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February 9, 1898 - Watkins Academy Fire on Feb. 4th & history
of some Watkins church buildings.
The Watkins Academy building was destroyed by fire on the morning of Fri. last, Feb. 4th. The flames were discovered at about 7:30 o'clock, by W.J. TOWER, who passing at the time, in the library room on the second floor and in the northwestern portion of the structure. They are supposed to have caught from a stove which was located quite near to the woodwork, but which had been attended to a short time before by the janitor, S. B. PECK. The firemen quickly responded, but so like a tinder-box was the old wooden structure that in a short time only blackened walls remained. Most of the contents of the lower story, where the primary departments were located, were saved from the flames, but nothing was secured from the academic department, and school books, educational apparatus, geological specimens and other articles of value were a total loss. The books destroyed included upwards of 300 volumes of encyclopaedias, etc. and nearly $100 worth of book belonging to Principal S.S. JOHNSON. The building burned was located some 25 feet southward of the fine school building now in process of erection, and on its completion would have been removed. It was insured through the agency of W. M. PEARSALL for $2,000....the grammar school building burned on the morning of July 19th, 1897....The Board of Education bought the old academy building of the Presbyterian Society in 1868, for $1,000. It was removed to the school grounds, placed on a basement and fitted up....In the fall of 1874 an addition was built to the eastward....The Watkins Academy building was a landmark of this village. It was built by the Presbyterian Society, at the corner of Fifth and Decatur Sts., in 1846, and for 20 years thereafter occupied as a place of worship. Like the old Methodist and Baptist churches it fronted the Park, on lots given for religious uses by th widow of Dr. Samuel WATKINS and later of Judge George G. FREER, whose maiden name was Cynthia CASS. The Presbyterian church was built in 1846-7; the Methodist church about 1849-50, and the Baptist church in about 1851. The bell was purchased by all three societies, and hung in the first completed church according to agreement. The town clock was bought at a later date through the efforts of the citizens of this place. The structure of this article was the 3rd church edifice ever erected in this place. The first church erected by the Presbyterians was torn down at its site on Monroe St. by C. W. INGALLS, the first of this year. It was built in 1833. This was 3 years before the old Episcopal church at the corner of Monroe and Division streets was completed, but that structure was begun in 1831, and hence is really the oldest church building in this village. It is only one of the 5 original wooden edifices of worship still standing. [Pupils deprived of school facilities by the fire will attend school at various locations, including the BALDWIN Block, Watkins Review office, the SHELTON Block in the store occupied by CHASE & Co.]
Dr. F. B. WELLER's dental office was broken into last Thurs. night.
Things were turned topsy-turvy, but apparently nothing was taken.
April 19, 1899 - Obit. of Hannah LAKE WIXON, Mead's Hill, NY
(From Family Bible Collection, Montour Falls Library)
Hannah Lake, wife of Reuben Wixon, died April 19. 1899. Mrs. Wixon was born in Urbana, Steuben county, N. Y.
Sept. 22, 1819, and married Reuben Wixon, of Wayne, N. Y., Jan. 24th,1844, taking up her residence on Mead's Hill, in April. 1846, where she died.
Her health had not been good for two years. She had one stroke of paralysis six weeks and another four weeks prior to her death. Her mind was wandering during the greater part of her sickness but became clear a short time before her death and she died happy and peaceful.
She was well informed in matters of general interest, a faithful student of the Bible, a woman of a geuerous unselfish life, and an interested worker in the Baptist church of Moreland. Mr. W. C. Gray, of whose Bible class she was a member, as a tribute to her memory spoke in brief, at her funeral, of Mr. and Mrs. Wixon their long connection with the society, and her accurate and extensive knowledge of the Holy Scriptures. Frequently when questions presented in the Sabbath school were indefinitely answered she would turn to some marked passage in her Bible and ask the teacher to read it to the school. Her Bible was well marked and showed her loving acquaintance with it.
