Benton News Archives - May 2004
When things go wrong, don't go with them.
|May 31, 2004.
It is Memorial Day, a day on which we remember the soldiers who died while
serving our country. Memorial Day has its origins when organized women's
groups in the South decorated graves before the end of the Civil War. A
hymn published in 1867, "Kneel Where Our Loves are Sleeping,"
by Nella L. Sweet, carried the dedication "To The Ladies of the South
who are Decorating the Graves of the Confederate Dead." President Lyndon
Johnson officially declared the birthplace of Memorial Day in Waterloo,
NY, May 5, 1968.
The Memorial Day weather forecast is a soggy one, with showers and cool temperatures. Yesterday was a "keeper."
On this date in 1889, more than 2,000 people perished when a dam break
sent water rushing through Johnstown.
In a recent obituary in the Press Enterprise for Frances MeKeel Moyer, the article stated that she was the daughter of Albert and Clara Snyder MeKeel (sometimes spelled McKeel). Sheila Brandon is searching for information about a sister of Frances by the name of Mildred McKeel, married to Charles Cadwalader. Anyone that is researching the MeKeel-McKeel family is asked to contact Sheila .
Didja hear about the two Cajun fishermen, Boudreaux & Thibodeaux, who went out in the Gulf of Mexico fishing? The way that we heard the story, they were gone a couple of months and when they returned they noticed a Taco Bell had been built while they were away. Boudreaux turned to Thibodeaux and said, "Look at dat, we not gone no time and dem Mexicans done come over here and built a telephone company!"
It is nice to look over the shoulders of our graduating classes from
time to time. We'll look in on the graduating
class of 1949 and see what their world was like 55 years ago. Harry
S. Truman was sworn in that year, Sam Rayburn of Texas was Speaker of
the House of Representatives, Dean Acheson was the Secretary of State,
the Supreme Court ruled, in Wolf v. Colorado, that evidence gained through
illegal search and seizure may be used by prosecutors. It was a year of
Pillsbury "bake-offs" and scented bras and Gorgeous George the
wrestler and roller derbies and Silly Putty. Joe Lewis, the "Brown
Bomber," decided to take up another line of work after being champ
for 11 years. Ezzra Charles became the new heavyweight champion "of
the world" when he out-thumped Jersey Joe Walcott. South Pacific
was the hit in music and The Lone Ranger just arrived on TV, along
with Quiz Kids, Original Amateur Hour and Kukla, Fran
and Ollie. Uncle Milton Berle was at the top of the charts. It snowed
in San Diego, Palm Springs and Santa Barbara that year.
The class night had as its theme "the Gay Nineties," presented as a "mellerdrammer." The whole class participated in the Mary Hartman production. Miss Hartman had taken a chew of gum away from one of the class members and "outlawed" gum from all practice sessions. Miss Hartman told all the class that "this is the fun night." And fun it was, especially after it was all over. Miss Hartman had a pack of gum for each member of the class as a reward for a "job well done."
The Junior-Senior Banquet was held at the Moses Van Camper Hotel. The king of the evening from the Junior Class was Donald Gould. The class did not have a yearbook in 1949, per L. Ray Appleman edict. It was not until recently that old pictures of the class were assembled in what the members now call a "yearbook."
We should mention the members of the class no longer alive. They include Robert Beishline, David Floyd, Carl Fritz, Richard Keefer, Ronald Keller, Richard Sands, Harry Unbewust, Carl Shultz, Anna Hewlett Kropiewnicki, Barbara Long Wilcox, Evelyn Shultz Palmer, Ruth Smith Briggs, Eleanor Wilson Kinney, Mary Ellen Wilson Reigle, Shirley Shannon Parsell, Helen Barnes Fox, Charles Karns, Joan Sentner Mizarchik, Jack Schupp, John Harrington, Ed McHenry and Russell Morgan.
|Once when we had a summer job working for
Ken Kelsey, a local carpenter by the name of
Ross Smith surveyed some linoleum that we had
just laid, threw back his shoulders and told us that "You don't know
sickem!" We are writing about something today that we don't know "sickem":
We wandered into a Main Street garage sale Saturday--the kind that actually is held in a garage, not the kind that is held in a side yard or on a porch and called a "garage sale." The seller had new bags of yarn in wonderful colors, and told us that her eyesight didn't permit crocheting any longer. The yarn was for sale. We ran the yarn through our fingers and it not only looked good but it felt good. We snarfed it up, threw it in a giant bag and headed for Florence Kocher's house, where crochet is king!
Florence loved the yarn and told us about some of the simple stitches and the practice needed to crochet. Florence explained that we could be making a baby blanket or a granny square within hours. She said that all we needed was a crochet hook, some yarn, a measuring tape or ruler, a supply of straight pins and a yarn needle. At the end we would need a little water to make it all lay flat.
The next step was holding the yarn so that it could flow easily from hand to hook. Over the little finger, under the ring finger, over the middle and left forefingers. Tough stuff! We tried to loop the yarn around the little finger, running it over the forefinger. The book says that the hook pulls the yarn from the fingers through the loop on the hook. That's what the book says. It was a little like reading an owner's manual for a VCR. The words are in English but the sentences are in a foreign language. We are just not cut out for this over the finger, under the finger stuff. Our patience was unraveling...
Crocheting is the stuff of grandmothers, although younger women are learning to create knit dog cozies and cat ponchos. Florence proudly told us that she had taught her granddaughter-in-law to crochet, and she in turn taught five other young mothers. Across the country, instructional books are winding up in younger people's homes.
Statistics say that more than 38 million people knit or crochet, according to a 2002 survey by the Craft Yarn Council of America. The bible for the group is Debbie Stoller's book "Stitch 'N Bitch" , but "old hands" at the art of crocheting don't need any fancy books to know what to do. Florence's guide was a "hand-me-down" from her Mother back in Warrior's Mark, PA. Those designs work just fine for her today, thank you, and we could tell that she would like us to move on and talk about something else. Her hands wanted to get to work.
|May 30, 2004.
Nina Baker celebrates her birthday today and
in Santa Ynez, California, David and Heidi Kline
celebrate their wedding anniversary. Hurricane Hazel was hitting the Carolinas
on this date in 1954.
Honoring ancestors by cleaning cemetery grounds and decorating graves is a tradition that is both ancient and world wide. The specific origin of Memorial Day, or Decoration Day as it was first known, are unclear. In early rural America, a memorial day was an occasion for family reunions and picnics. Following the aftermath of the Civil War, America needed a secular, patriotic ceremony to honor its military dead. Monuments to fallen soldiers were erected and dedicated, and ceremonies centering on the decoration of soldiers' graves were held in towns and cities throughout the nation. For many years, states observed the holiday on dates of their choosing. Memorial Day is now celebrated on the last Monday in May.
A bleach that sells under the brand name of Tesco's announced on its label that it "Kills bacteria as well as the leading brand." That's pretty hard on competition!
Quote of the Day:
The town was filled with garage sale buyers yesterday and everyone seemed to have a good time. There were people and cars everywhere. Gas stations were jammed and restaurants had an excellent day. Some garage sales proved so popular that it was next to impossible to park cars along Main Street.
In the course of an average lifetime
Winners of this year's Washington Post word contest
were very clear and organized. His lab experiments always worked, as I
remember. His field trips were fun, and inspiring."
"I didn't accomplish
much research." But I did get a lot of kids motivated in science.
Someone has to light a fire under kids, and I tried."
"It takes more
than a village to raise a child. It takes a special kind of village with
very special people. You know better than I do that you have such a village."
to read and write here, and that was the biggest element."
The Benton Area School System Alumni Banquet brought 240 to the high
school gymnasium Saturday night to feast on Cheri
Bissinger's roast beef, chicken, string beans, mashed potatoes
and extras, and to meet and greet the 2004 Inductees into the Hall
The High School Jazz Band, composed of 12 members under
the direction of Jennifer Welliver, entertained
the alumni with music to the enjoyment of everyone. There are five seniors
in the band, with three juniors and three sophomores and one freshmen.
|May 29, the 150th day
of 2004. There are 216 days left in the year. Leslie Townes Hope was born
on this date in 1903 in Eltham, England. Most of us knew him as "Bob."
In 1917 on this date, John F. Kennedy, the 35th president of the United
States, was born in Brookline, MA.
We are in the middle of a beautiful Memorial Day weekend. Today are the garage sales in Benton. Tonight is the Alumni Banquet at the high school starting at 5 PM for the tour of the new high school. The alumni banquet dinner will begin promptly at 6 PM and the induction ceremony will follow about 7 PM. Reservations for dinner are a must, but the public is invited to the induction ceremony. In Washington, DC, the National World War II Memorial will be dedicated today, marking the culmination of an effort that began in 1987, when legislation was introduced to create the $175 million memorial. It is also the Indy 500 weekend, but most of the glitter of that event has fallen off on NASCAR.
The 21 beautiful Welcome signs being installed on poles in Benton were the gift to the people of Benton by Mayor Jan Swan. Signs for the Benton Park will be installed in the near future.
Microsoft Corp. plans to release an update to its Windows XP operating system that will contain new technology aimed at stopping viruses and other forms of malware. The new release involves the default setting for the firewall. With Windows XP2, the firewall will turn on unless the computer user knowingly turns it off. In the original version, users had to turn it on themselves.
We are going to take the time to review the life and times of all of the inductees of the Benton Area High School Hall of Fame Program. We'll highlight Mary Lucinda Dodson and Donald Nelson Baker today.
Mary Lucinda Dodson, (1904-1997), a graduate of the class of 1922. Married name: Mary D. Gearhart. She is receiving the honor posthumously. Mary Dodson (Gearhart) graduated from Benton High School loving tennis, swimming and dancing. She especially loved sledding and rode bob-sleds, dishpans and coal shovels! She was an excellent singer and played the piano and the violin. She graduated from Bloomsburg Normal School and received a Master of Arts degree from Duquesne University. Mary served as president of the Association of Retarded Children for Monroe County and served on the board of directors of Burnley Workshop for physically and mentally challenged people in the Stroudsburg area. She founded weekly and summer programs and managed Camp Daddy Allen for 27 years in addition to serving as president of the board for 14 years. She was a member of numerous professional and civic groups and is listed in Who's Who in Outstanding Citizens of the Nation and in Who's Who in Outstanding Special Teachers. Mary retired from the Stroudsburg Area School District after teaching for more than 40 years. She married in 1935 and was widowed in 1954. She has one daughter, Margaret J. Dawson, Lambertville, MI.
Donald Nelson Baker, Ph.D., a graduate of the class of 1952. Donald graduated from Benton High School and completed his undergraduate work at Pennsylvania State University. He received his Masters and his Doctorate from Cornell University. He was named by the United States Department of Agriculture as the Outstanding Scientist of the Year in 1987. His teaching experience includes Clemson University and Mississippi State University. He is currently a cotton production consultant with responsibility for approximately 15,000 acres. Donald holds numerous awards and citations, but says that the most difficult was the one "at the bottom of the stack" which read simply Airplane Single Engine Land, Instrument... Donald lives in Starkville, MS, with his wife, Bobbi. There are five children and two step-children, and numerous grand children.
We are gong to talk about the North Branch Canal that followed the Susquehanna River through Columbia County this morning. We promise that it does have something to do with Benton. Read it all to find out what.
We have mentioned several times that the Susquehanna is the longest non-navigable river in North America. Nevertheless, in 1771 the provincial assembly named the Susquehanna River a public highway and set aside money to make it navigable. The first families to come up the river were propelled by four men with setting poles, cruising about two miles an hour against the current. The steamship "Susquehanna" exploded at Berwick May 3, 1826, during one attempt to mechanize navigation of the river and two years later digging of the North Branch Canal began in Berwick.
Long before this steamship accident, the highways of the wilderness were rivers. Settlements of the frontier were linked by water long before roads connected even neighboring farms. The Susquehanna and streams that flowed into the Susquehanna, however, remained non-navigable and the local roads did nothing to promote long-distance trade. Something had to be done, and finally the State agreed to promote a canal system. In Columbia County, the North Branch Canal was a part of this network. The canal seemed to be a natural. The Susquehanna flows into the Chesapeake Bay and from there was easy access to Baltimore, Philadelphia, and New York.
The building of canal boats was once the major industry of the town of Espy. In 1834 George and Thomas Webb built a canal boat called the The Fourth of July. The boat works of the Pennsylvania Canal Company was established in 1873. Two types of boats were built in this area, the flatdecker and the comber. The flatdecker was good for shipping non-finished material. The comber was outfitted with a pitched roof that shed water, making it more suitable for shipping finished or perishable merchandise.
Plank flatboats, called "arks," were also built near the present town of Fernville. The arks were built upside down, flipped into the waters of Fishing Creek and floated to the river where they were loaded with flour, whiskey and other locally produced products, then, depending on river conditions, floated down the river. Rarely were the river levels exactly ideal. The boat then needed to be brought back up the river, either by pushing the ark by poles stuck in the bottom of the river or by pulling the boat with a team and a rope. Frequently, the arks and later boats called Durham boats were sold when they arrived at their destination. The lumber from the boats were used by the purchaser.
It took six years to dig the canal sixty miles from Northumberland to Pittston. Picture this! The channel was forty feet across at the top and 28 feet wide at the bottom. Workmen dug the canal with picks, shovels and wheelbarrows. Teams of horses walking the towpath pulled the heavy loads up and down the canal. The North Branch was completed in 1831 to Pittston and to the New York border in 1856. It was part of a statewide network of canals known as The Pennsylvania Canal.
The drop in elevation between the New York state border and Northumberland was 360 feet. Locks were necessary for each drop of about ten feet. There were seven locks on the North Branch Canal as it rose 69 feet from Northumberland to the Lackawanna River above Pittston. There were locks at Rupert, Bloomsburg, and below Mifflinville.
Within ten years of the canal's completion, rails carried more and more freight, while the canal fell into disuse. The Lackawanna Railroad bought the canal from the State, but pulled the plug in 1901 and did not fill the waterway. An era came to a close.
