HomeColumnists ( July 17, 2019 )

100 Years Ago

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

North Jackson – The home of Mr. and Mrs. B. D. Brown, well-known residents of North Jackson, was destroyed by fire on the morning of July 4th. The blaze was discovered in the upper part of the house about 9am. Help was summoned and neighbors hurried to the scene, but they could not stay the flames. They succeeded in removing all the furniture from the rooms on the first floor, but nothing in the upper part of the house was saved. The loss is heavy.

Brooklyn – Dr. Calvin F. Bennett, who recently resigned from the military service, after having served 11 months with the American Expeditionary Forces, has opened an office for the practice of veterinary medicine. Dr. Bennett is a son of Dr. N. C. Bennett, a well-known veterinarian in southeastern Bradford County, who has recently come forth with what appears to be a positive cure for infectious abortion in cattle. Dr. Calvin Bennett has not only had experience with his father, but has worked with Dr. Frederick H. Schneider, of Philadelphia and Dr. Edwin Hogg, of Wilkes-Barre, and is a graduate of the Univ. of Pennsylvania. Dr. Bennett is one of four brothers who volunteered their services to the government during the war.

Thompson – Wendall Brown has purchased the house and lot on Jackson street formerly owned and occupied by H. L. Burchell and family. Mr. Burchell and family and Mr. Wademan and family, of Ararat, have gone to Oneida, Tenn, where they intend to reside. They made the trip by auto. ALSO Borough teachers hired for ensuing year: Principal, Prof. Robert Sampson, of Thompson; Asst. Principal, Miss Ruth Smith, of Virginia; Intermediate, Miss Myra Campbell, of Osceola, PA; Miss Nina Avery, of Ararat.

Silver Lake – Mr. and Mrs. J. F. Murphy have sold their farm and are moving to Binghamton, NY. A farewell was given them one evening recently.

Susquehanna – Jack Dempsey, who walloped Jesse Willard, and galloped away with the so-called heavyweight boxing championship of the world, worked in the local shops of the Erie almost six years ago. He came here on an Erie freight train, secured employment in the local shops and made this place his residence until pay day. All in all Jack resided here about six weeks. He was a quiet lad, and mixed but little, say those who knew him while he was here.

Comfort's Pond, Harmony Twp. (southern part of pond is in Thompson Twp.) – Leon Storer, while haying in his fields near Comfort's pond, killed three rattlesnakes in two days. The reptiles were playing in the fields when they encountered Mr. Storer.

Kingsley – The old depot has been remodeled into a garage and Fred Tyler is manager.

Harford – The Normal graduates of Harford, 1856, met again at the Rosemont Inn, Montrose. There were six of them, namely Betsey Oakley Jeffers, of Harford; Mary Corse Stevens, of Clark's Green; E. W. Bolles, of Fairdale; Levi T. Birchard, of Birchardville; Hon. E. B. Beardslee, of Little Meadows; H. M. Benson, of Jackson. The Normal school of over 200 was the first held in Susquehanna County for special training of teachers. It was organized by Supt. B. F. Tewksbury at the old Harford academy.

Gelatt – Mrs. Verna Daniels and daughter, Pearl, had a narrow escape in a run-away accident. They took dinner with Miss Gertrude Bigelow, leaving for home about four o'clock. The iron breaking, thill dropping, hitting the horse on the legs, causing her to run away, throwing them out and causing severe injuries about the back and head of Mrs. Daniels. Pearl's leg was badly bruised. We hope for their speedy recovery.

Montrose – Johnson City base ball team came here, last Saturday afternoon and was trimmed by the score of 7 to 1 by Camp Susquehannock. Camp Susquehannock started scoring in the second. The hit of the day came in the fourth, when Frank Shafer drove the ball to the left field fence, where the ball found a small space and went through, and Frank trotted around the circuit. One might try for ages to duplicate this hit, but the ball would miss the small space in the fence.

Lenox Twp. – Mrs. B. R. Carr was the victim of a painful accident last week, when she was thrown from a hay rake when it overturned on a side hill at her husband's farm in Lenox township. The horse attached to the rake continued on his way after the rake upset and she was dragged along for some distance. She sustained a compound fracture of the left leg and her body was badly bruised. Owing to her advanced age her condition is looked upon as serious.