Three brothers, Isaac, of Hornby, Thomas, of Urbana, who resides on the old homestead and James, of Michigan; one son, Brandt, of Dix, one daughter, Mary Rapalee, of Farmer, and eleven grandchildren survive her, six children having died. The death of Frank, the last who died Dec. 3, 1893, and Mary his wife, Dec. 4, 1893, was a heavy affliction.
She was buried from the Baptist church at Moreland Saturday, April 22d, Rev. W. P. Slocum, officiating.
Mr. Wixon desires to express his thanks and appreciation of friends and neighbors and to Miss Lydia Wilbur for
all kindness and services during Mrs. Wixon's sickness and funeral.
May 31, 1899 - Emmet DICKENS charged with assault; M.L. MARTIN's
cow had triplets.
East Steamburg has been heard from again. Last Sat. Sheriff TOLBERT arrested Emmet DICKENS, of that place, on a warrant charging him with assault in the second degree. The complainant in the case is Hiram SWICK. It is alleged that on Tues. of last week DICKENS assaulted SWICK with a pitchfork while engaged in pressing hay. DICKEN's bail was fixed at $500, and his examination has been set down for June 6th before Justice EVERTS, of Watkins. The complainant and defendant are young men.
A cow belonging to M.L. MARTIN, of Burdett, recently gave birth to triplets. Two of the calves weighed 39 pounds each and the other 37 1/2 pounds at birth, and all are healthy and vigorous. The same cow had twins a year ago, we understand.
June 14, 1899 - shooting birds.
A great deal of complaint appears in the state exchanges in regard to the boy and Flobert rifle. The killing of birds by the boy who wants to shoot something will prove a costly practice if the boy should be detected. A boy who shoots a robin or a meadow lark, or who destroys a nest of any bird with its eggs or young, excepting the sparrow, crow, crane, raven, crow-black, common blackbird or kingfisher, is guilty of a misdemeanor and may be compelled to pay a fine of $25.
June 21, 1899 - James AUBLE's sheep killed on RR tracks.
Last Fri. night James M. AUBLE, of Hector, drove a flock of sheep in to Hiram VEDDER's barnyard for the night intending to take them, with others, to the PARKS farm the next morning where they were to be pastured. Sometime during the night they broke out and in the morning wandered upon the Northern Central tracks just as the 5:26 express came thundering down the grade, plunging into the flock, killing 15 and injuring many others. It is a bad loss for Mr. AUBLE as well as a cruel accident. (Montour Falls Free Press.)
July 12, 1899 - Double drowning fatality - Charles ORR & William
Charles ORR, of Townsend, and William ARMSTRONG, of near Wayne, were drowned in Lake Waneta about midnight on Tues. night of last week. They were engaged in fishing, and were accompanied by a young man named MERRICK, of the town of Dix. The accident happened on the east side of the lake, the boat capsizing and throwing all three of them into the water. After struggling for a short time MERRICK told his companions to cling to the boat and swim for shore. Upon reaching land he listened, but hearing no sound summoned help. About two hours later the dead bodies of ORR and ARMSTRONG were recovered. ORR was about 25 years of age. ARMSTRONG was about 30 years old, and leaves a wife. He was buried at Wayne, and ORR at Sugar Hill.
July 26, 1899 - Misc. News
A resident of Franklin Street reports that he was kept awake at 2 o'clock in the morning by the village nightwatch, who was sawing away furiously on a fiddle. Is it another case of Nero?
Among the excitements of last Thurs. evening was a fist fight on one side of Main St., and a woman temperance lecturer discoursing on the other. The fight, as usual, drew the largest crowd. (Montour Falls Free Press)
August 2, 1899 - Drowning of Willie TIMMS; Three Horse Accidents.
A drowning accident occurred Mon. afternoon about three o'clock, in the canal near a point where the Glen creek empties into it. Willie TIMMS, a lad of about ten years of age, a son of Mr. & Mrs. Charles TIMMS, of Farmer, formerly of Watkins, went bathing with several other boys, and as the water in this point is deep in places, young TIMMS sank, and before aid could reach him was drowned. The body was not recovered until 8pm, although several charges of dynamite were used.
