Posts Tagged ‘Massachusetts’

Two Hundred Years Aloft

December 7, 2012

Two Hundred Years Aloft - The Athens Messenger OH 14 Sep 1927

Two centuries are the aggregate ages of these flying oldsters, Mrs. Almatia Bennett, 101, of Chicopee Fallls, Mass., and Charles W. Bradley, 99. By way of celebrating Mrs. Bennett’s 101st anniversary, they flew from Boston to Old Orchard, Me. And after an hour in the air Grandma Bennett said she would fly again on her 102nd birthday.

The Athens Messenger (Athens, Ohio) Sep 14, 1927

Lucy Blackinton of New Salem

March 9, 2012

Image from Forgotten Franklin County Town

A Notable Woman of New Salem Dead.

Mrs. Lucy Blackinton of New Salem died, Saturday, aged 93 years, 2 months and 22 days.

She is the Lucy Blackinton of New Salem, who got lost the 23d of July, 1883, and was found in a swamp on the west side of Eagleville pond in Orange the 31st, having been gone and without food nearly eight days. She went out alone to pick berries near the house and wandered off into the woods. At one time, about a week after she was lost, about 300 people were searching for her, and although they went near her and she heard their voices, she could not make herself heard and she lay down to die.

She had to experience a rain and a cold, frosty night, while in the swamp, and was a frightful looking object when found, her clothes being nearly all torn off. She soon after regained her usual health and strength, although then over 87 years old. She had been comparatively well till within a short time, but died eventually of heart failure.

The Fitchburg Sentinel (Fitchburg, Massachusetts) May 28, 1889

The Latter House

January 15, 2012

Image from Image Museum – Lee, MA


Sad was the hour when startling bells
Rung out their fearful warning;
And all around we heard the cry:
“Our dear old church is burning!”
Burning — burning!
And all around we heard the cry:
“Our dear old church is burning!”

But other churches op’d their doors
To cheer us in our sorrow,
And Christian friends bade us be strong,
And hope still for the morrow.
The morrow — the morrow;
And Christian friends bade us be strong,
And hope still for the morrow.

That morrow, is has come TO-DAY;
And grateful memories bringing,
The glory of this latter house,
We dedicate with singing.
Singing — singing!
The glory of this latter house
We dedicate with singing.

Dear Jesus, come and bless this place,
Where youthful hearts are moulded,
And safe within thy loving arms
Let all the Lambs be folded,
Folded — folded!
And safe within thy loving arms
Let all the lambs be folded.

The Berkshire County Eagle (Pittsfield, Massachusetts) Jul 9, 1858

Lee One Year since the Fire. [Excerpt]

One year ago last Friday night we lay in the cars at Richmond, blocked in by snow three feet deep, while the thermometer stood at thirty below zero. The monotony of that tedious night was relieved by speculations as to the locality and cause of a brilliant light in the south east. After our liberation, we ascertained that it arose from the great fire which destroyed the Congregational Church, and much of the business portion of Lee.

The night was a memorable one, and the year which has since passed has been an eventful one — for Lee. We chanced to celebrate the anniversary by a visit to the good town to see how it stands the rubs of fortune, and we found it looking, as energetic men do, all the better for the impediments with which it has struggled, although some of them have doubtless much checked its immediate progress.



is the only other prominent building which is replacing those burnt. It is of wood, and is to cost $20,000, including the organ, &c. Mr. A.L. Clark, of Pittsfield, is the architect. Judging from what is completed, which is only a part of the exterior, it will be one of the finest buildings of the kind in the State. The Saxon windows, with their heavy caps, are very attractive, and if the work to be done is in keeping with them, as we are told it is, the building will be one which would be an ornament to any town. It will be completed and dedicated next June, when we shall have more to say of it.


The Berkshire County Eagle (Pittsfield, Massachusetts) Jan 29, 1858

Biographical sketch of the church’s architect, Abner L. Clark from the following book:

Title: Samuel Davis, of Oxford, Mass., and Joseph Davis, of Dudley, Mass., and Their Descendants
Genealogy and Local History series
Author: George Lucien Davis
Editor: George Fisher Daniels
Publisher: s.n., 1884
Page 328

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.

