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Issue Home December 24, 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

RUSH: Lewis Rose, claiming to be a horse buyer with his home in Scranton, was arrested by Troopers Moore and Smith, of the state constabulatory, at Rush Saturday night, charged by Fremont Roberts of this place with the larceny of an overcoat. Rose had been boarding for a short time in the Roberts’ boarding house and departed surreptitiously with the son of the house’s overcoat. A warrant was issued for the arrest of Rose and the troopers located their man in bed and found the overcoat in his possession. They brought him back to Montrose in their sleigh, arriving here, after losing their way in the unfamiliar country, at about midnight. Justice VanScoten, on Monday morning, sentenced him to jail for 30 days after Rise defaulted in the payment of the fine of $10 and costs.

MONTROSE: The excellent sleighing of the past few days has certainly been enjoyed by many of our young people, but we think, surpassing all other individual incidents, was the delightful experience of two of our most esteemed young ladies who “took a sleigh ride” on Tuesday afternoon. Starting from the Court House at about 3 o’clock, possessing every confidence in their own ability to successfully manipulate the Gas Tank, Carbulator, Steering Geer and Yank Horn, of Commissioners’ Clerk Foster’s little white automobile “Flora,” they proceeded out Grow Avenue in a most lady-like and uneventful manner, when suddenly upon reaching the railroad crossing, contrary to all reasonable expectations or good calculations, and much to the disgust of “Flora” and consternation of the young ladies they encountered the afternoon train. Eye witnesses declare that the rapidity and dignity displayed by Miss Nellie in “getting out” would be worthy of emulation by any successful lightening change artist, while Miss Lottie, still remaining confident, bravely grasped the Steering Gear and “hung on” while Flora in her usual characteristic manner gyrated, contorted and ran (regardless of the fact that one of the young ladies was “out” a mile from home, and the snow one foot deep), to a point on Lake Avenue where the rescue occurred. The hero of the rescue being no less or other personage than our esteemed townsman, Mr. P. J. Radeker, who in his usual gallant way, reassembled the entire party and started them on their homeward way, none the worse for their experience.

ELK LAKE: Mrs. Dennison Thomas died at the home of her son-in-law, Rodney Kent, Dec. 17, in her 95th year. The funeral was held on Saturday at the house, the Rev. Mr. Shaw officiating. Interment at the Springville cemetery.

SUSQUEHANNA: The Susquehanna Metal Manufacturing Company's plant is working full time and has enough orders on hand to keep it going for some time to come at the same full pressure. Last week it received two heavy orders, one from the United Indurated Fibre Co., of Lockport, N.Y., for 1,500,000 pail ears, with promise of more to follow, and another from the American Railway Co., of the Street Car Trust, for 25,000 trolley wheels. It will require about 50 tons of steel to fill these orders. Only about thirty men are at present employed in the new plant, but when their building on the Oakland side is completed, it is expected that fully 150 men will be employed constantly.

UNIONDALE: Chapman Leek, who left Uniondale three years ago to seek his fortune in the West, and located in Idaho, has forged ahead sufficiently to become a candidate for the Legislature at the last election. His popularity was shown by the fact that he lacked but sixteen votes of being elected. For so short a time that is goin’ some.

BROOKLYN: J. J. Austin is pressing hay for Wade H. Barnes. Mr. Barnes, who graduated from State College after taking a four years’ course and began farming about four years ago, has had the misfortune to have his fine herd of cows condemned. Some that cost him fancy prices in New York State have had to be killed and the loss to Mr. Barnes will be nearly $2000. He has decided to quit the dairy and go into the insurance business.

WEST AUBURN: The saw and grist mill belonging to A. F. Possinger, at Keeney’s Pond, was consumed by fire last Sunday evening, also a quantity of feed. They saved about a ton of feed and a cider mill that was near by. There was no insurance, we are informed.

HOPBOTTOM: The weather conditions have changed wonderfully. Here we are with a fine run of sleighing, with wells and springs dry, and what’s more, we have had no equinoctial storm as usual. The predictions of weather prophets are not reliable any more. Farmers were out with harrows to break the crust for the benefit of the traveling public.