Altay -- John GREGORY's horse became frightened on Fri. last near the bridge opposite the saw mill of D.A. LAMB, overturning the buggy, and throwing him and his nephew out, and nearly demolishing the wagon and harness, but fortunately no one was hurt. Mr. GRAHAM's horses also ran away the same day, and nobody injured; and a Mrs. RUMSEY's horse came running through town, with Mrs. RUMSEY in the wagon, and ran into the blacksmith shop, the horse having started near Tyrone. Nobody hurt, and only a broken pair of thills.
August 9, 1899 - Burglars in Watkins.
There were burglars in Watkins last Wed. night. They paid their respects to the residences of County Clerk HAWES and J.B. MACREERY on Tenth St. At the former place they gained entrance by breaking a paper window pane and unfastening a door. They removed between five and six dollars from Mrs. HAWE's purse, which was in a drawer in the dining room, and helped themselves to some of Mr. HAWE's choice Havanas. They departed without waking the household. At Mr. MACREERY's they met with poorer luck. The intruder first entered the cellar, the outside door not being fastened, but was unable to gain access to the rooms above. He then removed a screen from a window, and proceeded to crawl through, but made so much noise among some dishes that he was frightened away. Mrs. LOVE heard him, and aroused Mr. MACREERY. John got his big five or six shooter and went in search of the rascal, but without success. However, he was afterwards heard to strike a match near the house. The occurrence took place between 4 and 5 o'clock. Some time during the hours of Fri. morning the Jefferson House was entered through a rear window. The cigar case in the office was pried open and about $50 worth of cigars stolen. The burglars also helped themselves to eatables. Since then 2 men have been arrested and committed to the Bath jail for vagrancy. A quantity of cigars were found in their possession, and they are undoubtedly the persons who committed the Jefferson House burglary, if not the HAWES and MACREERY ones. They will be brought to Watkins later.
August 16, 1899 - Death of Daniel S. TUTTLE.
Daniel S. TUTTLE, of this village [Watkins], died of organic heart disease at the home of his parents in Reading on Fri. afternoon last, Aug. 11, 1899. He had been ill at his Watkins residence and at the home of his parents, but it was not generally known that his condition was dangerous, and even his family did not realize until the end was so near. The deceased was in the 31st year of his age. He was the elder of the two sons of Hon. and Mrs. Adrian TUTTLE, and about 4 years ago was married to Miss Wilhemina NEWMAN of this village. He was a graduate of Watkins High School and of the Cornell Law School. He had been a practicing lawyer in this village for about six years past. Daniel S. TUTTLE was one of the most widely known young men in the county. He was endowed with more than ordinary natural ability, and enjoyed excellent educational advantages. At that time he was a perfect specimen of physical manhood, and a giant in strength, but, as is frequently the case with such men, he was cut down by disease ere he had reached life's medieval period. He was of a genial, generous disposition, and his companionable nature and kindly ways won him friends wherever his acquaintance extended. The ending of his life almost at the beginning of his professional career is a bereavement to his relatives too deep for pen to describe. The funeral was held at the parental home Sun. afternoon at 3 o'clock. Burial was in the TUTTLE family lot in Glenwood cemetery. The funeral was one of the largest ever held in Reading, and a long procession of carriages followed the remains to their final resting place.
August 23, 1899 - Burr LOCKERBY killed at Cayuta. & Mrs. MACK
has surgery in Montour Falls, etc.
Burr LOCKERBY, a well-known resident of the town of Cayuta, was instantly killed last Thursday while superintending for th construction of a silo for Supervisor Charles H. SMITH. Mr. LOCKERBY placed a piece of the framework in position about 16 feet above the ground, but did not nail it. Soon afterwards he climbed up the frame and took hold of the loose piece, evidently forgetting that it had not been fastened. He fell backwards, striking his head on the stone foundation. The deceased was about 53 years old. Mr. LOCKERBY had held the office of town assessor, and had filled other positions of public trust. He was highly esteemed as a neighbor, citizen and friend, and the tragic ending of his life cast a gloom over the town.
