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Issue Home April 18, 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

CRYSTAL LAKE: Greeley Belcher has just purchased a magnificent team of dark brown imported horses. Mr. Belcher has but recently taken up his residence at Crystal Lake where he has purchased a large tract of land. He formerly owned large interests in Alaska, which required his presence, but he has now disposed of these and expects to live at Crystal Lake.

FOREST CITY: Daniel Surba, a young man about 18 years of age, was killed in the Clifford mines at Forest City Monday afternoon. He was a foot tender at one of the planes and during a few moments’ idleness jumped on one of the trips of cars to ride a short distance down the plane. A sudden jolt of the car threw him off and under the wheels, where he received injuries which proved fatal.

SCRANTON/DALTON: The Northern Electric Railway, operating between Scranton and Dalton, will probably be open for traffic by June 1. Tracks are now laid and the greater part ballasted and 35 new cars have been built for the company and are ready for shipment. The road will be operated on a 35-minute schedule, at the onset, until the company can figure what service is necessary.

NEW MILFORD: The section men working on the Lackawanna here went on strike Monday morning for more pay. The strike affects two sections of men, most of whom are Hungarians. The strike was begun when the men received their pay from the pay car. AND: The funeral of Mrs. Mary Miller, aged 83 years, occurred at the New Milford Baptist church on Saturday, Rev. H. M. Pease officiating. Mrs. Miller was the mother of 14 children, 10 of whom are living.

MONTROSE: Charles, the little son of Mr. and Mrs. C. T. Marvin, fell from the second story of the Marvin home on Lincoln avenue yesterday morning, but almost miraculously escaped uninjured. The child is about 10 months old and unobserved it leaned from the open window and becoming overbalanced fell to the ground, a distance of 12 or 14 feet. He struck on one shoulder, and frightened members of the family rushed to him expecting to find him badly hurt, if not seriously injured. An examination by a hurriedly summoned physician revealed only a trifling bruise on the shoulder. The little tot has been wont to express himself in baby prattle when desiring to tell others, when hearing anything fall, by exclaiming “bing!” Soon after his fall he was soothingly asked about his tumble and responded simply, but expressively, with a solemnly uttered “bing!”

SUSQUEHANNA: Monday morning, at about 12 o’clock, fire was discovered in the Cascade House stables. The fire had gained good headway before it was discovered, but Erie Hose Co., No. 1 and the Chemical Engine company responded quickly to the alarm and soon subdued the flames and managed to save the hotel and other nearby property. In the barn at the time were several horses and a few pigs, which were rescued. One horse belonging to E. A. Barrett was badly burned about the mane. Only a portion of the other contents of the barn was saved and Charles Sabin, E. A. Barrett and F. O. Stearns, proprietor of Cascade House, lost their carriages, harness, etc. The building was insured for $1000 and contents for $100 in the agency of C. E. Titsworth.

BROOKLYN: The Brooklyn High School graduating class numbers 14; it being the largest in the history of the school.

FRIENDSVILLE/FLYNN: There was a very pretty marriage in Friendsville, April 10, by Rev. B. Driscoll. J. W. Flynn, of Flynn, and Mrs. Grace, of Binghamton, being the contracting parties. The bride was tastefully dressed in black silk and the groom wore the conventional black dress suit. They were attended by Elizabeth Flynn, a sister of the groom, who wore a beautiful dress of brocade satin, and Andrew Phalen, of Flynn, who was attired in an Oxford gray suit. The happy couple returned to their home in Flynn, amid a shower of rice and congratulations of their many friends.

SOUTH GIBSON: Fuller and Chamberlain, wholesale and retail dealers in anything made of iron, advertise mowers, reapers, binders, cream separators, roofing, fertilizers, light and heavy wagons, sleighs, & c. They have a telephone.

BEECH GROVE, Auburn Twp.: Mr. and Mrs. C. L. Tewksbury left here last Tuesday for their home in Kirwin, Wyoming. They will visit her sister, Mrs. A. S. James, at Ely, Minn. on their way.

UNIONDALE: A goodly number of trout have been caught by the small boys in the stream near here and on Monday morning a number of fishermen from down the valley arrived here, equipped for angling.

