Archive for January, 2012

Mathematical Matrimony

January 11, 2012

Image from Blig Blug and Friends

Mathematical Matrimony

Ephriam: “Whut you all call it when a girl gits maried three times — Bigotry?”

Mose: “Lawsy, boy, you suttenly am a ignoramus. Why, when a girl gits married two times, dat am bigotry, but when she tries it three times, dat am trigonometry.”

— Successful Farming.

Decatur Herald (Decatur, Illinois) Oct 24, 1929

The Mother’s Kiss of Her Dead Child

January 10, 2012

Image from The Burns Archive


The Mother’s Kiss of Her Dead Child.

The kiss of Friends, who meet to part,
Or welcome their return,
Is sweet, and grateful to the heart,
Where kind affections burn.

The kiss, which faithful Lovers claim,
Is fonder and more true;
And, while it feeds the mutual flame,
It seals their vows anew.

Still more sincere, the Parent’s kiss,
That bathes the Infant cheek,
Imparts and draws a kindred bliss,
Which language cannot speak;

But far most sacred and most dear,
Of all most undefiled,
The mother’s kiss, who, with a tear,
Imprints it on her child.

Her child, who sleeps in death’s embrace,
Her lips to feel no more, —
If aught could warm its icy face,
That kiss would life restore;

And, if its spirit hover’d nigh,
This proof of holy love,
The richest blessing would supply,
Its wings could bear above.

If angels sought with purpose mild,
Earth’s purest scene to know,
The mother, kissing her dead child,
That spectacle would show.

Cherryfield, October, 1843.

Bangor Daily Whig and Courier (Bangor, Maine) Oct 26, 1843

Image from The Burns Archive

The Icy Stage

January 10, 2012

Image from Golden Landmarks


We copy from a Montreal paper the following description of the loss of a mail stage in the ice, followed by the death of the driver, and a narrow escape from death by a passenger:

The night was intensely cold and dark; a drifting snow had fallen, which had obscured the track, and as the stage was on its way from Port St. Claire to Lachine, the horses got off the track and gradually edged to the unfrozen portion of Lake St. Louis. There were but two passengers, Mr. Ogden of Quebec, and Mr. Russell of Ancaster. When the leaders plunged into the water, Mr. Ogden and Mr. Russell both leaped from the stage; the first made good his footing on the main ice, but Mr. Russell’s cloak unfortunately got entangled, and before he could extricate himself, he found himself in deep water.

He clung to the stage, but as the night was dark he could see nothing of his companions. The horses swam with the stage about two miles until it grounded on a shoal, near the Isle Dorval, where the horses perished. Owing to the intense cold, Mr Russell’s clothes were immediately frozen to the stage, otherwise he must have been swept off, as the wind was blowing strongly. Soon after the plunge, Mr. Russell called out to the driver, Mudge, who answered that he was on a sheet of ice and drifting down; but the night was so dark that they could not see each other. Mr. Russell afterwards heard him shouting at intervals, some distance ahead of himself, and there is every probability that the unfortunate man was burried down the Lachine rapids.

Image from L’Île Dorval – Dorval Island

Mr. Russell lay on the stage, where it grounded, exposed to the dreadful inclemency of the weather, for eight hours, from half past one in the morning to half past nine, at which hour he was rescued. When Mr. Ogden escaped, he made his way to the nearest house for assistance for his companions. He procured men and ropes, and returned to the scene of the accident, but discover no trace of the stage; hearing voices, as he thought, in the direction of the Isle Dorval, he made the best of his way to Lachine, and roused the inmates of La flamme’s hotel.

A number of men and canoes were immediately put in requisition, and the party proceeded in a direction in which they thought they hear some one shouting; but owing to the dense fog they wandered up and down for five hours, and finally did not discover Mr. Russell until within thirty feet of the spot where he lay frozen to the stage. — When found his situation was distressing in the extreme; from the continuous beating of the surf over him as he lay, he had become completely encased in ice, to such an extent that it was found necessary to clear it from his with axes, before he could be detached from the stage.