Mrs. Wm. MACK, living on Genesee St., Montour Falls, had her right leg amputated above the knee last Sun. morning. For the past two years Mrs. MACK has been confined to her house and bed with what was supposed to be an obstinate case of rheumatism, but the disease recently developed into what is known by physicians as tubercular ulceration. Last week a counsel of physicians was called, and it was decided to amputate the leg above the knee. The operation was performed by Dr. BARNES, of Watkin.
September 20, 1899 - Reynoldsville (Hector) Caucus.
The Republican pow-wow, caucus or NYE ratification meeting held at STOUGHTON's Hall, Reynoldsville, last Sat. evening is said to have been the largest and most unruly of any that has ever been held there since the 5th Hector district was formed. George BOYD, John H. SWICK and Jay T. DUNHAM, out-and-out NYE howlers, were elected by a good margin. The SOULE family, or shoe bottom gang, as they are called at home, were very numerous and outspoken, and seemed to be very confident that they would continue to boss the district as they always had since it was created....in consequence the NYE followers gritted their teeth and worked the harder....When the result was announced, Frank FROST, Hank WAIT and others...rushed out to tell CASSIDY. The vote was 66 for the NYE delegates and 48 for the SLOANE ticket.
October 4, 1899 - Republican County Convention
The Republican county convention with its ups and downs and ins and outs is now a matter of record, having passed into political history last Sat. afternoon. Without stopping to make nominations, the convention proceeded to a formal ballot for member of assembly. The time-honored hat was discarded, and a regular iron-clad ballot box was substituted in its place. During the counting of the votes, Candidates NYE and SLOANE modestly betook themselves to the ante-room, and awaited the result with fear and trembling. It was a time of awful and agonizing suspense, and hearts beat like triphammers. The result of the ballot was declared as follows NYE, 42; SLOANE, 32 - and how the NYE shouters did shout. The result, however, was generally known before it was officially announced, for the countenance of George Worshipful FORT, whose brother Frank was watching the count, suddenly took on the radiance of a thousand candles, and he hurried across the convention floor to whisper the glad tidings into the pale ear of the colicky carpetbagger. George Nevergetthere WAGER, who was supposed to have turned his delegates over to SLOANE boots, breetches and body....
Last but not least was the nomination of a candidate for coroner, and a tempest in a teapot raged for a time. One of the grateful Watkins delegates tried to make the convention swallow Dr. Charles Precipitable GODFREY, of Cayuta, but one of the doctor's admirers in the neighboring town of Catharine nominated Dr. William Thankful JONES, of Alpine. He said that Dr. GODFREY had been a coroner once, and had perhaps satisfied himself as he had heard no one else say he was satisfied. A ballot was taken, JONES receiving 41 votes and GODFREY 31.
This has been the hottest and dryest summer during the 11 years that records have been kept at this station.
October 25, 1899 - Bill SREEVE's Fish Story (SHREVE)
Here is one of Bill SREEVE's original fish stories. It is the biggest one we have heard this season. Bill says he was out on the lake one day recently, when he was attracted by a monster trout which was flouncing in the water. He soon discovered that the big fish was endeavouring to free itself from a lamprey, and in its great efforts it would occasionally jump clear of the water. Bill did not have a gun with which to shoot the whopper, but he watched for a good chance and as the big fellow jumped high into the air he rowed his boat under it and caught it as it came down. It weighed 20 pounds.
