HomeColumnists ( November 13, 2019 )

100 Years Ago

By Betty Smith, Susquehanna County Historical Society, Montrose, PA

Uniondale – Mr. and Mrs. Theron B. Dimmick were tendered a surprise by their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren on November 9, 1919, the occasion being their 50th wedding anniversary. They were married at her home in Uniondale on November 9, 1969 by Rev. Yates Hickey, pastor of the Uniondale Presbyterian church, and were attended by Miss Sarah Mills and Payson Burritt. The bride was the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Henry Wood; none of her relatives survive. Several of the children died young and a brother was killed in the Civil War. The union was blessed by six children, 14 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren, all of whom were present, except one daughter, wife of Sheldon Lamoreaux, whose death occurred on May 1, 1905. Those left who witnessed the wedding are: Mrs. Myrlis Dimmick Stevens, Norman G. Dimmick, of Uniondale and Mrs. Sarah Mills Raynor of Carbondale. (A long list of attendees is with the article).

Little Meadows – George McCrossin, who has conducted the Little Meadows hotel for the past seven years, has leased the hotel and with Mrs. McCrossin will spend the winter in the south, driving through in their automobile to Miami, FL.

Brooklyn – O. M. Doloway took the early trolley home Tuesday morning, and, with other passengers, saw a deer between Montrose and Brooklyn. A couple of years ago several deer were seen in this county, one being killed in Silver Lake township. [At the time deer were rarely seen in this or surrounding counties.] ALSO Mrs. G. H. Terry entertained the members of her Sunday school class at a molasses candy pull at her home.

Elk Hill – David Jones, who resides on the east side of Elk Hill, lost his home by fire Thursday morning. Mr. Jones was in Montrose at the time. The occupants of the house were his son, Ralph, daughter, Anna and a niece, Miss Ruth Goodwin, of Carbondale. Ralph detected the smell of smoke when he arose. On investigation he found flames coming through the register hole of the furnace. He hastily awakened his sister and cousin who escaped in their night clothing. They wrapped themselves in blankets from the barn and sought help from the neighbors. On their return the house was entirely consumed. Just how the fire started no one can explain, but it is believed it was caused by a new furnace whose operation was not thoroughly understood. The house and contents were insured.

Thompson – Charley Glover, while cranking up an auto, had the same experience of many others, which resulted in a fracture of his right arm. He was taken to Dr. McNamara's office and later returned to his home on the west side. ALSO Michael Kutarnia, when cranking an auto belonging to Peter Petrus in Forest City, broke the small bones of the right hand. Two others had tried in vain to get the machine to go when Mr. Kutarnia was appealed to.

Montrose – The Monday Club held a very interesting open meeting at the library. Mrs. Harriet LaGrange, a returned missionary, spoke on Syria and told of the great suffering of the people in that stricken country during the war. ALSO On Monday evening, committees from the Daughters of the American Revolution, Daughters of Veterans, Sons of Veterans and American Legion, held a meeting at the library. Miss Eliza Brewster was elected chairman. It was decided to fall in line with the nation-wide movement to study the Constitution and the work of Americanization.

Forest City – The high school basket ball quintet journeyed to Honesdale Friday evening to play the high school team of that place. The visitors were defeated by a score of 19 to 14, a stiff game throughout. ALSO Frank Hawkyer is the champion cabbage raiser of this vicinity. He had over 10,000 heads of marketable cabbage this year of more than usual size. He sold the crop at seven cents per pound. Forest City was his market. He says he could not supply the demand.

Tirzah – Arnold Foster killed a fine red fox one day last week, while squirrel hunting in Walker's woods. He came upon the fox which was sleeping and made a good mark. Arnold is a boy, but the best marksman around.

Glenwood – The soldiers and Sons of Veterans held their annual oyster dinner at the Grange hall, Saturday last, there being over fifty friends present, including visitors, seven of the old soldiers of '65 and several of the young soldiers of the World War also present.

Harford – There are various kinds of "bees," such as the bumble bee, the honey bee, the sewing and quilting bee, but the bee that was around in Will Merritt's woods made more noise than all of these other bees put together. It was a wood bee for the Congregational church and although there were not as many men present as expected, there were enough so that the hum of their saws and axes made things merry all day and as the sound echoed through the woods we knew that the fuel was being made ready so the church might be kept warm when the cold, dreary winter approaches, and we thank Melvin Tingley, Cody Gates, W. R. Merritt, Gail Peck, Alonzo Hawley, G. W. Osmun, H. W. Booth, Walter Booth, Earl Lewis, DeForrest Decker and John Alworth. ALSO "Uncle" Philander Harding is real smart in spite of his 97 years and "Aunt" Janie is active, keeps up her reading and interest in topics of the day, and one can hardly believe she was 87 her last birthday.