Alvan Clark: Artist, Astronomer – Telescope Maker

August 18, 2011



The Story of His Useful and Busy Life.

How He Became an Astronomer — How His Telescopes Were Manufactured — His Honors at Home and Abroad.

Alvan Clark, whose death at Cambridge, Mass., at the age of 83, was recently recorded, did more to advance astronomical science than any other person of this century. As a telescope maker his reputation is world wide. when Dom Pedro, of Brazil, visited this country some years ago he said there were three persons in Cambridge whom he wanted much to see. These were Longfellow, Professor Agassiz and Mr. Alvan Clark.

At the age when most persons think they are too old to begin any new business or learn anything, or even go on energetically with what they do know, Mr. Clark began the work which made him famous. He did not so much as know anything about it. Nor did he ever see a lens in process of construction outside of his own shop. He lived on a farm until he was 22 years old. His early education was such as the common schools afforded. In his 23d year he went to Lowell and became a calico engraver. He had a talent for drawing which he developed unaided. For nine years Mr. Clark was a calico engraver. Meanwhile he took up portrait painting. He located in Boston and painted heads for twenty years, earning over $20,000 with his brush, without ever having been taught anything about art. Though he grew famous in quite another field, it was to his days of artist life that he always went back in memory with the most affection. And during his later years he again took up the brush and found pleasure and recreation in the work of his young manhood.

He was more than 40 when he became interested in telescopes. Assisted by his two sons he afterward produced the most accurate and the two largest instruments in the world. His oldest son, George B. Clark, while in college at Andover read a treatise on “Casting and Grinding the Speculum.” Inspired by that he conceived the idea of making a telescope. He consulted his father, who at once became deeply interested in it. They worked together at the experiment, and from this small beginning came the great work which brought them fame and wealth. Both sons were later included in the business, and the firm was known as Clark & Sons, and they worked together nearly forty years.

Grinding lenses is a work which requires the utmost nicety. Often, after months of careful labor, a flaw is found and all the work must be lost. Once when Mr. Clark was giving the final polishing to a lens upon which a year’s time had been expended, it fell to the floor and was broken. Looking woefully at the fragments a few moments in silence, he stood up saying: “Boys, we will make a better one.” The unlimited patience, which enabled him to be cheerful under such a disaster was his chief characteristic. And he was ever cheerful and companionable.

Mr. Clark was the first optician in the United States to make achromatic lenses, each completed lens being composed of two pieces, one of crown and the other of flint glass, and he invented numerous improvements in telescopes and their manufacture, including the double eye piece, an ingenious method of measuring small celestial arcs. He made the 18.5 inch glass now in the Chicago observatory; the one of 24 inches aperture for the Washington observatory, and the 30 inch refractor for the Imperial observatory of St. Petersburg, for which the honorary medal of Russia was awarded — the only one ever conferred upon an American. The last and greatest work of Mr. Clark and his sons was the construction of a 36 inch refractor for the Lick observatory on Mt. Hamilton, in California. This will be finished in a few months, and will be the largest in the world. Mr. Clark was also an astronomer of note, and made some valuable discoveries, for which the Lalande gold medal was awarded him by the French academy. The cheapest telescope Mr. Clark ever made cost $300, while the National he sold for $16,000, and the Lick glass will cost $50,000 without the mounting. The objectives alone to these instruments are worth $25,000 each, and are capable of a magnifying power of 2,000 diameters, and of increasing the surface of the object viewed to 2,500,000 times its natural size. It takes a month’s solid labor to make a good 4 inch objective, and a year for an 8 or 10 inch one.

