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Issue Home July 2, 2008 Site Home

100 Years Ago
From the Desk of the D.A.
The Healthy Geezer
Straight From Starrucca
Veterans’ Corner
What’s Bugging You?
Food For Thought
Earth Talk

100 Years Ago

SPRINGVILLE: Mr. Clayon, once a tenant on the Riley farm, since having moved to or near Avery station, report says he has gone for treatment, having, as a report says, all the symptoms of hydrophobia, caused by the froth from a mad creature getting on the back of his hand, where there was a small scratch. We are sorry to learn of this misfortune and hope he will recover.

GREAT BEND: The school board elected teachers for the ensuing year, as follows: Principal-Esmund B. Beardslee; Grammar-Miss Lugerdia Egleston; Intermediate-Miss Katherine Johnston; Second Primary-Miss Edith Reckhow.

S. MONTROSE: The South Montrose Mill Co. is receiving so many orders for their celebrated trunk slats, that they are obliged to work overtime to fill their orders.

LENOX: Thomas Moore Cameron, a veteran of the Civil War and for thirty-two years postmaster of Lenox, died at his home in that place recently. He was born in Newburg, N.Y., Nov. 18, 1840 and when 12 years of age came with his parents to Susquehanna county. He received a good common school education and in the fall of 1862 enlisted in Co. B, 177th P.V. After being mustered out in August 1863, he was in the government service for18 months, and at the close of the war returned to Susquehanna county and engaged in carpenter and blacksmith work at Cameron’s Corners. He married Sarah Wilson, of Dallas, Luzerne co., Dec. 26, 1869, who survives. Also, four children—Byron T., of South Gibson; Jennie E., wife of J. E. Corey, of Lenox; Gertrude M. and Albert J. at home, and four brothers and two sisters.

EAST RUSH: Keifer Bros have made some improvements around their barns. They are up-to-date dairymen.

FOREST CITY: Mary McCabe announced her engagement to Patrick Conery of New York City; Margareta Berg and Julius Liptak are also engaged to marry.

NEW MILFORD: The D.L. & W. now refuses to carry passengers on their “milk trains” which they have done for years, and which greatly accommodated the public. To make matters still worse some of the passenger trains that formerly stopped at all stations, now stop only at every other station, and a pronounced howl is now raised because of this and the company is being spoken of in all sorts of disrespectful terms, because of the great inconvenience caused to the traveling public. For instance the other day Hon. C. C. Pratt, of New Milford, was coming up on the evening train from New York, and instead of being able to ride to New Milford and leave the train, as he was able to do for lo these many years, he found the train didn’t stop at New Milford, therefore in order to get home he had to get off at Alford and come up as far as Heart Lake, the meantime telegraphing for a horse to come from New Milford to Heart Lake to meet him and take him home.

MONTROSE: Our team has made special preparations for the two games the Fourth. Evangelist Crabill, the ex-professional, will pitch one game and Whipple, our old reliable, the other. Both are worth coming miles to see. Preacher Crabill is getting into his old-time form and his pitching will be of the one-two-three order. The Phoebe Snow team comes to us from Scranton, one of the strongest and fastest teams in the valley. Our base ball fans will remember that this team has been here before and that they play a good strong game. AND: Rev. Dawson Edwards, the well known colored preacher, has deeded his property to his wife and children. Mr. Edwards believes in not waiting for Death to distribute his goods and chattels, but has a desire to see them happy while he is still on earth. In a characteristic note the God-fearing man says: “I have promised God if I should live to serve my family here, I would deed them my two places. All I want now is my hymn book and Bible.”

UNIONDALE: Harford and Montrose have successfully maintained agricultural fairs for more than a half century. Uniondale now has the fever, and an effort is to be made to hold an annual fair in that place, but as an added attraction there will be horse races. Parties have been at work trying to interest the farmers and have them purchase sufficient stock to make the venture a success. A charter has been applied for, but it is not thought the promoters will be able to hold a fair this year as many improvements will have to be made on the grounds before a fair can be held.

AUBURN: Arthur and Harry Reimel and Glen Linaberry took in the “Buffalo Bill” show at Wilkes-Barre, Saturday.

