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Issue Home August 13, 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
Barnes-Kasson Corner

100 Years Ago

FOREST CITY: The people of Forest City desire to have better accommodations for a postoffice. The postmaster desired to locate it in the municipal or boro building, providing the boro authorities could provide a suitable room. The fire company also desire a change in their room which they occupied in the municipal building, so the boro council commenced making some alterations in the building so as to accommodate the fire company with a room on [the] side of [the] building and change the room they had occupied in front for a postoffice for which a fair rental was to be paid by the postoffice department. However, an injunction was filed restraining the borough authories from making any such change, claiming that the borough council had no authority to use public funds for such purpose—that municipal buildings could not be used or rented for any other than municipal purposes. Judge Little handed down an opinion dissolving the injunction, thus permitting the boro to make the change desired. His opinion involved a legal question that the courts of PA had not yet decided. An appeal, it is understood, will be taken.

GELATT: There are two persons in this neighborhood who are making nightly raids on gardens and potato fields. A good dose of bird shot might be in place and teach them a lesson. AND: In the game of ball here between the old men and the regular team, the score stood 31 to 5 in favor of the regular team.

MONTROSE: The property known as the Montrose Canning factory land, buildings, engine, &c. will be sold at auction Sept. 3d. at 2 P.M. Terms cash. AND: The mammoth tent for use of the coming Bible Conference has been received and was hauled to the Fair grounds, where it is to be erected. It will seat 1800 people—just about the total population of Montrose

HEART LAKE: Three young fellows attended the dance here on Thursday night of last week. They started home late and all were pretty tired. Finally slumber overcame them, including the driver, and when they awakened as dawn began to streak the east they were surprised to find themselves in a cornfield, with the horse contentedly munching away. In getting the horse back into the road they discovered some one had become acquainted with their plight and attached a card on their carriage on which was scrawled, “Goin’ Some.” The boys acknowledged the “corn.”

FOREST LAKE: Aug. 1st the descendants of Canfield Stone met for their 6th annual reunion. There were 117 people present and the grounds and tables were prettily decorated with flowers and flags. Besides songs and recitations, some relics of old-time days were exhibited. AND: All those who visit campers here are fined if the men wear “biled shirts” or the women don silk waists or expensive gowns. They live in Elbert Hubbard or Roycroft style—that is, free and easy.

NEW MILFORD: The annual “Home Coming,” which was observed the latter part of last week, was well attended and possessed its full share of pleasures for those who yearly make it a point to attend. A ball game was played between New Milford and Fleetville, resulting in favor of New Milford. The band played in the pagoda in the afternoon and in the evening a large number enjoyed the dance held in the opera house.

DIMOCK: Liverymen tell us that a more than usual interest is being manifested in this year’s Dimock campmeeting, as shown by the fact that nearly all their horses and carriages have been rented for Sunday, the big day, when the population of the towns in this vicinity is largely decreased by the outgoing throngs.

GREAT BEND: The chair factory, which closed down several months ago, resumed work Monday on full time with a full force of employees. It is thought as there is now a general resumption of business, the factory will keep running steady.

FRANKLIN FORKS: Mr. and Mrs. A. E. Stockholm left on Monday for an extended trip through the West, visiting their son, Will in Ohio, and Lisle in Sandwich, Ill.

LATHROP TWP.: Saturday, Aug. 9, was a red letter day at Lakeside. The Hopbottom and Lakeside Sunday schools held a picnic on the island in Tarbell Lake. They spent a delightful time in fishing, rowing, etc. The lake is the most beautiful sheet of water between this place and Scranton and is surrounded by a prosperous farming section. The scenery is fine.

WEST AUBURN: Little Bryce Whitney met with a painful accident while returning from the store with his cousin, Gordon. They met an automobile, the horse became frightened and Bryce jumped and cut his foot very badly. He was taken to Dr. Beaumont’s and the foot was dressed. He is doing nicely at this writing.

JACKSON: Ed Bowell, on Saturday, while driving to Susquehanna, killed a rattlesnake 3½ ft. long, having 7 rattles on. He was showing them in town the next day. AND: Wm. Homer met with a heavy loss one night last week. Someone came and took his bed of ginseng, which he has put a large amount of labor and time on. If those evil persons could find employment in the county seat [jail] for a few years, the farmers would be very happy.

HARFORD: Miss Jessie Robbins teaches the Sweet school and Miss Elizabeth Baker, the Richardson Mills school. AND: The Junior League of the M. E. church will give an entertainment in the church Friday evening, Aug. 14, consisting of recitations and singing. Aunt Hannah Spooner will be present and entertain you with her family album.

HALLSTEAD: The recent action of the Lackawanna Railroad company in providing passenger service on train No. 42, known as the milk train between Binghamton and Scranton, and making all local stops, is greatly appreciated by the people here.

CHOCONUT: John Dean has a very lame horse and has bought another to finish haying.

UNIONDALE: Automobiles are growing more numerous every week this season.

ELK LAKE: C. E. Lathrop found a silver coin dated 1798.