We have mentioned several times about the grant of $50,000 for the construction of a portion of the bike and foot path connecting Columbia and Montour counties along the Susquehanna River. The grant was awarded by the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. It is one of almost $1.6 million in grants recently announced by DCNR secretary Michael DiBerardinis for more than 99 miles of trails in 14 counties. Funding for the project also has been provided through the federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality program. The project was supported by state Sen. John Gordner, R-27, Berwick.
The path from Northumberland to the Wyoming Valley will run along the old Pennsylvania Canal and tow path. The section of trail in Montour and Columbia counties will stretch approximately 25 miles from Danville to Berwick, part of the Susquehanna Greenways Project, a group that develops greenways to the Chesapeake Bay. The SEDA-COG Joint Rail Authority owns the land where the trail is going to run. The first phase of the project involves connecting Danville and Bloomsburg. Ultimately, a regional trail network can be developed, linking Northumberland to the Wyoming Valley. Project organizers estimated work to begin in a year. With an interest in the canal by hikers and bike riders, things of historic significance like existing canal locks could be preserved and restored.
Brian Auman, Landscape Architect, Community Resource Center, SEDA-Council of Governments, looked into extending the hiking and biking trail from the Canal Trail to Benton. Brian feels that it is feasible. Columbia County currently is conducting a County Recreation and Open Space plan. Brian told us that "I encourage (you) to get involved in that process and make the case for connections to Benton!"
We would like to know what you think. Should the residents of the upper Fishing Creek Valley push for inclusion in planning for a hiking and biking trail to link to our area? Please let us know what you think. If you like the idea, the person to convince is Bob Aungst, the director of Columbia County Planning, (570) 389-9146.
Quote of the Day:
|May 28, 2004. Dandy
Randy Karschner, Ron
Igou and the Dionne quintuplets--Annette, Cecile, Emilie, Marie and
Yvonne--celebrate birthdays today.
In what we can only say are very unofficial readings, readers have told us that Wednesday night's rain totaled 1.6" South of Benton Borough, 2¼ inches out West Creek and the same at New Columbus. Name it and someone reported it: rain, hail. lightening! One small bridge over West Creek washed away. Shoulders are washed away in places along state route 239 from Cambra towards Benton. Harrisburg didn't get a drop of rain, by the way. We see great stands of corn with the corn mostly standing in water, we see fields with weeds two feet high, we see fields much too wet to plant or to get a tractor on. Strawberries could be ready a week early this year, but getting into the fields to pick is another matter. For every inch of rain, a field will need a minimum of two days of good weather to dry out. The waterlogged soil will cause plant roots to rot, encourage pests and cause soil erosion.
Dreaming of Alaska this summer, but short of cash? If you can get out of town in June and July, sailings are being offered by the new cruise discounter Cruise Cheap. The airfares are bundled with the cruise price. Rates are good-for-June and July for a weeklong Alaskan cruise aboard Holland America's Veendam (Vancouver to Seward, including the Inside Passage, Ketchikan, Juneau, Sitka, Glacier Bay and College Fjords) and airfare from East coast gateways for $1,078. The least expensive sailing is June 13, but there are good rates (about $40 more per person) for June 27 and July 4 ($60 more). Call 800 439-1909 to book, but do it quickly or availability will be gone.
Quote of the Day:
We are going to take the time to review the life and times of all of the inductees of the Benton Area High School Hall of Fame Program. We'll highlight Audie Hittle today.
Audie Hittle helped found the first Explorer's Post in the Benton area and was that organization's first president. He served as class president and held other high-school offices. He holds three degrees, one in engineering plus two advanced degrees. Audie is a highly decorated military veteran, nationally recognized pioneer of government-industry collaboration and intrepid entrepreneur. During his 22-year military career starting in 1975, he was twice awarded the Meritorious Service Medal, the highest USAF non-combat award and distinguished himself in outstanding service to the United States. Audie transitioned to the private sector in 1997 and has since held key leadership roles in Fortune 500, small and startup companies. Audie is married to his high school sweetheart, Karina McMillan. The couple has one daughter and resides in Tyngsboro, MA.
Ice-cream is exquisite - what a pity it isn't illegal. Voltaire
My advice to you is not to inquire why or whither, but just enjoy your ice cream while it's on your plate. Thornton Wilder
Age does not diminish the extreme
disappointment of having a scoop of ice cream fall from the cone.
|One of the pleasures of growing up in a previous
generation was to have the very occasional meal that didn't involve meat
and potatoes. A favorite was tender sweet fried clams from a HoJo, the restaurant
with the orange roof and golden arches. HoJo's seemed to specialize, if
my failing memory is correct, in macaroni and cheese, saltwater taffy, baked
beans, turkey dinners with mashed potatoes, chicken pies, clam chowder,
toastees and 28 flavors of ice cream.
We remember a long trip from Benton to Mount Morris, New York, thirty-five years ago when brother Dayne said that he needed a break from driving and that we would stop at Howard Johnson's for lunch. A youthful passenger, unfamiliar with the orange-roofed restaurant, asked, "Is he a friend of yours?"
The closest HoJo restaurant to Benton was in Danville, and the restaurants appeared at one time all along the Pennsylvania, Ohio and New Jersey turnpikes.
Howard Johnson borrowed $2,000 in 1925 to buy a small corner drugstore in Wollaston, Massachusetts. The store sold candy, newspapers and patent medicine but the real interest of customers was at the old marble soda fountain. Howard created a sensation using his mother's recipe for ice cream with natural ingredients and a heavy hit of butterfat content. He soon opened a beachfront ice-cream stand, and sold $60,000 worth of ice cream cones, a nickel a cone, the first summer.
By 1928 he was selling $240,000 worth of ice cream cones and he kept adding flavors until he reached 28 varieties. He added more beachfront stands and sold lots of hot dogs clipped at both ends, notched lengthwise, cooked in creamery butter and inserted in a lightly toasted, buttered fresh roll.
Undaunted, Howard persuaded an acquaintance to open a "Howard Johnson's" restaurant on Cape Cod under a franchise agreement in 1935. Howard Johnson designed the space, created the menu, set the standards, and delivered the food and ice cream. The franchisee, under a license, owned the property and received the bulk of the revenues. Howard required that the restaurant be run according to his quality standards or the contract was void.
In the middle of the Depression, 17 Howard Johnson's restaurants opened. One restaurant owner invested $10,000 as one-third the cost, the remainder to be financed over three years. The owner hoped he would gross $60,000 a year, but he actually grossed $200,000 during the first twelve months. The bright orange roof and the Simple Simon and the Pie Man road signs appeared on 107 Howard Johnson restaurants by 1939. The restaurant became the "Host of the Highway." By 1954 there were 400 Howard Johnson restaurants in 32 states. The Howard Johnson Co. went public in 1961 with 88 franchised Howard Johnson's Motor Lodges and 605 restaurants. Ahead, however, lay obstacles in the road, known as the energy crisis and the Big Mac.
Howard Johnson's became yesterday's news. Holiday Inn®, Ramada Inn® and Marriott® hotels and McDonalds and Burger Kings and--well you get the picture. The Howard Johnson chain suddenly didn't look so modern any more. Imperial Group PLC of Great Britain bought the chain in September 1979, and started selling off many of the pieces of the pie.
|It is fun to poke around and compare the old with the new.
On the left below is the CALSO service station operated by GlenWatts in
1955. The station was at the Southeast corner of Main and Market Streets.
On the right below is the 2004 version of the building, now housing a coin
shop, Benton Coins & Collectibles, 227 Main Street.
Because of the strength of the national "Chevron" brand identity, Standard Oil Co. of California made the decision in 1958 to convert all of its Eastern U.S. stations from Calso to Chevron.
|The conversion involved repainting more than 7,000 station pumps in
a new color scheme and adding the Chevron name plate. During the transition,
the company placed a red bag over the Calso signs that read, "What's
come over our Calso sign?" The public learned the answer when the red
bag was pulled away and the Chevron name and symbol appeared.
In 1984, the company adopted Chevron Corporation as the official corporate name, replacing Standard Oil Company of California. This step coincided with the merger with the Gulf Corporation. Today, the company is known as the ChevronTexaco Corp selling the Chevron, Texaco and Caltex brands.
"I've stopped reading the
newspapers. You've got to keep your sanity somehow."
May 27, 2004
A successful man is one who can
lay a firm foundation with the bricks others have thrown at him.
Success is getting what you want.
Happiness is wanting what you get.
Success isn't a result of spontaneous
combustion. You must set yourself on fire.
"Just living is not enough,"
said the Butterfly. "One must have sunshine, freedom, and a little
May 27, 2004. Hobe and Jesse Whitenight celebrate their 26th wedding anniversary today on the 27th. Daughter Lacinda tells us they were "set up by Aunt Marisa and Uncle Ted being invited to their house for dinner. Unbeknownst to Dad, they had schemed for him to take Jessie home afterward. He drove his motorcycle. She took the ride home anyway and the rest is history." Actually, Jesse always fumed a bit when daughter Linda would hitch a ride on future husband Tom Morris' motorcycle. After her ride with Hobe, however, a motorcycle ride didn't seem quite as bad.
Julia Ward Howe was born in New York City on this date in 1819. She
is best known as the author of "The Battle Hymn of the Republic."
The northern part of Columbia is getting ready for the yard and garage sales Friday, Saturday and Sunday, with most sales taking place on Saturday. Even restaurants and food suppliers are getting into the act. The good Southern Sweet Tea will be available at a moment's notice for take-out at the Market Square Grill, and both Market Square and The Old Filling Station will have quick sandwiches to eat on the run. The TasteeKreme is always quick, as is the Sub Shop. From noon until about 7 PM, the fire company will have fried chicken. D.R.'s QuickMart will have a couple of hot dogs (or a hamburg) and chips and soda outside for under $2, weather permitting. AYSO will wash your car at the CCFNB at Main and Market and you can keep right on piling the bargains in your SUV. If you head north to Central for the big sales there, the Christ United Methodist Church will have a yard sale with food and baked items from 8 AM. Rev. Leh tells us there are a lot of children's items in good condition. Our unofficial records show that we have had rain on 23 out of the last 35 days , but the forecast for Friday and Saturday is perfect.
On Friday, May 28, local musicians will stage a benefit concert for Jason Perez, the owner of Brews N Bytes, Danville. The benefit concert is to help Jason with his medical bills. Jason had a terrible accident that put him in the hospital. The concert will be held in the parking lot behind Brews N Bytes and will get underway at 7:00 PM.
Ruth Cavanaugh, Staten Island, NY, wrote that the annual Farver Reunion will be held starting at noon Sunday, July 11, at Berwick's Ber-Vaughn Park. Ruth notes that it is the 56th Consecutive Annual Reunion of the many branches of the Farver family. Ruth has many of the pictures that her mother had, and has Family Tree charts to explore along with over 5,000 Farver Family members in her files on her web site. If any Farver family members would like to visit the web site, send Ruth an email at and she will send an invitation so they can visit.
Bonnie Farver, President of the group, tells us that the reunion will be in the last pavilions down on the top section near the restrooms. She asks that attendees bring an item for auction and to be prepared to an do an old fashioned cake walk.
For people interested in starting their own genealogical web site as Ruth has done, visit the web site at www.myfamily.com .
Flying somewhere? Consider Harrisburg International Airport, a little over two hours away. Passenger traffic counts jumped by 14.8% last month. We find excellent rates out of the airport in Middletown, just outside of Harrisburg.
We all know that the partially hydrogenated oils in margarine, shortening, french fries and thousands of processed foods contain trans fat. Studies begun in the late 1980s began to show that trans fat actually promotes heart disease. In 1993, the Food and Drug Administration began to require food labels to disclose trans levels.
Trans fat raises LDL-or
"bad"--cholesterol about as much as saturated fat does. Unlike
saturated fat, however, trans fat lowers blood levels of HDL--or "good"--cholesterol.
Studies in the last year indicate that current thinking is that trans
fat is worse than saturated fat and could be responsible for as many as
20,000 or more deaths each year.
Check for "partially hydrogenated vegetable oil" in the ingredient lists of margarines, cakes, cookies, pastries, pot pies, crackers, and frozen foods. Some of the biggest users of partially hydrogenated vegetable oil are such major chain restaurants as McDonald's, Burger King, Wendy's, KFC, Applebee's, and Red Lobster. When you visit your favorite restaurant, don't accept french fries just because they are inexpensive for the restaurant to serve. Insist on a heart-healthy substitute.
Whine, whine, whine--that's all we seem to do. Verizon Wireless activated its Troy Township cellular communication tower Wednesday, to the delight of western Bradford County. Another Verizon tower in Tioga County provides service sweeping from Wellsboro to the edge of the range of a tower near Towanda. Does the upper Fishing Creek valley get a cellular tower? You betcha your bippy we don't! Please mention that fact whenever you happen to be around a person anyway associated with the sale of cell phones.
The sirens some heard Wednesday were emergency sirens used to warn residents of an emergency at the PPL nuclear power plant in Salem Township. They were activated for an annual test Wednesday. There are 112 sirens located throughout Luzerne and Columbia counties. Only one failed to sound.
Millville will dedicate a monument in the park May 29 at 1 PM. Millville graduate Mark Robbins is responsible. The monument remembers local Millville veterans who served their country.
We are going to take the time to review the life and times of all of the inductees of the Benton Area High School Hall of Fame Program. We'll highlight Fred Baker today.
Fred Baker is the Chief Executive Officer of Baker Installations, Inc., a $30 Million 500 employee telecommunications service provider in 12 states. Baker Installations technicians service over 20,000 consumer homes and businesses every week.
Fred founded Baker Installations in 1976, Baker Leasing in 1984 and Expert Cable Inc. in 1990. Inc. Magazine awarded Baker Installations the "Inc. 500" Award for "Fastest Growing Privately Owned, Companies" in both 1984 and 1985; the 1999 Arthur Andersen "Best Practices" Award for Motivating and Retaining Employees; and in year 2000, runner up for Entrepreneur of the Year Award for Pittsburgh.
