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: All history teachers strive to bring the past to life for their students, but Ned Beck went the extra mile. In his Pequea Valley Intermediate School classroom, jeans-wearing eighth graders became period-dressed citizens of July, 1863. The classroom was darkened and lit only by candlelight while students attended a mock town meeting complete with debate and voting. The May 26, 1994, New Era had the story.
The same edition reported that Tim Montag spent a hot, humid day preparing Meadowcreek Lane for a test of his company’s new road surface technology. The manager for E.J. Breneman Inc. said the new “micro-surfacing” was applied in a rough, thin coating. It helped to prevent skidding and was less expensive than a traditional surface.
National Headline: Ray denied parole in King assassination.
50 Years Ago: Vermont Commissioner of Education Harvey B. Scribner had choice words for those who scorned “young people striving for a better society.” Speaking in Lancaster to an audience of 50 police officers, Scribner said young people would not accept hypocrisy and were well aware of large problems in society. Scribner rejected the idea that problems in schools were a result of “taking prayer out of the country’s public schools,” calling the idea “simplistic.” The May 26, 1969, Intelligencer Journal had the story.
Also in that edition, it was reported that members of the Town & Country Club heard the call of the State Hospital and responded in spades - literally. In addition to garden tools, they also gave curtains, seeds, furniture, books, a wash line and clothespins. Gardening would be used as therapy for the patients in the hospital.
National Headline: 7 start cruise in papyrus boat
75 Years Ago: The May 26, 1944, Intelligencer Journal reported on a fire in the Woolworth building. The blaze started on the sixth floor in the office of dentist Dr. C.V. Halpin. A burning gas jet damaged a window, some equipment, a wall and part of the ceiling. Spectators lined the streets to watch firemen lift almost 300 feet of hose to get at the burning window. Dr. Halpin was at lunch when the fire started.
The same edition reported that the city school board adopted a budget of $1,371,139 and set the tax rate at 11 mills, unchanged from the previous year’s rate. As a “special wartime emergency measure” the board agreed to open the grounds of four schools from 5 to 9 p.m. The open schools would be part of the regular playground season program.
National Headline: Somerville urges unemployed night club workers go into war plants
100 Years Ago: St. Joseph’s Hospital launched a fundraising campaign to raise $150,000. All of the money raised would go toward needed improvements to the local hospital. The board anticipated a very fast response from residents, based on the hospital’s record of 36 years of good work in the community. Campaign chairs were confident of “swift and sure success.” The May 26, 1919, New Era had the story.
Also in that edition, Lancaster resident Chester Ecklin was reportedly a witness to a tragedy near the mouth of the Potomac River. A traveling salesman, he was aboard the Florida, one of the ships that rescued crew and passengers of the Old Bay liner when that ship burned. Passengers aboard the Florida assisted in the rescue.
National Headline: Woman suffrage again held up // Southern Democrats balk effort to have measure advanced