In recognition of his great contributions to science degrees were conferred on Mr. Clark by the universities of Harvard, Amherst, Princeton and Chicago, but he had worked at telescopes for ten years without receiving the slightest recognition or encouragement from any official, scientific or educational quarter. And yet these ten years were those of the revival or foundation of practical astronomy in the United States. To Mr. Dawes, a scientific divine of Europe, is due the credit of bringing out this telescope maker. At the time Mr. Clark began a correspondence with Mr. Dawes there was not in all England an establishment which could grind a large object glass into accurate shape. England had lost the art of shaping object glasses, but rough glass of the necessary purity and uniformity was cast there as in no other country. Mr. Clark for some time imported his rough disks to fill the orders he received from Mr. Dawes, who was a telescope fancier, always on the lookout for improvements in construction and mounting.

Only the very largest lenses are ground by machinery. The tools for grinding a lens are very simple — merely round plates of cast iron, about three feet in diameter, hollowed out to suit the curves of the lens. They look like huge, shallow saucers. Three of these tools are necessary, one nearly flat for the inner surface of the flint glass, one convex, for its outer surface, and one concave, for the crown glass. The surface of the tool is covered with coarse emery and water, the glass is laid upon it, and the grinding is carried on by sliding the glass back and forth on the tool. While sliding, the glass is slowly turned around, while, at the same time, the operators continually move around in the other direction, so that the strokes are made successively in every direction on the tool. By these combined motions every inequality, either on the glass or the tool, is gradually worn away, and both are reduced to portions of nearly perfect spheres. Then finer emery is used until the surface becomes quite smooth. Then comes the polishing. The whole tool is covered with a thin coating of pitch, which is pressed, while still warm, into the proper shape. It is then covered with a layer of water and the polishing rouge, and the glass is again laid upon it, and kept in motion in the same way as in the fine grinding. Thus each surface of the two glasses is speedily brought to a high polish. Then the glass is tested to find the defects. It is set up on edge, facing a luminous point at a distance equal to ten or fifteen times the focal point. The image of the point formed in the focus of the glass is then examined with an eye piece of high power. The glass is then taken back to the tool and the polishing process is recommenced, only pressing upon those parts of the glass where it has to be ground away. It is tried again, and again goes to the polisher.

So far no extraordinary skill on the part of the workman is required; but as the size of the glass is increased the process becomes more difficult and tedious, and the difficulties of judging what the defects are increase enormously.

The telescope is by no means finished with the glass. It must be tubed properly. It must admit of being moved by clock work in such a way that as the earth revolves from west to east the telescope shall revolve from east to west with exactly the same velocity, and thus point steadily at the same star. The details of the machinery for attaining these and other results have required a large amount of thought and care.

Bismarck Daily Tribune (Bismarck, North Dakota) Sep 8, 1887

Specification forming part of Letters Patent No. 8,509, dated November 11, 1851.

To all whom it may concern:
Be it known that I, ALVAN CLARK, of Cambridge, in the county of Middlesex and State of Massachusetts, have invented a new and useful Improvement in Telescopes…

Specification of Letters Patent No. 1,565, dated April 24, 1840.

To all whom it may concern:
Be it known that I, the undersigned, ALVAN CLARK, of Cambridge, in the county of Middlesex and State of Massachusetts, artist, have invented a new and useful Improvement in Rifles, which I call a “Loading-Muzzle,” …

Fools in Massachusetts

June 5, 2011

Reviving the Blue Laws.

A Massachusetts Court has unearthed the famous Blue Laws, and proposes to enforce them religiously. A worthy Jew closed his store on Saturday and attended faithfully to his devotions at the synagogue, respecting the day as a Sabbath. On the following day he deferred to Christian scruples by allowing his place of business to remain closed; but not having any conscientious scruples of his own in the matter, and there being no Jewish worship to attend, he went fishing.

For this offence against the ancient laws of the Commonwealth he was arrested. At the trial the very learned Court ponderously ruled to the effect that if the accused were a fisherman he might lawfully fish every Sunday in the year and make all the money he could at it; but if he angled for amusement he was guilty of a criminal offense; and as that was what he had done, a fine was imposed upon him, which will doubtless impress upon him the awful guilt of amusing himself on Sunday, which isn’t his Sunday.

S.F. Chronicle.