Fred has served in numerous positions with organizations ranging from the Pennsylvania Cable and Telecommunications Association, to the Allegheny Regional Asset District Board of Directors which distributes $60 million of taxes annually to regional cultural projects; and the Governor's conference on Small Business 1998. His commitment to "making a difference" is reflected in his involvement with the Council on Pornography during Ronald Reagan's presidency and the Republican Presidential Task Force Medal of Merit, George Bush Presidency; and the Board of Trustees for Allegheny Institute, a local political economic think tank. In the spring of 1999, candidate Fred Baker came within a 4% voter approval for Allegheny County Councilman At Large for the first elections for Home Rule government. Fred devoted 18 years to the South Hills Christian School as a school board member, and two 2-year terms as a Deacon of Library Baptist Church. A favorite board since 1987 is the Board of Directors of the Caleb Project, which focuses on missions mobilization to the least reached nations with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. A bible student for 45 years; an adult bible class teacher for 30 years, Fred enjoys guest lecturing and has been heard on several radio shows such as "The American Entrepreneur," "Lead the Way" and "The Jerry Bowyer Show" where he talks about leadership as a Christian businessman.
Born and raised in Benton, Fred later attended Mississippi State University. At his campus job with the Mississippi County Extension Service he developed and established a library reference filing system for over one million County Extension Service agricultural and home economics publications saving 20 hours per week to fill publication shipping requests from county agents.
Fred has been married to Beth Christine Kocher for 38 years, and they are the parents of eight children and seven grandchildren. Their social and recreational time center on family, church, school and business activities. Leisure time pursuits and hobbies are computer activities, photography, reading, television, skiing, golf, single track biking and travel.
So many candles. So little cake.
May 26, 2004
Aspirin appears to reduce women's chances of developing the most common type of breast cancer.
In all things of nature there
is something of the marvelous.
Time is like a dressmaker only specializing in alterations.
Pull out a gray hair and seven
will come to its funeral.
|May 26, 2004.
Today Carol Vance, Ellen
Yvonne Lenbergs, Linnea Holdren and
Laura Gould celebrate their birthdays, along
with county singer Country Hank Williams Jr., 55.
Nevin and Deborah Dressler celebrate their wedding anniversary today.
It came and went so fast! Folklore holds that when you hear the sound of the first cicadas, the first frost of the year will occur about three months later.
The Susquehanna River bisects our state. One branch is known as the West Branch and flows East through Lock Haven and Williamsport, then South until it joins with the North Branch in Northumberland. The North Branch begins in New York state and flows South through Wilkes-Barre. The river then flows South and East to the Chesapeake Bay, draining an estimated 27,500 square miles of the state, an area larger than Massachusetts, New Jersey, Vermont and Delaware put together. The river is the longest non-navigable river in North America.
My lilac trees are old and tall;
The 51 members of the graduating class in Millville are excited about Thursday night, the night they graduate and the night that the Guv comes to give them a send-off courtesy of a commencement address. State Agriculture Secretary Dennis Wolff's son Nicholas will be one of the 51 graduates.
We are going to take the time to review the life and times of all of the inductees of the Benton Area High School Hall of Fame Program. We'll start today with Dr. Donald Rabb.
Donald D. Rabb graduated from the Benton Vocational High School Class
of 1940, and went on to graduate from Bloomsburg State Teacher's College.
He received his master's degree from Bucknell University and his Doctor
of Education degree from Pennsylvania State University. He has participated
in advanced studies at an additional five universities.
Donald served for three years in the Army Air Force, two of which were spent with the 12th weather squadron in North Africa, Italy and Egypt. He has served on numerous national biology committees dedicated to improving the curricula of secondary school biology courses and to upgrade the education of biological scientists at the undergraduate level. He was appointed to teach in National Science Foundation-sponsored Institutes for Biology Teachers at the University of Hawaii in 1965 and at Delhi University, India, in 1968. He was the commencement speaker for the first class to graduate from Bloomsburg University in 1983.
He has an impressive list of local organizations in which he has played an active role, ranging from high school and college alumni associations, the Bloomsburg Fair Association, the Benton Fireman's Association and the Benton Borough Council. He was an inspiring scoutmaster. Donald married his high school sweetheart, Dottie McHenry, and they have three children.
Speaking of getting together at the Alumni Banquet, remember that nothing makes a woman feel older than meeting a bald-headed man who was two grades behind her.
Didja know that the Pennsylvania Power and Light Company dates back to June 4, 1920, when eight different utility companies were merged into a single company with 62 small steam electric and hydroelectric generating plants. Just a few years before the beginning of the PP&L, more than 70 electric companies served central and eastern Pennsylvania. One of the companies was the Lehigh Power Securities Corp., which had a controlling interest in the Columbia and Montour Electric Co., which provided service to Berwick, Bloomsburg and Danville. PP&L made a major expansion in the late 1920s. In 1928, for example, PP&L acquired the Benton Hydro-Electric Company, the Millville Electric Light Company, the Montoursville Electric Light Company, and the Orangeville-Columbia Power & Light Co.
A new Pennsylvania law requires parental consent for a minor to have any form of body piercing. Body piercing joins prohibitions on tattooing for under-age kids. Of course, Momma and Poppa can agree, but we hope that they do not.
We overheard two cows talking in a field near Derrs. Daisy said to Dolly, "I was artificially inseminated this morning." "I don't believe you," said Dolly. "It's true, no bull!," exclaimed Daisy.
David Neff, 34, 255 Shannon Hill Road, Benton, lost control of his tractor-trailer in the westbound lane of I-80 near Milton. There were no injuries, but traffic was tied up about five hours.
Expect police to check for seat belt usage in vehicles over the upcoming Memorial Day weekend.
For those who inquired about our health we'll mention that we are heavily into exercise, this week concentrating on weightlifting. We perform this exercise as we stand up. We don't want to be in the position where we are called upon to stand to offer a chair to a lady--and we can't. We feel that we can do as much as we ever did, we just don't want to! We have everything that we had 20 years ago, except that most stuff is a little lower. We want to feel fit as a fiddle, but it's hard shaped as we are like a cello. We suspect we may be over the hill because we feel like the morning after and we haven't been anywhere. We can remember back to when we were 20 and we didn't care what the world thought of us. At 30, we started worrying what the world thought of us, and now we realize that it isn't thinking of us at all. We know that life begins at 40, but then so does hair loss, bad eyesight, arthritis and the habit of repeating everything three times. We tell you these things just to console ourselves at no longer being able to set a bad example. We often think that life would have been so much easier if we had been born 80 and worked our way toward 18. This nonsense of being told to slow down by a doctor rather than by a policeman is for the birds.
Get the last word in: Apologize.
When weeding, the best
way to make sure you are
The only difference between a rut and a grave is the depth.
Union soldiers often marched South singing a song entitled "John Brown's Body."
Pennsylvania furnished 362,284 men to the army and 14,407 to the Navy during the Civil War.
May 25, 2004
May 25, 2004. Happy birthday today
to Brenda Conrad, Lebanon.
Brenda shares her birthday with Ralph
Waldo Emerson, born in Boston on this date in 1803. Please extend
your prayers today to Lorna Evarts, a patient
in the Geisinger Hospital.
The Benton Area Schools would like to take old yearbooks off your hands if you no longer want them. If you are willing to part with yearbooks that are no longer of any use to you, how 'bout bringing them with you when you come to the Alumni Banquet this weekend.
Tomorrow morning, like every Wednesday morning, throngs of people will head to the Lewisburg Farmers Market. You can count on about 80 vendors tomorrow, and that is no different than most of the 70-odd years of "The Market's" existence on Fairground Road in East Buffalo Township. The market is open year-round on Wednesdays, with fish markets, butchers, bakers and much more both inside and outside. Three-quarters of the sales at the Lewisburg Farmers Market take place between 9 and noon. Most of the markets business is conducted in the morning.
American Bandstand started as a local program in Philadelphia and stayed with us on ABC from 1957 to 1987, broadcasting the hottest new recording acts and dances. Eternally young Dick Clark, now 74, won't let go of a good thing. He is trying to market an update of American Bandstand for a summer 2005 debut.
We've been away, but we returned to Benton last night and found multiple presents waiting for us in our basement. We left the basement door open for awhile before we left and a three-legged cat decided to take a basement nap and slept through the closing of the door, her last chance of freedom for a long time. The cat has had a miserable two weeks, since the family it lived with decided to leave town without the cat, making the poor animal homeless. If anyone would like the cat, we suspect that it is yours for the asking. Bring warm milk.
The small town of Gettysburg was the site of the largest battle ever
waged during the American Civil War. The town was already 77 years old
in 1863, after originally being laid out by James Gettys, who had purchased
By chance on July 1, 1863, the future of Gettysburg was changed forever.
The Battle of Gettysburg, fought in the first three days of July, 1863,
resulted in a victory for the Union "Army of the Potomac" and
successfully ended the second invasion of the North by General Robert
E. Lee's "Army of Northern Virginia." The battle is frequently
referred to as the "High Water Mark of the Confederacy." It
was also the bloodiest single battle of the war, resulting in over
51,000 soldiers killed, wounded, captured or missing.
We'll continue from yesterday with some of the oddities of the war...
Lincoln was not universally trusted. In the election of 1860,
more men in the North than in the South voted for his opponent. Although
he ended up being called the "Great Emancipator," that was never
the role anticipated for the man. As President, Lincoln had the preservation
of the union as his primary objective.
Quote of the Day:
|Rod and Tiffany Deitrick announce the birth of Jenna Nicole Deitrick. Proud grandparents are Jean Deitrick, Benton; and Buck and Judy McHenry, Stillwater. Jenna Nicole was 6 lbs/11 oz and 20" long, arriving May 22 at Johns Hopkins Bayview hospital.|
|The Benton United Methodist Church recently distributed their collectable of the former Hotel Moses Van Campen, the 13th in a series of 16. The hotel was built in 1933 on the site of the former McHenry House. The McHenry House was on Second Street, now known as Main Street.||
The McHenry House
||The Hotel Moses Van Campen had 29 rooms on three floors. According to the description on the collectible, "a "huge, bright living room with flowered, overstuffed furniture was to the left of the lobby."|
To the right was the bar, which
was especially crowded during the Farmer's Picnic. At the end of the carpeted
lobby was a unique coat rack with an oval mirror, deer hear, and deer
hooves turned up to hold hats and coasts. The restaurant held 100 guests.
Next in the series will be the former band shell at the Benton Park and it will be available in September. In November of this year will be the O. B. Savage barn and in February, 2004, will be the Long Wagon Works. Contact a member of the Benton U. M. Church to order your copy today.
Death is no more than passing
from one room into another. But there's a difference for me, you know.
Because in that other room I shall be able to see.
Give someone special some flowers
Today would be a good day to do something special for someone special
Today would be a good day to learn something new from someone new
Talk about getting "rain on your parade!"
May 24, 2004.
Leota H. Poust Shaffer,
(Jan. 6, 1920-May 22, 2004), 84, died Saturday. She was born in Pine Summit,
the daughter of the late Oliver and Della Fenstermaker Poust. She is survived
by son, Barry D., Middleburg; and daughters Judy and Linda K., Lancaster
and grandchildren. Services will be Thursday at 11 AM at the Benton United
Methodist Church, Friends may call just prior to the service. Burial will
be at Benton Cemetery.
Frances Moyer, (July
9, 1919-May 22, 2004), 330 W. Third St., Bloomsburg, died Saturday, She
was a daughter of the late Albert and Clara (Snyder) Mekeel and graduated
from Lehman High School in 1937. Mrs. Moyer worked as a waitress for 20
years at the Heritage House Restaurant and for 20 years at the Kozy Korner
Restaurant and last worked for the Mortgaged Inn Restaurant. Her homemade
pies were legendary. Mrs. Moyer lived in Stillwater for 45 years and in
Benton from 1995 to 1999. She is survived by daughter: Jo Ann Lindner,
Bloomsburg; two grandsons and four great-granddaughters: and a brother,
Warren Mekeel, Lehman. She was preceded in death by her husband, Emmett
M. Moyer, who died Jan. 23, 1969; a son, Robert "Bobby" Moyer,
in 1955; and brothers and sisters. Funeral services will be held Tuesday
at noon at the McMichael Funeral Home Inc. with burial in the Maple Grove
Cemetery, Sweet Valley. Friends and relatives may call Tuesday from 11
Thomas Hart Benton, a Senator and a Representative from Missouri was
born at Harts Mill, near Hillsboro, NC, March 14, 1782; attended Chapel
Hill College (now the University of North Carolina) and the law department
of William and Mary College, Williamsburg. He was admitted to the bar
at Nashville, TN, in 1806 and commenced practice in Franklin, Williamson
County, TN; member of the State senate 1809-1811; served as aide-de-camp
to General Jackson; colonel of a regiment of Tennessee volunteers from
December 1812 to April 1813; lieutenant colonel of the Thirty-ninth United
States Infantry 1813-1815; moved to St. Louis, where he edited the Missouri
Inquirer and continued the practice of law; upon the admission of Missouri
as a State into the Union was elected as a Democrat to the United States
Senate; reelected in 1827, 1833, 1839, and 1845 and served from August
10, 1821, to March 3, 1851, the first Senator to serve thirty consecutive
years; author of the resolution to expunge from the Senate Journal the
resolution of censure on Andrew Jackson; unsuccessful candidate for reelection
to the Senate in 1850; elected as a Missouri Compromise Democrat to the
Thirty-third Congress (March 4, 1853-March 3, 1855); unsuccessful candidate
for reelection in 1854 to the Thirty-fourth Congress and for Governor
of Missouri in 1856; engaged in literary pursuits in Washington, D.C.,
until his death there on April 10, 1858; interment in Bellefontaine Cemetery,
St. Louis. Benton Township was established in 1850 in honor of Senator
Thomas Hart Benton.
We find estimates of up to 623,000 soldiers dying in the Civil War.