He was perfectly sensible when found, but in a most exhausted state; both hands and the left knee were frozen. Mr. Russell still lies in a most precarious state; and we fear there are but faint hopes of his recovery. The body of Mudge has not been found. The mail bags were recovered, but up to Saturday, the cold was so intense that the state had not been removed from the spot where it grounded.

Alton Telegraph And Democratic Review (Alton, Illinois) Mar 17, 1848

Ralph S. Bauer: Reform Mayor of Lynn

January 9, 2012

Lynn, Massachusetts postcard image from Jovike’s photostream on flickr

— St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Mayor Bauer of Lynn has spoken. No more shall the woman smoker be seen in that town on stage or screen. The billboards have also been purged of the contaminating influence exercised by the pictorial cigaret and girl. And the ukase will, we are sure, be heartening to everybody who worries about the frailties and peccadilloes of other folks and thinks something ought to be done about it.

Obviously, the Mayor of Lynn is every inch a wowser; Lynn itself, once gay and grimy, has come upon the semi-retirement of “the city that was.” Now its elegy may be written, in true wowserian strophe:

Here lies Lynn,
Sans gin, sans sin,
Sans Nicotin.

Decatur Herald (Decatur, Illinois) Oct 24, 1929


Mayor Bauer of Lynn gets his name on the front pages of the newspapers again by issuing an ultimatum against bare-legged girls, but he would accomplish more as a reformer if he used a little quiet persuasion with school teachers and pupils.

We have failed to detect a grave menace in the fashion of bare sun-tanned legs. With all due regard to the sensitive nature of the fair sex, it must be said that most feminine legs are too imperfect in form and natural covering to permit of public display without artificial covering of some kind.

The bare-legged fashion will not get very far because most women have too much common sense to display the imperfections which are more conveniently concealed or minimized beneath sheer silk.

Fitchburg Sentinel (Fitchburg, Massachusetts) Oct 1, 1929

“The notions that were bred into being years and years ago are now being assaulted and turned topsy-turvy. Our social conduct is changing. We must admit that. Thirty or 40 years ago, if a flapper appeared on the street in the same costume she wears today, she would have been rushed to jail as fast as the smoke left her heels. Now no one cares about the flapper’s dress except Mayor Bauer of Lynn.

Fitchburg Sentinel (Fitchburg, Massachusetts) Nov 23, 1929

Not yet can they put you in jail for wondering so we wonder what Mayor Bauer of Lynn is going to attempt after he has pulled off that recently announced determination to make the school teachers of his city, men and women alike, cut out tobacco. It might be as well to wait until he has made good on that ruling before thinking up the next play for front page position in the newspapers.

If the Lynn teachers are human beings, the mayor is likely enough going to find it harder to make them quit the smoking habit than it was to give his city a reduced tax rate. It will be more or less like enforcing the Volstead act.

Theoretically, it can be done, and the dry leaders can prove it. Actually, it has not yet been done, and the wet leaders say you can’t prove it can be. Looking at it from a distance, it doesn’t strike us as being any of the Lynn mayor’s business if the school teachers wish to smoke, providing they do it in reason. We shouldn’t say that the women teachers should smoke at any time, and not at all in public. But as for exercising that privilege in their own homes it is hard to see where the mayor has any particular call to get stuffy about it.

As to making the men teachers take the anti-nicotine pledge, he has accepted a real job if the male breed down that way is anything like normal. The joker in the cold deck which Mayor Bauer has picked up appears in the situation as it affects the pupils in the schools.

Mayor Bauer may conceivably make the school teachers as smokeless as he decrees, but we have a natural curiosity to know how he is going to make the boys and girls who go to school quit it. Not that we know whether the Lynn school girls smoke, but many of the boys do, unless down in Lynn boys are no longs boys. For which reason the pupils are going to snicker as they look at their poor hen-pecked teachers who dare not smoke for fear of losing their jobs. And you don’t have to be a slave to nicotine to see the humor of the situation which Lynn’s great reform mayor seeks to bring about.

The Fitchburg Sentinel (Fitchburg, Massachusetts) Sep 8, 1926

Bone Dry or No Football Game

Lynn, Mass., Nov. 26. (AP) — Mayor Ralph S. Bauer saw so much drinking at the Harvard-Yale football game at Cambridge Saturday, he said, that he has ordered the Thanksgiving Day high school contest here to be bone dry or stopped.

