Milk bagging machine, 1971

Jim Hess of Pine View Acres near New Danville demonstrates the store's new milk bagging machine in this photo from August 1971.

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Excerpts and summaries of news stories from the former Intelligencer Journal, Lancaster New Era and Sunday News that focus on the events in the county’s past that are noteworthy, newsworthy or just strange.

25 years ago

The front page of the New Era on Aug. 22, 1996, featured a fish story.

It wasn't a dramatic exaggeration, though - it was the real deal.

Strasburg police chief Robert Ham had just returned from Maryland, where he competed in the 23rd Ocean City White Marlin Open, the world's largest bill-fishing tournament.

Not only did he compete, he won- by pulling in a massive 446-pound marlin, which came with a prize of $166,823. The winnings would be split between Ham and five other men who shared and crewed his charter boat.

The four-day contest drew some 1,500 saltwater anglers from all over the United States. Ham was the second winner from landlocked Lancaster County - just two years earlier, Kunzler & Co. vice president Chris Kunzler III won the Open with a 521-pound marlin.

In the headlines:

SAT scores are highest in 25 years

Kevorkian facing death charges?

Luxurious $210 million new home for Flyers, 76ers is ready to open

Check out the Aug. 22, 1996, Lancaster New Era here.

50 years ago

Lancaster County has long been known for fresh-off-the-farm milk. But in 1971, Pine View Acres, a farm dairy store south of New Danville, started selling milk in a whole new way - in bags.

Buying a plastic bag of milk was a novel concept to Lancaster County residents, but the idea had caught on in Canada and throughout Europe, though few American dairies offered their product in that form.

The system - which involved a large machine that piped fresh milk into UV-light-sterilized bags - resulted in a package that consumers could then empty into a bottle or other container at home. The bags could also be placed into reusable plastic pitchers to avoid a messy transfer.

The advantage to the new system was simple: Freshness. By eliminating the traditional packaging process and the middlemen involved with it, milk could be processed, packaged and sold to the consumer on a daily basis.

In the headlines:

Six die in San Quentin break

Nixon names citizen panel to aid Pakistan refugees

Chris Evert scores upset

Check out the Aug. 22, 1971, Sunday News here.

75 years ago

A funeral for an Amish girl killed when she was struck by a car drew more than 800 mourners in the summer of 1946.

The crowd was too large to be accommodated in the Upper Leacock Township farmhouse of the Jacob Stoltzfus family, as would be typical for Amish funerals. The bier and funeral proceedings were moved to the family's large bank barn, where potato crates and planks served as makeshift seating for friends and family from as far away as Maryland and Delaware.

Rachel Stoltzfus, the second oldest daughter in a family of 11 children, was struck and killed near New Market, Maryland, where she and a group of farm youths had traveled for a post-harvest vacation trip.

In the headlines:

U.S. gives Tito ultimatum

Palestine towns surrounded by British troops

Polio in nation approaching peak

Check out the Aug. 22, 1946, Intelligencer Journal here.

100 years ago

In August 1921, the Lancaster Chamber of Commerce wanted to convince people from "the outer edges of the county" that the city of Lancaster was worth traveling to - especially for the purpose of shopping.

Eighty-four retailers in the city, from small shops to department stores, agreed to hold sales on Aug. 23 in an effort to show off Lancaster's retail landscape to those who might be reluctant to visit.

Lancaster Sales Day wasn't meant to be a money-maker, the Chamber said, but rather a "friend-maker," adding new people to city shopkeepers' lists of regular customers.

Sales were to be offered on every sort of goods imaginable, from washing machines to bed linens to clothing. City hotels and restaurants were also getting in on the deals by offering dining deals for visiting shoppers.

In the headlines:

400 U.S. Marines sent to Panama for secret duty

Costa Rica wins disputed ground, says State Dept.

Check out the Aug. 22, 1921, Lancaster Intelligencer here.

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