NEWS BRIEF: One of the big attractions of the Wilkes-Barre Fair, which opens Aug. 24th and continues for six days and nights, will be the appearance of a gigantic airship. The fair management have completed arrangements with the Stoobol Airship company to bring its flyer to Wilkes-Barre.

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

I had an interesting discussion with a liberal friend the other day regarding the effectiveness of debate between liberals and conservatives. Essentially, my friend contended that liberals and conservatives view the world through different glasses and, as a result, liberals and conservatives inherently see different truths. As a result of different world views and philosophies, a liberal and a conservative inherently cannot agree without compromising or abdicating their own “truths.” In other words, in order for a liberal and conservative to agree on something, one of them would have to convert (or defect) to the other side. Thus, my liberal friend concluded that it was really pointless for conservatives and liberals to argue, as neither will change their mind.

There is certainly some merit to the argument – we tend to view the world through our personal perceptions which have been forged by our families, our religion, our education, our employment and other societal factors. The rigidity of these philosophies or beliefs depends upon individual personalities. Admittedly, there are some people who will doggedly refuse to acknowledge or concede that an opposite view may have merit – people with blinders attached to their cognitive functions which prohibit consideration of anything outside their personal sphere. For such people, my liberal friend is likely right – there is no point in debating or discussing anything as the conversation will likely end with frustration, anger and resentment. We have all encountered and interacted with such people – and the experience was likely not a pleasant one.

My response to this argument was certainly a product of my own experience and education. As I have said before, the process of a legal education changes your perception of things dramatically. Attorneys are expected to not only challenge and assess the opposing side’s positions – but also internally weigh and probe their own positions. For an attorney, nearly everything is debatable, including seemingly obvious truths. President Clinton, a trained attorney, once famously quipped that the truth of a particular statement all depended upon the definition of the word “is.” Obviously, this is an extreme example, but it makes the point well. Attorneys are taught to debate vociferously – and, once transformed, an attorney has little chance to walk away from it. So, when my liberal friend told me that debating was pointless, I simply did what I was trained to do – I debated the point! In retrospect, I now see the irony and humor in my action.

On the other hand, the suggestion that there is no point in liberals and conservatives discussing or debating issues is a hopeless position. There is a degree of relativism in this approach – the concept that absolute truths do not exist and we should each view the world according to our own personal truths. In a world without absolute truths, my liberal friend is right – there is no point in debating anything as there are no right answers, only personal preferences of equal value. In such a world, debate does become a useless tool as there is no truth to uncover and uphold. In my estimation, this is not the world that most Americans want – and that is exactly why we debate, discuss and argue so mightily for what we believe. The point of the debate is simple: to make America a better place. Whether debating from a liberal or conservative perspective, the goal is the same.

My liberal friend ended our conversation by challenging me as to whether my views had ever changed as a result of our discussions. Apparently, if my views had not changed, this demonstrated the futility of our discussions. My answer was simple – my views may not have changed, but my understanding and knowledge of the opposite side’s position were strengthened. This not only helped me to understand an opposing viewpoint, but also assisted me in assessing the strengths and weaknesses in my own position. If we are intent on finding the truth, I would submit there is no better means of doing it.

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. I’m in my sixties and I just had a blood test. My PSA went up from 2 to 3. My doctor told me to see a urologist to get my prostate checked. How worried should I be about cancer at this point?

When older men gather, they exchange PSA stories as often as they once shared stories about girls. PSA test results are horribly confusing and often terrifying. I have personal experience with both the confusion and the terror.

PSA is the cause of so much concern to my male readers – and their loved ones – that I’m going to cover this topic in a three-part series, which begins today.

The prostate is a walnut-size gland that surrounds the urethra, a tube that carries urine from the bladder. The urethra also transmits semen, which is a combination of sperm plus a fluid the prostate adds.

Cancer of the prostate is one of the most common types of cancer among American men, and also one of the most complex. More than 6 in 10 cases of prostate cancer cases occur in men 65 and older. By age 85, more than 75 percent of men have prostate cancer; many have lived with the disease for more than a decade. The disease is usually not fatal.

Treatment for prostate cancer works best when the disease is found early.

In a physical exam, the doctor feels the prostate through the rectal wall. This is called a Digital Rectal Exam (DRE). Hard or lumpy areas may mean that cancer is present.

Doctors also may suggest a blood test to check your PSA level. PSA levels may be high in men who have an enlarged prostate gland or prostate cancer. PSA tests are useful for early cancer diagnosis. But PSA test results alone do not always tell whether or not cancer is present.

When doctors suspect cancer from indications found through a blood test or DRE, they may perform a biopsy. Doctors can remove samples of the prostate with a needle and look at them under a microscope.

There are many options for treating prostate cancer:

Observation. If the cancer is growing slowly, you may decide to wait and watch.

Hormone therapy. This stops cancer cells from growing.

Surgery. There are several surgical options. These include radical prostatectomy or removal of the entire prostate, cryosurgery that kills the cancer by freezing it, radiation therapy to shrink tumors, and implant radiation that places radioactive seeds into the prostate. Surgery can lead to impotence and incontinence. Improvements in surgery now make it possible for some men to keep their sexual function.

Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) is the term used to describe an enlarged prostate, which is common in men 50 and older. Some men with prostate cancer also have BPH, but that doesn't mean that the two conditions are always linked.

Prostate-specific antigen (PSA) is a protein produced by the cells of the prostate gland. The PSA test measures the level of this protein in the blood. It can be detected at a low level in the blood of all adult men. It should be noted that it is common for PSA ranges to vary among laboratories.

A fundamental problem with the PSA test is that, while elevated levels can indicate the presence of cancer, they can also be caused by: benign prostatic hyperplasia; urinary tract infections; prostatitis, inflammation of the prostate; a digital rectal exam; recent ejaculation; recent bowel movement; recent urinary catheterization; recent urinary tract operation; large doses of medicines, such as methotrexate for cancer treatment; the medicine finasteride, which is used to treat BPH.

To be continued in our next column.

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

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What’s Bugging You?
By Stuart W. Slocum

Hummingbird clearwing moth: the busy impostor

What looks like a hummingbird, sounds like a hummingbird, flies like a hummingbird, and feeds from flowers like a hummingbird? Well, if it has antennae, it’s not a hummingbird! It is in fact a moth called the hummingbird clearwing (Hemaris thysbe). Often mistaken for a baby hummingbird, it is frequently seen hovering about flower gardens during the summer. While most moths are nocturnal, the hummingbird moth is active only in the daytime. This busy insect belongs to the Sphinx (Sphingidae) moth family. The family name comes from the posturing that the larvae assume when disturbed. They rear up in an elevated position, resembling the famous Egyptian sphinx. Often the bizarre-looking caterpillars will aggressively thrash from side to side and even regurgitate a sticky green fluid.

A hummingbird moth caterpillar.

The adults have large eyes and long antennae located on a protruding head. Their thorax is “fuzzy” and in flight their conical abdomen extends past the hind wings. Their front wings are long and narrow, considerably larger than the hind wings. After their first flight, these moths lose the scales on their front wings, thus leaving them clear, with only an outlined margin of reddish brown. They are strong, rapid flyers and are among the few insects that can hover. Unlike hummingbirds, these moths will sometimes land on a flower while feeding. In flight, the clearwing moths make a buzzing sound similar to that of a hummingbird. The moth uses its proboscis, a long straw-like “tongue,” to suck nectar from the flower. This nectar, high in sugar content, provides the fuel necessary for the energy expended in the hovering and rapid flight.

A hummingbird moth on bee balm.

The spherical eggs, laid on lower leaf surfaces, are comparatively large and smooth. The young caterpillars feed in the middle of the leaves, resulting in distinctive circular holes. The larvae of the Sphinx moths are commonly called hornworms. This is a reference to the prominent spike that sticks up from the middle of their last segment. The smooth caterpillars, up to 2 inches in length, are lime green, with 2 yellow stripes along their backs. Their spiracles (breathing holes), which line the sides, appear as white spots encircled with red. Their bodies are covered with small, yellow, wart-like bumps. The voracious caterpillars feed day and night on many shrubs in the honeysuckle and rose families, including cherry, plum and snowberry. They also frequent viburnums. The mature caterpillars form loose cocoons and pupate in soil or fallen leaves. There are usually two generations per year.

Unlike some of their Sphingidae relatives, such as the tomato hornworm, these moths are of little ecological concern to our gardens or landscape. On the contrary, they serve an important role in the pollination of many plant species. While reaching in for the flower nectar, the moths get coated with a dusting of pollen from the blossom’s anthers. Their fuzzy thorax and abdomen make an ideal substrate to hold the pollen until the moth crawls into the next blossom, where some of it rubs off and pollinates that plant. Many plants require this cross-pollination to produce fruit and seeds.

Both the hummingbird and its look-alike moth are enjoyable parts of that so short and fleeting duration of time that we call summer.

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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Barnes-Kasson Corner
By Cara Sepcoski

Cataract Awareness Week August 10 – 16

August 10- 16 is Cataract Awareness Week, and Barnes-Kasson Hospital is helping to spread awareness. A cataract is a clouding of the lens in the human eye. Cataracts slowly develop over time, usually without pain. Most cataracts remain small and hardly affect vision, but they can grow and become a major defect upon vision, causing blindness.

Cataracts have become the leading cause of blindness worldwide. Approximately 20.5 million Americans age 40 and over have cataracts. This number is slowly decreasing though, because of the new advancements in eye surgery. A new procedure that replaces the lens of the eye is now being preformed 1.6 million times per year on patients with cataracts.

There are still no alternatives to surgery, as there are no drugs, eye drops or exercises that can rid a patient of cataracts. Yet doctors leave the surgery option completely up to the patient. They remind them that surgery is still surgery, and it has its risks, as it is delicate. And if the cataracts do not affect the patient’s vision too much, then they shouldn’t have the surgery.

Some people with cataracts experience a slight blurring of their vision, double vision in one eye, or yellowing of colors. Patients sometimes experience trouble driving at night and moderate sensitivity to light, as well as frequent changes in their glasses/contacts prescriptions. If you suspect you have one, then immediately talk to your doctor.

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