Twelve thousand persons at the stadium for the Yale-Harvard contests, he estimated yesterday, were more interested in quart bottles and hip flasks than anything else. Many women “took a pull out of the bottles the same as the men,” the Mayor said, and neither the police nor the faculty interfered.

The Rev. Garfield Morgan, pastor of the Center Congregational Church, according to the Mayor, was approached by some one in a big fur coat who said to him, “you look like an old timer, have a drink.”

“Can this be the same Harvard of which the late President Eliot used to boast?” Mayor Bauer asked. “The factor that made her the dominant educational institution of our land was that she had been building men for nearly 300 years?”

On the Mayor’s order, the police chief will station fifty patrolmen and sergeants on duty Thursday at the Lynn-English classical high game with orders to arrest all persons who drink and to stop the game if drinking becomes serious.

Kingston Daily Freeman (Kingston, New York) Nov 26, 1929

Mayor Bauer, of Lynn, addressing a meeting of the Women’s Republican club at  Cambridge, Mass., this week, said there were about 4,000 too many municipal employes in Boston and that he could discharge all of them without one being missed. “All city governments are ‘good fellow’ governments,” the mayor told his audience. “Public officials feel they have got to get jobs for their constituents and they don’t care whether there exists a job or not.”

The Bridgeport Telegram (Bridgeport, Connecticut) Jun 30, 1927


“The Naked Truth” which is now showing at the Park theatre has caused considerable comment and discussion recently in Boston and Lynn, Mass. The Mayor of Boston, refused permission to present the film to Bostonians, and immediately upon taking this stand, Mayor Bauer of Lynn viewed the film and passed on it as a good and proper picture, bearing a message of beneficial value to the community and permitted the Lynn Auditorium to show the film for four weeks to record-breaking crowds. The film is featured by an all-star cast supported by Jack Mulhall and Helene Chadwick. This is the first showing of the film in this vicinity. “The Naked Truth” is to the point and calls a spade a spade.

The Bridgeport Telegram (Bridgeport, Connecticut) Nov 2, 1926

Image from Shorpy


LYNN, Mass., — Dec. 14. — (By The Associated Press.) — By proclamation of Mayor Bauer, dogs are assured the freedom of the streets if they do not make nuisances of themselves nor obstruct traffic like some political aspirants do. The more he sees of men, the more respect the mayor has for dogs. The proclamation was issued after state authorities urged that stray dogs be rounded up and killed because of the spread of rabies.

Ogden Standard Examiner (Ogden, Utah) Dec 14, 1927

Images of John P. McGloin from the Lynn Museum and Historical Society

Independent baseball will be played on the playgrounds at Lynn this summer with Mayor Fred Manning tossing out the first ball. Former Mayor Bauer stopped the games on the playgrounds when he was in office.

Fitchburg Sentinel (Fitchburg, Massachusetts) Jul 12, 1930

Mayor of Lynn

Ralph Sherman Bauer

Image from NOBLE Digital Heritage

The following biographical information (from Descendants of HANS MICHAEL BAUER, (BOWER)) tells of Mayor Bauer “pulling himself up by the bootstraps” and making a life for himself:


His father died when he was only seven years old. Even at that extremely early age he became the main support of a family consisting of his mother and three sisters, the youngest a nursing baby. The family then living in Philadelphia and it was there that Ralph S. Bauer began his career in the newspaper business. The result of his first day’s sales as a “newsie” was cents. From that time on, every dollar he has ever had has been made by his own business ability. During the first 15 years of his life, there was no kind of human poverty this family did not face, and through it all, held together as a family and received such education as could be obtained under such circumstances.