Uniondale – Sunday brought more visitors to Cottrell Lake than usual. The larger number was from the cities. Over one hundred took the evening train and many more returned by auto.

News Brief: "It's a waste of time," says a practical road maker, quoted in the Washington Farmer, "to do road dragging after the roads have dried up. They will usually be wavy and full of holes all summer. Those dragged while wet, will have relatively smooth surfaces." The road man referred to, uses a simple plank drag that cost him $1.50 and has made the highways around his home nearly as smooth as a pavement. While this advice would not fit all kinds of roads, it does apply to conditions in a great many sections.

200 Years Ago from the Montrose Gazette, July 17, 1819

*Notice. There is an unjust note held against me, for which I never received any value – and I hereby caution all persons from buying said note, as I am determined not to pay it unless compelled by law. –Said note was given September 9th, 1818, and became due May 1st, 1819. ROLIN BELL, Lenox, July 7, 1819.

*Burying Ground. Public Notice is hereby given to the inhabitants of Montrose and its vicinity, that one of the Committee which was appointed to circulate a subscription for the purpose of obtaining money to purchase a burying ground, and to inclose [enclose] it, has removed from this place and carried the subscription with him – but there was not enough subscribed to purchase the ground then contemplated. We the committee appointed for the above purpose, have thought proper to appoint Friday the 23d inst. at two o'clock pm at the Court House in Montrose, for the meeting of the society, to appoint another committee, or do the business necessary to be done – for we have no ground we can call our won, as a society, to bury our dead. – These things ought not to remain so. SAMUEL WARNER, ROBERT DAY, Committee. Montrose, July 10, 1819.

*At the present time of failures of Banks, it is with pleasure we are able to state that the Silver-Lake Bank, at this place meets all demands with promptness. This may truly be termed the time that tries Bank's Souls, and those which maintain their credit thro' the present pressing time will deserve well of the community. Silver-Lake notes are quoted in Philadelphia at only 2½ per cent discount; which is as low or lower than any other interior notes in this state.

*DIED. In this town, on Monday last, in the 16th year of her age, Miss Peggy Ann Bowman, daughter of Rufus Bowman.

*DIED. On Thursday morning last, Miss Julia Catlin, daughter of Erastus Catlin, in the 17th year of her age.

*DIED. In Choconut on Thursday morning last, aged about 25 years, after a lingering illness, Miss Luna Webster, daughter of Amos Webster.

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Letter of the Law

By Jason J. Legg

For the past several weeks, we have discussed the recent United States Supreme Court decision that allowed a large memorial cross to remain on state land in Maryland. We have reviewed the opinions connected with the 7 justices who formed the majority votes and their views as to why it was constitutional for a historical war memorial cross to sit upon state-owned lands and to be maintained by the state. This week we will discuss the views of the 2 dissenting justices who believed that the continued placed of the memorial cross on state land violated the Establishment Clause.

Justice Ginsburg, joined by Justice Sotomayor, referred to the memorial as "an immense Latin cross" that "looms even larger illuminated against the night-time sky." The dissenting justices refused to accept that the Cross had obtained a secular meaning as a war memorial – and that Maryland's decision to allow the Cross on state land demonstrated a lack of neutrality toward all religious faiths. Justice Ginsburg argued that the maintenance of the Cross "elevates Christianity over other faiths, and religion over nonreligion."

Justice Ginsburg noted that prior precedent prohibited government endorsement of a religious message, i.e., the government had to remain neutral. Injecting her personal beliefs into her opinion, Justice Ginsburg stated openly: "As I see it, when a cross is displayed on public property, the government may be presumed to endorse its religious content." Such governmental endorsement "conveys a message of exclusion" to citizens who do not associate with that particular religion.

Justice Ginsburg observed that the Latin cross had been the defining symbol of Christianity for more than 2,000 years – it is an exclusively Christian symbol that it is not utilized by any other faith community. Thus, Justice Ginsburg concluded that "the principal symbol of Christianity around the world should not loom over public thoroughfares, suggesting official recognition of that religion's paramountcy."

