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Issue Home December 8, 2010 Site Home

100 Years Ago
From the Desk of the D.A.
The Healthy Geezer
Library Chitchat
Rock Doc
Earth Talk
Barnes-Kasson Corner

100 Years Ago

SOUTH NEW MILFORD: The roll call at the Moxley church, on Saturday, Nov. 26, was a very interesting affair. The church was organized 83 years ago with 12 members, 6 men and 6 women. The present church was built by Austin Darrow in 1850. Rev. Mr. Browe, of Hallstead, preached in the morning and in the afternoon Austin Darrow gave a history of the church. Several ministers who formerly preached here could not come, but sent interesting letters.

EAST LYNN: E. L. Brown and party have been spending some time bear hunting on the mountain near Mehoopany. The snow was very deep, between four and five feet, making it quite impossible to get around.

SOUTH GIBSON: John Belcher and son have been drilling for water on the hill back of the town and after going down 150 feet they found an abundant supply. Pipes are being laid to the residences of D. A. Morgan, C. Keech, C. W. Lewis, James Fuller and Evan Anthony. The windmill is up and the work nearly completed. W. W. Resseguie, near Smiley, has secured water by drilling. The drillers are now at work at Arthur Estabrook’s on Kentuck Hill.

BROOKLYN: On Thanksgiving Mr. and Mrs. Chas. R. Austin entertained at their home the following friends, all deaf mutes: Mr. and Mrs. I. Williams, Mrs. J. Austin, son, daughter and granddaughter, all of Binghamton; Mr. and Mrs. James Benninger and Perry Oakley, of Nicholson; Mr. and Mrs. Geo. Gow and children, of Lathrop, and Mr. and Mrs. Charles Sterling, of Lindaville. The report is that all had a most enjoyable time.

SUSQUEHANNA: Alonzo Boyden, who will be 101 years of age next month, met with a serious accident on Thanksgiving day. Mr. Boyden, in sitting down, lost his balance and fell from the chair to the floor, breaking his leg at the thigh. Dr. D. J. Peck reduced the fracture, but there is little possibility of his ever being able to walk upon it even though he should recover. In another report Mr. Boyden, possibly the oldest man in the county, died December 8 from injuries received by a fall Thanksgiving day.

MONTROSE: A project is under way to dam up the creek flowing west of town over L. H. Ball’s flat [near the corner of Rt. 706 and Owego St.] and make a skating park during the winter. A nominal admission will be charged to skate on the pond. The idea will meet with favor from the younger element and the older ones who have not forgotten how to cut a “figure 8.”

GLENWOOD: W. P. Kellogg, of Syracuse, was at his farm, formerly owned by the late Galusha A. Grow, and which he has offered to the State as an experiment farm. During the past few years they have been growing good crops of alfalfa, and Mr. Kellogg states that they are now also raising some fine thoroughbred Shropshire sheep, weighing as high as 250 pounds. He is an enthusiast on the subject of agriculture.

LITTLE MEADOWS: The first number of the lecture course at Apalachin was given Friday evening, Dec. 2, by Rounds’ Ladies’ Orchestra. The young people who attended from here were: Louise Fox, Lena Deuel, Christian DeKay, Lulu Palmer, Henry Hall, James Moe, Frank Boland, Albert Dewing, Harry Brown and Chauncey Barker.

FOREST CITY: Joseph Raudzus, a young man about 20 years of age, went to work as a laborer in the Stillwater Coal company’s mines, on Monday, and Tuesday was killed by a fall of rock. The remains were taken to Connelly’s morgue and then to the home of Joseph Balunas, on the corner of Grand avenue and Railroad street, where he boarded. The funeral will be held this morning, the last sad rites being observed in St. Anthony’s church and interment made in St. Agnes cemetery. Deceased spent his boyhood here and about a year ago returned to Lithuania, with his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Stanley Raudzus, who were residents of Forest City for many years. A month ago he returned and on Monday went to work at the Stillwater mine.

HARFORD: Master Rupert Grant entertained his teacher and Sunday school class at a chicken dinner Dec. 1. They were a merry lot of boys and had a very enjoyable time.

THOMPSON: The help-yourself-band, so much at home in Thompson, of late, visited Myron B. Miller’s store last week and carried away eighteen overcoats, three of which they dropped a sort distance from the store. “Uncle” Tom Walker and Myron Miller are the only wholesale dealers in town so far, notwithstanding that they do a thriving business.