Almost everyone kept a diary or a ledger, newspapers on both sides of
the Mason-Dixon line editorialized daily and photographs recorded the
major events of the way. If all of the recorded information about the
Civil War was bundled it would take a number of large rooms to contain
it. We have collected some information about the Civil War that we found
interesting and we'll share some of it over the coming weeks. Here is
The Original Pennsylvania Dutch Folk Festival announced yesterday that the entire Kutztown Folk Festival collection of tools, farm equipment, signs, and buildings will be sold at public auction at the Schuylkill County Fairgrounds on Saturday, June 12. The Kutztown Festival was scheduled to run June 26 through July 4 at the Kutztown Fairgrounds. The festival celebrates the history of the Pennsylvania German culture. You will only find traditional crafts, food, music, and folk life at this festival. At press time, the web site for the festival had not yet made the announcement of the sale.
A reader is looking for a picture of John Kile, Sr. and wives Maria Hess and Hannah Scott. He is also looking for a picture of their son, Nelson Kile, who married Amy Holmes. Can you help?
Ralph Ford, 60, a volunteer from 17 Old Koons Road, Shickshinny, was directing traffic at the Benton Memorial Day parade Sunday, and was struck by a 88-year old woman from Bloomsburg. Ralph stands 6'4", was wearing a big orange vest with reflective tape on it with a big white hard hat on his head at the time. The accident occurred between the UniMart and the bridge on state route 487. The driver's car hit his knee, and Ralph was taken to the Bloomsburg Hospital, then treated and released. His ankle was hurting him Sunday night but Monday morning reports are that is is OK. The next time that you see a community volunteer, thank them for the service they provide. Folks should be glad we have guys like Ralph who do a good job!
Didja know that this year, 38% of shoppers who bought a new car on credit still owed an average of $3,686 on their trade-in, according to Edmunds.com, a consumer car-buying guide?
We would like to mention the recipients of last year's Hall of Fame.
The only time that winning is important is in war and surgery.
May 23, 2004
It still isn't progress even if the cannibal uses a fork!
Don't put off until tomorrow that which can be accomplished just as easily the day after.
"I went to Philadelphis one
Sunday. The place was closed."
May 23, 2004. Tom Kline celebrates his birthday today, and sharing his birthday are bandleader Artie Shaw, 94; actress Joan Collins, 71; and singer Jewel, 30.
For those of you who are interested in the genealogy of the people involved in St. Gabriel's Church, there will be an all-day genealogy workshop July 17 in the Church social hall. The St. Gabriel's homecoming will be Sunday, July 18. Sunday services on the 18th will be at 10 AM and 2 PM.
We seem to end up with the darndest questions from readers. One of
the strangest was about how Indians of the area kept their health. Our
research concluded that the Indians used a lot of different roots and
plants as medicinal cures for their various ailments, but they didn't
disclose much about their remedies to people who would later provide that
information to others.
Lindsey Keller is the subject of a feature article in Sunday's Press Enterprise. You may recall that Lindsey, running in her second marathon, recently finished 33rd out of 6,653 women in the Boston Marathon, ninth among American women and 488th in the entire field of 17,950. The article is entitled "Miss do-everything--Field hockey, biking, running, Keller does it all."
The story is told about the time that President Eisenhower invited
James Michener to the White House. Michener wrote back, explaining why
he could not attend. Michener's letter read,"
Eisenhower wrote back that he understood.
A really fine teacher and friend came into our life and the lives of hundreds of students at both the Benton Area School System and Bloomsburg University. We'll tell you more about this man later next week, along with others who are being inducted into the Benton High School Hall of Fame at the annual Alumni Banquet. We'll hear each of these fine people speak next Saturday night, or we'll hear from a living relative of the honoree.
Didja know that Pennsylvania now averages $2.019 per gallon for regular unleaded gasoline according to the AAA?
In Tom Austin's column in the Press Enterprise with Sunday's byline, he tells the story behind the story of the Fishing Creek Sportsmen's Association giving the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission and the park $1,000 dollars to buy lime for Lake Jean. The club contributed another $1,400 for a new boat dock for anglers to use at the park. Why the increased emphasis on fishing at Lake Jean? Trout were stocked at Ricketts Glen State Park for the first time this year and the lime was an attempt to achieve an accessible pH count for the trout to survive. To get the rest of the story, make sure you read the article in today's Press Enterprise.
Set your calendars for some events of the summer, including...
Quote of the Day:
Didja know that William Henry Harrison served only 32 days, the shortest term of any U.S. president? He served from March 4 to April 4, 1841. He came down with pneumonia shortly after his inauguration and never recovered.
Don't expect life to be fair.
Never go to bed with dirty dishes in the sink.
A good way to judge your personal success is by the degree that you're enjoying peace, health and love.
May 22, 2004
Don't spread yourself too thin. Learn to say no quickly and politely.
Don't believe people when they tell you to be honest with them.
May 22, 2004.
A little over two hundred years ago on this date, a "fever"
claimed the life of Martha Dandridge Custis Washington (1731-1802), the
first of the First Ladies. Martha, a widowed mother of two, and one
of the wealthiest women in Virginia following inheritance from her deceased
husband, Daniel Parke Custis, married George Washington in January 1759
when she was 27. Life at Mount Vernon, Virginia, was a social whirlwind.
Between 1768 and 1775 over 2,000 guests visited the Mount Vernon home.
Novelist Arthur Conan Doyle was born in Scotland on this date in 1859. When Doyle graduated from the University of Edinburgh with a degree in medicine, he was ship's doctor on two vessels that sailed to Greenland and West Africa, eventually opened his own practice in England, and wrote fiction. His third novel was the first that introduced Sherlock Holmes and his partner, Dr. John Watson. He wrote The Sign of Four three years later and published two-dozen short stories which took the public by storm. Doyle, however, was tired of the character, and decided to end the series in 1894 by killing Holmes off in The Final Problem. The problem was that didn't set well with the public! One woman called him a "brute." His solution was elementary: he resurrected his hero, and Holmes and Watson later appeared in 34 additional short stories and 2 novels.
We can't make all the class reunions, but we'll include all the pictures of various classes that you can provide to us.
A unique popcorn, peanuts, and molasses confection that was the forerunner
to Cracker Jack caramel coated popcorn and peanuts was introduced at the
World's Columbian Exposition, Chicago's First World Fair. The name "Cracker
Jack" came from a salesman who had been given a taste sample of Cracker
Jack, then exclaimed, "That's a Cracker Jack!"
"Take me out to the ball game,
We always enjoy the sights of Memorial
Day, the freshly marked graves so carefully attended to by descendents
who remember and care, the former members of the graduating classes of
Benton Area High School who for the first time in many years agree to
return to an Alumni Banquet and class reunion, the parades and other remembrances
for those who have died in our nation's service, the red poppies worn
in honor of those who died serving the nation during war, and the huge
number of people in a hurried pace carrying used items as if they were
priceless and moving as if time were running out. It is time for the annual
Memorial Day yard sales and flea markets and the upper Fishing Creek valley
will be right there with the best of them!
We normally don't include commercials
on the Benton News,
but we made an exception in this case.
It often requires more courage
to dare to do right than to fear to do wrong.
May 21, 2004
Drink eight glasses of water every day.
Let people know what you stand for and what you won't stand for.
People deserve a second chance, but not a third.
Avoid people who are negative.
May 21, 2004. There are 30 days remaining until the official start of summer. On this day in 1927, Charles Lindbergh landed his plane in Paris, completing the first solo, non-stop transatlantic flight. Bill and Lori Lenhart celebrate their wedding anniversary today. Don't forget the Rummage Sale running to 5 PM today at Christ the King Church.
On this day in 1901, Connecticut enacted a driver speeding law that stipulated the speed of all motor vehicles should not exceed 12 mph on country highways and 8 mph within city limits.
A new restaurant is set to open next week locally and one is slated to close later this month. We'll start with the Good-Bys! Jillys Restaurant on route 118 in Kyttle closes for good at 2 PM the last Sunday of this month, the 30th. We wish the staff and ownership of the restaurant the best. Jillys is an excellent place for Sunday dinner.
Further up the road by a mile a new Italian restaurant opens next week under the management of Gina and Peter Tomasak. They are the new owners of the Foothills Restaurant, 1417 State Route 118. You can't miss the restaurant with the 3' X 4' lighted sign out front. The restaurant will seat 60. Pete is the author of books like Ricketts' Battery: A History of Battery F, 1st Pennsylvania Light Artillery and The White Gold of Mountain Springs Lake. He has written for several journals and has edited other books. Pete is in the final stage of wrapping up a fourth book that we'll tell you about soon, and has a fifth book researched and ready to put pen to pencil. Three have been published. We wish Pete and Gina the best in their new endeavor.
We have not been keeping the service personnel as up to date as we could be, but we'll tell you that Erica Feola is in Fort Drum with the 10th Mountain division and will be on her way to Iraq in June. Her address is 204 Brady Road, Sackets Harbor, NY 13685.
The Benton branch of the First Columbia Bank & Trust Co. will conduct a Food Drive in June for the Benton Food Bank starting June 1. The bank is also taking donations of stuffed animals for the 4-H Club. The animals are given to the Bloomsburg State Police for distribution to children during a crisis. The police asked for Teddy Bears but will accept any cuddly animal that is clean and in good condition. Stop at the bank above Benton for further details and with your donations.
There are several theories as to who first discovered anthracite coal. One theory involves a campfire that a hunter by the name of Necho Allen built and which ignited an outcropping of hard coal near Ashland. The Necho Allen theory of who discovered the black gold holds that the event lead to the discovery nearby of the world's richest known vein of anthracite coal.
Others hold that anthracite coal was discovered by a farmer and miller by the name of Philip Ginder in 1791 on Sharp Mountain, nine mile west of the Lehigh River and forty miles north of Allentown. According to the story, Ginder was digging for "good rock" to use as a millstone and returned with what he later called "stone coal." A blacksmith, possibly by accident, caught it on fire. A neighbor, Col. Jacob Weiss, saw the possibilities in what had just happened and had the stone coal taken to Philadelphia for analysis. Weiss, with some partners he picked up in Philadelphia, formed the first coal mining company in the United States, the Lehigh Coal Mine Company.
In 1818, the Lehigh Navigation (the Lehigh Canal) was constructed to carry anthracite coal from the upper Lehigh Valley to Easton. By 1820, a downstream navigation system was completed allowing barges loaded with coal to float from the present town of Jim Thorpe, then called Mauch Chunk, to Easton.
The Lehigh Navigation and the Lehigh Coal Company merged to form the Lehigh Coal and Navigation Company in 1821. In order to provide both ascending and descending navigation on the Lehigh, the company rebuilt its waterway into a conventional lift lock canal 46 miles long. It had 52 locks, 8 guard locks, 8 dams and 6 aqueducts that ranged over an elevation of almost 355 feet.
Whatever theory of the discovery of anthracite coal you wish to believe, by 1828 coal towns were filled with both opportunists and miners. Prospectors penetrated the mountains with pits, tunnels and shafts and when these holes in the ground filled with water others would be dug. Miners discovered that they could dig much farther by horizontal drilling into the mountain from the foot of a hill. The original Pioneer Colliery at Ashland gave its name to the Pioneer Tunnel which ran 1800 feet into Mahanoy Mountain, owned and operated by the Philadelphia and Reading Coal and Iron Company from 1911 to 1931.
Anthracite coal is clean burning and gives off less smoke and greater heat than soft coal. Eastern Pennsylvania has 97% of all anthracite in the United States with the balance in Utah. The Pennsylvania deposits geologically occurred within an area of 484 square miles contained in nine counties. The majority of anthracite produced comes from Lackawanna, Carbon, Luzerne, Northumberland, and Schuylkill counties, with additional mining in Wayne, Columbia, Dauphin, and Susquehanna.
The Schuylkill River provided a way to get the coal out of the mountains, and by 1815 the Schuylkill Navigation Company had opened a canal between Pottsville and Pottstown. Financial trusts from Philadelphia bought up huge tracts of anthracite-rich forests and farmlands by 1830, and by the time of the Civil War, any town with anthracite in the ground became a mining bonanza.
Nine trains a day once ran to Philadelphia from Pottsville. Trains don't run from Pottsville to anywhere anymore. The Philadelphia & Reading Coal & Iron Company once dug sixty million tons of hard coal per year. By 1795, an anthracite fired iron furnace was established on the Schuylkill River. In 1806, John Pott purchased the furnace and then founded the city of Pottsville.
Mistakes are a fact
of life. It is the response to the error that counts
Take your dog to obedience school. You'll both learn a lot.
I'm not a snob. Ask
anybody. Well, anybody who matters.
Don't answer the phone when it is not convenient for you. The phone is for your convenience, not the caller's convenience.
Don't rush into important decisions. People will understand if you tell them that you'll "get back to them tomorrow."
May 20, 2004. Joe Labonte was born on this date in 1932 and shares his birthday with Academy Award-winning actor Jimmy Stewart. H.D. Hyde of Reading patented the fountain pen in 1830 on this date.
Lorraine Feola turned 50 on Saturday, May 15, and we forgot to mention it. In fact, if Lorraine's Mother, Orchid Carlson, Kearny, NJ, hadn't told us about it, we would have slept through it completely. Lorraine is the popular co-founder of the bluegrass group, Raven Creek, and the hostess of The Shed at Ivy Farms.
On the West side of town, the new band shelter is under construction at the Rodeo Grounds. The old one was blown down by a bad wind last November. All remnants of that bandstand are now gone, and a new one is under construction in the northeast corner of the rodeo grounds. Construction started on Mother's Day and the floor is in and the walls are going up.
Dan Stoneham played the radio advertising for the upcoming rodeo for us yesterday and the Rodeo Association has scored a winner with their efforts. You'll start to hear these advertisements on the radio and television as we get closer to rodeo time, July 13 through July 18, 2004.
And as a reminder, work night is every Thursday night around 6 PM for rodeo association members. There is always something to do around the grounds to get ready for the rodeo, things like mowing, weed wacking or just cleaning up around the grounds. The meetings of the rodeo association are the last Thursday of every month at the grounds during the summer.
