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Excerpts and summaries of local news stories from the pages of the Intelligencer Journal and Lancaster New Era appear here each Monday. They focus on events in the county's past that were noteworthy, newsworthy or just strange. Full versions are available on microfilm at Lancaster Public Library, 125 N. Duke St.
Also, during the sesquicentennial of the Civil War, excerpts from Lancaster's Civil War-era newspapers, as well as new stories, can be found on the "Lancaster County and the Civil War" blog, at Lancas terOnline.com, keyword: Civil War.
CULTURAL EXCHANGE: The New Era reported on a visit to a local high school by a Soviet delegation.
A group of 11 people from the Soviet Union, including educators, writers, health care administrators, factory workers and farmers, stopped at Lampeter-Strasburg High School while on a tour of the United States.
The Soviets were returning a visit by members of the Lancaster Friendship Force, which went to the Soviet Union as part of a cultural exchange program the previous year. (Feb. 4, 1988)
DRUG DEBATE: Lancaster's mayor took issue with a report from state authorities about the drug trade in the city, the New Era reported:
"Lancaster County's growing reputation as an outlet shopper's dream apparently applies to the seamy underworld of cocaine trafficking.
"State and local authorities involved in a major drug sweep today reported that prices here for the highly addictive white powder are a third of the price of cocaine in Harrisburg and about half the price of the drug in Miami, still considered the major port of entry for cocaine."
Pure cocaine was reported to be selling on the streets of Lancaster for about $30 a gram. A gram cost $100 in Harrisburg and about $60 in Miami, a report from the state attorney general's office said.
The report said prices were so low locally because of close connections between dealers here and sources in Miami and because there was no "kingpin" for the Lancaster drug trade, but rather a number of lesser dealers in competition with one another.
However, a few days later, the New Era reported that Lancaster Mayor Arthur Morris disputed the low-price claims.
Morris said he was angered by the report and called the $30-a-gram figure "very speculative." He claimed that street purchases made in connection with drug investigations ranged from $33 to $87 a gram, similar to prices in other Pennsylvania cities. (Feb. 5 and 10, 1988)
AIRLINE HUB: The Intelligencer Journal reported on a big day at Lancaster's airport.
"Lancaster's modern Municipal Airport" became the eastern terminus for TWA as a heavy fog settled over the eastern seaboard and reduced the cloud ceiling at Newark to zero.
Two TWA planes headed from Pittsburgh to Newark landed in Lancaster, and their passengers -- as well as the mail they were carrying -- were loaded into taxis and driven to the Lancaster train station, where they completed their trip to Newark by rail. (Feb. 4, 1938)
FIRST CHECKS: The first-ever unemployment compensation checks were received by Lancaster residents, the Intelligencer Journal reported.
According to county officials, 94 checks arrived on the first day, ranging in amount from $7.50 to $15.
A total of 7,100 county residents had applied for unemployment benefits at the time. (Feb. 4, 1938)
FIRST LOOK: Lancaster's new high school was open for public inspection, the Intelligencer Journal reported.
The $1.4 million J.P. McCaskey High School was ready for occupancy and was open for three days of public tours, hosted by members of the senior class.
About 25,000 county residents turned out for the tours, the Intell reported.
Groundbreaking for the school was in December 1935. The project was financed with the aid of a Public Works Administration grant of about $630,000. (Feb. 5, 1938)
Flashback Lancaster is compiled from the Lancaster Newspapers archives by Jed Reinert.