Turning Back the Pages

100 years ago — April 1922

SALISBURY — Joseph R. Sanford, for a number of years at the head of the picture and framing department at the A.H. Heaton & Co. store, will leave their employ at the end of this week. Mr. Sanford expects to devote his attention to the further development of patents he has in the rubber industry.


A fire in the ice house at Salisbury School on Monday afternoon for a time endangered the school farm house and barns near by. The fire was supposed to have started from a spark thrown off from a fire, which was being used by men butchering hogs, and the ice house was all ablaze when first discovered. The fire spread to the milk house which was also destroyed. The Lakeville hose company made a fast run with the chemical and did excellent work in protecting the nearby buildings. The roof of the farm house and that of the cow stable caught fire a couple of times but the chemical quickly subdued the blaze. The Canaan fire company also arrived later, but fortunately found little to do. The stock was removed from the barns, and one large bull gave considerable trouble and caused some excitement. He was finally roped and tied to a tree outside. The students of the school joined in fighting the blaze to good effect.


Louis Goderis is having his house reshingled.


Daylight Saving is again bothering some cities in New York State. New York City will probably adopt it, but some up-state cities have repealed it. The railroads running between New York City and Massachusetts will adopt the same plan on April 30th for running trains as last summer. Lakeville citizens will discuss the question at a meeting at Roberts Hall next Wednesday evening. Canaan is agitating for daylight saving. It is understood that Winsted and Great Barrington are to have daylight saving.


The trout fishing is reported as much better than the catching.


The ice on the lake disappeared the early part of the week.


50 years ago — April 1972

Only a couple of days before the start of the fishing season Saturday there still was no sure evidence that spring had arrived in Northwest Connecticut. Measurable snow has fallen on five days this month, with five inches last Thursday night and Friday morning April 7, and another inch this Tuesday. But cheer up! A storm dumped 12 inches of snow on April 7 last year, and there was another four inches of wet snow the morning of April 25.


New standards set by the Interstate Commerce Commission for abandonment of railroad freight service make it much easier for Penn Central to eliminate freight trains on the Upper Harlem Division from Dover to Chatham. Passenger service ended March 20.

The Harlem Valley Transportation Association claims that Penn Central’s plans for reorganization to solve its financial problems include outright abandonment of 9,000 miles of freight trackage.


A bedroom fire at the Salisbury home of Orpha Robinson last Thursday apparently started when a down quilt slipped off a bed and fell against an electric heater. Mrs. Bernice Lovett, who works for Mrs. Robinson, discovered the fire and called the Lakeville Hose Company. Meanwhile, persons from the White Hart Inn rushed over with fire extinguishers. Firemen put out the fire quickly, but there was extensive smoke damage in the bedroom.


Russell Humes, formerly of Lakeville, has been named to the dean’s list at Marist College in Poughkeepsie, N.Y. He is the grandson of Mrs. Bertha Parmlee of Farnam Road.


George Miner of Lakeville, an employee of the Hartford Electric Light Co., was seriously injured last Wednesday while at work. Mr. Miner was aloft in a “bucket” when the lift device failed, causing the bucket and its passenger to plunge to earth. The accident happened about 1:30 p.m. at the intersection of routes 44 and 182, east of Norfolk. He is reported to have suffered broken ribs and possible lung damage, and to have lost some teeth.


Building Inspector William Conrad was appointed town fire marshal and demolition officer by First Selectman William Wilbur at a meeting of the Board of Selectmen Friday night. Mr. Conrad succeeds Thomas Carberry, who resigned for personal reasons.


An inspection team from the State Health Department awarded Geer Memorial Extended Care Facility in Canaan an “A-1” rating following a visit last week. This is the second consecutive year Geer has won such a designation.


Eleven murals by the late James Thurber are now being restored by a group of artists, most of them veterans of the old Army magazine Yank. The Thurber creations are mounted on the walls of Costello’s Restaurant and Bar on Third Avenue in New York City. Mr. Thurber maintained a home in Cornwall for many years.


25 years ago — April 1997

A plan to change the face of Route 44 in Salisbury is still in the works, according to officials at the Connecticut Department of Transportation. First Selectman Robert Smithwick has scheduled a public meeting for April 15 at 1 p.m. in Town Hall. “The DOT really just wants the interested people to attend. There’s a lot of opposition to the plan,” he said. The proposed change would involve lowering the crest of the hill at the corner of Main Street and Lincoln City Road, which is also the location of Salisbury Central School. Lowering the hill would improve visibility and reduce the potential for accidents in the area which is a designated school zone.


Two girls from Salisbury have been announced as valedictorian and salutatorian for the Housatonic Valley Regional High School Class of 1997. Robin Yerkes, 18, who is first in her class, is the valedictorian. She has been accepted to Columbia University in New York City and plans to concentrate her studies in math. Cynthia Matthews, 17, is second in her class, and the salutatorian. Ms. Matthews has been accepted to Yale, Columbia and Wellesley, and is waiting to hear from Brown University. She is also a photographer and wants to combine it in some way with whatever she does, she said.


To a developer it may be a vacant lot with valuable commercial potential, but to many residents the half-acre grassy expanse on the corner of routes 44 and 7 is an important part of Canaan’s rural charm. Since the land was bought several years ago and immediately posted with a “will build to suit” sign, the Board of Selectmen has looked for ways to buy the land to prevent construction of the rumored convenience store, doughnut shop or fast-food place. Their concerns included the resultant traffic and its effect on the firehouse and ambulance garage that flank the property, as well as aesthetics.


WEST CORNWALL — The historic covered bridge that conveys Route 128 over the Housatonic River was closed to traffic for five hours Wednesday to repair damage caused by a recent motor vehicle accident. An International box truck driven by a New York City man knocked loose a bridge crossbeam and fascia boards March 18 when he attempted to drive the truck through the historic structure. Trucks that exceed the bridge’s height limit have struck the bridge entrances on many occasions over the years.

These items were taken from The Lakeville Journal archives at Salisbury’s Scoville Memorial Library, keeping the original wording intact as possible.

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