AUBURN TWP.: Be sure and hear Irving T. Roberts in “The Man of the Hour,” a political drama in four acts, a tale of here and now and one of the great moral plays of the day, at West Auburn, Wednesday evening, Dec. 14. Mr. Roberts is very highly spoken of as an impersonator.

ELK LAKE: On Nov. 27, 1910, at his home near Elk Lake, death came suddenly to Hiram Hosford, aged 74 years. He was a member of the Grand Army, [a veteran of the Civil War] true to the colors and loyal as a citizen, friend and Christian. His life had been full of patient faithfulness in all services, at home, in business and with neighbors where he has lived. Burial in Stone street cemetery in Forest Lake. Bearers were comrades O. A. Baldwin, H. C. Spafford, Asa Warner, C. E. Fessenden.

ARARAT: The continued stormy weather has made quite good sleighing in this section.

FRIENDSVILLE: Reacting to an article in Country Gentleman, titled “The Farm Privy” [which must have been anti-privy], “An Old Farmer in Friendsville” wrote the following: “We had a privy built in 1863 and it looks well yet. We have a box that holds five bushels of road dust and a dipper in it for use, with the notice over it, “Please use the dipper.” We get the road dust in this way: We put a lot of old pails on a stone boat and fill these pails on the road, drive to the privy and unload them in the box. We clean the privy twice a year, in November and April, by driving to the rear with a wagon, load the contents, and scatter it on the field we intend to plant corn in the next season. We find road dust useful in many ways - in fowl houses, cow barns and hog pens.”

NEWS BRIEF: An Oklahoma girl advertised for a husband and got him. The total cost for advertising, wedding outfit, etc., was $11. He died within one year, leaving her an insurance policy of $10,000, and yet some people claim it doesn’t pay to advertise. ALSO, Buttermilk is in great demand for good buckwheat cakes but is sometimes very hard to get. Water from boiled potatoes makes a fine substitute for buttermilk it is said. Try it the next time the buttermilk gives out.

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

A few weeks back, I did a column on margarine and marijuana - contrasting the recent efforts to regulate and prohibit the use of Trans Fats in restaurant food preparation with the referendum in California to legalize marijuana. In that column, I had made an erroneous reference to Crisco having Trans Fat in it and that Crisco was an indispensable ingredient to my grandmother’s apple pie recipe. Several readers contacted me to let me know that Crisco no longer used Trans Fats, and I personally verified this fact when I made a few pies with my daughter for Thanksgiving. A little more research revealed that Crisco had altered their recipe several years ago to remove Trans Fats from its product. I extend my apologies to Crisco for making this mistake - and I now have an excuse for why my crust has never seemed to be as good as Gram’s.

Several readers were upset about the use of the Trans Fat example as they argued that Trans Fats were very dangerous and unhealthy, and that the government should be protecting the public. I apparently left some readers with the impression that I did not believe that Trans Fats were bad - or I failed to make clear just how unhealthy Trans Fats are. The column was intended to contrast the almost schizophrenic dichotomy between increased regulations of a common legal substance, albeit unhealthy substance, in one area coupled with deregulation of a known dangerous illegal controlled substance in another area. My attempt at levity was poor given the manner in which so many people struggle with heart disease and related issues - and Trans Fats are plainly a major culprit in many of those struggles.

Thankfully, the State of California rejected the movement to legalize marijuana. But the forty-four percent of the population voted to legalize marijuana - a substantial block of voters. The arguments for legalization generally fall into several categories: (1) too many resources are being expended combating marijuana use and we are not making progress; (2) marijuana use is wide spread and there is no meaningful way to stop it; (3) there is abundant tax revenue that could be obtained if it were legalized; (4) it has alleged medicinal properties; (5) what people do in the privacy of their home is no one’s concern so long as it does not harm another person; and (6) if we legalize it and regulate it, then people will be safer than buying it on the street. As legalization proponents have been repeating these things for decades, the “war” on the “war on drugs” is making progress with the average citizen.