November 1, 1899 - Arthur F. GANUNG arrested
Arthur F. GANUNG, residing in the town of Dix west of Montour Falls, is under arrest charged with crime of rape on Grace ROSS, a girl only 13 or 14 years of age. The girl's mother is dead. Her father, George ROSS, and other of his children live at Heckley, near Utica. A year or two ago Grace went to live with the GANUNG family. Recently, according to the father's story, he failed to receive satisfactory answers to letters he wrote to his daughter and members of the GANUNG family, and, becoming suspicious, he went to Montour Falls last week. Upon reaching that place he learned that his daughter was in Elmira. He finally located her in that city, and found that she was soon to become a mother. His grief and anger were so great that he created a disturbance, causing a patrol wagon to be called. He then told his story to the police, and GANUNG was arrested on a warrant issued by Justice J. B. EVERTS, of this village. His examinationwas commenced Monday, but was adjourned till November 11th. For some time past GANUNG has been a guard at the Elmira Reformatory. He was formerly a school teacher in this county, and a few years ago acted as station agent and deputy postmaster at Wedgwood. The county directory gives his age as 43 years.
November 22, 1899 - New Salt Plant, Watkins.
-Southwestern Reading. George McNEMER reports that when he returned home last Thursday night from the entertainment at the Baptist church, he found a "Wandering Willie" in his cellar devouring the remnants of his Thanksgiving turkey. George thinks it is bad enough to have poultry taken alive, but when it comes to appropriating one stuffed and baked, it is going a little too far.
- Luke O'MALLEY, of Penn Yan, is in jail charged with the murder of Edward MORAN, of that village. The two were shaking dice in O'Malley's saloon when they got into a quarrel and MORAN was struck over the head with a seltzer bottle, receiving injuries resulting in his death.
-While the death of young BERKLEY, at Geneva, as a result of the pranks of university students, is still fresh in the minds of the people, the announcement is made that a boy of 12 years, at Lawrenceville...has died from injuries received while being hazed by older students. It is about time that this system of brutality was ended at schools and universities... [Edward Fairchild BERKLEY, of St. Louis, a Cornell freshman, was drowned in the canal east of Geneva on the last Fri. of Oct....he had been ordered to wade across the canal; the water was very low, but it is supposed his feet sank in the mud and he fell while trying to extricate himself.]
November 8, 1899 - James ALLWOOD arrested
James ALLWOOD, who first came into prominence in southern Seneca county and northern sections of this county a year or more ago on account of his thieving operations, was arrested a few weeks since for stealing from a Hector farmer, but escaped from the officer who had him in charge, and at last accounts was still at large. ALLWOOD's wife died in July, leaving five children, aged from one to 12 years, who have been taken in charge by a charitable institution.
Dealers in firearms and toys should remember the fact that it is unlawful to sell a pistol or revolver to a boy under 18 years of age, without the written consent of the justice of this town. It is also illegal, without the consent of parents or guardians, to sell air or spring guns to boys under 12 years of age.
November 29, 1899 - C. C. HOWARD died in accident near Cayuta.
C. C. HOWARD, a prominent farmer and live stock dealer residing near Alpine, died the fore part of this week from injuries sustained in a runaway accident about two weeks ago. The accident occurred near Cayuta. His team ran away, and one horse, the wagon and Mr. HOWARD were thrown off a bridge nto Cayuta creek, a distance of about 10 feet. Mr. HOWARD was unconscious when removed from the creek, and was taken to the home of his son-in-law, F. N. SAVERCOOL, of Alpine. He was attended by Drs. BARNES and JONES, but his injuries proved to be a fatal nature. Funeral Friday at the residence of Mr. SAVERCOOL.
December 13, 1899 - Land Surveyor sued for trespass while on the
A land surveyor from the town of Hector "got his foot into it", so to speak, last week while establishing boundary lines for Dr. BELL in Monterey. After doing the work he called on the other property owner--a woman--to discuss the matter, being accompanied by a well-known resident of Monterey. The lady appears not to have taken kindly to his mission, and gave the two men orders not to trespass on her land. The surveyor had left his instruments on the woman's premises, and naturally went ahead and removed them. A short time afterwards, while enjoying his dinner, a summons in an action for trespass was served on him and his companion. The surveyor says he has been kicked about this big footstool for fifty years, and has helped settle many line fence disputes, but was never before sued.