FLOWERY VALLEY, Franklin Twp.: Leap Year is nearly ended. You girls had better get a hustle on you.

BRACKNEY: Some of the young ladies of Brackney are enjoying sleighrides in new cutters while the sleighing is good.

WEST BRIDGEWATER: Moses Mott, who fell down stairs Wednesday morning and was hurt quite badly, has been unconscious ever since and is not expected to live. He has driven the Friendsville stage two or three summers. He is living at Mrs. Sarah Lindsey’s, three miles from Montrose. He is attended by Dr. Decker. His brother died in Rush a few months ago. He has a sister, married, living in Jackson, but we do not know her name.

THOMPSON: Lura Pickering, from the conservatory of music, Ithaca, Wallace Latham from Syracuse University, John Gillett from Bucknell University, and Bruce B. Williams from Wyoming Seminary, are enjoying their Christmas vacation with their parents.

HARFORD: The gristmill of T. M. Maynard, burned to the ground, Feb. 15. Many men would have been stunned at $5000 and more going up in smoke, but he has utilized his water power in producing lumber, built a feed store, and is ready to serve his old customers as in days gone by. Grinding will be resumed in the spring. The old mill property was built by Freeman Peck in the 1840’s.

FOREST CITY: The Citizens band, an organization that came into existence quite a number of years ago but which later ceased to exist as a body, was reorganized last fall, the membership including the players of the older band who are yet residents of the town, with the addition of other others, who have come here since. The band now has a membership of 23 and is keeping diligently at work. The town band is an institution of considerable importance in most American communities and is always worthy of encouragement and support.

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

Two Christmas Stories

By Jason J. Legg

As you may recall, there has been some discussion about the use of the column to discuss holiday themes. As most readers know, I am a Roman Catholic, and, as a result, there are occasions when my faith finds its way into the columns during special occasions. These religious columns have caused some to object, contending that I am misusing my position as a public official to advocate religious themes. While I disagree with this assessment, there is little reason to pick a fight where none is necessary. After lengthy discussions with one of the objecting parties, a compromise has been reached. When I delve into wholly personal matters of faith, the column will shed its title and any information associating it with my position as District Attorney. The editors of the paper will then determine what, if anything, to do with it. The column oftentimes contains my personal reflections, but this will hopefully relieve the concerns of some citizens that I have been abusing my position. With that said, I have a few personal Christmas stories to share with you.

A few months ago, I met an extraordinary little girl. In order to protect her identity, I will not disclose her real name. For the purposes of this story, I will call her Jill. She is suffering from a physical disability that limits her ability to walk, so Jill relies upon a wheelchair to help her get from one point to another. Aside from her serious physical disability, Jill has not had an easy life. She has been neglected and abused. To this point, Jill’s short life has been filled with adversity, pain, disappointment and betrayal. And Jill’s history makes the rest of this story even more amazing.

Jill had the opportunity to meet Santa Claus this year. After she had been helped into Santa’s lap, the standard question was asked.

“What do you want for Christmas?” Santa asked.

Jill responded with three simple requests, and Santa was surprised.

“Don’t you want anything else?” Santa asked as he tried to be helpful.

“Santa, the Christ-child only received three presents,” Jill solemnly replied, “Why would I get more presents than Jesus?”

While I was not at the exchange, I am told that Santa began to cry. This little girl, whose life has been filled with so much pain and suffering, had just cut straight to the truth with more clarity than most adults.

“You are one of the few children that I have met who really understands the spirit of Christmas,” the tearful Santa responded. From what I have been told, for those who were present for the exchange, there was not a single dry eye.

Last week, I received a second story about a little girl’s Christmas wish. The little girl’s name is Hannah Faith Garman. While she was still in her mother’s womb, it was discovered that her mother had breast cancer. The doctors were fearful that the mother would not survive the pregnancy without chemotherapy treatment. Hannah’s mother won her battle with cancer, and Hannah was born healthy.