"A wise old bird is the pelican
A newcomer to the country and western music world is Josh Turner, a native of Hannah, South Carolina. His popular song currently on the fast track is Long Black Train. The song uses the image of a long black train as a metaphor for temptation, and warns of the eternal consequences of climbing aboard. Josh has a deep, rich voice that is well beyond his 25 years. In fact, MCA signed him after hearing him sing only two songs. Josh, a strong Christian, is an all-American good looking young man you might expect to see on television's "The Bachelor." Take a look and listen at his web site, http://www.josh-turner.com/ , and you'll understand. You may think that you are listening to Randy Travis or Johnny Cash.
You can hear Josh in Pennsylvania on June 4 at the Reinholds Memorial Park in Reinholds, 120 miles from Back Home in Benton, PA, down route 61 past Reading and on June 6, at Del Grosso Park, Tipton, 130 miles from Benton, down route 220 past State College and Tyrone.
Well, I can hear the whistle from a mile away.
PPL Corporation owns and maintains ten area that are listed among the 200 best bird-viewing spots in Pennsylvania according to Audubon Pennsylvania. PPL maintains about 25,000 acres of company-owned land for recreational and educational use. Local PPL sites listed include the Susquehanna Riverlands environmental preserve and its Council Cup Scenic Overlook in Luzerne County; Montour Preserve's Lake Chillisquaque in Montour County; and Lake Wallenpaupack in Wayne County.
|May 19, 2004. Joyce
Letteer celebrates her birthday today. Former First Lady Jaqueline
Kennedy Onassis died ten years ago today.
The Pennsylvania senate yesterday unanimously approved a spending plan for the state's 2004-2005 fiscal year, an amended version of the General Appropriations Bill that passed the House last Wednesday. The Senate budget bill differs from the plan approved by the House. The two bills will end up in a House/Senate conference committee to produce the final 2004-05 spending plan. The next step will then be negotiations between the legislative leadership and the Rendell administration as to what the Legislature will pass and what the Governor will sign.
Didja know that Elizabeth (Betty) Dressler (1925-2003), known to many as the "Hug Lady" of Jackson Township, was the first triple bypass valve replacement patient from the Harrisburg Polyclinic Hospital to survive? Betty worked the farm, raised the six children, had a "garden the size of Benton," and learned to drive a car at the age of 40. Betty had her first heart attack at the age of 37 and had seven heart attacks by the age of 42. Her surgery took place in 1966, and followed a quick trip to the hospital in the ambulance with Dr. Lee Dippery riding with her, which probably saved her life. Years later, when son Ken had his bypass surgery at the Polyclinic Hospital, Betty and Ken became the first successful mother and son to have bypass surgery from the Polyclinic Hospital.
The Plymouth Historical Society is seeking family recipes for their upcoming cookbook to be available this fall. Anyone can submit a recipe, whether it is a family favorite, something that grandma use to make, something for a family reunion, whatever the case may be. You can also include information such as who the family member was that made the particular dish, any fond memories, etc. Recipes can be sent to Sheila Brandon.
Gasoline prices edged toward $2 a gallon locally for regular unleaded. Here are some representative prices: Catherman's Mobil in Milesburg: $2.069 a gallon; a Texaco station in Pleasant Gap: $2.04. The Snow Shoe Auto Travel Plaza: $2.02. Sheetz in Shamokin Dam: $1.999; Benton QuikMart: $1.959; Benton UniMart: $1.939.
||This 44 year-old site is the oldest surviving McDonald's
in the worldwide chain of 20,000 restaurants and the last one with red-and-white
striped tile exterior.
The McDonald's restaurant is on Lakewood Blvd. in Downey, CA.
Photo courtesy of Ken Ota
Since we introduced the subject of the "good
old days," here are some terms you probably haven't thought of
for years. If you are not of a sufficient age, you may have to get someone
over 50 to explain the terms to you.
My love life is like a fairy tale.
Manners are easily learned from those who have none.
The subject of the super load was of interest to a number of readers. The convoy consists of nine police cruisers, utility trucks and two haulers from Robbins Transportation Services carrying an industrial wood dryer on its way to Lock Haven. The trucks have been tying up roads since May 6, as part of their journey from Fairless Hills to a paper pulp factory in Lock Haven. Each of the two truck and trailer combinations measure 234 feet long, with 22 axles and counting cargo stands over 20 feet high and weights over 900,000 pounds. The trailers range from 18 feet wide to 24 feet wide. Each truck has two drivers. The trucks each have 650-700 horsepower and can tool along a straight stretch of I-80 at breakneck speeds up to 30 mph. Crossing bridges, a technique called crabbing is used. Because both the back and front of the vehicle can be steered, the truck crosses almost sideways in both lanes of traffic to evenly distribute the weight.
From route 192 West of Lewisburg, the convoy caught Route 880 to Loganton. After spending last night, the trucks will continue to Lock Haven, delivering the loads this evening.
Common looking people
are the best in the world. That is the reason the Lord made so many of
Please use your seat belts today. We would like you to join us again tomorrow.
We have a holiday coming up. Do you have Old Glory ready to be flown?
If you are never on time, try setting your watch five minutes fast. It won't help, but it shows that you are trying.
Today would be a good day to take the scenic route
Meanness don't happen overnight.
|May 18, 2004.
There are 227 days left in the year. Happy birthday today to Shirley
Lockard and happy 55th wedding anniversary to Don
and Betty Miller, Grove, OK. Happy
birthday today to Pope John Paul II [Karol Wojtyla], born 1920.
It was on this date in 1860 that Abraham Lincoln was nominated for
the presidency by the Republican National Convention and Hannibal Hamlin
was nominated for the vice-presidency. Lincoln was a Kentucky-born lawyer
and former Whig representative to Congress. He gained his national stature
during his campaign against Senator Douglas for the Illinois senate seat
in 1858 over the issue of slavery in what became known as the Lincoln-Douglas
Debates. Lincoln argued against the spread of slavery. Douglas argued
that each territory should have the right to decide whether it would become
free or slave. Lincoln lost that senate race, but gained his partys
presidential nomination. That November Lincoln again faced Democrat Douglas,
Southern Democrat John C. Breckinridge and Constitutional Union candidate
It was 24 years ago today when Mount St. Helens, a volcanic peak in the Cascade Range of southwestern Washington, blew its 9,680 stack in a massive eruption which killed 57 people and devastated 210 square miles of wilderness. Shaken by an earthquake measuring 5.1 on the Richter scale, the north face of the mountain collapsed in a massive rock debris avalanche. Nearly 230 square miles of forest was blown over or left dead and standing. At the same time a mushroom-shaped column of ash rose thousands of feet skyward and drifted downwind, turning day into night as dark, gray ash fell over eastern Washington and beyond. The eruption lasted 9 hours. In 1982, the 110,000-acre National Volcanic Monument was created on the spot.
Buster and Chloe wanted you to know about the new law in Pen Argyl, PA, 95 miles from Back Home in Benton, PA [E on I-80, then S on route 33]. The town is no longer a "pooper scooper" town. A new law forces dog owners to walk their pooches in the street and attempts to prohibit animals from relieving themselves on some public property or private property owned by someone other than the owner of the dog. Sidewalks are off limits, so pet owners say they've walking their pets in the street. Violators of the new ordinance can be fined from $50 to $1,000 or face 30 days in jail.
We are frequent visitors to California and so we tend to keep our eye on Governor Schwarzenegger. You'll remember that he started as popular as pie six months ago. We looked over his shoulder yesterday and found the polls say he has a 64% job-approval rating. His $100 billion budget, somewhat comparable to France, isn't raising taxes and has every promise of being approved on schedule by June 15. What a concept! The governor proposes a budget to the legislature, the legislature barely gets out its blue pens, they pass the budget and the governor signs the bill into law. Compare that to our state! The state deficit was covered with a $15 billion bond, which voters approved in a referendum. The legislative agreed to support the Governor in reforming the costly state workers' compensation system. Confidence is coming back to California, although problems like highways and water and education still need to be tended to. We don't recall the exact words Jay Leno once used, but it was something like Governor Schwarzenegger could be President in that he has the appeal of Ronald Reagan as an actor and the difficulty with the English language that George W. Bush has, and he's got a little Clinton in there, too!
Didja know that Pennsylvania is only one of three in the nation without a law that makes it a crime for a pilot to fly while intoxicated?
Make sure that you have the concert of the Stillwater Christian Church's Brush Arbor Choir on your calendar for Saturday and Sunday evening at 6.
We didn't get time this weekend to say anything about various emails
we received over the week making claims that were unknown to be true or
untrue. One claim asked readers to participate in a one-day "gas
out" May 19 in order to help lower the retail price of gasoline.
That email first come on the scene in 1999, and resurfaced in 2000. In
both years, there was virtually no participation or effect on retail gasoline
prices. The current version is no different.
Ever wonder what the news was all about 100 years ago? A Morning
Press for approximately this time in 1904 included the following events
of local interest...
You might not want to speed on Italian highways this year. You might find yourself being chased by a Lamborghini. Italian police now own a 500 horsepower, two-seater Lamborghini Gallardo, which can hit a top speed of 185 miles per hour. The sports car, painted in the police's distinctive blue and white colors, has a flashing blue light on the roof.
I don't think much of a man who is not wiser today than he was yesterday. ~ Abraham Lincoln
Give the best you have to your employer. It is one of the best investments that you can ever make.
Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. ~ Henry Ford
Loosen up and relax! Except for a couple of life and death matters, nothing is as important as it first seems.
We learn more by
looking for the answer to a question and not finding it than we do from
learning the answer itself.
Be curious forever. Ask "Why" a lot.
Try not to tell people how something should be done. Try telling them what needs to be done. You'll quickly be surprised at the creative solutions that come up.
|May 17, 2004.
It is the third Monday of the month and time again for the North Mountain
Historical Society to meet at the Brass Pelican Restaurant. Today's subject
is "The first hanging in Sullivan county." Better tank up soon.
Regular gas prices in Towanda are now $2.049.
On this date in 1932, the US Congress officially changed the name of the US protectorate of Porto Rico to Puerto Rico, restoring the original non-Anglicized, spelling of the Caribbean islands name. On this day in 1954, the United States Supreme Court unanimously ruled on Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka. The ruling stated that racial segregation in public schools violated the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution, which guarantees equal protection of the laws to all citizens.
Make sure that you read the article in today's Press Enterprise about Barbara Barnes Thirtle, the guest speaker yesterday at St. Gabriel's Church.
We have come a long way since 1943 when the US Army contracted with
the University of Pennsylvania's Moore School to develop an electronic
computer later known as ENIAC (Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer).
The computer took more than three years to build. It might be an appropriate
time to review some essentials for email...
Didja know that state wildlife officials estimate that 30,000 coyotes
live in Pennsylvania? Eastern coyotes can weigh 45 to 60 pounds and stand
two feet at the shoulder. They are capable of sprinting about 40 miles
an hour. Mark Twain described the coyote as "not a pretty creature
or respectable either, for I got well acquainted with his race afterward,
and can speak with confidence. The cayote is a long, slim, sick and sorry-looking
skeleton, with a gray wolf-skin stretched over it, a tolerably bushy tail
that forever sags down with a despairing expression of forsakenness and
misery, a furtive and evil eye, and a long, sharp face, with slightly
lifted lip and exposed teeth. He has a general slinking expression all
over. The cayote is a living, breathing allegory of Want. He is always
Views on Joe Paterno's contract to coach Penn State football through 2008 seem more closely divided than polls weighing Senator Kerry's chances against President Bush.
Quote of the Day:
In a noisy world, wisdom whispers. Listen closely.
Some may remember during the War Years when...
We heard about the farm hand near Waller who was leaning on his John Deere when a Firebelch 500 came roaring over the top of the hill. The driver slammed on his brakes and yelled out the window for directions to route 487. The farmer said he didn't know. The driver then asked how to get to route 239. The farmer thought for a moment, then said he didn't know. The driver then asked about Benton, asked which direction it was from there. The farmer wasn't sure. The driver raced his engine in frustration and said to the farmer that he didn't know very much, did he! "Nope," the farmer, replied, "But I'm not lost, am I."
Going West, Young Man? Watch out for the super load again moving on area highways this morning. The super load is a large dryer on a special truck equipped with 22 axles. It is 235 feet in length, 20 feet high and 20 feet long. The weight is almost a half-million pounds. The load was too tall to clear the overpass bridge at Lightstreet and used local roads. Back on Westbound I-80 west, the super load exited at the Buckhorn Interchange, again because of physical restrictions along the interstate. The dryer then headed north on Route 42 to Millville, where it turned left onto Route 254 to I-80 at Limestoneville (Exit 215). On I-80 westbound, the super load travels to Exit 210, where it gets onto Route 15 northbound to the White Deer Exit. At White Deer, it picks up Old Route 15 Road (Route 1011) southbound to West Milton. In West Milton, the super load, heading south, will enter the northbound exit ramp and travel several miles south in the northbound lanes. Going south on Route 15, the dryer will turn right onto Route 45 at Lewisburg. Following Route 45 west, the super load will then turn north onto Buffalo Road (Route 3007) in Mifflinburg, north on Buffalo Road to Forest Hill, and Route 192 west for further adventures in Centre County.
I have totally ruled
The true measure
of a man is how he treats someone who can
I have always been
on the side of the heretics, against those
Become the most positive and enthusiastic person you know.
May 16, 2004. Don't forget the bluegrass jam at Jerseytown today.How 'bout that Smarty Jones! The undefeated Kentucky Derby winner ended up 11 1/2 lengths ahead of a second-place horse whose jockey thought he was going to win the 1 3/16-mile race only 30 seconds before.
The May meeting of the Fishing Creek Femme Fatale Chapter of the Red Hat Society will be held May 19 at the Cloverleaf Barn, 129 McCracken Road, Danville, just off I-80. Please call Marilee Yost,925-6718, or Queen Mother Carol Vance, 925-2591, if you would like a ride. Luncheon is at 2, but consider coming early to shop the antique mall. Luncheon is a quiche, salad, beverage and dessert for $9.00, excluding tip and tax. Guests are welcome, but proper attire is required; i.e., purple outfit and red hat . Program will a special guest playing the Hammered Dulcimers and of course the wine tasting. The chapter is open to new members. Please plan to attend this most special program.
