100 Years Ago
In 1912, it was good news to the residents of Jamestown to learn from The Journal Friday evening that the Erie Railroad had ceased its opposition to the order of the public service commission that the Institute Street, Main Street and West Second Street grade crossings be eliminated and that the work would begin at the earliest possible moment. It was, if anything, better news to learn that the railroad company had agreed to provide better station facilities. The city had doubled in population since the issue was first discussed and it was easy to show the necessity of the elimination of the crossings in question.
"Shut up, shut up," was the reply the wireless operator of the Titanic made to the warning of the proximity of a dense field of ice less than two hours before the liner struck the berg. This was learned by the senate investigating committee. Captain Stanley Lord and Wireless Operator Cyril Evans, both of the steamship Californian, testified to the curt reply to their attempt to warn the big liner of the danger that lay ahead. It was further established in the testimony of Captain Lord that his ship lay surrounded by ice, not more than 19 1/2 miles from the Titanic, from the time she struck the berg and sent out her "C.Q.D." call until she sank beneath the surface. The testimony of both men demonstrated that but for a weary wireless operator going to bed, the Californian would have heard the call for help from the Titanic and proceeded to the assistance of the liner at once.
75 Years Ago
In 1937, giving his views on politics from the position of clergyman, Rev. G. W. Palmgren of the Zion Mission Church address the Political Study Club at its luncheon at the Jamestown YWCA Rev. Palmgren said in part: "As I see it, politics does not deserve all the knocks it gets. True, in this or that detail the blows aimed at it are not deadly enough but I do not believe that politics should be considered inherently bad. I cannot find that there is a particle of difference between politics and government. One sounds more dignified; the other has a cheaper ring. Politics is government and government is politics."
The New York Court of Appeals unanimously upheld the constitutionality of the McNaboe law forbidding suits for alienation of affection. The decision of the state's highest tribunal was directed against Lawrence Hanfern, Floral Park, L.I., plaintiff in a $30,000 action against George Mark, Nassau County. Hanfern, a former employee of Marks, charged that his former employer had stolen his wife's affections. His contention that the legislature had no right to abolish so called "heart balm" suits was upheld by Queens County Supreme court. "The end in view of the legislature in enacting this measure," he asserted, "was to protect a few rich defendants from newspaper publicity."
50 Years Ago
In 1962, skindivers resumed search for the body of a 20-year-old Sugar Grove parachutist, Thomas H. Nobbs. He was last seen at about 7:20 p.m. on April 25, swimming toward shore in the Allegheny River, near the Warren airport, with his parachute still attached. The youth was one of three who jumped from an airplane piloted by William "Bud" Maier, airport manager. The other parachutists landed safely. They were all members of the Chautauqua Sky Divers. Nobbs was the only one of the three parachutists who was not wearing a life jacket.
For two years, young Donald Luther of Buffalo, pleaded for permission to visit his grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Burns, at their home in Bradford, Pa., 86 miles away. He finally got his chance the previous day. Under fair skies, with temperatures reaching into the 80s, Donald, 14, bicycled the 86 hilly miles from Buffalo to Bradford in just eight hours. "It was a hot day, he commented. "Some of the hills were real rough and I had to walk up them." Donald made the trip by bike, he said, because he had an urge to accomplish something.
25 Years Ago
In 1987, Paragon Cable was boosting the number of channels offered in its basic service by 15, a move which would increase the monthly fee for cable television by as much as $3.50. Paragon Cable General manager Gene Aversa announced the changes at a press conference at the Holiday Inn in Jamestown. "The reason we're doing it is predominantly because of customer requests," Aversa told The Post-Journal. The new channels would include the Cable Value Network, Christian Broadcasting Network, The Weather Channel, Cable News Network or CNN, The Nashville Network, WTBS from Atlanta and Music Television or MTV.
On May 2, students and administrators at the State College at Fredonia were holding "Fredonia Marxonia" - the first of what they hoped would be a long and friendly series of Marx Brothers' festivals. That was hardly guaranteed. The relationship between Fredonia and the Marx Brothers had been touchy since 1933 when Mayor Harry B. Hickey complained to the clan about their choosing "Fredonia" as the mythical country in their film, Duck Soup. The Marx Brothers had responded to his letter in typical fashion, suggesting that he might change the name of his village as it was spoiling the reputation of their picture.