In 1912, fire at 1 o'clock in the morning destroyed three hotels and the William Dempsey house and barn at Limestone. It was also believed that one man, from Salamanca, was killed in the flames. The fire started in the Titusville Hotel. It was in this hotel that the man lost his life. He was known only as Rossi. The first intimation of the fire was the shriek of a whistle from an Erie locomotive. The residents of Limestone were awakened and turned out in large numbers. Lines of fire hose were laid from the tannery. The service proved to be very satisfactory and considerable property was thus saved. Hotels burned included the Eagle, the Titusville House and the Commercial Hotel. The three hotels were of wood construction and stood in a row to the left of the Erie tracks.
A new organization which appealed widely to girls, especially of high school age, had recently been started in Jamestown. This was the Camp Fire Girls of America, an organization similar in scope and purpose to the boy scouts and destined to become as great a factor in the life of the average American girl as the boy scouts had among the boys. The object of this organization was to add the charm of romance to work, health and play. The symbol was Fire, indicated by the rising sun. The symbol of membership was the standing pine, signifying simplicity and strength. The watch words were work, health, love, the first two letters of each word being combined to create the special camp fire word "Wohelo." There were three degrees of Camp Fire Girls, the wood gatherers, fire makers and torch bearers.
In 1937, winter held much of Upstate New York in its icy grip this day, many sections being covered with a near-record November snowfall. As residents of many upstate areas dug themselves out from under ten inches of snow, a bright sun helped clear icy roads that the previous day had caused many minor traffic accidents. The Buffalo weather bureau forecast was for continued cold. One traffic fatality was caused by the storm. At Batavia, Miss Beatrice Dixon, 24, died in a pileup of three cars on an icy highway. Western, central and northern New York were hardest ht by the fall. In Canandaigua, many motorists were provided with beds in lobbies and corridors of hotels when they were caught in the storm. More than a foot of snow fell in Jamestown and Chautauqua County.
Jamestown Chief of Police Charles A. Sandburg and Traffic Lieutenant Oscar C. Bergdahl issued a joint warning to car owners on this afternoon in an effort to keep all city streets open to city snowplows during the remainder of the winter. It was impossible for the plows to do a good job of keeping streets open if car owners left their machines parked at the curb in front of their homes overnight, said the two officers. Every car found illegally parked after midnight would be tagged by prowl car patrolmen and traffic officers.
In 1962, criticism was directed at Jamestown Mayor William D. Whitehead for failing to submit an application to the New York State Council of the Arts for free professional aid in appraising the historic and architectural merits of Fenton Mansion. The criticism was voiced by John P. Sinclair, chairman of the Chautauqua County Civil War Centennial Committee after learning that Mayor Whitehead had taken no action to obtain available state assistance for an evaluation of the local landmark as recommended by the Fenton Mansion Study Committee. Such a study had been recommended by the Fenton Mansion committee in connection with proposals that the former residence of New York's Civil War governor be preserved and maintained as an historic museum.
One of the country's most skilled craftsmen in art glass might have built his glassworks on Chautauqua Lake if he had visited here earlier in life. Such was the comment of the 84 year old Swedish born artist as he viewed the lake from the Garrison home high above Ashville Bay where he and his wife were guests. Emil J. Larson, whose works were choice among collectors' items, said he had never seen a more beautiful spot anywhere. The lake was like a sparkling jewel as it reflected the blue of the autumn sky. "In this magnificent setting I would like to have worked," Mr. Larson exclaimed. "I regret I didn't come here sooner." The tall, handsome artist had retired from the glass business 25 years previously.