HALLSTEAD: As an evidence of the growth and prosperity of Hallstead the past six years it is only necessary to give a few figures relative to the business of the postoffice since Postmaster Simrell was appointed. The postal business has increased from $18,000 to over $36,000 a year and the money order business for the past year exceeded $50,000 of total orders issued. In addition to the above increase of business the past year, a second rural free delivery route has been established and route No. 1 has been extended. As a result of this increase Postmaster Simrell has received official notice from the department that his salary had been increased to $1500 a year commencing July 1.

MIDDLETOWN: D. J. Murphy’s new barn is nearly completed. It will be one of the finest in this section of the country. AND: The ball game between Friendsville and Middletown Centre was one of the finest played this season. The score standing 4 and 2 in favor of Friendsville.

HARFORD: W. J. Baker is planning to erect another cottage at Tingley Lake.

THOMPSON: The time for family reunions is at hand. The Wrighters opened the season with their second gathering on Thursday of last week at the old homestead at Wrighters Lake and it is no disparagement on the other gatherings to say it was more Wrighter than the best of them.

LITTLE MEADOWS\FRIENDSVILLE\TRIPP LAKE: Three large four-in-hand loads of Binghamton Y.M.C.A. men passed through Montrose Tuesday, en route to Camp Wyalusing, near Little Meadows. A large camp is to be established there this summer, this being only the “advance guard.” Camp Choconut was opened Tuesday for the summer. Two large four-in-hand loads of youngsters, whose ages range from 12 to 16, arrived over the Lehigh Valley that afternoon and were taken to the camp, which is located hear Friendsville and has been successfully conducted for a number of years. Camp Susquehannock was opened for the summer the latter part of last week. The camp as formerly, is conducted by G. Carlton Shafer, assisted by several college friends, and the young men enjoy the summer months at Tripp Lake in athletic sports and amid beautiful surroundings, besides being tutored in various studies in which they are less proficient than they desire to be.

FRANKLIN FORKS: Miss Mary Bailey has returned from Stroudsburg, where she has been attending school.

HEART LAKE: Awake! To-morrow morn, the 4th—awake! Go with the I.O.O.F. Band to Heart Lake; there spend the day in happy measure, remembering the 4th is set aside for pleasure. Listen to band concerts and take a boat ride, on the still waters with your girl at your side; greet distant friends whom you meet by chance—politely invite them in the pavilion to dance; should they decline, don’t leave the ground, without a spin on the merry-go-round; then witness the ball game and shout yourself hoarse, visit the soda fount for sure relief, of course; and if you get hungry, there’s plenty to eat, at Mack’s lunch counter, there turn your feet; so, to-morrow morning when you awake, jump on the first train for a day a Heart Lake.

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

Dick Heller can take his gun home with him. As you may recall from a previous column, Dick Heller is the 65-year old federal security guard who carried a handgun in the course of his work, but was prohibited from taking his gun home with him because of the gun ban in Washington, D.C. In a 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court for the first time plainly stated that the Second Amendment creates a personal right to own and possess a firearm.

As I had done a previous a column about Dick Heller’s case, I decided it would be appropriate to do a follow-up on the reasoning of the decision. On the day the decision was announced, I received an email update from the National District Attorney’s Association, which contained a link to the opinion. When I pulled up the opinion, I found that it was 157 pages long – a little light reading!

The Second Amendment itself is a single sentence containing 27 words: “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” Despite its brevity, and seeming simplicity, the justices engaged in amazingly detailed dissection of each phrase within the Second Amendment, including defining the words in the context of 18th century culture. There was also extensive discussion on the rules of grammar. In fact, a group of Professors of Linguistics and Grammar actually prepared and filed a brief to tell the justices what the 27 words in the Second Amendment actually meant! How did things get so complicated?

During my first year of law school, I remember a professor warning us that law school would forever warp the manner in which we viewed the world. She said that she believed in informed consent, i.e., that we should understand that we were about to be changed – and not necessarily for the better. We all sat there dumbfounded – we had not yet undergone the transformation, so how could we truly understand. We were still ordinary caterpillars that had not made the transformation into the beautiful and regal legal butterflies. So she used an example we could all understand.