Five years later, however, Hannah was diagnosed with a rare and incurable brain tumor. At this point, she is bedridden in her family’s home. Hannah is losing her motor skills as the tumor continues to take its fatal course. Hannah was asked what she wanted for Christmas. Her request was simple – she wants to see how many Christmas cards she can get. According to the person who passed this one to me, Hannah loves to have the cards read to her and, when available look at the picture of the person (or family) who sent the card. Everyday, Hannah’s grandmother reads to her all the new Christmas cards. Her room is now filled with Christmas cards.

If you have an extra Christmas card lying around, you could help to make a little girl’s final Christmas a little more special. Here is the address: Hannah Garman, 704 Orchard Road, Litiz, PA 17543. If you have the time, spread the news to friends and family – and help Hannah not only fill her room with cards, but her entire house.

From my family to yours, Merry Christmas!

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The Healthy Geezer
By Fred Cicetti

Q. Is it true that you can get Legionnaires’ disease from gagging on a drink of water? This has got to be bogus.

While this sounds like an urban myth, it is true.

Most people become infected with Legionnaires’ disease when they inhale microscopic water droplets containing legionella bacteria. If you choke or cough while drinking, you can get water in your lungs. If the water contains legionella, you may develop Legionnaires’ disease, which is a form of pneumonia.

Legionnaires' disease primarily affects the lungs. However, it can cause infections in wounds and in other parts of the body, including the heart.

Those who are especially vulnerable to Legionnaires’ disease are older adults, smokers, heavy drinkers and people with weakened immune systems.

If not treated, Legionnaires' disease can be fatal. Immediate treatment with antibiotics can usually cure Legionnaires' disease.

Legionella bacteria also cause Pontiac fever, which is like influenza. Pontiac fever usually clears on its own in a few days.

Legionnaires’ disease got its name from American Legionnaires who were celebrating the nation’s bicentennial in the summer of 1976 in Philadelphia. Hundreds became very ill and 34 died from the disease. The infection was traced to a hotel water system. It took almost six months to identify the bacteria that caused the illness.

This type of bacteria existed before the Philadelphia outbreak. More Legionnaires' disease is being detected now because doctors look for it whenever a patient has pneumonia. It is difficult to distinguish this disease from other forms of pneumonia; so many cases still go unreported.

The legionella bacteria usually are found in water; they grow best when the water is warm. So, legionella is often found in hot tubs, plumbing, water tanks, whirlpool spas on cruise ships, and large air-conditioning systems.

A few people have contracted Legionnaire's disease after working in the garden or using contaminated potting soil. It's also possible that the disease may spread when earth containing the bacteria is stirred up at large construction sites.

Like many microorganisms, legionella bacteria can attach to the insides of pipes, faucets and showerheads. Then they form a “biofilm” on the surfaces. As water flows past, it dislodges some of the biofilm and spreads bacteria throughout the water system.

You can get Legionnaires' disease in your home, but most cases have occurred in large buildings; there’s a theory that extensive systems permit bacteria to grow and spread more easily.

Legionnaires' disease is a sporadic and local problem. It often occurs in hospitals and nursing homes where the bacteria can spread and the residents are vulnerable to disease. There is no evidence that the disease is transmitted between people.

Legionnaires' disease is common in the United States. About 25,000 cases of the illness occur each year and cause more than 4,000 deaths. The fatality rate is similar to that of other forms of pneumonia, which is about 15 percent.

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

Cockroaches: disgusting housemates

Looking back upon the many jobs I have had along the winding path to retirement, probably none approach the uniqueness and repulsion of one I had as a part time college lab assistant. My duties consisted of caring for the entomology professor’s cockroach colonies. These were not your ordinary little “bugs.” No, instead they were an exotic species over three inches in length, which smelled bad and loved to crawl up your lab coat sleeves. Worse yet, they had to be individually handled and “doctored.”

A German cockroach in its nymph stage.