FAIRDALE: Mr. and Mrs. G. A. Risley took a trip to Brooklyn on Saturday last, visiting with Eugene Snyder and other relatives and friends. Returning about 9 o’clock they found their 25 head of cattle all nicely fastened in the barn and fed, little Arthur, his son, aged 7 and daughter, aged 9, doing the work.

HARFORD: There is deep need of temperance work in Harford. The members of the W.C.T.U. are acting wisely in trying to save our boys and girls.

GLENWOOD: After the death of Galusha Grow rumors surfaced regarding a woman who had put herself forward as the widow of Mr. Grow, a lifelong bachelor. James T. DuBois, secretary to Mr. Grow, denied the rumors saying “in all the trouble that came to him in the latter years of his life, there is nothing that impeaches his honor or integrity or casts a blot on his fair name. This I know. As executor I will guard those things that he kept secret in his lifetime, probably unwisely so, and through supersensitiveness. But some things I can tell you. In November 1905, I received a letter from Mr. Grow asking me to come to Glenwood. I found him in ill health. He told me of his financial reverses saying that he was penniless, with the exception of about $200 a year from some railroad bonds. The bulk of his loss was in money given to those whom for years he had befriended and assisted. I could call the business blackmail, but it was told [to] me as an instance of ingratitude. At any rate, everything was gone, including the home at Glenwood.” Mr. DuBois met with Andrew Carnegie, who gave Mr. Grow a pension of $1000 a year and later increased it to $2000. Mr. Carnegie was very anxious that Mr. Grow, because of his distinguished services to the country and mankind, should live in comfort for the rest of his life. When thanked by DuBois, Carnegie replied, “Don’t thank me, I desire to thank you for calling my attention to Mr. Grow’s trouble. I have always considered that his services to this country were of very great value, especially that Homestead Act.”

NEWS BRIEFS: Farmers say that an April snow does as much good as a coating of manure and augurs a good season for crops.

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Along the Way...With P. Jay



Montrose seeks county donation

A couple of items surfaced at last week’s meeting of the county’s Board of Commissioners that are worth more than honorable mention.

The first issue was brought to the floor by Montrose Councilman Jack Yeager, who is one of the most effective and efficient council members I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. The second item was mentioned by Harold Wegman, chair of the Northeast Region of volunteers to the Area Agency on Aging. Don’t hold me to that name for the organization that Harold heads up, but I think you get the general idea.

The commissioners did not seem all that excited about either issue, but Chair Roberta Kelly did say that Yeager’s request merits further discussion. Wegman’s topic seemed from here to be equally as important but it is more of a statewide issue.

A little background on Yeager’s subject. A number of years ago, the Borough of Montrose embarked on an urban renewal project that was focused on an area between Public Avenue, and Church, Spruce and Maple streets. A chunk of the property was taken up by the construction of the Montrose Square Apartments and a sizeable area almost in the middle of the project was cordoned off for parking.

It has been about 25 years since that parking lot was paved and through the years, the borough maintained the lot and plowed it in the wintertime. Now, it is time to repave the lot and Yeager asked the commissioners if they would consider donating about $10,000 toward the project.

Jeff Loomis, who is somewhat of a self-proclaimed curator of the county coffers, suggested (1) that the borough use the revenue from its recently enacted one percent personal income tax to pave the parking lot or (2) that the borough install meters in the lot.

Yeager pointed out that a part of the agreement when the merchants paid for the initial paving years ago is that the borough will never meter the parking lot. He also pointed out that when the personal income tax was approved, the council lowered the real estate tax by one mill. This prompted Loomis to suggest that people using the lot purchase parking stickers and put them on their vehicles. Sort of a belated Easter present from Mr. Loomis to the county employees who use the lot.

In short, Yeager asked for some county money and Loomis went so far as to suggest ways that the county employees could reach into their pockets to help pay for the paving. At last count, Annette Rogers, borough secretary/treasurer said there are about 42 county employees and/or others whose job requires them to be in the courthouse daily, that use the parking lot.

Over the years that I have been covering county government, I have seen the commissioners reach into the till for money that was given to a number of municipalities. It is a safe bet that $10,000 could be given to the Borough of Montrose without putting a strain on the county budget.