She said that she was watching The Little Mermaid with her daughter the other night – well, we could all relate to that as everyone had seen the movie. She called to mind the scene were the sea witch makes the “contract” with the mermaid, Ariel. Ariel gave the sea witch her voice in return for human legs – Ariel got her voice back if she got the prince to kiss her in three days. Everyone watching the movie knew that Ariel was making a bad bargain – but she did it anyway. The professor noted that an attorney, however, knows even better. Ariel was a minor, so she could not make a valid contract with the sea witch without her parent’s consent. The contract was legally void, as it was unconscionable, i.e., the sea witch took advantage of Ariel in her love-struck state and imposed heavy terms on her. The contract was also illusory, i.e., Ariel never had a chance to truly negotiate any of the terms. She kept going with the legal arguments to get Arial out of the contract – but you get my point. Even a scene in a simple child’s movie is different to the trained (or warped) legal mind. This was the professor’s point – though she was likely pointing this out more for the comic value than the truth.

As I read the 157-page opinion, I remembered those words – and wondered at just how true they may have been. The constitution – brilliant in its simplicity and brevity – has birthed some of the most tortuous legal conclusion and opinions written by some of our society’s best legal minds. While the 27 words in the Second Amendment seem rather simple and straightforward, the justices on the Supreme Court were unable to even agree on what they meant. The difference was razor thin – a 5-4 decision – so that one justice determined the ultimate meaning of the Second Amendment.

In the end, it was Justice Scalia, writing for the majority, who simply noted that the “Constitution was written to be understood by the voters; its words and phrases were used in their normal and ordinary as distinguished from technical meaning.” In other words, the constitution should be interpreted as an ordinary person would read it – not with the technical and tortured meanings that can be contrived by the trained legal mind. In the end, the Second Amendment means what it says – and, as Justice Scalia noted, “it is not the role of [the Supreme Court] to pronounce the Second Amendment extinct.”

Please submit any questions, concerns, or comments to Susquehanna County District Attorney’s Office, P.O. Box 218, Montrose, Pennsylvania 18801 or at our website,, or discuss this and all articles at

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The Healthy Geezer
By Fred Cicetti

Q. What are the risks involved in taking hormones for menopause?

The process of “reproductive aging” begins around age 40. There are declining levels of the hormones estrogen and progesterone. These hormones maintain the health of the vagina and uterus, and they regulate menstrual cycles.

Menopausal transition, called “perimenopause,” is when a woman’s body is close to menopause. Perimenopause usually begins about 2 to 4 years before the last menstrual period. It ends when menopause begins. A woman reaches menopause when a year has passed since her last period.

Menopause symptoms include changes in periods, including intervals and flow rates, hot flashes and night sweats, vaginal dryness, and thinning of bones.

To help control menopause symptoms, a doctor might suggest taking estrogen and progesterone, known as Hormone Therapy (HT) or Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT).

The most comprehensive evidence about taking hormones after menopause comes from the Women’s Health Initiative Hormone Program, sponsored by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and the National Cancer Institute.

The WHI Hormone Program involved two studies – the use of estrogen plus progestin (a synthetic progesterone), and the use of estrogen alone. Women who have undergone a hysterectomy are generally given estrogen alone. Women who have not undergone this surgery are given estrogen plus progestin, which have a lower risk of causing cancer of the endometrium, the lining of the uterus.

The estrogen/progestin study was stopped in 2002, when investigators reported that the overall risks outweighed the benefits. The estrogen-alone study was stopped in 2004, when the researchers concluded that estrogen alone increased the risk of stroke and blood clots.

The following are some additional findings from the WHI program about the risks of taking hormone therapy.

Estrogen/progestin increased the risk of breast cancer, heart disease, stroke, blood clots, and urinary incontinence.

In women taking estrogen/progestin, the breast cancers were slightly larger and diagnosed at more advanced stages, compared with breast cancers in women taking a placebo.

The risk of colorectal cancer and hip fractures was lower among women using estrogen/progestin.

Estrogen/progestin doubled the risk for developing dementia in postmenopausal women age 65 and older.

Endometrial cancer rates for women taking estrogen/progestin daily were the same as or possibly less than those for women taking a placebo. Uterine bleeding, however, was a common side effect, leading to more frequent biopsies and ultrasounds for women taking estrogen/progestin.

There may be an increased risk of ovarian cancer with use of estrogen/progestin.

The risk of breast cancer was decreased in women using estrogen alone.

Estrogen alone did not increase or decrease the risk of colorectal cancer.

Estrogen alone had an increased risk of urinary incontinence and a decreased risk of hip fractures.