I hear these claims repeatedly from people when we discuss drug enforcement efforts. I remember sitting down with one marijuana dealer who demanded that we agree (we didn’t) that he was not as bad as a cocaine or heroin dealer. In his mind, when he sold marijuana to kids, he was only providing them with a natural “herb” and “everyone” knew it should be legal. If you wonder why all the money we spend on educating kids is not working to stop marijuana use, it might simply be because kids are getting mixed messages. They are told in school that marijuana use is unhealthy, bad and dangerous, and then they come home to hear the opposite message from the rest of society.

After the margarine/marijuana column was completed, I read that San Francisco had enacted an ordinance to get rid of fast food “Happy Meals” (or similar kid meals with toys used as an enticement) in an effort to combat obesity. At least one person still had some level of common sense in California - the Mayor vetoed the measure. Perhaps this would have been a better way to illustrate the insanity of California - a state where they are moving rapidly toward legalized marijuana but are at the same time trying to make Happy Meals illegal.

As I said, there is something fundamentally schizophrenic about a society that runs around advocating for the legalization of marijuana, but then also demands the criminalization of other more common everyday items like margarine and Happy Meals. What message are we really sending the kids? It seems pretty clear to me that it is a mixed message at best.

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. Who is most likely to commit suicide?

The following figures are from the National Center for Health Statistics for the year 2007. The rates are per 100,000 population.

Age          Suicides         Population         Rate

5-14         184         40,128,842         0.5

15-24         4,140         42,407,421         9.7

25-34         5,278         40,401,199         13.0

35-44         6,722         43,082,460         15.6

45-54         7,778         43,871,845         17.7

55-64         5,069         32,725,938         15.5

65-74         2,444         19,369,726         12.6

75-84         2,119         13,057,435         16.3

85+         858         5,515,250         15.6

Unknown         6

Total         34,598         280,560,116         11.5

White men are at the highest risk of suicide, especially those over the age of 85; they had a rate of 49.8 suicide deaths per 100,000 persons Women and teens report more suicide attempts. Suicide is the eleventh most common cause of death in the United States.

Depression is a condition usually associated with suicide in older adults. There are a lot of problems to face as you get older. There are losses of all kinds that can get you down. And feeling blue for a while is a normal part of living at any age.

But, unrelenting depression is not normal. If you feel this way, you should seek medical attention. Most people get better if they treat their depression.

If you or someone close to you is having suicidal thoughts, you can call this toll-free number, available 24 hours a day, every day: 1-800-273-TALK (8255). You will reach the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, a service available to anyone. All calls are confidential.

There are many causes of depression. Some of them are the natural consequences of being older: a health crisis or death, the loss of physical or mental capacities, or being a stressed-out caregiver.

Seniors usually rebound from a period of sadness. However, if you are suffering from “clinical depression” and don’t get help, your symptoms might last months, or even years.

The following are common signs of depression. If you have several of these, and they last for more than two weeks, get treatment: anxiety, fatigue, loss of interest or pleasure, sleep problems, eating too much or too little, abnormal crying, aches that can’t be treated successfully, diminished concentration or memory, irritability, thoughts of death or suicide, and feelings of despair, guilt and being worthless.

Depression is a serious illness. It can lead to suicide. Don’t waste time; find help.

Start with your family doctor. The doctor should check to see if your depression could be caused by a health problem (such as hypothyroidism or vitamin B12 deficiency) or a medicine you are taking.

After a complete exam, your doctor may suggest you talk to a social worker, mental health counselor, psychologist, or psychiatrist. Doctors specially trained to treat depression in older people are called “geriatric psychiatrists.”

Support groups can provide new coping skills or social support if you are dealing with a major life change. A doctor might suggest that you go to a local senior center, volunteer service, or nutrition program. Several kinds of talk therapies work well.

Antidepressant drugs can help. These medications can improve your mood, sleep, appetite, and concentration.

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is an option. It may be recommended when medicines can’t be tolerated or when a quick response is needed.

[More about suicide in our next column.]

If you have a question, please write to

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Library Chitchat
By Flo Whittaker

In late October, the Susquehanna County Library and Historical Society sent out its 2011 Support Drive appeal. Did you receive our mailing? If you did, we hope that you include a gift for our organization on your list this year. This is truly a “gift that keeps on giving.” Your support, no matter what amount, will help us to continue to be of service to Susquehanna County through our main library in Montrose, the three branches libraries in Hallstead/Great Bend, Forest City and Susquehanna, the county-wide Outreach Department (Books-by-Mail and Books-on-Wheels), and the Historical Society.