Startling statistics

In his report to the commissioners regarding the elderly, Harold Wegman said information released recently by the state Department of Public Welfare (DPW) indicates that 73 percent of Pennsylvania’s personal care homes are operating with expired licenses. It boils down to 1,190 of the state’s 1,589 personal care homes not having current licenses.

DPW admits to being behind in completing inspections but the real problem apparently is a shortage of help. Sort of explains why the DPW Internet “update” on personal care homes is dated 9/22/06. Don’t-cha just love the way our legislators in Harrisburg feather their own nests with little or no concern for the taxpayers, but fail miserably when it comes to adequately staffing agencies that are desperately in need of additional help?

I have lived in this state for the past 35 years and I honestly doubt if at any point during that time, the Commonwealth has ever had enough state troopers.

About the only place that appears to have more than enough help is the state Department of Transportation. I am sure all of you have driven by a PennDOT road project at one time or another. Doesn't it seem like there are always two or three guys working and two or three more watching them work?

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

Earlier this week, a friend emailed me an editorial addressing the propriety of “legislating morality.” In essence, the author complained that government was not doing enough to encourage decent moral behavior, in particular with respect to sexual conduct. The editorial bemoaned that laws no longer encourage chastity and fidelity – and personal privacy rights have trumped the criminal prohibitions against sexual behavior that leads to the destruction of families (such as adultery). My friend noted that he agreed that the moral character of our society has rapidly declined, but doubted the author’s contention that it is proper to legislate morality.

Both the editorial and my friend’s thoughtful comments have been weighing upon me for several days. It has become a common mantra for people opposing a law to accuse proponents of trying to legislate morality. In reality, however, criminal sanctions are commonly based upon some communal moral determination that the underlying conduct is wrong. This moral consensus manifests itself in the form of prohibitive legislation that carries the coercive power of the state in the form of criminal sanctions, i.e., financial penalties or incarceration.

I pulled out my textbook from my first year criminal law course in law school, and the very first chapter of the book explained that there were two ancient distinctions for criminal acts: male in se, a Latin phrase meaning acts wrong in themselves, or male prohibita, a Latin phrase meaning acts that are wrong because they are prohibited. In the category of male in se you would find offenses such as murder, sexual assaults, physical assaults, theft, robbery, or any other offenses that a society generally determined are naturally wrong. In the category of male prohibita you would find regulatory offenses such as speeding violations, parking tickets, building violations, or other regulatory items that are naturally wrong, but have been determined to be criminalized in order to maintain order in the society. Obviously, one ancient category of criminal offenses (male in se) deals with acts that have been determined to be inherently wrong, which obviously indicates a moral judgment of the community as a whole in relation to those acts. Moreover, as a society, we generally view male in se offenses as being more serious than the male prohibita offenses, i.e., while both murder and speeding are criminal in nature, murder is universally condemned but most people shrug off a speeding ticket as a mere lapse of judgment.

These ancient classifications require consideration of the communal mores to determine whether a criminal act is inherently wrong or simply a prohibited act. In making this determination, however, certain acts may cross from one category into another as society changes its moral fabric, and eventually may even fall out of both categories if society comes to accept or tolerate the behavior. For instance, for many decades, numerous states criminalized adultery and sodomy as a result of a societal determination that these acts were not acceptable. As society has changed, the justification and rationale for such legislation has largely disappeared to the point that the behavior has moved from an inherently wrong offense (male in se), to a prohibited offense (male prohibita), to an offense that society is no longer willing to criminalize.

Every state still has dinosaur criminal statutes that represent a moral determination made by generations long past. For instance, in North Dakota, there is a statute that criminalizes cohabitation between adults of the opposite sex unless the couple is married. The statute has been in place since North Dakota became a state, and the offense is classified as a sex offense, along with prohibitions against rape, incest and adultery. Six other states have similar criminal statutes criminalizing cohabitation prior to marriage. At the time these statutes were enacted, they signified a communal moral determination of unacceptable moral conduct that required criminal sanctions. It is unlikely that these statutes still accurately reflect the direction of the community’s moral compass, especially since 5.2 million Americans live in relationships that would be criminal in North Dakota. Because society now accepts the behavior, no arrests or prosecutions are pursued.