The doughnuts-and-coffee crowd will be happy to know that Dunkin' Donuts and Wal-Mart Stores Inc. are teaming up. The chain will open stores inside ten Wal-Mart stores, none locally. If the stores do well, additional stores will be added. The Wal-Mart SuperCenter that opened near Camp Hill this week is gigantic, possibly the largest one we have ever been in, and it has a nice feature for the men who have to lolly-gag around while their wives search for goodies. The store includes a wireless area where you can sit with your laptop and get your email and troll the Internet. Big seems to be the order of the day, in that the new Giant grocery store in Camp Hill will be 91,000 square feet. We suspect that their motto will be "Where's the beef?"
We thought that recovering from an operation gave special privileges. We were wrong. When we arrived at the house after leaving the hospital, I was asked if I would like dinner.
"What are my choices?" I asked.
"Yes or no," was the quick response.
On this date in 1868, President
Andrew Johnson came within one vote of "high crimes and misdemeanors,"
charged in the Senate under the articles of impeachment. A second vote
on May 26 of that year also fell short of the two-thirds majority required
to convict the president.
This deadlock culminated in the first impeachment proceedings in
U.S. history. In February 1869, the House voted articles of impeachment
and seven House Managers, including former Civil War Majors General Benjamin
F. Butler and John A. Logan, prepared Johnson's trial. Lincoln appointee
Salmon Chase, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, presided. Ten of eleven
articles concerned the Tenure and Army Appropriations Acts; the last article
claimed Johnson had attempted to undermine the Congress.
Several people who don't know the Benton area, but nevertheless read
the Benton News, asked for more description of the ridge and valley countryside
surrounding our area. The readers wanted to know what made things different
here from other places. We immediately thought of the boundaries that
historically have made our area difficult to reach. To the East, far beneath
the ground, lay the anthracite coal fields that created a very different
life style. To the North lay a formidable "mountain" that made
winter travel difficult, but our forefathers nevertheless carved out a
narrow stagecoach path in order to reach the lower boundaries of New York
State. Our typical entrance to the upper Fishing Creek valley followed
a trout stream from the South, where the valleys were wider, the passage
was easier and the soil easier to work. For most of us, our commuting
patters haven't changed much over the years.
Take a 30-minute walk today.
Practice empathy today. Try to see things from other people's points of view.
Don't burn your bridges today. You have to cross this river again soon.
May 15, 2004
Show a lot of enthusiasm today, even if you don't feel like it.
Take good care of those you love.
May 15, the 136th day of 2004. There are 230 days left in the year. The Benton News was not published Friday, May 14, and therefore we missed the birthdays of Eugene Bardo, Jr. and Jackie Davis. Happy belated birthday! If you see Rosalie and Arden Harrison today, wish then a happy 40th anniversary.
This is Armed Forces Day. President Harry S. Truman led the effort to establish a single holiday to thank our military for their patriotic service in support of our country. Armed Forces Day replaced separate Army, Navy, Marines Corp and Air Force days. The single-day celebration stemmed from the unification of the Armed Forces in the Department of Defense. The entire month of May is actually Military Appreciation Month. You can express your gratitude to individual members of the Armed Services by signing the on-line form at http://www.defendamerica.mil/nmam.html .
In 1942 on this date, gasoline rationing went into effect in 17 states limiting sales to three gallons a week for non-essential vehicles. The French would say, Ah, les bons vieux temps ou nous etions si malheureux! which translates into something like, "Oh, the good old times when we were so unhappy!" But guess what! We are still unhappy with the current state of gasoline. And speaking of the "old days," Edna Laubach underwent a knee replacement at Williamsport a year ago at this time, and Lee Remley underwent a heart by-pass.
The Webmeister of the Benton News was released from Holy Spirit Hospital, Camp Hill, Friday morning following the implanting of a coronary stent system in his left anterior coronary artery and the insertion of several balloons in posterior descending arteries. Other problem areas were left for improvement by lifestyle changes through proper nutrition, infusion of medicine and exercise. Fred Allen once said that a committee is a group of men who individually can do nothing, and as a group decide that nothing can be done. Such was not the case with the committee of medical personnel who treated my coronary arteries.
The Benton Volunteer Fire Company, along with firemen from Unityville,
Millville and North Mountain, responded to a fire alarm early Friday evening,
a fully engulfed barn on fire at 132 Mendenhall Road, Waller. The farm
is owned by Jerry Newhart and his wife Geraldine
Newhart, a member of the Benton School Board. Livestock and a pet
dog were lost, along with hay and straw. The
Press Enterprise reports that son, Mike
Newhart, 21, saved a horse and one cow.
If getting away from the rain forecast for today sounds good to you,
take a road trip. Follow the Susquehanna South with your fishing gear
and camera and visit a few antique shops on the way.
The Benton News was not published Friday, May 14.
The goal in marriage
is not to think alike, but to think together.
You don't stop laughing
because you grow old; you grow old because you stop laughing.
|May 13, 2003. Celebrating
birthdays today are Bob Conner, Lauren
Elizabeth Andrysick, Libby Lewis, Nancy
McClure and Charles Wodrig and they
share their birthday with actress Beatrice Arthur, 78. Dr.
Ken Cross is awaiting surgery to relieve pressure on his heart.
It is very hard to believe that it has been a year since Neil Metcalf, then 62, died in Kingston from work-related injuries. And a year ago at this time, Theresa Hartman had another six weeks of casts to look forward to before she could walk again following her fall and Ruth Kline was in a hospital care unit with heart-related items. A year later, Theresa is doing just fine, and Ruth is much improved with her heart problems of a year ago. However, this year Ruth is confined to a chair or a bed following the serious fracture of one ankle and a serious sprain in the other ankle.
Birders from all across Pennsylvania will meet at PPL Corporation's Montour Preserve for the Pennsylvania Society for Ornithology's annual meeting Saturday, May 15, and Sunday, May 16. The preserve is among 200 recommended birding sites in the state by Audubon Pennsylvania. The Pennsylvania Society for Ornithology fosters the study and appreciation of the state's birds and promotes the conservation of birds and their habitats. Program information is available on the society's Web site at www.pabirds.org.
Didja know that
Up in Sullivan County, the School Board approved a $10.4 million
tentative school budget for the 2004-05 school year, which includes a
5.5% increase in the property tax rate.
There once was a man from O'Clare
The 1952 high school senior class officers were Donald Baker, President; Wayne Baker, Vice-President; Beverly Dietterick, Secretary; and William Follmer, Treasurer. The yearbook, the Kaleidoscope, was dedicated to L. Ray Appleman, an educator in the local school system for 52 years.
The Benton High School Honor Roll was published in today's Press Enterprise. Share your pleasure at seeing a familiar name!
Scores of former Benton residents will soon be returning for the Alumni
Banquet and other visitors will be beating down our doors to get a taste
of the country. And what to do with these visitors?
. Proceed North and west 23 miles to Tunkhannock for your next stop.
. Take a leisurely ten mile ride over Pennsylvania Highway 29 south
and west to State Route 3003. Then go north to North Mehoopany, then take
State Route 4002 north to Township Road 443, and 443 northwest to State
Route 3001, which runs northwest ten miles to Laceyville in the northwest
corner of Wyoming County on the North Branch on the Susquehanna River.
Trying to squash a rumor is like
trying to unring a bell.
May 12, 2004
Some of us are like wheelbarros,
only useful when pushed and easily upset.
The best bridge between despair
and hope is a good night's sleep.
|May 12, 2004.
Actress Katharine Hepburn was born on this date in 1907. She won four Academy
Awards and was nominated for eight more. Her films included Bringing
Up Baby, The African Queen, Guess Who's Coming to Dinner
and On Golden Pond.
In the mid-1800s, children's books were often published anonymously, so that a man whose birthday occurred today is not well known. It was, for example, not until the third edition of his book of limericks in 1861 that his name was revealed. The man was poet Edward Lear, born in London in 1812. He suffered from epilepsy, asthma, poor eyesight, and chronic depression. Had you been alive when Lear was alive, you would know him for his landscape paintings and drawings , but today he's best known for his nonsense poetry like The Owl and the Pussycat and poetry in the form of limericks , a verse form in five lines (aabba). Tennyson, Kipling and W.S.Gilbert later followed in his style.
There was a Young Lady of Clare,
The event of the death of Edward Lear took place on a Sunday in May 1888. Invitations were sent out well in advance. The invitations read: Mr. Edward LEAR, Nonsense Writer and Landscape Painter Requests the Honor of Your Presence On the Occasion of his DEMISE. San Remo 2:20 a.m. The 29th of May Please reply. Lear's death became so popular that revivals of the event were often staged but no one knows how it came about.
Ronald C. Poles, 70, (Jan. 18, 1934-May
11, 2004), 5063 State Route 487, Benton, died Tuesday at Geisinger-Wyoming
Valley Medical Center, Wilkes-Barre. He had been employed by Fishing Creek
Outfitters in rural Benton and with his wife, Dotty, had owned and operated
the former Blue Heart Bed and Breakfast, Five Points Road. He was an Eucharistic
minister with Christ the King Catholic Church. Surviving are his wife,
Dotty, children Jean M. Reiss, Toms River, NJ; Linda L. Deglman, Milford,
NJ; Ronald A. Poles, Flanders, NJ. Seven grandchildren and a sister, Carol
Ann Clay, also survive. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated
10 AM Friday at Christ the King Catholic Church. Burial will be in St.
Gabriel's Cemetery, Sugarloaf Township. A viewing will be held Thursday
from 6 to 8 PM at McMichael Funeral Home Inc.
Alanna M. Bath, a 2002 graduate of Benton Area High School, was recently inducted into Kappa Delta Pi, the Wilkes University Chapter of the Education National Honor Society. Alanna is entering her junior year as a music education major at Wilkes University this fall. Alanna also made the Dean's List for this Spring 2004 semester with a GPA of 3.91, and a cumulative GPA of 3.6.
We have something for you to say fast five times: Benton Boys Basketball Booster Basket Bingo takes place at the Benton Volunteer Fire Company Sunday, May 16. The cost is $20 per player and all players must be ticket holders. Over $1,000 in baskets will be given away, plus door prizes. Doors open at 1 PM, and bingo starts at 2 PM. Tickets are available at the door, but seats are limited. Refreshments are available, please call 925-0141 for information.
In May get a weed-hook, a crotch and a glove,
The Farmer's Almanac suggests grouping these herbs together in the
Do you need to know the meaning of sprinkling trust, toxic tort or some equally puzzling legal term? Look up your legal terms at http://www.nolo.com/lawcenter/dictionary/wordindex.cfm .
We are currently putting together a short history of Rhorsburg which we'll include here within the next two weeks. We welcome pictures of any of the three churches, the five stores or the hotel that once stood in the town. We welcome any human interest stories that you might like to share.
In the coming weeks we may be slowing up a bit on the Benton News. We haven't been feeling the best lately and so Thursday morning about 6 we'll check into Holy Spirit Hospital, Camp Hill, for a heart catheterization scheduled for 7:30 AM. We didn't do well on a stress test and we followed with a similar performance with a nuclear stress test, and falling asleep at 9 at night is losing its appeal. We are going to try the route that the doctors want us to take and so you might not see us around for a little while. We'll be back as soon as we are feeling up to it.
We are only young
once. That is all society can stand.
May 11, 2004
A word to the wise
ain't necessary - it's the stupid ones that need the advice.
You are the music
while the music lasts.
|Tuesday, May 11,
2004. We celebrate the birthdays of Steve Letteer,
Ron Kelsey and H. Dayne
Kline today. Dayne is 85 today, by the way. These three fine men
celebrate their birthdays with Irving Berlin.
For reasons we don't fully understand, we often talk about roads
and this morning we'll say a few things about wooden roads. We previously
discussed the corduroy roads that were used as stagecoach runs on the
Susquehanna and Tioga Turnpike, and we have talked about the plank roads
in Sullivan County that existed for a very short time in Jamison City
and for a longer period in Thorndale.
Didja know that...
|May 10, 2004. There are 41 days until the
official start of summer. Today is the birthday of Joe
Savage, Third Street.
Many in the area know Max and Lorraine Fritz Hartman, full-time motor home people who usually spend the summers Back Home In Benton, PA. Their son Keith's wife, Nancy, peacefully passed away Sunday afternoon in North Carolina. Max and Lorraine have parked their rig on Keith and Nancy's property since last August when they left Benton. Our sympathy is extended to the family. The family address is 2192 Jack Road, Clayton, NC 27520.
On this day in 1869, the transcontinental railroad was finished "coast-to-coast"
when the last "Golden Spike" was tapped into place at Promontory
Point in Utah Territory as the Union Pacific tracks joined those of the
Central Pacific Railroad. It took six and a half years to link the two
coasts with 1,800 miles of track. The connection of the two tracks reduced
the four to six months time taken by the overland pioneers to about six
Frederick Austerlitz was born on this date in 1899 in Omaha, a son of Frederick Austerlitz, a Vienna-born brewer, and his wife, Ann Gelius. His sister, Adele Marie Austerlitz, had a successful vaudeville act with brother Fred that lasted into an adult stage career on Broadway. She was, in fact, the bigger star of the two during their time performing together. The name "Astaire" was taken by young Frederick and his sister, probably from an uncle surnamed "L'Astaire." Astaire introduced 36 hit songs in his movies from 1929 through 1951. Dancing seemed effortless for him. His movies with dancing partner Ginger Rogers were classics, although they only had one on-screen kiss and that was in a dream sequence.
Tomorrow marks the second day four administrators from Colegio Americano de Guatemala will spend in the Benton Schools. After an overview of both buildings, and meeting with the superintendent and the principals, these visitors are ready to spend the next few days in classrooms observing and talking to teachers and students. This fall teachers from CAG will spend time in Benton classrooms with Benton faculty members. These visitors will be housed by local residents. Benton teachers and administrators are expected to visit the Guatemalan school as soon as early 2005.