When Ralph Bauer, yet in his teens, determined to exchange the environment of Philadelphia for cultured Boston, his [wealth] when he landed amounted to 27 cents. Many were the hours of loneliness that were his, with neither kith nor kin nearer than the PA metropolis. Many were the night he slept on a Boston Common bench with the star-studded blue dome of the heavens above, his only coverlet. Oft were dreams rudely disturbed by the smart blow of a patrolman’s night-stick on the thin soles of his tattered shoes. Always with warm appreciation will remained his memory of one of Boston’s guardians of the peace, who drew from him the tale of his struggles for existence. Never will he forget the warmth of the coat the officer tucked about his lusty body while he promised to rouse him from his slumbers in time to get his share of the profits from the early morning edition of the Herald. True to his word the officer awakened the sleeping lad and provided him with a good hot breakfast. If that man is still alive today Ralph Bauer would like to know his whereabouts, for he has never forgotten his kindness to a little lonely lad in a great city, far from his lived ones. He was graduated from the Boston Latin school and immediately thereafter obtained a position in the mailing department of the Boston Herald.

The Guide Post

January 8, 2012

The Guide Post.

Translated by Bayard Taylor from the Alemadnic-German dialect of John Peter Hebel.

D’ye know the road to th’ bar’l o’ flour?
At break o’ day let down the bars,
And plough y’r wheat-field hour by hour,
Till sundown — yes, till shade o’ starts.

You peg away the livelong day,
Nor loaf away, nor gape around;
And that’s the road to the thrashing’-floor,
And into the kitchen, I’ll be bound.

D’ye know the road where the dollars lay?
Follow the red cents here and there;
For if a man leaves them I can guess,
He won’t find dollars any where.

D’ye know the road to Sunday’s rest?
Jist don’t o’ week-day’s be afeard;
In field and workshop do y’r best,
And Sunday comes itself, I’ve heard.

On Saturday’s it’s not far off,
And brings a basketful o’ cheer, —
A roast and lots o’ garden stuff,
And, like as not, a jug o’ beer!

D’ye know the road to poverty?
Turn in at any tavern sign;
Turn in — it’s temptin’ as can be;
There’s bran new cards and liquor fine.

In the last tavern there’s a sack,
And, when the cash y’r pockets quit,
Jist hand the wallet on y’r back.
You vagabond! see how it fits!

D’ye know what road to honor leads?
And good old age? — a lovely sight!
By way o’ temperance, honest deeds,
And tryin’ to do y’r duty right.

And when the roads forks, ary side,
And you’re in doubt which one it is,
Stand still, and let your conscience guide;
Thank God, it can’t lead much amiss!

And now the road to church yard gate
You needn’t ask! Go anywhere!
For, whether roundabout or straight,
All roads, at last, ‘ll bring you there.

Go, fearin’ God, but loving more!
I’ve tried to be an honest guide, —
You’ll find the grave has got a door,
And something for you t’other side.

Appleton Motor (Appleton, Wisconsin) Jul 3, 1862

bio – pg 71


January 8, 2012


What must be done to conduct a newspaper right?       Write.

What is necessary to a farmer to assist him?       System.

What could give a blind man the greatest delight?       Light.

What is the best counsel given by a justice of the peace?       Peace.

Who committed the greatest abominations?       Nations.

What is the greatest terrifier?       Fire.

Appleton Motor (Appleton, Wisconsin) May 17, 1860

Who Then Shall Be Saved?

January 7, 2012

Dr. Meiklejohn Says Our National Wealth is a Viper That is Destroying Us …

And We Know What a Terrible Worry it is to Rich Men …

And Besides, Money is the Root of All Evil …

But We All Take a Chance!

Decatur Herald (Decatur, Illinois) Oct 17, 1929

Image and quote from searchQuotes

Whatever the immediate gains and losses, the dangers to our safety arising from political suppression are always greater than the dangers to the safety resulting from political freedom. Suppression is always foolish. Freedom is always wise.
— Alexander Meiklejohn

I Ain’t Dead Yet

January 6, 2012


Time was I used to worry an’
Sit around and sigh
And think with every ache I got
That I was going to die.
I’ve seen disaster coming from
A dozen different ways
An’ prophesied calamity and dark
And dreary days.
But I’ve come to this conclusion
That it’s foolishness to fret;
I’ve had my share o’ sickness —
But I ain’t dead yet.