Do we legislate morality? No, we do not directly do so. Does our collective moral character define and dictate what becomes legislation? Yes, it does. If you want to understand a society’s moral character, you need only look at the legislation that its representatives have determined is necessary and proper. In other words, we do not legislate morality; rather, our legislation is the outward manifestation of our collective, societal morality. While the difference does not immediately seem significant, it makes all the difference in the world. Laws cannot make a people behave morally; rather, laws are the direct result of the moral character of the majority of the citizens, for good or ill.

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

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The Healthy Geezer
By Fred Cicetti

Q. The report on the blood tests for my annual physical included “C-Reactive Protein, Cardiac.” What is this?

C-reactive protein (CRP) is made by the liver. Elevated CRP in your blood indicates that you have inflammation or a bacterial infection. CRP levels do not always change with a viral infection.

The CRP in a healthy person is usually less than 10 milligrams per liter (mg/L). Most infections and inflammations produce CRP levels more than 100 mg/L.

CRP is a general test that may indicate a variety of ailments including rheumatoid arthritis, pneumonia, cancer, tuberculosis, appendicitis, bacterial meningitis, inflammatory bowel disease and urinary tract infection.

The test is used to monitor patients. CRP tests don’t diagnose a specific disease; they warn that more testing may be required.

There is a high-sensitivity version of the CRP test (hs-CRP) that is used to assess the risk for heart problems. It measures CRP between 0.5 and 10 mg/L. The results of this test were what you saw on the report of your blood evaluation.

Most studies show that heart-attack risk rises with hs-CRP levels. If the level is lower than 1.0 mg/L, the risk is low. There’s an average risk for between 1.0 and 3.0 mg/L. A level higher than 3.0 mg/L, indicates a high risk.

Some studies have found that, if your hs-CRP level is in the upper third, your risk is twice that of someone whose level is in the lower third.

High levels of hs-CRP:

Consistently predict new coronary events in patients who’ve had a heart attack.

Are linked to lower survival rates of heart-attack victims.

May increase the risk that an artery will re-close after it’s been opened by balloon angioplasty.

Seem to predict recurrent events in patients with peripheral arterial disease.

However, the connection between high CRP levels and heart-attack risk is not completely understood. There is evidence that suggests inflammation is involved in atherosclerosis – hardening of the arteries. It’s possible that an infection might cause atherosclerosis.

There’s a theory that inflammation contributes to heart disease by working with cholesterol that is deposited in the plaques on blood-vessel walls. Inflammation may damage the plaques, allowing tiny portions to break off into the bloodstream. These small fragments can lodge in small blood vessels in the heart or brain, causing a heart attack or stroke.

The CRP test is ordered when inflammation is risky, such as after surgery. Because CRP levels drop when inflammation abates, the test is ordered to determine whether treatment of an inflammatory disease is working.

In addition, CRP tests are used to monitor the healing of wounds, organ transplants and burns.

If you have a question, please write to

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Straight From Starrucca
By Danielle Williams

Mary Piercy e-mailed me and informed me of Susquehanna’s school play, “The Little Shop of Horrors.” She and her family went to enjoy the play a few weeks ago. She said that the play was outstanding. It ended with the world falling in love with the plant, Audrey II, and the people cut off parts of the plant to make little Audrey IIs for everyone.

I was also informed that Scott Fisher played Mr. Mushnik in the play. Mr. Mushnik was the owner of the Little Shop. Unfortunately, Scott was eaten by the killer plant and did not last very long in the play. But I did hear that he did a marvelous job. Keep up the great work, Scott!

Last March, Robert Gilleran Sr. underwent open-heart surgery down in Florida. I am glad to report that he is doing well in Florida, rehabilitating. If you wish to send “Get Well” cards, please call Bob Gilleran at 727-2653.

I am also happy to report that June Downton, Doris Davidson, and Maxine Dickey are doing well on SNF.

Let’s all hope that spring will come back to us very soon!


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Veterans’ Corner

No Veterans' Corner This Week

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