THE WAY WE WERE – December 1909

Culled by Judy Garrison

From December 1909 issues of The Andes Recorder

100 Years Ago

with commentary by Jim Andrews


Wednesday morning while William T. Hyzer was in his livery barn a wagon tongue came down and struck him on the head cutting a gash. The blood flowed profusely and the services of a physician was necessary to stop it. [Jim Andrews: Hyzer’s livery was behind the Groom house on Main Street.]

Earl Gladstone fell into Armstrong Bros. mill pond Monday afternoon but escaped with nothing worse than a cold bath. [JA: Armstrong’s mill pond was behind Hogan’s.]

The Star of Bethleham [sic], which is only visible every 500 years, may now be seen in the eastern sky about daybreak.

Dr. Bruce will preach his farewell sermon at the United Presbyterian church on Sabbath, December 28, and on Sabbath, January 2, Rev. H. K. Galloway, of South Kortright, will preach and declare the pulpit vacant. [JA: Rev. James Bruce was pastor of the Presbyterian church from 1864 until 1909 and remained as Pastor emeritus until his death in 1913.]

Tuesday evening at a special meeting of the Village Trustees the contract for lighting the street lamps for the coming year was awarded to Emory Brown at 60 cents per night for lighting and cleaning. [JA: This consisted of maintaining the kerosene lamps contained in the street lamps, which included replacing wicks and cleaning chimneys. He went through town at dusk and lit the lamps and returned at 10 pm to extinguish them.]

Albert Ruff, of Hamden, has moved onto the Roney farm on Palmer Hill, which he recently purchased. [Ed.: This is the Roney farm mentioned in last month’s 100 Years Ago. It was in the Ruff family for nearly 100 years—transferring a few years back—and will probably be called “The Ruff Farm” for another fifty years.]

James Kelley has joined his wife in Andes. He has been in Idaho and the Dakotas as one of a party of surveyors for six months. [Ed.: Reading this column we can see how the exploration, settlement and investment in the far west involved many Andes people, especially the adventurous and entrepreneurial ones.]

Tuesday morning the thermometer at Dr. Bruce’s registered at 2 degrees above zero [this would be about December 22nd]. Plumbers are busy thawing frozen water pipes. [Ed.: The more things change…] [JA: Rev. Bruce was also the weather observer and kept copious meteorological records (which I have in my possession!)]

A notice has been served on the Village Trustees to stop sleigh riding on High street, and those who are riding should be governed accordingly. [JA: Perhaps sleigh riding on the street packed down the snow to create a slipping hazard for horses?]~

*Jim responds to editor’s awed appreciation for how far back his memory seems to go with the following comment: “I spent much of my high school and college evenings and summers sitting with the elders of Andes and listening to their stories and looking at their pictures. It was truly fascinating to hear all these stories first-hand—and their memories went back to 1890. Their enthusiasm in telling me these things made the tales that much more interesting.”

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