Susquehanna – Susquehanna celebrated "Armistice Day" with considerable enthusiasm. One of the largest parades ever witnessed in that place was held. About 140 service men were in line. The rain prevented a dance on the pavement in the evening, but numerous functions of this nature were held in the halls.

Birchardville – A serious accident occurred near this place last Saturday, when a team of horses belonging to H. B. Stone & Son ran away. Mrs. H. B. Stone and Mrs. Earl Stone were on their way to Birchardville and had just started down the long hill leading to that village when the wagon pole broke, frightening the team, which broke loose from the wagon and ran wildly down the hill. Friends seeing the horses free, hurried to the scene with an automobile and motorcycle. The two women and little Lelia, daughter of Mrs. Earl Stone, had been thrown from the wagon and was found suffering considerable pain. They were taken to the home of W. H. Small, at Birchardville, and Dr. Newman was hastily summoned. Mrs. Stone, Sr., had suffered a broken rib and other severe bruises, and the younger Mrs. Stone was injured in one shoulder and back and severely shocked. They were all able to be removed to their homes a few days later, where Mrs. Emma Ball is assisting in caring for them.

New Milford – Howard C. Sherman, of Franklin Township and Lutie M. Wirth, of New Milford township, were married Nov. 5th, by Rev. E. A. Benson, of New Milford.

From the Independent Republican, October 23, 1856: A Republican Team – At the meeting in Thomson on Saturday evening before the State election, a unique turn-out made its appearance from Ararat. It was a team of thirteen yoke of oxen, drawing three wagons, connected together, which contained ninety men. On returning the load comprised 112 men. It went and returned without accident.

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Letter of the Law

By Jason J. Legg

On December 30, 2017 at 10:50pm, Clair Barry III was operating his pick-up truck on State Route 144 in Bellafonte, Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania State Trooper Christopher Pifer was driving his patrol car in the opposite lane of traffic and, when the vehicles passed each other, Trooper Pifer noticed that Barry's truck moved to the right and crossed the white fog line before then returning into Barry's lane of traffic. With his suspicions roused, Trooper Pifer turned his patrol car around and began to follow Barry's pickup truck.

Barry then made a sharp right hand turn off State Route 144 onto North Allegheny Street. Barry took the turn a little too wide which caused his pickup truck to cross the double yellow line on North Allegheny Street and briefly travel in the opposing lane of traffic. There were no other motor vehicles on North Allegheny Street at that time.

After traveling another 100 feet on North Allegheny Street, Barry's pickup again crossed the center line by a few inches and entered into the opposing lane of traffic. This occurred at a place in the street where the right shoulder had narrowed. There was again no other traffic in the vicinity when Barry's pickup briefly crossed the yellow line. After observing these three incidents where Barry's pickup briefly left his lane of traffic, Trooper Pifer conducted a traffic stop for a violation of Section 3309(1) of the Vehicle Code, which requires a motor vehicle to be driven "as nearly as practicable within a single lane of traffic" and prohibits a motor vehicle from moving from a lane of traffic "until the driver has first ascertained that the movement can be made with safety."

During the traffic stop, Trooper Pifer discovered that Barry was intoxicated and thereafter charged Barry with a DUI offense. Barry then moved to suppress the evidence contending that Trooper Pifer lacked probable cause to pull him over for a traffic violation. The trial court conducted a hearing and suppressed the evidence. The Commonwealth appealed.

In considering the evidence, the Superior Court noted that Section 3309(1) only prohibits a motorist from leaving his or her lane of traffic if the movement is unsafe, i.e., endangering any other motorists or pedestrians. You are allowed to avoid a pothole if you can do so safely. In affirming the trial court's finding that the traffic stop lacked probable cause, the Superior Court concluded: "Here, Barry crossed the fog line and center lines only briefly. Additionally, the record confirms that Barry's actions did not pose a safety risk to other motorists, and nothing in the record suggests that he was otherwise driving erratically." Because Barry's movement from his lane of traffic was done safely, the Superior Court concluded that Trooper Pifer lacked probable cause to conduct of traffic stop of Barry's vehicle – and affirmed the suppression of the evidence.