I’ve found a thousand failures and
A thousand deaths I’ve died,
I’ve had this world in ruins
By the gloom I’ve prophesied,
But the sun shines bright this morning
And the skies above are blue,
And with all my grief and trouble
I have somehow lived it through.
There may be cares before me
Much like those that I have met,
Death will come some day and take me —
But I ain’t dead yet.


Decatur Herald (Decatur, Illinois) Oct 24, 1929

Why Not a Law to Board Up Wall Street

January 5, 2012


— John T. Flynn, in the American Magazine.

On Monday I bought share on share.
On Tuesday I was a millionaire;
On Wednesday I took a grand abode;
On Thursday in my carriage road;
On Friday went to the opera ball;
On Saturday came to the pauper’s hall.

Now, when do you suppose that was written? Save for a little quaintness in the language, it might have been turned out last March. As a matter of fact, it was written 200 years ago. From which we may see that the contagious disease, called speculation is not by any means a modern infection.

When that bit of verse was penned, the notorious Mississippi bubble had broken in France and the frenzied stock buyers were rushing madly into a little lane in Paris called Quincampoix street, where the stock sharpers carried on their trade in the open air. The municipal authorities, in order to check this crazed speculation, boarded up the street to keep the foolish victims out.

Decatur Herald (Decatur, Illinois) Oct 3, 1929

Cross Words and Crosswords

January 5, 2012

Cross and Puzzled

A Cross Word puzzle is a cinch for some,
But not very easy for a fellow who’s dumb.
They give you a word and you hunt for its mate,
You work on it from early morn until late,
You think you have found just the word that you need,
You tax your brain till you’re way off your feed,
The dictionary you look into, page after page,
When you can’t find the word, you fly off in a rage
And when the time comes to creep into your bed,
You can’t get to sleep; words run through your head.
“O, when will this craze be over”, you cry
The answer comes back: “In the sweet bye and bye”.
It’s good for the intellect of some that we know
But as for poor me, there’s not a ghost of a show.

Daily Messenger (Canadaigua, New York) Jan 26, 1925

Crossword Religion

Opinion will be divided upon the unique plan of Rev. George W. McElveen of stimulating interest in the church through the agency of the crossword puzzle. Rev. McElveen, who is pastor of the Knoxville Baptist Church, of Pittsburgh, Pa., recently announced that the congregation would have to solve a crossword puzzle before he would preach his sermon. The puzzle spaces were mapped out on a huge blackboard and suspended by the pulpit and the congregation had to guess the correct words for them. when completed the words formed the text of the sermon.

The idea of the crossword puzzle is old but this particular application of it is new indeed and was undertaken by Rev. Mc Elveen, it is understood in an effort to give his church a little more life and activity and add an additional interest to a perhaps dry theological dissertation. As is usual with an entirely new idea there is much discussion both for and against, some persons holding that the reverend gentleman’s plan is a forward step in modernizing religion and making it palatable for the younger generation. the opposite side, however, consists mostly of older, and perhaps more orthodox church goers, deplores this tendency to introduce any innovations in the church services. It is doubtful, however, if many other ministers try the scheme until they find out how the plan worked in Rev. McElveen’s church.

Portsmouth Herald (Portsmouth, New Hampshire) Dec 3, 1924

Echoes of many family jars in this community lately have reached our ears. Knowing, of course, that wifie is not always “dovey” in hunting season time, we attributed the many domestic squabbles to that cause. Now, according to the following, it isn’t hunting season, or bobbed hair, that’s causing all the trouble, but — well, read it for yourself:

Lancaster, Pa., Dec. 3 — Edith M. Fry of Ephrata, told a jury in court today that her husband, Alvin B. Fry, beat her because she was unable to figure how much “gas” it required to drive the family automobile from their home to Washington. The jury granted her a divorce. But the husband says he hit his wife only after she had put across an uppercut that closed one eye. He contested the divorce. Apparently the husband was a crossword puzzle fan, for, according to testimony, he frequently heaved the dictionary at his wife when she failed to give prompt definitions to words he propounded.

Clearfield Progress (Clearfield, Pennsylvania) Dec 5, 1924

Crossword puzzle in Latin will be introduce on examination at Milton Academy this year for Latin students.

Daily Messenger (Canadaigua, New York) Dec 19, 1924