If you have a question, please write to

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Straight From Starrucca
By Danielle Williams

No Straight From Starrucca This Week

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Veterans’ Corner

No Veterans' Corner This Week

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What’s Bugging You?
By Stuart W. Slocum

Fireflies: nature’s flashers

Many of us have fond childhood memories of stalking flickering lightning bugs and popping them into a glass mayonnaise jar to create our own natural nightlight. Fireflies, also commonly called lightning bugs or glowworms, are neither a fly nor a bug, but actually a beetle. Antarctica is the only continent without any fireflies. There are at least 150 species of fireflies found in North America. In fact, fireflies are so popular that one species, Photuris pennsylvanica, is our state insect. Tennessee also lists a firefly as its state insect. Fireflies that have the ability to flash (not all species can) are not generally found in the United States west of Kansas.

Like all beetles, fireflies have complete metamorphosis with egg, larva, pupa and adult stages. The female firefly lays 500 to 1,000 eggs in moist soil, under leaves, in moss or near water. Most eggs develop in 10 days to 4 weeks. Upon hatching, the larvae appear as flattened, “caterpillar-like” creatures with a series of hard, flat, plate-like shields covering their backs. The larvae are often found in rotting wood or forest debris along roadsides or near creeks. They are serious predators, hunting down and consuming earthworms, snails and slugs. Following “slime trails,” the rather bizarre-looking larvae tracks down their prey and inject it with an anesthetic compound. This injection immobilizes and helps predigest the victim. Sometimes multiple larvae will attack and prey on larger prey such as night crawlers. Firefly larvae have also been known to scavenge and consume small, dead organisms. Many larvae over-winter in sheltered locations, reemerge in the early spring and continue to feed. Upon reaching final instar size (one half to one inch), they form a small cell in the moist earth and change into a pupa. After about 10 days, the pupal skin is shed and the fully formed adult firefly emerges.

The adults are elongated, varying in size from one-fifth to one inch in length. The presence of a light-producing “lantern” in the abdomen is unique to fireflies. The adults are primarily concerned with finding a suitable mate. It is widely believed that the adults rarely eat, although it is speculated that some might feed on plant nectar. The adults have a life span of 3 to 4 weeks. The females of many firefly species are wingless and cannot fly. As a defense, fireflies have the ability to exude droplets of blood from the base of their wing covers. This blood is very bitter and poisonous to such natural predators as songbirds and frogs.

The firefly’s notoriety comes from its ability to produce light. It’s not just ordinary light, but light that is 100% efficient. While an incandescent light bulb loses 90% of its energy in the form of heat, a firefly’s light produces no heat. Their light is the result of a chemical reaction that occurs in specialized abdominal cells called photocytes. This production of light by biochemical reaction is referred to as bioluminescence. The light production has several uses for the firefly. The primary use is for the location and attraction of a suitable mate. In most species, the individuals who fly about flashing are males. Those sitting on the ground or in vegetation are females. The flashing also serves as a warning device to predators. The light-making chemicals are bitter and their natural predators will avoid eating them. The flashing lights are sometimes used as a distress signal and warning beacon. Those caught in a spider web or glass jar will send flashing bursts to warn others. That distress signal can also be a detriment to certain fireflies, especially the males. Like the black widow spider, there is a species of firefly called the femme fatale, which will lure in a male mate and then have him as a meal. There are even several predatory firefly species that can mimic the flash of other fireflies. The females of those species will lure in a male with “love flashes,” only to have him as dinner.

Different species produce different colors of light. Some produce yellow flashes, while others have orange, red and even green glows. Each firefly species employs its own unique pattern of intermittent flashes and light intensities to attract a mate of the correct species. Flashing at only certain times of the evening or night can further enhance selection of a correct mate. All stages of fireflies can produce light. The eggs and larvae as well as the adults can glow. While it is unknown as to why eggs would glow, larvae are likely using it as a defense mechanism, similar to that of the adults. Hence the term “glowworm” refers to a larva or flightless female firefly, not a true worm.

Seldom, if ever considered a pest, fireflies not only hold many valuable scientific secrets, but also are one of nature’s charming insects that many of us hold dear as a nostalgic reminder of more innocent and happy moments of our childhood.

Questions, comments and suggestions regarding this article, identifications or any other insect- related matters are welcome. Please email them to

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Food For Thought
By Lauretta L. Clowes DC

No Food For Thought This Week

From the Editors of E/The Environmental Magazine

No Earth Talk This Week

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