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Turning Back the Pages

•100 Years Ago - January, 1913•

Powder flares up, injures clerk

Lewis G. Hamilton, a clerk in the John G. Hunt’s Hardware store in Warrensburgh, was a victim of a New Year’s flare-up Jan. 1, 1913 which nearly put him out of business.

In sweeping up the store in the morning, he cleaned up a small quantity of powder which had been spilled when a sale was made earlier and taking up a dust pan with the sweepings, he threw the contents on the ash pile back of the store.

Later, he had occasion to burn some loose papers and he touched a lighted match to a scrap of paper which came in contact with the powder. There was a blinding flash and a sheet of flame leaped up into the young man’s face burning him severely. He was taken at once to Dr. Goodman’s office where his wounds were dressed. The burns were exceedingly painful but it is believed that they will not leave a scar. His eyes were not injured. (Note: Hunt’s store was in the north end of the Main St. building that today houses Marco Polo’s Pizza.)

Sad waste of life

Silas McCasland, a young man who had just reached his majority, was convicted at Plattsburgh of manslaughter in the second degree for killing Charles Facto in a drunken brawl at Bedford on Aug. 3, 1912. He was given an indefinite sentence in the Elmira Reformatory.

McCasland is said to be suffering from incipient tuberculosis and it was deemed inadvisable to sentence him to the regular prison, which by reason of the close confinement would have been equivalent to a death sentence.

Crazy weather prevails

Friday Jan. 3, 1913 was a day of remarkable weather. In the afternoon there was an electrical storm of summertime proportions. The thunder was heavy and the lightning sharp. At 4 o’clock this subsided and the sun came out warming the atmosphere to almost spring like heat. Than came a wind, starting with a breeze and increasing into a gale which swept along at the rate of 50 miles per hour and did considerable damage in various parts of the town. (No: It must have been on a day like this in 1606 that Shakespeare wrote, “So foul and fair a day I have not seen.”)

Readers are welcome to contact Adirondack Journal correspondent Jean Hadden at jhadden1@nycap.rr.com or 623-2210.

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