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100 Years Ago

February 8, 1917

W. J. Jackson, rural mail carrier out of Marlinton, had an eggstrordinary experience the other day. His schedule, which is as regular as a clock, has a part of it feeding his horse at a barn in town. The other day while the horse was getting his lunch of cereal, a hen made her nest under the seat of the mail wagon, and there remained on her post of duty until the mail carrier was going down the hill to the place where the road crosses the head of Stony Creek, when the hen began to cackle and to rejoice over a new laid egg, which egg had been laid in transit. The hen and the egg were brought back on the return of the carrier and restored to the owner. We have often heard of a farmer’s hen coming to town in this way, but this is the first hen that we have ever heard of that tried to get from the town to the farm.
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Butter may go to a dollar a pound, eggs a quarter a piece; and wheat one cent a grain, but sooner or later men will be forced back to the land to raise from the land the things that the people must have to eat. The present state of affairs has been coming on for a long time. The cities have become more and more attractive to the dwellers therein. The census shows that the population is not properly balanced as between the country and the city. In times of good crops this scarcity is felt and the farmer is stimulated to greater efforts by increased prices. If there came a year of short crops there would be something like a famine in this country. The worst feature of the condition is that the city men have lost the art of raising things from the ground. When they come back they will have to come as unskilled laborers and the farmers who have been raised to the business will be the overseers and direct their work. Any man who has an acre of ground had better hold on to it and get it in readiness to use for a man may go without shoes, and without hats, and nearly without clothes, but he has to have something to eat, and that must be produced year by year from the ground.
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A great many years ago when the stage coach was taking care of the travel that the railroads handle now, and opulent tavern keepers along the turnpike had more money than they knew what to do with, a Pocahontas man came back over the mountain from Warm Springs, with his eyes sticking out like bunions, as O. Henry expresses it, and told a wonderful yarn about seeing a rich tavern keeper who lit his pipe with a ten dollar bill. Yes, sir, there was the old Creosus, keeper of the Blue Pig Tavern, pretty tolerable drunk, lemme tell you, fired up his pipe in the bar room. Felt around for a light and finally pulls out a ten dollar William, makes a lighter out of it, reaches for a candle, lights the money, and then lights his pipe, and goes out and gets in the stage and goes on up the mountain.
That tale made a deep and lasting impression on us though it was many a year old when we first heard it.
Now a days in England, when a gentleman wants to do a patriotic act and contribute to the treasury of his beloved country, he takes some of the paper obligations of England and burns them up, and that is considered to be a very genteel way to present a five pound note to the mother country.
Treating this flat money as mere scraps of paper is the way they look at it.
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A young man about eleven years old came to see us the other morning and when the slight business transaction that had brought us together had been accomplished we naturally turned the conversation to matters of mutual interest.
He was surrounded by an aroma that encompassed him like a shell. A well known mephitic odor familiar to all the native born. A heavy, repelling perfume that the city lady conjectured must come from the deadly night shade, but which belongs to the scent of the glands of the pole cat…
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T. C. Anderson, F. P. King and Carl L. Sheets have rented the Alexander Amusement Parlors. In addition to pool, bowling and other amusements they will open a moving picture show under the name of the Imperial Theatre. The show will open as soon as the seats arrive, probably about the 15th.

Wednesday, January 31, 1917, Nich Sempromojling and Miss Mary Supan were married at Inframonte by Rev. Wm. T. Price. These parties are at home to their friends at Clover Lick. They were chaperoned by Frank Mams. Mr. Sempromojling and Miss Supan, along with their chaperone, Mams, are Austrians. This event is suggestive of a most thrilling story, the truth of which is even stranger than fiction. Ten years ago they were sweethearts in Austria. The groom came over ten years ago, the bride four. He recently located her in Chicago, hence these wedding bells.

To the Editor:
Are we really a Christian nation? Really patriotic?
These are facts – 510,000 Syrians dead of starvation; Belgium children developing tuberculosis because of their weakened condition; thousands of Polish and Armenian women and girls ravished. Millions facing starvation – eagerly eating dead bodies, dogs and dung!
But Marlinton has given – how much? A day’s begging netted $80 – a jitney a piece to help the world’s greatest suffering – a nickel for world charity! And a widow here who works every day gave $12 of that $80.
“O shame! Where is they blush?”
We have pyrotechnic patriotism in July. We would, if in war, be spending millions daily. Yet, when we have a chance to make America loved abroad by becoming a brother to humanity – we flip nickels!
“Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, to visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction.”
The Monroe Watchman has received $350 from its readers. How much do the Times readers believe in Christian charity and the good name of the United States?
Enclosed is $1.

Editor Times:
It is shocking to note, as I have no doubt you have, in the periodicals and publications of today, so many errors in the spelling and use of common, almost everyday words.
As for example, the manufactured word – “Preventative,” for Preventive, and the use of “Motive Power,” for Motor Power, “Flowers of Sulphur,” for Flour of Sulphur, “The year around,” for The year round, ”Foment,” for Ferment, etc.
Now, I am not writing this for publication, but, I do wish to call the attention of publishers to these things.
Old Scholar

This is what I call groundhog weather – 15 below 0.
People are now putting up ice and the crop is good.
Ed Hudson says if the war starts he has another boy, and all are doing well.
Brown Moore came very near being killed one day last week by one of his big barn doors falling on him. He was by himself and had quite a time to get from under it. He is able to be around some this week.
There is a hog law before the legislature which we hope will pass soon. There is also a bill before the Legislature to pension the teachers. Teachers get better pay for the time they put in than any other class of people. Better pension the farmers who work six days out of the week from daylight till dark, then we have a few loafers that could stand a pension and not grumble.

Groundhog day was observed in this neighborhood as being the worst day of the winter.
Prof. G. D. McNeill gave his “Round the World” lecture here January 1st. It was enjoyed by all present. About $9 was realized for the library.
G. W. Mann is on Elk doing a big job of wood sawing for James Gibson with his gasoline engine.
Several of the boys were down from Warwick for the football game Saturday evening.
The matter of consolidating the Edray and Hunt-ersville districts will soon be settled by the County Court, and we hope that our Court will show its wisdom by leaving conditions as they are. We have built our school house at Marlinton for the benefit of the boys and girls of this district and they should have its full advantages…

We are having snow and very cold weather. The mill was down one day on account of the cold.
W. P. Helmick is at a Baltimore hospital for treatment.
Mrs. W. P. Helmick and Miss Georgia Lamb spent Sunday at Bartow.
Mr. Fuller got his hand and arm mashed one day last week and is now in the Marlinton Hospital.

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