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 Aug. 25, 1994, New Era reported that kids in Lancaster County Park had “gone batty.” Several children and parents from the city’s public housing complexes teamed up with Vo-Tech teachers, city police and park rangers. The group built bat boxes as part of the Living Clean program. Living Clean provided “wholesome” activities for local youth. Police officer George Quickel designed the bat house project to create an interest in wildlife.
The same edition reported that the county’s 16 public school districts spent a record $50.8 million on renovations and new construction. Hempfield School District had three construction sites going at the same time, and was one of the biggest spenders. School District of Lancaster was also preparing to break ground on a large project – McCaskey East.
National Headline: Goodbye tradition: GM phasing out 2-key systems
50 Years Ago: The Pennsylvania Department of Forests and Waters put on a grand demonstration of a new firefighting tool in Lampeter – a helicopter. The demonstration also marked the 27th annual Lancaster County Firemen’s School. The copter could scoop up and dump over 100 gallons of water flying low over a water source, and it made short work of the grass fire set at Lampeter Community Park for the demo. The Aug. 25, 1969, Intelligencer Journal had the story.
In the same edition, it was reported that Lancaster Model Neighborhoods planned to elect 30 people to the Citizens Assembly. For the first time, the election would be conducted by district. Residents of five districts would vote for delegates in their own districts. Kenneth Abernathy, community coordinator for the Model Neighborhood Agency, outlined the new election process.
National Headline: Moon’s surface “extraordinarily ancient”
75 Years Ago: The Aug. 25, 1944, Intelligencer Journal reported that many pastors and ministers were urging 15-minute “services of thanksgiving” in local churches to mark V-Day. Services would be informal and nondenominational. People could attend in their work or street clothes, and just go to the church that was nearest to them at the time. All churches would hold the same service. The closing hymn would be “My Country Tis of Thee.”
Also in that edition: Police arrested a man who had been “terrorizing” Schoeneck residents. The suspect was an older man, wearing tattered clothing and carrying a heavy club. He threatened several residents and tried to prevent them from entering their homes. Police said the man was “demented.”
National Headline: All France shakes with rumble of American armor
100 Years Ago: Politicians were “incensed” at the efforts of former County Chairman B.F. Davis to get his son elected to the same office. Davis put his son forward as a candidate even before the current chair tendered his resignation. Angry parties were already “crystalizing” opposition candidates against B.F. Davis Jr. The younger Davis offered no comment in the article.
In the same edition, “girls night out” had a somewhat different meaning at Buchanan Park. The culmination of a summer’s-worth of activities, Girls Stunt Night showcased several hundred girls who entertained with “a dash of the old time three ring circus.” Theater, dancing and singing were popular acts.
National Headline: Supreme Council gets resignation of Archduke Joseph