Probably no other insect is as despised or unwelcome in our home as is the cockroach. The mere glimpse of one scurrying for cover when startled by the bathroom light is enough to repulse us. The truth is that cockroaches are extremely successful at living in association with humans and are present to some degree in most households. Among the most common of all insects, cockroaches have inhabited the earth for over 300 million years. They are very adaptable, and their requirements for temperature, humidity, shelter and food closely parallel the needs of humans.

Most cockroaches are flattened and oval, with a large plate-like covering over their thorax. This flattened anatomy allows them to be very successful in crawling into very narrow spaces behind baseboards, under cupboards and around pipes. Adult cockroaches have very long, threadlike antennae. Many have fully developed wings, but only a few species actually fly. Their coloration is uniform, in shades of brown, reddish-brown or black. Their long, spindly legs are adapted for swift running. A pair of tail-like projections called cerci is located at the tip of their abdomen. These are covered with sensitive hairs that are used to detect air movement, thus providing an effective “early warning” defense mechanism.

As with other insects possessing incomplete metamorphosis, cockroaches have only three stages in their life cycles: egg, nymph, and adult. The female deposits her eggs enclosed within dark-colored capsules called ootheca. The symmetrically shaped capsules are usually dropped in a protected location near a food and water source. Depending on the species, the ootheca can contain anywhere from a dozen to 100 eggs. A female will usually produce one ootheca per week, and may produce up to 90 in her lifetime. After one to two months, depending on temperature, the eggs hatch into young cockroaches called nymphs. The young, immature cockroaches resemble adults, but are smaller and wingless. They molt as many as twelve times before reaching full maturity. In a normal cockroach population, nymphs are much more numerous than adults.

Cockroaches are scavengers that will feed on a wide variety of materials. This can include such household materials as leather, bread, starch, paper, glue, soap, book bindings, hair, clothing, plant matter, dead insects, skin flakes, wood and cheese. However, the real damage caused by cockroaches isn’t really as much about what they eat, as it is what they contaminate. Their environment of hiding and feeding in such bacterial infested locations as drains, sewers, garbage cans and bathroom recesses exposes them to many harmful pathogens, which they then proceed to track across kitchen counters, dishes, open food containers and other exposed areas of our food preparation. It is by contamination, rather than consumption, that cockroaches cause the greatest detriment to people.

Of about 3,500 worldwide cockroach species, only 55 species are found in the United States. Fortunately, only four or five are inhabitants of Pennsylvania. Next time I will give some details about those species, and discuss ways of controlling their populations.

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

Barnes-Kasson Hospital is observing National Safe Toys and Gifts Week during December 21 –  27.  During the holiday season is when the most toys are bought for children, it is also the season when the most toy related injuries occur.

 Eye related injuries and chocking on small parts are the most common injuries due to toys. According to the Prevent Blindness America group, “Toys and home playground equipment cause more than 11,000 injuries to young eyes each year.”

If you believe that your child has an eye related injury due to a toy, it is important that you take caution. Depending on what may be wrong, your child’s eye may need to be washed out. Tell your child to avoid rubbing their eye at all costs. If needed, take your son or daughter to receive immediate medical attention.

The National Safe Kids Campaign has created a list of important things to remember in order to keep your child safe this holiday season. Some of their tips include to consider the child’s age, interests and skill level when selecting a toy. It is also important to look at the quality, design and construction, and follow age and safety recommendations on labels. Other tips are to avoid toys with sharp points or edges, and those with cords longer than 7 inches that may pose a risk for strangulation for young children.

Other tips and suggestions for staying safe include being safe about what toys you buy, and to always keep a close eye on your children while they are playing. Avoid giving “big kid” toys to smaller children. Toys intended for older children usually contain small parts that smaller children can easily choke on. Two of the most important things you can do is to listen to your instincts about buying a toy for your child and to look for the letters "ASTM" on the packaging of the toy. This means the product meets the national safety standards set by the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM).

The staff at Barnes-Kasson Hospital would like to wish you a safe and sound holiday season, and to remind you to always keep a look out on your children.

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