It is also calculated to impress upon him that the Puritans settled New England. The existence of such laws records the fact that fools have lived in Massachusetts, and the ruling of the Judge will prove that they are not all dead.

Reno Evening Gazette (Reno, Nevada) May 18, 1876

1894 Republican Platform

October 19, 2010


The principles of the Republicans of Massachusetts are as well known as the Commonwealth itself; well known as the Republic; well known as Liberty; well known as Justice.

Chief among them are:

An equal share in government for every citizen;

Best possible wages for every workman;

The American markets for American labor;

Every dollar paid by the Government, both the gold and silver dollars of the Constitution, and their paper representatives, honest and unchanging in value and equal to every other;

Better immigration laws;

Better naturalization laws;

No tramp, Anarchist, criminal or pauper to be let in, so that citizenship shall not be stained or polluted.

Sympathy with Liberty and Republican government at home and abroad;

Americanism everywhere;

The flag never lowered or dishonored;

No surrender in Samoa;

No barbarous Queen beheading men in Hawaii;

No lynching;

No punishment without trial;

Faith kept with the pensioner;

No deserving old soldier in the poor house;

The suppression of dram drinking and dram selling;

A school at the public charge open to all the children, and free from partisan or sectarian control;

No distinction of birth or religious creed in the rights of American citizenship;

Devotion paramount and supreme to the country and to the flag;

Clean politics;

Pure administration;

No lobby;

Reform of old abuses;

Leadership along loftier paths;

Minds ever open to the sunlight and the morning, ever open to new truth and new duty as the new years bring their lessons.

The Fitchburg Sentinel (Fitchburg, Massachusetts) Oct 23, 1894


Senator George F. Hoar


Republican Rally

[excerpt – Senator Hoar‘s speech]

“If you are willing to take for security the promise of a party upon which no man can safely bank and which no man can safely discount, then vote the Democratic ticket. If you will trust a party which has always done better than it promised then vote the Republican ticket. If you wish to join the party of slavery and disunion, of rebellion of bankruptcy, of failure and despair then vote the Democratic ticket. If you wish to join a party of progress, of union, of freedom and victory and hope, then vote the Republican ticket.

“If you want the mortgage on your house foreclosed you had better vote the Democratic ticket. If you want it paid off you had better vote the Republican. If you want wages to go down, then vote the Democratic ticket. If you want wages to go up then vote the Republican ticket. If you like three days’ work in the week better than six then vote the Democratic ticket. If you like six days better than three then vote the Republican. If you like to have two men for one job vote the Democratic ticket. If you like to have two jobs for one man, then vote the Republican ticket. If you want your mills managed by college professors, then vote the Democratic ticket. If you want them managed by business men, then vote the Republican ticket.”

The Fitchburg Sentinel (Fitchburg, Massachusetts) Oct 19, 1894

Curious Wreath

December 18, 2009


A wreath is exhibited at a fair in Gloucester, Mass., this Christmas week, that is composed of the hair of one hundred different residents of that town, none of whom is under seventy years of age, while ten of them are over ninety, and one of them is a centenarian. The lady who made it is fifty, and has been four years about it.

The Adams Sentinel (Gettysburg, Pennsylvania) Jan 5, 1864

Frog and Toad Weren’t Always Friends

January 26, 2009



A gentleman in Lynn, Massachusetts, while passing a pond in that city a few mornings since, witnessed a singular scene, which he describes as follows: Around the margin of the pond, in the water, there was a large collection of common toads; close beside them was an equal gathering of bull-frogs; and a battle between the two was in progress. The frogs, being the most powerful, were busily engaged in drowning the toads. One or more frogs would sieze a toad and hold his head under water until he was drowned. Sometimes a frog would find himself overmatched, and then he would utter a peculiar sound, when one or more of his comrades would come to his aid, and the toad was sure to go under, never to rise again. This battle continued for several minutes, until the toads were “cleaned out,” when the frogs joined in one triumphant croak.

Nevada State Journal (Reno, Nevada) Jun 17,  1871