The Vehicle Code provided another option to justify the traffic stop which Trooper Pifer did not seek to utilize, namely a provision that allows for a traffic stop where the police officer had "reasonable suspicion" that a traffic violation was occurring and further investigation was needed. This provision is utilized in DUI cases where a driver is exhibiting signs of intoxication without committing any specific Vehicle Code violation. For instance, if Barry had been weaving in and out of his lane of traffic in a manner consistent with an intoxicated driver, then Trooper Pifer could have conducted a traffic stop even if the weaving had been done "safely," i.e., there was no other traffic nor pedestrians endangered by Barry's conduct. Reasonable suspicion is a lesser standard than probable cause – but still requires a police officer to articulate grounds upon which a reasonable person would suspect that a DUI was occurring.

Barry, however, only left his lane of traffic on three occasions – one of which was during a turn, the other occurred in an area where the roadway had narrowed. If Trooper Pifer had continued to observe Barry operating his motor vehicle – and developed additional observations of weaving behavior – then Trooper Pifer may have developed sufficient facts to conduct a traffic stop based upon reasonable suspicion that Barry was an intoxicated driver. In the absence of such extended observations and evidence, Trooper Pifer also lacked reasonable suspicion to stop Barry's motor vehicle.

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How To Take Pills©

By Dr. Ron Gasbarro

The eye-opening smell of coffee

The pharmacist's adult son is a freelance technical writer and works at home. Recently, he told his dad that he was having trouble getting up in the morning. His sleepiness was not a result of slothfulness. He needed to get vertical and go to his desk to work on projects for his clients. The pharmacist knew that his son took a sleeping pill occasionally. However, the effects of his sedative should only last 6 hours, not 12 hours.

Alarm clocks, wake-up services, the FedEx guy banging on the door making the dogs yap uproariously – some people can sleep through a world war. Aside from the smell of sizzling bacon, nothing wakes people up more effectively than the aroma of fresh perked coffee. Is this learned behavior? Or are we conditioned to salivate like Pavlov's dogs as soon as the molecules of a dark French roast waft our way? Maybe both. However, a study demonstrated that you do not have to drink the coffee to wake up. The smell alone can do the trick. The research was done on a population hardly ever seen hanging out at Starbucks – Wistar lab rats.

In this study, a portion of the rats was sleep-deprived. Sleep deprivation causes stress and throws the body out of whack. Symptoms include bad temper, blurred vision, memory loss, inability to concentrate, confusion, hallucinations, nausea, and reduced sexual drive. As was discovered, the sleepy rats showed increased brain activity just from the aroma alone. The researchers speculated that some of the brain's changes occurred in some proteins that could have a calming effect on the stress the rats experienced. The coffee smell also increased the amount of antioxidants in the brain. Antioxidants can avert or slow damage to cells caused by free radicals, which are unstable molecules that the body generates when confronted with environmental and other stressors. Free radicals are responsible for many diseases – from cancer and heart disease to arthritis and lung disease. While the body can deactivate free radicals on its own, taking in antioxidants, such as coffee, which is packed with them, can only help.

Every other year, we hear that coffee kills. The next year, a study emerges to say that coffee extends our lifespan. Consider this: A 2008 Harvard analysis of two databases spanning approximately two decades and involving 42,000 men and 86,000 women found no proof of increased death from coffee consumption. Best to skip the cream and sugar and take it black.

A patient of the pharmacist once mentioned that his urine smelled like coffee. "Is this normal?" he asked. Urine that smells like Maxwell House typically means one is drinking too much coffee. Whether it is innocuous or harmful depends on how much coffee one is consuming. Coffee dehydrates the body. The signs of depleting the body's water store include bad breath, dry skin, and muscle cramps. Also, excessive caffeine enhances the effect of dopamine, a neurotransmitter. Too much dopamine can make one jittery, anxious, and still conscious at 3am. Caffeine blocks the amino acid, adenosine, which generally makes one ready to hit the pillow at night. Again, one is wide-awake and staring at the ceiling.

The pharmacist's son said that the real reason the smell of coffee wakes him is in anticipation of that first steaming sip. The pharmacist suggested that his son buy a one-cup coffee maker for his bedroom. That way, the smell will arouse him, and the brew itself will only be an arm's length away.

Ron Gasbarro, PharmD, is a registered pharmacist, medical writer, and principal at Read more at

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