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 April 14, 1994, New Era announced that four “smash-and-grab” theft suspects were arrested after a 25-mile chase. One was caught with a trunk full of stolen goods and the remaining bandits were nabbed soon afterward. The suspects broke plate glass windows at Rockvale Outlets and made off with whatever they could carry. Because of previous crimes, police were closely watching the outlets and saw the vehicle make its escape.
Also in that edition, it was reported that Sgt. James R. Zahm of the Lancaster Bureau of Police received the Kiwanis Youth Activity Award. Zahm was a 13-year scoutmaster. Former Chief of Police David M. Rineer presented the award, which was given in his name.
National Headline: Cigarettes no more addictive than coffee, tobacco executives say
50 Years Ago: School costs in six districts were published and ranked in the April 14, 1969, Intelligencer Journal. The state compared administration, instruction and debt service costs. In addition, principals, custodians, activities, and at least 10 other measures were compared along with total budget numbers for the six Lancaster County districts.
All members of the Lancaster city police force and its five cadets were slated to attend a 21-hour riot school, the same issue reported. Lt. Wilmer A. Hoover said the purpose of the school was to help officers understand the problems behind social unrest that led to rioting and violence. There would be sessions on human behavior, understanding minorities and foreign-born citizens, and the role of the police in a democratic society.
National Headline: More harm than good // Too much winter flab? Beware of exercising!
75 Years Ago: Civilian Defense officials praised Lancaster’s observance in a state-wide blackout. Control center staff who monitored the response “were lavish in their praise” of air raid wardens and those in protective services. This despite the fact that one air raid warden was arrested for public drunkenness during the blackout. The April 14, 1944, Intelligencer Journal had the story.
Also in that edition, it was reported that Earl F. Rebman proposed drastic measures to boost tin can salvage. The Lancaster County salvage chairman urged the revocation of food rationing stamps for individuals who neglected to properly prepare tin cans for salvage. He called the failure to do so “direct sabotage” and said slackers should be prepared to forfeit stamps.
National Headline: Seeks to break up “black market” in bus, railroad reservations
100 Years Ago: The April 14, 1919, New Era covered the tragic story of a 4-year-old who was murdered. John Sandoe enticed young Laura Hershey away with him on a Saturday afternoon. After killing her, he buried her body in a manure pile where it was found late the next day. Sandoe confessed to the crime, which stunned the community of Greenland and its close neighbor Lancaster.
In the same edition, it was reported that Chairman Magee of the Chamber of Commerce Victory Garden Committee secured a number of cabbage plants to distribute at the Victory Garden meeting. Each gardener in attendance would get several plants, as well as free seeds provided by the government.
National Headline: “Victory Armada” back in home port