were shocked by the change, apparently Mrs. Watts was taking direction from state officials.

The second shot heard around the courthouse came when Commissioner Loomis introduced a motion at a commissioners’ meeting that would have given Mrs. Watts a $90 a week pay raise after seven months on the job. Despite his college degrees and years of experience as a businessman, Mr. Loomis was never known for his political prowess. Needless to say his motion didn't go anywhere but it did raise a lot of eyebrows around the courthouse.

And now Mrs. Watts has entered the political arena as a candidate for county commissioner. Is it payback time? After all, she becomes the third resident of Bridgewater Township to enter the race. Her move could impact on Mr. Loomis, who appears confident he can win another term, and Fred Baker II who, for some time, appeared to be Jeff’s shill in the audience while Jeff behaved like a carnival barker at meetings of the board of commissioners.

I learned a long time ago never to second guess a woman’s thoughts or behavior. As a result, I wouldn't even hazard a guess as to how serious Mrs. Watts will treat her candidacy. Obviously if she spotted some discrepancies in the voter registration office, she may feel there are other areas of county government that need attention and would like to do something about it.

Whatever her reason, Mrs. Watts’ entry in the Republican Primary Election has got to be regarded as a threat by the incumbent candidates. But there is another unanswered question lurking in the background. With her late entry in the race and the number of Republican candidates who have been circulating petitions, can she muster up enough signatures to warrant a slot on the GOP Primary ballot? If she is successful in getting the required 100 signatures, it will be yet another sign there is an awful lot of unrest among county Republicans. Remember, voters can only sign two petitions for county commissioner.

Recently I spoke to a prominent Republican, who shall remain nameless, about the influx of candidates for county commissioner.

“I think you hit the nail on the head in a recent column,” he said. “A $50,000 salary for a part-time job is tempting. And with a raise each year, it will be well over $200.000. Tack on health insurance and a pension plan and it becomes a quarter of a million dollars. Where else can anyone find that kind of a part-time job in Susquehanna County? It’s one of those political plums you guys write about from time to time.”

Back to Top


From the Desk of the D.A.
By District Attorney Jason J. Legg

In March 2001, Coweta County (Georgia) Deputy Sheriff was patrolling a local highway when he observed a Cadillac traveling at a high rate of speed, 73 mph in a 55 mph zone. As a result, the Deputy Sheriff attempted to initiate a traffic stop through the use of his overhead lights on the marked patrol car. Rather than stopping, the driver simply kept on going. Another Deputy Sheriff joined in the chase, with a marked patrol car with emergency lights activated. The driver of the vehicle refused to stop, weaving along a two-lane country road, passing other motorists despite double yellow lines, and running through stoplights. The driver of the vehicle was reaching speeds of 80-90 miles per hour, and covered nine miles in a six-minute span. At one point, the driver was cornered in a parking lot, with the assistance of additional police cruisers, but he again evaded apprehension by striking one of the vehicles that had attempted to block the exit.

As the chase continued, one of the Deputy Sheriffs radioed for permission to execute a PIT (Precision Intervention Technique). The PIT maneuver involves a patrol vehicle striking a particular spot on the fleeing vehicle to throw the vehicle into a spin so as to stop the chase. The Deputy Sheriff requesting permission to execute the PIT maneuver had never received any training on it. Permission was granted, and the Deputy Sheriff used his patrol vehicle to strike the Cadillac, which sent it spinning off the road, where it flipped down an embankment.

The driver of the Cadillac was Victor Harris, a 19-year old with a suspended license who was fleeing to avoid incarceration. As a result of his reckless driving, Harris is now a quadriplegic. Harris then filed a civil rights action contending that the police officers used unlawful force in attempting to apprehend him. The ultimate issue for the courts to decide is whether the use of force used to stop Harris was reasonable under the circumstances. If the force was unreasonable, then Harris has a claim for money damages. If the force was reasonable, Harris has no claim.

The United States Supreme Court has clearly stated in past cases that the use of deadly force cannot be used to apprehend every fleeing felon. In its cases, the court has made clear that it is better that a fleeing felon escape than be killed, unless it can be demonstrated that the felon poses an immediate threat of serious harm to the officers or others. In short, the use of deadly force by a police officer must be applied in very limited and dangerous situations.

The case involving Harris and the Coweta County Deputy Sheriff is now pending before the United States Supreme Court. The lower federal courts have determined that Harris did not fall within the category of offenders upon which deadly force (the ramming of Harris’s vehicle at high speeds) could be utilized. The lower courts found that the reckless driving at high rates of speed did not pose a sufficient threat of serious injuries so as to warrant the use of deadly force. While Harris ran stop signs, passed on double yellow lines, and traveled at high rates of speed, there was no specific instance (providentially) of him actually running other motorists off the road. Because the chase occurred late at night, the courts also concluded that he was not a threat to pedestrians in the shopping center parking lot because it was closed at the time.

