Thursday, August 16, 1923
Dog days ended August 11th and those of us who were awake Sunday morning at break of day saw a great exemplification of the gold-en exhalation of the dawn, and it was a right fearsome sight, too. The mist was about halfway down the mountainside and the yellow light showed a steaming earth. It was getting ready to rain some more. It was Mark Twain who said that people are forever talking about the weather and never seem to do anything about it.
We have had plenty of rain for the last month or so, for which we are duly thankful. This is the year that the nervous farmer who is not a good waiter scored on his more deliberate neighbor for that kind of farmer got his hay up without rain, a consummation greatly to be desired. Last year, as I had to depend on my neighbors, I put up my hay the first of July and when it was cut down, the sun seemed to have no pow-er to cure it, and we had to fool and fiddle with it and put it up in small stacks, but it did not make good feed. And I got so tired of it that I determined then that this year, I would wait and it looks now like it will be September before we get around to it. But anything is better than a dry summer. This is a favored country in regard to rains.
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It is still raining. I wonder how the Coolidges up in Vermont are getting along with their hay now, since one of their best hands has had to go and be President. I do not know when I was more deeply touched in a dramatic sense than when I visualized President Coolidge helping his father put up hay, and it was more than that. I felt about the Coolidges as I do about my neighbors, who are living useful and God fearing lives on the farms around here. It is kind of strange to get chummy with the Coolidges, is it not?
Calvin Coolidge had been in the hayfield. The Presidency being suddenly and unexpectedly cast upon him, it was necessary for him to be notified and there was no phone. Two officials got a car and reached the place about two in the morning. It seems that they either did not have a phone or that there was no night service. They knocked on the door and woke the Colonel, who called up the stairs to Cal. The lamp was brought out into the sitting room, but it was pretty dim, so Mrs. Calvin Coolidge brought the lamp down the steps from their room, and the President was able to read the message and one of them was the form of oath, with the request that he take the oath of office. The Colonel was a notary and the family bible was on the center table, and so the oath was administered there and then and by morning the place was alive with reporters, officials and friends and the President left for Washington…
The town reprobate can do anything bad and be arrested daily and cause no remark. But let a righteous man step aside for a single mistake and great excitement prevails. That is what happened to our local tannery when a little lime got away last week and killed a few fish in the river. This tannery has probably the best reputation of any similar industry in the State for lawful use of the streams. The occasion last week was a combination of dry weather, absence of the regular superintendent, the busy season and a mistake as to the amount of lime held in solution in some water that drained into the river. Two days later there came a flood and the river has been high enough ever since to take care of the drainage.
The game and fish department admit that this tannery is a bright and shining example in West Virginia, and claim that newspaper notoriety forced them to take action in regard to the offense.