I had the occasion to talk to a number of county residents both in Montrose and Great Bend on November 20 and 21. Many of them told me how much they value the Susquehanna County Library system. Some were not aware that our annual support drive was underway. While we mailed more than 6,900 letters, we obviously did not reach all of the more than 42,000 county residents. If you are interested in supporting the Library in this manner, you may stop in at any of the four library facilities to fill out the support form.

We at the Susquehanna County Library hope that you have a joyful holiday season and that what you want is under the tree on Christmas day. We also hope that you will remember the Library as you make your year-end contributions. Your support is vital.

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Rock Doc
By Dr. E. Kirsten Peters

Doing The 180 Pivot

I remember well when Barbara Mandrell and George Jones sang a fine country and western song about changes in public perspective. For those of you too young to remember, the lyrics of the chorus were:

“I was country when country wasn’t cool/I was country from my hat down to my boots/I still act and look the same/what you see ain’t nothin’ new/I was country when country wasn’t cool.”

The song rocketed up the charts when the country twang had become the fashion in popular music - a testimony to how public opinion can turn on a dime because country music hasn’t been popular outside its niche before nor since.

Here’s another example of how public perspectives can radically change. It wasn’t that long ago that most environmentalists viewed the wood-products industry as the enemy. The image of lumberjacks cutting down trees seemed to many like a picture of rapacious wolves gobbling down innocent bunny rabbits.

But opinions have changed about that, too.

“I think some of my green friends in the old days thought I was a ‘lumber-Nazi,’” Dr. Karl Englund said to me recently.

Englund is an engineering researcher in wood products and their uses at Washington State University.

“But there’s been a real 180 degree turn. Now people understand that wood products are a renewable and green resource,” he continued.

Englund spoke to me as he gave me a tour of the research and testing facility where he works.

“You can think of wood as solid carbon dioxide, exactly what we need to take carbon dioxide out of the air and put it into ‘sinks’ where it will stay for a long time,” he said while knocking - of course - on wood.

To be sure, there’s nothing new about lumber. But what is new are the materials that people like Englund dream up and produce out of scrap wood, saw dust, waste plastic and other materials of little value.

Laminated veneer lumber, or LVL, was one of the first products to come out of wood engineering labors. LVL is made of thin but large layers of wood that require a full-sized log. They are then pressed and glued together to form material that’s stronger and more uniform than lumber. Oriented strand board, or OSB, is also useful because it’s made of smaller strips of wood in layers that are oriented in alternating directions.

Another, newer material that’s a topic of research is formed from short strips of wood that are heated and pressed into 3-D forms that create what engineers call a “complex geometric shape.”

I’d call it a wood waffle. It’s interesting stuff just to toss around.

Now think of such a waffle that has a thin veneer of wood on its top and bottom. What you have is a material that’s lightweight, strong, and even traps air in its pockets, making it naturally insulating.

That’s good engineering all around, the type of thing Englund and his colleagues are researching for possible transmission to the commercial sector.

But the story gets better from a green point of view.

Smaller pieces of waste wood can be ground up to material similar in size to whole-wheat flour. When combined in a giant extruder with plastic - including recycled plastics that otherwise would be waste - the fine wood fiber particles form the strength component of products like composite lumber decking. The material doesn’t rot outdoors because the plastic seals the wood away from moisture. Add some coloring agents, and you have decking that looks fine and will never jam a splinter into your bare feet.

Good engineering isn’t limited to wood products. When material is ground up to small sizes, wheat straw, rice straw and other agricultural by-products can be used in some basically similar ways.

Englund has a refreshing perspective on his engineering work.

“I’m a garbage guy,” he said. “The point is to use people’s waste.”

Englund may work mainly within the wood-products industry, but it’s clear to me he’s really green. And he always had been.

Unlike public opinion, some things are a constant.

And yes, I’m still listenin’ to country music - sometimes in my best western hat.

Dr. E. Kirsten Peters, a native of the rural Northwest, was trained as a geologist at Princeton and Harvard. This column is a service of the College of Agricultural, Human and Natural Resource Sciences at Washington State University. Peters can be reached at

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From the Editors of E/The Environmental Magazine

No Earth Talk This Week

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Barnes-Kasson Corner
By Cara Sepcoskiw

No Barnes-Kasson Corner This Week

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