As to the argument about crosses appearing on marked graves in public cemeteries, Justice Ginsburg observed: "When a religious symbol appears in a public cemetery – on a headstone, or as the headstone itself, or perhaps integrated into a larger memorial – the setting counters the inference that the government seeks either to adopt the religious message or to urge its acceptance by others. In a cemetery, the privately selected religious symbol on individual graves are best understood as the private speech of each veteran."

Justice Ginsburg argued that constitutionally prohibiting the cross from being on state property would not require the cross to be "torn down." Rather, she suggested that "the violation may be cured by relocating the monument to private land or by transferring ownership of the land and the monument to a private party."

In the end, Justice Ginsburg could not accept the majority's argument that passage of time and secular nature of the memorial had in any way muted the religious nature of the cross itself. In selecting a cross for a public memorial, as opposed to an individual grave site, Justice Ginsburg asserted that the state government was entangling itself into religion in a manner that exceed neutrality and had become an open endorsement of religious beliefs. Thus, Justice Ginsburg (joined by Justice Sotomayor) dissented and contended that the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment required that the cross be removed from state property.

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How To Take Pills©

By Dr. Ron Gasbarro

TV drug ads featuring "real" people

Hank came into the pharmacy to get a refill. While he was waiting, he said to the pharmacist, "Did you ever notice how TV ads have more and more mixed couples on them? You know, black husband and white wife, Chinese girlfriend and Indian boyfriend. Even guys hugging guys. What's going on?"

The pharmacist is far from closed-minded. He believes in "live and let live." Yet, he has seen these TV ads increase in frequency. Many companies now do it: Cheerios, Colgate, Apple, Bud Light, Kodak, Microsoft, and IKEA to name a few. Now, the pharmaceutical industry is portraying "unconventional" couples in drug ads. Such drug ads started early on when various antiretrovirals for HIV infection became available. There, you would see a gay couple washing dishes, making supper, and fondling their pet iguana, happy in the fact that their condition is under control. Good for them!

But one has to ask oneself: Exactly what are the sponsors of these adverts selling? If the advertisement is for a brand new biological indicated for psoriasis or ulcerative colitis, does it matter if the patient's partner is black or white, gay or straight? Sometimes it does matter. An analysis of US health data from 2001 to 2013 found that black, Asian, and other minorities are less likely than whites to see a doctor for treatment of the chronic inflammatory disease. The researchers found that among the 842 people with psoriasis included in the study, 51% of whites, and 47% of Hispanics saw a dermatologist for treatment. By comparison, only 38% of blacks, Asians, and other non-Hispanic minorities saw a dermatologist for their psoriasis. Hence, by including a minority in the commercial, non-whites may be encouraged to get help. Also "while psoriasis is less common among minorities, previous research has shown their disease can be more severe," says study author Junko Takeshita, MD, a dermatology professor at the University of Pennsylvania.

In terms of inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) such as ulcerative colitis (UC) and Crohn's disease, racial disparity also exists in terms of both diagnosis and treatment. According to a 2014 review, minorities with UC can be 50% less likely to undergo surgery than whites, while minorities with Crohn's can be 70% less likely to undergo bowel resection than whites. In Asian cultures, IBD is often seen as taboo and such a diagnosis is typically not shared to share an IBD diagnosis with family or friends. Not seeking medical help can result in dire complications and unnecessarily increased morbidity. Seeing a TV ad for an IBD drug that includes minorities – however subtle – can be the impetus to look for early medical care.

Of course, socially diverse ads for merchandise that every human uses can be distracting. This year, Kimberly-Clark, the makers of Cottonelle® toilet paper ran two ads touting their very necessary product. In these ads, a voiceover reads: "Down-there-care from Cottonelle…down there because today you meet the parents. So before they sit you down, give your bootie a confidence boost with cleaning ripples for a superior clean…" However, while one ad, featuring a heterosexual couple, ends with "…and makes you feel like the kind of guy she takes home to mother", the second one, starring two men, ends with "…and make you feel like the kind of guy he takes home to mother." Okay…

The pharmacist knew that an ad can be funny, cute, and memorable. But if the viewer remembers the ad and not the product, was it really effective in selling the product? More ads are welcoming everyone from amputees to Down's syndrome kids. Whether or not the ad distracts one from the marketing message depends on how one relates to all the background noise.

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

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