State College ranks ninth in the nation in Forbes Magazine's list of the Top Ten small towns in America to do business, a higher ranking than the Penn State football team over the past several years.
We are very happy about the decision--pending county review and approval--to move a Panera Bread Restaurant into the Buckhorn area, near the Wal-Mart SuperCenter and Lowe's. The restaurant is extremely popular wherever one is created, usually outside of a shopping center and accessible during the drive into the shopping center in a separate building from the shopping center. The bagels and the bread and the soups are homemade. The stores are divided into two lines as you enter. The first line is mostly for bagels and bakery items and carry out. The second line, further back in the store, is primarily for lunch and dinner items. Because of the normal popularity of the restaurant, there is usually a line, although it is fast moving. All menu items are made on the spot and very fresh. Soft drinks and ice tea are dispensed by the customer at the rear of the store and the many blends of coffee are dispensed near the middle of the stores. Most of the over 600 restaurants have a free wireless connection for laptop computer users and several issues of the Benton News came from various Panera bread restaurants this winter as we dawdled over a latte and a cinnamon crunch.
Didja know that in Pennsylvania...
We know a husband who is absolutely no good at fixing anything, so everything in that couple's house works. Our house is different. The husband in our house is absolutely no good at fixing anything, but attempts everything. The wife takes desperate stabs at disaster control, and usually that fixes the problem, but on occasion that creates a new crisis. A case in point was the laborious removal and recycling of two large sections of fencing, which turned out to be four feet short of what was needed in the new location. The fence problem reminded us of a Mother's Day advertisement we saw that said, "Whatever type of person your mother is, we know we can help you choose a gift to make her grim all over." The fence situation made everyone grim indeed!
Randy Hess, son of Al and Pat Hess, will perform at the Bloomsburg Fair September 28. Oh, and by the way, Trace Adkins will be there, too!
If the man can remember so many jokes,
We wonder how many readers can remember hearing on the radio the
lines "Call For Philip MMMMMooooorrrrrrrrrraaaaaiiiiisssss!!!!!"
The man responsible for that once-familiar sound was only 4' tall and
in public always wore a red bellhop uniform and that was the only line
we ever heard the man utter. His name was Johnny Roventini, but radio
listeners knew him as "Johnny Philip Morris." Johnny first did
his "Call For Philip Morris" in 1934 on a broadcast of the Ferde
Grofe Show on NBC's Red Network. To the music of On The Trail Movement
from the Grand Canyon Suite, Johnny yelled out his first "Call
For Philip Morris" to a nationwide audience.
Spec. Jeremy C. Sivits, 24, a member of the 372d Military Police Company, is a military policeman from Hyndman, PA, about 100 miles southeast of Pittsburgh. Sivits will face a public court-martial in Baghdad May 19. He is suspected of snapping some of the now-notorious photos of Americans abusing Iraqi prisoners. Seven other soldiers also face criminal charges for alleged abuse at the Abu Ghraib prison. The 372d Military Police Company apparently were told what to do by Army military intelligence officers, CIA operatives and civilian contractors who conducted interrogations. Abuses at the U.S. detention center in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, are being hinted. With each passing day, we get the impression that inhumane and degrading treatment, including physical and psychological coercion, was more of a broad Army policy than the Department of Defense is letting on and if that is the case we wonder why it is that the soldiers at the lower levels are the ones who may end up being the ones punished most. Because we live so close to the local headquarters of the 320th Military Police Battalion based in Hanover Township, we expect that we will be hearing a lot about the subject in the coming days.
"Survivor All-Stars" contestant Amber Brkich walked into Madison Square Garden and walked away with an engagement ring and a $1 million prize. "Boston Rob" Mariano, yanked out a ring and proposed to Brkich on the nationally-televised show seen last night on TV.
A mother never realizes
that her children are no longer children.
I stopped believing
in Santa Claus when my mother took me to see him in a department store,
and he asked for my autograph.
May 9, 2004
I don't have a bank
account, because I don't know my mother's maiden name.
|May 9, 2004. It
is Mother's Day, the day when we officially celebrate the woman who
brought us into the world. Anna M. Jarvis was instrumental in developing
"Mothers Friendship Day" as part of the healing process of the
Civil War. Miss Jarvis wanted a day set aside to honor all mothers, living
and dead. She chose the second Sunday in May, the day her mother died. Anna
Jarvis's church, Andrews Methodist Church, Main Street, Grafton, West Virginia,
first celebrated the occasion on this day in 1908. The church is now called
the International Mother's Day Shrine and special Church services will be
held there this morning. In May of 1914, a bill to make Mother's Day an
official holiday came to the desk of President Wilson. He signed it and
ordered flags to be flown on Mother's Day from all public buildings. Mother's
Day will be special to someone in Pennsylvania this year, since one lucky
Powerball player, possibly from the Bucks County area, has the winning ticket
worth $213.2 million.
Today is the birthday of Ethel Hack, formerly of Stillwater, now living in Berwick, who celebrates the day with actress Candice Bergen. Down in Danville, Lois, 78, and Ira McHenry, 91, celebrate their wedding anniversary today. Back in 1980 on this date, 35 motorists were killed when a Liberian freighter rammed the Sunshine Skyway Bridge over Tampa Bay, causing a 1,400-foot section to collapse.
How many of you can identify this quote from your youth? My head to clearer thinking, my heart to greater loyalty, my hands to larger services, and my health to better living. Answer at end.
The term "post road" applied to any recognized mail route including both navigable waters (1823) and railroads (1838). Early post offices were often taverns or general stores, and letter carriers were horsemen riding in relay. Richard Fairbanks's tavern in Boston was one such mail repository and dates from 1639. The Boston Post Road was laid out along old Indian trails from New York City to Boston. In January of 1673, the first post rider rode from New York to Boston and established the first major overland route in the American colonies. The first trip lasted between two and three weeks for the 250 miles, much through wilderness. Francis Lovelace, governor of New York, gave the rider the following instructions:
"You are to comport yourself with all sobriety and civility to those that shall entrust you...You are principally to ally yourselfe to the Governors, especially Gov. Winthrop, from whom you shall receave the best direction to form ye best Post Roade;You shall do well to provide yourself to a Spare Horse, good Port Mantels soe neither letter nor Paquetts receave any damage under your hands."
We don't always get things right around here. We remember the story
about another person who didn't get everything right, a baseball player
by the name of Hank Aaron. The first time he batted in the major leagues,
the catcher of the opposing team told him mockingly that he was holding
the bat all wrong. "You should hold it with the label up so you can
read it," the catcher told him.
The specialty of the 320th Military Police Company, headquartered in Ashley, is in-processing and medical care of arriving prisoners. Guarding enemy prisoners of war as part of the 800th Military Police Brigade was also a requirement, but according to an Army report quoted in Saturday's New York Times, "few of the 1,000 reservists had been trained to do that, and fewer still knew how to run a prison." Within days following the American invasion of Iraq, the 320th landed in Kuwait and moved swiftly into southern Iraq, to a sprawling barbed-wire American camp known as Camp Bucca, home of many Iraqi prisoners, a prison formerly used by Sadam Hussein. Camp Bucca, the coalition's facility for enemy prisoners of war is near Umm Qasr in southern Iraq. The 280-acre site Abu Ghraib prison had a history of executions and torture that made the prison one of the most feared symbols of the old government. At times, six guards on a single 16-hour shift would be in charge of 700 Iraqi prisoners. Reportedly at one time, 7,000 to 8,000 detainees were held at Camp Bucca.
Quote of the Day:
Students, are you tired of wasting your time on guessing equation roots? Do you want to finish your math homework faster? Do you think it's impossible to solve complicated equations? DeadLine is a free equation solver designed especially for students. It combines graph plotting with advanced numerical calculus, in a very intuitive approach. Using this freeware, you can solve not just algebraic equations, but also a variety of equations, trigonometric equations, exponential equations and many more. Download it free at http://deadline.3x.ro/ .
Didja know that eBay could reach merchandise sales of $32 billion this year? There are approximately 105 million registered users.
The 4-H Clubs have as their motto, "My head to clearer thinking, my heart to greater loyalty, my hands to larger services, and my health to better living."
Coca-Cola would be green if coloring weren't added to it.
May 8, 2004
Mother used to tell us to "eat our spinach. It's good for growing kids." Her advice didn't work for us then. At that age, I didn't want to be growing kids.
May 8, 2004. The German high command surrendered unconditionally to the Allies on this date in 1945, ending World War II in Europe. President Truman made the announcement in a radio address.
"Pemberton's French Wine Coca" was once sold in drug stores,
with "valuable tonic and nerve stimulant properties of the coca plant
and cola nuts," although it was not sweetened with wine, but with
sugar. It was said to be "a most wonderful invigorator of the sexual
organs," although no actual clinical trials of the product were ever
reported. The drink's inventor, Dr. John Stith Pemberton (1832-1888),
called it "one glorious cocktail."
Today we celebrate the birthday of Randy Hess,
40, who celebrates his birthday playing music with Trace
Adkins at Jamboree USA at the Capitol Music Hall, Wheeling, West Virginia,
tonight. The group will be returning to the Bloomsburg Fair September
28, although we notice that the fair has not yet made that announcement.
And while we are talking about the fair, we'll mention some of the other
acts coming to the Fair this fall.
The Central Susquehanna Valley Transportation Project (CSVT)--the Shamokin Dam bypass on the existing Route 15--has progressed to the point where construction could begin in late 2006 or early 2007 if funds are made available. The project has been cleared to proceed into final design and purchase of the right-of-ways needed for construction. The engineering and right of way will cost an estimated $72 million and the construction phase would cost an estimated $278 million, for a total project cost of approximately $350 million. Phase one of the project would run from Chillisquaque Creek north of the Route 405 intersection to just south of Winfield, where the CSVT will interchange with Route 15 and would include the highest bridge in the state--4,400-foot long, 130-foot high--crossing from Point Township to just below Winfield. The estimated cost of Phase 1 is $170 million, none of which has been allocated. Phase two would continue south, bypassing Shamokin Dam and Sunbury and rejoining Route 11/15 near Selinsgrove. Funding for the project will be 80% federal and 20% state money. No bills have yet to be introduced at the Federal level to provide full funding for the project.
About this time of the week we look at some of the ridiculous things
we get in the mail each week. Here are a couple for this week, except
for a change there is a ring of truth lurking below the surface...
Someday maybe I'll be skinny
Over a million and a half dollars in grants for the planning, acquisition
and construction of more than 99 miles of rail-trails in 14 Pennsylvania
counties have been announced. Rail-trails are abandoned railroad beds
converted for recreational uses such as hiking, biking, jogging and cross-country
skiing. Pennsylvania leads the nation in the number of rail-trails with
116 open trails, according to the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy's Pennsylvania
office. Over the last decade, Pennsylvania has nearly tripled the number
of miles of rail-trails to the current 1,257 from 432 in 1995.
We learned more about "huckle-buckle bean stalk" than math when we were students in the Benton Area School System, and as a result we didn't compute the monthly charge for year 20 correctly yesterday when we used the illustration of an annual augmentation of $900 monthly rent for a Town Hall located in the existing Fire Hall, assuming an annual consumer price index rise of 2.5%. The rent in year 20 should be $1,438.785 in lieu of the $1,271.67 that we computed. We apologize for the error.
We'll never forget the time a little boy saw a bull at the other end of the pasture. "Is that bull safe?" the little boy asked the farmer. "Safer than you are!" was his answer.
A true friend stabs you in the
May 7, 2004
|May 7, 2004. We
forgot to mention Karen Boston's birthday yesterday.
Today is the birthday of Gerald McHenry and
Leona Bardo and they celebrate their birthdays
with singer Teresa Brewer, 73, and NBC newsman Tim Russert, 54. On this
date in 1977, Seattle Slew won the Kentucky Derby, the first of its Triple
Crown victories. In 2002, Seattle Slew died on this date when he was 28.
Johannes Brahms was born in Germany on this date in 1833, and Piotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky came along seven years later on this date in 1840 in Russia. Brahms was the composer of A German Requiem, four symphonies, four concertos, and many songs, piano pieces, and chamber works. He never married. Piotr Tchaikovsky was the most popular Russian composer of all time and wrote symphonies, operas, and the ballets Swan Lake, The Nutcracker, and The Sleeping Beauty. Tchaikovsky was a homosexual, which was officially banned in Russia at that time. He was, however, financed by a wealthy widow for thirteen years. She stipulated that they never meet and they didn't. Like many modern men, Tchaikovsky thought that marriage would be a solution to his sexual problems. He married a young female fan, but like so many modern marriages, it was a disaster. He left her almost at once, in a state of nervous collapse, attempted suicide and went abroad. Officially, Tchaikovsky died of cholera, but stories also circulate that he underwent a 'trial' from a court of honor from his school regarding his sexual behavior and it was decreed that he commit suicide. The true story is unknown.
On this date in 1915, a German submarine sank the British ocean liner Lusitania, drowning 1,198 civilians, including over 100 U.S. citizens. Prior rules of naval engagement required warning commercial vessels before firing upon them. Public outrage over the loss of civilian life hastened the United States entry into World War I. Although the cargo list of the Lusitania stated that she carried approximately 170 tons of munitions and war material, this fact was not revealed to the U.S. public at the time. An emotional appeal in which Secretary of the Interior Franklin K. Lane evoked the Lusitania to explain U.S. involvement in the war might not have gone over so well if all the facts were known. Luckily, this sort of thing never happens in modern government.
Darlene Dixon Bartlebaugh died Thursday
morning, May 6, 2004, about 7:45 at home in North Bend, WA. Her husband
and daughter were at her bedside. She was the daughter of the late Byron
and Theta Dickson who lived on Park Street, Benton, for many years. Darlene
is survived by her husband, Bart, sons Brian and Shawn; daughter, Tracie,
and six grandchildren, all in the Seattle area. She is also survived by
brothers, Sterling, Leakesville, Mississippi;
Donald, Dallas; sister, Genevieve
Yacko, Catawissa,and Carol
Koss, Pittsburgh, along with several nieces and nephews. For anyone
wishing to sent her family a card the address is...