The case is being watched closely to determine whether the United States Supreme Court will make a sweeping decision that will impact upon police chase policies throughout the country. How far can a police officer go to stop a fleeing motorist? What type of force, if any, can a police officer utilize to end a high-speed chase? Will police officers simply be required to terminate all high-speed chases unless they know that the driver is a dangerous felon? If so, how do you determine which felons are dangerous enough to warrant the use of force in the context of a high-speed chase? Does a police officer have to wait for the fleeing motorist to hurt someone before force may be applied to end the flight? Was the problem in this case simply that the police officer was not properly trained? When we get answers from the court, I will let you know.

Please submit any questions, concerns, or comments to Susquehanna County District Attorney’s Office, P.O. Box 218, Montrose, Pennsylvania 18801 or at

Back to Top


The Healthy Geezer
By Fred Cicetti

Q. I’ve been seeing lots of TV commercials lately about “restless legs syndrome.” I’ve never heard of this condition. Is it rare?

Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS) affects about one in ten adults in North America and Europe. RLS is found in both men and women but can begin in children. The percentage of people with RLS increases with age. And, seniors experience symptoms longer and more frequently.

Many researchers believe that RLS is under-reported. Victims of RLS are often diagnosed as suffering from insomnia, depression or a disorder of the nerves, muscles or skeleton.

RLS is a neurologic movement disorder. It produces uncomfortable sensations that cause an irresistible urge to move the legs. RLS symptoms can be relieved temporarily by movement. Symptoms occur during inactivity and strike most frequently during the evening. These attacks lead to sleep problems.

The following are 11 questions from the Restless Legs Syndrome Foundation. If you answer “yes” to 6 or more of these, you may have RLS.

When you sit or lie down, do you have a strong desire to move your legs?

Does your desire to move your legs feel impossible to resist?

Have you ever used the words “unpleasant,” “creepy-crawly,” “creeping,” “itching,” “pulling” or “tugging” to describe your symptoms to others?

Does your desire to move often occur when you are resting or sitting still?

Does moving your legs make you feel better?

Do you complain of these symptoms more at night?

Do you keep your bed partner awake with the jerking movements of your legs?

Do you ever have involuntary leg movements while you are awake?

Are you tired or unable to concentrate during the day?

Do any of your family members have similar complaints?

Does a trip to the doctor only reveal that nothing is wrong and there is no physical cause for your discomfort?

RLS may be inherited. About half of patients have a family history of the RLS. Also, there is a lower incidence of RLS in Asia than there is in North America and Europe.

There are two forms of RLS – primary and secondary. Primary RLS is unrelated to other disorders; its cause is unknown. Secondary RLS can be brought on by kidney failure, pregnancy, iron deficiency anemia, or some medications. Research has shown that there is a relationship between RLS and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

Most people with RLS also have periodic limb movement disorder (PLMD), which causes leg twitching or jerking movements during sleep.

There are two drugs approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat RLS; both are also used in higher doses for Parkinson’s disease. These are Mirapex® and Requip®. Both drugs may make people fall asleep without warning. There are also several drugs approved for other conditions that help alleviate RLS symptoms.

It is possible to combat the symptoms in other ways. Walking, massage, stretching, hot or cold baths, vibration, acupressure, meditation and yoga can help.

Caffeine and alcohol can worsen RLS symptoms.

If you have a question, please write to

Back to Top


Straight From Starrucca
By Danielle Williams

Straight From Starrucca

By Danielle Williams

February 26 was Perri Weldy’s eighteenth birthday. Happy birthday Perri!

I took my dog for a walk the other day, and I noticed the amount of garbage lying on top of the snow. I started to wonder how much litter was trapped underneath the snow. It saddens me to know that there is that much trash crowding our beautiful town. In the spring, I would like to organize a group of volunteers to clean up this garbage. I’ll add more when I get more details.

I am glad to see the snowmobiles riding on the trails, finally. I noticed a great deal of riders lately. I hope that the riders are taking cautions when driving along the roads, and I hope that the drivers are taking caution of the snowmobiles while driving on the roads. Daniel Downtown said, “The snow is great!” When asked if he was going to be sad when it melts he said, “Nah, then I can look forward to baseball season.”

I talked to Jared Stewart the other day about how things are going. I found out that Jared, his mother, Gwen Stewart, and his sister, Mariah, are living at the Oakland Trailer Park. They moved away near the time of Gwen’s parents’ deaths. Her parents, Robert and Shirley Williams, passed away in 2002 and in 2003. It was sad to see them leave, but I am pleased to hear that they are doing well.

Gale Williams returned from her trip to Florida last week. She said that she had a splendid time being with her brother, Larry Florence, and her sister, Joyce Medlar. I am glad that she has returned safely from her long trip.

Meghan Gilleran said that she is looking forward to the upcoming softball season. She was sad to find out that I am unable to play this season due to my shoulder injury. She has been working hard on upgrading her pitching skills. Good luck to the Lady Sabers Softball this upcoming season. I am going to miss it.

I am happy to report that June Downton is doing well at SNF at Barnes-Kasson Hospital.

I am also happy to report that Paul and Karen Downton had a baby boy named Jonas on the 27th of February.


Back to Top


Veterans’ Corner

No Veterans' Corner This Week

Back to Top


News  |  Living  |  Sports  |  Schools  |  Churches  |  Ads  |  Events
Military  |  Columns  |  Ed/Op  |  Obits  | Archive  |  Subscribe