December 27, 1899 - Human remains found on OSBORN place.
On Sat. last, as one of Lyman COATS' boys was cleaning out a smoke-house for Mrs. Caroline OSBORN, on the old Osborn place near this village (Watkins), he unearthed a human arm and hand and also various other portions of the framework of a skeleton. The boy naturally was very much frightened and hastened to tell his father and John BELL, who were sawing wood nearby. After carefully examining the find, Mr. BELL and Mr. SIMONS came to this village and reported the affair to Dr. STILWELL, who in turn notified the coroner, Dr. M. L. BENNETT, of Watkins. Dr. BENNETT immediately went to the Osborn home, summoned a jury of six men and proceeded to hold an inquest on the remains, but when he informed Mrs. OSBORN, she very quickly cleared up the mystery...they were brought to her house by her son, Dr. Chas. OSBORN of Waterloo, who brought them from Buffalo a number of years ago when he was attending the Buffalo Medical College...The bones were given to him by the faculty of the college to study the formation of the arm and the hand.
December 27, 1899 - Suicide of John LEE, Monterey.
John Lee, of Monterey, died last Sunday night from the effects of a large dose of laudanum which he took sometime Sunday afternoon. He was about 30 years old, and lived with his mother, a widow. He had suffered from a fever sore on one of his legs for many years, and last spring the same limb was further injured in a runaway accident. For a time amputation seemed necessary, but of late the condition of the limb was improved. He had been using laudanum for some time, but it is thought that the taking of an overdose was intentional. When the effects of the poison began to manifest themselves, he told what he had done, but the doctors were unable to save his life.
August 4th, 1901 - Obit. of Ephraim CLEVELAND.
Ephraim CLEVELAND, a notice of whose death recently appeared in the Free Press, was the oldest son of Noble CLEVELAND, whom many old residents will remember as one of the early pioneers, & lived nearly all his life, from boyhood to old age, in the vicinity of Havana, - now Montour Falls, - & died in the year 1888, at the advanced age of 84 years. Eprhraim was born July 11, 1826, & remained with his father until Sept. 1843, when he married Miss Matilda LYONS of Moreland [Dix], who only lived one short year & passed away a victim to consumption. In 1852 he married Margaret ACOMBS, an English lady, who came with her parents from England when about 5 years old. With this second wife Ephraim settled in Catlin, Chemung county. To them were born 4 sons - Noble R. of Montour Falls, Luther E. of Catlin, and Lee & William of Moreland; & one daughter, Elizabeth, who passed away from earth some 6 years ago. They resided in Catlin until a few years ago, when they moved to Castils/Castile?, Wyoming county. At the end of one year, not feeling content to live among strangers in their old age, they returned here & came to the old homestead where they have since lived with his sister, Miss Ann CLEVELAND, until his death, which occurred shortly before midnight on August 4th, 1901, at the age of 75 yrs. & 24 days.
Ephraim was a man with many sterling traits of character - a strong adherent to the right, & a great foe tp the wrong in all ways, always ready to do a kindness for a neighbor & always trying to do to others as he would be done by. He was a kind & loving husband & father & brother & a good neighbor. He will be sadly missed by all. He is survived by his wife & 4 sons & a number of grand children; also 3 sisters & 2 brothers - Charles & Miss Ann CLEVELAND of Moreland [Dix], Stafford & Mrs. Al__n McCARTY of Elmira Heights, & Mrs. Charles PRICE of Watkins. The funeral services were held from his late home, Wed. Aug. 7, the Rev. Albert LIVERMORE officiating; burial in Montour Cemetery. Mrs. Margaret CLEVELAND & family desire to thank the neighbors & friends for their kind assistance during the sickness & death of their husband and father Eprhraim CLEVELAND. - contributed by I.C.J.