Melvin L. "Pete" Rosencrance Jr.,
(July 27, 1925-May 5, 2004), 78, 264 Town Hill Road, Shickshinny, died
Wednesday. He was a son of the late Melvin L. Rosencrans Sr. and Myrtle
(Kyttle) Rosencrans. Surviving are his wife, Dorothy,
three sons: Ronald, Annville; Harold
and Howard, both of Shickshinny; three daughters:
Linda, Oklahoma City; Beverly,
Millville; and daughter-in-law Dottie Rosencrance,
New Hope. Also surviving are 20 grandchildren, 15 great-grandchildren;
a brother, Donald Rosencrans, Mooretown;
and a sister, Gertrude Roman, Sweet Valley.
Funeral services will be held at 11 AM Saturday at McMichael Funeral Home
Inc. Burial will be in Bethel Hill Cemetery in Fairmount Township. A viewing
will be held on Saturday from 10 AM until the time of the service at the
At the Town Council meeting Monday night, a proposal was advanced
that suggested renting office space from the Benton Volunteer Fire Department
to fulfill the functions of the Benton Borough in lieu of establishing
a long-term debt for the purchase of a building. A number of readers asked
if we could provide more information about it. Excerpts from the proposal
follow, noting that we neither attempt to endorse or not endorse the proposal...
Using an annual augmentation of the $900 monthly rent, assuming an annual consumer price index rise of 2.5%, the rent in year 10 would be $993.43. and in year 20 would be $1271.67.
Piece of mind is always hard to achieve when someone you know is always handing out a piece of his mind.
Settle what you don't agree on by doing what is right. Don't settle on the basis of who is right.
|May 6, 2004.
It was on this date that the first postage stamps were issued in 1840 and
on this date in 1954, medical student Roger Bannister broke the four-minute
mile during a track meet in Oxford, England, finishing in 3 minutes 59.4
seconds. On this date in 1937, the German dirigible Hindenburg burned and
crashed in Lakehurst, NJ, killing 35 of the 97 people on board and a Navy
crewman on the ground.
At the Kirby Center...
The Internet has brought the world into the living room, both the good and the bad. As in dot con. Dot con? Dot con. As in con artists. Don't forget for one moment that the Internet world is filled with fraud in very clever ways, including business opportunity scams, using email to reach vast numbers of people with false promises, hijacking consumers' modems and cramming hefty long-distance charges onto phone bills. Law enforcement officials have identified the top 10 dot cons facing consumers who surf the Internet at http://www.consumer.gov/sentinel/ , a consumer fraud database. We continually say that "if it looks too good to be real, it probably is."
A site where you can spend a lot of time, especially if you don't have a fast modem, is the Pennsylvania State Highway Video Inventory at http://220.127.116.11/ividlog/video_locate.asp where you can watch the excitement of driving on Pennsylvania's highways on video. It is worth taking a look, though, if you want to get an overview of any road in the state.
The Stillwater Christian Church Brush Arbor Choir will present Just Hooked by Gospel, arranged by Bob Andrews and directed by Barbara Henne and Bob Andrews. Reserve May 22 and 23 at 6 PM at the Stillwater Christian Church for a stompin, toe tappin, clappin good time--old time gospel music at its best. For additional information, call 458-6389.
Didja know that in the United States, about 1 in 200 will be diagnosed with some form of cancer this year? The American Cancer Society predicts 1.3 million new cases of all forms of cancer in 2004 in the United States, and because of advances in medicine, more than half will survive! For prostate cancer, the most common internal cancer among men, approximately 13% who get the disease will not survive. Breast cancer in women and prostate cancer have a similar rate of occurrence, although nearly 19% of women with breast cancer will succumb to the disease. From ages 60 to 79, one man in seven is going to be diagnosed with prostate cancer, but not because of specific warning signs of its presence.
We'll mention some cowboy songs that probably won't make the top ten,
but are interesting anyway...
May 5, 2004
One reason why a dog is such a loveable creature is that his tail wags instead of his tongue.
If you are at the end of your rope, tie a knot in it and hold on for dear life.
A person's wisdom is at his lowest point when his anger is at its highest point.
Deal with the faults of others as gently as you deal with your own.
|Cinco de Mayo,
Wednesday, May 5, 2004. Cinco
de Mayo is the Mexican holiday marking the defeat of French invaders
at the Battle of Puebla in 1862. The Mexicans were outnumbered two to one,
but they inflicted an estimated 1,000 French casualties and forced a retreat
to the Gulf Coast. The city was renamed Puebla de Zaragoza after the Mexican
general that led the effort.
Didja know that the Titanic carried 12,000 jars of Richard Hellmann's mayonnaise scheduled for delivery to Vera Cruz, Mexico, the next port of call for the ship after New York City? Hellmann made his salads and sandwiches famous with his wife Nina's mayonnaise. His Blue Ribbon mayonnaise in jars contributed greatly to the surge in popularity of cole slaw as a side dish. The Mexican people were horrified at the loss of the ship and of the mayonnaise. So much so that they declared a national day of mourning which they still observe today, known, of course, as Sinko de Mayo.
The Farmer's Almanac reminds us to Plant corn now or lose a bushel a day past the middle of May. The annual meeting of the CCFNB takes place at 10:30 this morning. Glen and Anna Baker are celebrating 53 years of marriage today. Designer Gabrielle "Coco" Chanel introduced her first perfume in 1921 on the fifth day of May, the fifth month, giving it the name "Chanel No. 5," her lucky number.
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has begun testing the use of radio frequency identification (RFID) tagging, technology that the company hopes will eventually replace bar codes once that a global RFID standard is adopted. Future generations could be wearing, eating and carrying miniscule microchips about half the size of a grain of sand. The microchips listen for a radio query and respond by transmitting their unique ID code. Most don't even use batteries. They use the power from the initial radio signal to transmit their response. Wal-Mart is installing "smart shelves" with networked RFID readers for their initial testing. Gillette, as an example of a company using the technology, recently announced it would purchase 500 million RFID tags from Alien Technology, a venture funded, privately held company. In the future when you munch a Mounds, the candy could include a 64-bit unique identifier yielding about 18 thousand trillion possible values. A German company has invented washable RFID tags designed to be sewn into clothing. The European central bank is considering embedding RFID tags into banknotes as soon as year 2005. Stores could flash ads on screens based on spending patterns. Keep a clean arrest record or police could gain cradle-to-grave surveillance. Father used to ask no one in particular, "What is this world coming to?" If he could see it today.
Joshua B. Laubach, son of Jerry
and Joanne Laubach, Benton, will graduate from Mansfield State
University on Saturday, May 8, with a Bachelor of Music in Education.
He was on the Dean's List for the past five semesters, and this semester
he made the President's List with a 4.0. Josh has been a member of Phi
Mu Alpha Sinfonia for the past four years, and served as President
in the 2003/2004 year. Joshua will be working at Knoebels for the summer,
managing the music department and is getting married July 10 to Angella
Hoffman, Mifflinburg. Angie is also a Music major and plans to teach.
Joshua plans to teach Choral/Music at the high school level.
Quote of the Day:
Mr. Cashman's senior economics classes are studying stock market simulations and last night two of his students addressed the Fishing Creek Investment Club at their monthly meeting.
Brokerage fees were charged on the sale and purchase of the investments, and real-life events applied to the investments, such as stock splits and dividend reinvestment. During the period from March 13 and ending on May 7, the groups studied an array of stocks and invested in diverse companies. Shannon proudly told us that in her group out "of 28 investments, only ten were in the red."
The Hurff Family Association will celebrate its 100th anniversary at the annual family reunion July 17 in Washington Township near the site of the family's first Gloucester County homestead. Robert S. Parks, 70, Benton, chairman of the Hurff Family Association reunion committee, expects abut 200 people to attend the event. Anyone who believes he or she might be a Hurff descendant is asked to send genealogy information to Robert Parks, 2030 Parks Road, Benton, Pa 17814.
Another nail was pounded into the public service coffin of the Borough Town Hall last night when the Northern Columbia Community & Cultural Center unanimously voted not to consider the building for use. The saga of the building continues as the four bids for the purchase of the building were rejected at Monday's Town Council meeting.
She'll never admit it, but I think
that it was Mamma.
May 4, 2004. The Rev. Vernon McDormand and Lynn Sutton share birthdays today and celebrate the day with Randy Travis. In 1970 on this date, four students were killed by National Guardsmen during demonstrations at Kent State University. We haven't published for about a week and we forgot our birthday list while we were away. We'll make up the birthdays tomorrow, and we are sorry for the belated notices.
Keep Ruth Kline in your prayers, a victim
of a fall at her home yesterday. She broke a bone in her left
ankle and is in a cast for up to six weeks. She also sprained her right
|Many people would think a vacation like this a waste of
time. We were parked on a hill overlooking a lake of brownish water outside
of Wilkesboro, North Carolina, with what seemed to be a thousand other campers
parked nearby. As evening approached, the air filled with the smoke from
rings of fire from below the level where we were parked, from the level
where tent people stayed. On the plateau where we were parked, everyone
was in campers on wheels compared to tents on grass at the level of the
lake. One camper even had a sign in the window of his Class C motor home,
The lake was part of the 69-acre Waste Water Treatment Facility of Wilkes County, North Carolina, where SewerFest 2004--the name that the firemen give to the campsite at the waste water treatment plant--was ongoing. We parked here for the third year in a row while we attended the 17th annual MerleFest nearby on the campus of Wilkesboro Community College.
There are towns where residents and visitors turn up their noses, literally and figuratively, at anything involving close proximity to a sewer plant. But in Wilkesboro, the Sanitary Commissioner is also the Fire Chief and the town of Wilkesboro owns both the water company and the fire company, so when 75,000 or so come to town for the MerleFest the firemen rent the grounds around the sewer plant as a fund raiser to people who gladly shell out good money for the privilege of staying on site at the sewer plant. It would be somewhat akin to the Benton Water and Sewer Authority renting space, with electricity and water and selling fried chicken and barbeque and tee shirts, to something like 1,200 people when the Benton Rodeo or the O.A.T.S. bluegrass festival comes to town. About 600 camping sites had been reserved when we arrived about a week ago. It is an honor to be able to stay at the sewer plant and hundreds who come to the MerleFest are turned away from the camp sites each year. In fact, our reservations are secured for a camping site for next year.
We ought to mention that to get the mile and a half from the SewerFest to the MerleFest, the firemen provided three busses that life would otherwise have passed by. The largest of the three was a 1987 Chevrolet that would hold about 60, but almost always held about 80. The East Elkin Full Gospel Church owns the Chevrolet bus and the driver, Ken Stoker, made round-trips from 7:30 AM until 3:30 in the morning Thursday night through Saturday night and all day Sunday. A stain line showed on his SewerFest Tee Shirt, the result of Ken's belly dragging on the steering wheel.
|Eddy Merle Watson died in the early dark hours of October 23, 1985,
when his farm tractor rolled down a steep hillside near his home in Deep
Gap, Stoney Ford Township, North Carolina. Merle was the son of 17-year
old RosaLee and guitar player Arthel Watson, known to everyone as "Doc."
Merle fell victim to a polio epidemic and was paralyzed from his waist down
for almost two months when he was six and for the rest of his life he had
hip joint damage and a bad limp. He grew up in a musical family and in his
short 21 years of life, he traveled an estimated four million miles by automobile.
On the evening of October 22, 1985, Merle could not sleep and went to the basement of his home and started to trim some red beech paneling for his basement walls. The saw blade hit a fault in the grain and a large piece of hardwood splintered off, embedding itself in his muscle in his arm. Merle wrapped the arm in a leather jacket, jumped on his tractor and in the darkness followed the ridge line to a neighbor's house. The neighbors did not have anything to remove the huge splinter and Merle was finally forced to use his hunting knife, sterilizing it in a glass of wine, to dislodge it. The wound was then covered with a bandage and Merle climbed on his tractor and left. On the way back down the steep incline, the tractor brakes locked and Merle was thrown off and the tractor rolled on him, killing him instantly.
As a testament to Merle's popularity and musical accomplishments, acoustic musicians gathered in Wilkesboro, North Carolina, near his home in Deep Gap, in the fall of 1987. Doc was asked to do a benefit concert at Wilkes Community College in order to finance a garden in Merle's honor, and that began the history of the MerleFest. Doc Watson is 79 now and mostly retired and has come a long ways from the day that he bought his first guitar from Sears, Roebuck.
Will the circle be unbroken,
And we must mention our favorite poem from our trip to North Carolina. It goes like this, if we can remember the way that we heard it told...
Said the little red rooster to the
Said the little hen to the
We followed the recovery progress of Jules McHenry following his bypass surgery and his recovery in ICU and his short stay now in the rehabilitation unit at the Geisinger Hospital. It seems as though Jules has been recovering for a long time, but a quadruple bypass surgery is nothing to sneeze at for a person of Jules' age.
Being in the hospital convalescing reminds us of the time that three
duffers were in the hospital, and they decided to pick up a game of poker.
No one had any cards, so one of the guys shuffled down to the nurse's
station and when the nurses were all away from the station he picked up
a bunch of cards that listed operations, disorders, treatments, procedures
and medicines. He hid the cards in his hospital gown and if you have ever
actually worn a hospital gown you realize just how awkward it really is
to get to a location where you can actually hide anything in the gown.
It was a real attention getter, mind you.
is a James Madison University
senior who isnt even on the track team at JMU but who qualified
for both varsity field-hockey and for the U.S. national field hockey
team and likes to skydive in order to curb her fear of heights
and who recently went to North Carolina to compete in a 24-hour
mountain bike race. The latest feather in her cap is placing
33rd among the 6,653 women who started the Boston Marathon. Lindsey
finished 488th in the entire field of 17,950, pretty darn outstanding
for a girl from Back Home in Benton, PA. Lindsey ran the 26.2 miles in
3 hours, 3 minutes and 22 seconds and Boston was only the second marathon
she ever ran.
News from Back Home in Benton, PA, is copyright
© David R. Kline,
20022004. All rights reserved. Contact the author for reproduction requests.
Comments and feedback are always welcome.