Tuesday, February 28, 2023

This Day in Bovina for February 2023


Here's the monthly compilation of entries from the Town of Bovina Facebook page:

Seventy-three years ago today, the February 1, 1950 New York Times carried this obituary of Bovina native William A. Miller, who was noted as a stage coach driver in Delaware County in the 1880s and 1890s. 

Ninety-five years ago today, on February 2, 1928, an alert Ruth Coulter saw a light in the village school building and discovered that the building was on fire.  As later reported in the Andes Recorder, "The fire department was called out and the fire was put out by the use of chemicals and very little water with only slight damage. It started from the furnace."  The building concerned is now the Bovina Public Library.  Ruth Coulter later married Bill Parsons.

Seventy-nine years ago today, the Bovina Center column of the February 3, 1944 Delaware Republican-Express reported that "the Harvey Burgins have a new floor in their dining room." The same column also reported that "Mrs. Lillian Hafele is now living in her new home, the former Jennie Archibald house."

Fifty-eight years ago today, the February 4, 1965 issue of the Delaware Republican-Express reported in its Bovina column "Due to the closing of the New Kingston Creamery, four dairies have already brought their milk to the Bovina Creamery, Marvin Hosier, Bill Elliott, David Condon and a Mr. Walters…."

Two farm related items from the Andes Recorder appeared 126 years ago today in its Bovina column for February 5, 1897

"Cows averaged $22.80 at Thomas Gordon’s auction last week Thursday, in Glenburnie, and everything else sold well.

"Many think that the grasshoppers working on the hay and straw the past season, is the cause of so much sickness among cows and horses here this winter."

Ninety-seven years ago today, the February 6, 1926 Walton Reporter, reported: "Delhi friends of Sloan Archibald of Bovina Center are glad to learn that he is able to get about his home a little now after being confined to bed for a number of weeks due to fracturing one of his hips by a fall. Mr. Archibald is advanced in years, but his strong constitution seems to be bringing him through in good shape. He is the father of Russell Archibald of the Archibald garage of this village." Sloan died in December 1928 in Bovina.

121 years ago, in its February 7, 1902 edition, the Andes Recorder reported on a letter from a Bovina resident who was in Seattle:  "Writing from Seattle, Miss Jennie J. Campbell, who recently went from this place, likes the place very much and her letter, written about the middle of January, states that the climate is mild and at that time the weather was like our April.  Lawns were green and roses and violets were in bloom."

Seventy-two years ago today, the Bovina column in the Delaware Republican-Express for February 8, 1951 reported "Mr. and Mrs. Clifford Gibson, who have been living in rooms over the [Clayton] Thomas garage, moved to Andes. Mr. and Mrs. Roy Knaff and family, who have been living in the old hotel moved into the rooms vacated by the Gibsons." The old hotel probably was the building that stood kitty corner from Brushland Eating House and was demolished in 1960.

117 years ago, on February 9, 1906, Dr. L.L. Van Slyke, of the [New York] State [Agricultural] Experiment Station, Geneva, NY lectured in Strangeway’s Hall.  His topic was the “Utilization of Barnyard Waste.”  The Andes Recorder, in promoting the lecture, reported that “The Doctor is under the Bureau of Farmers’ Institutes of the State Agricultural Department.  He will tell how to enlarge the bank account.  He is an interesting speaker and his address will both please and profit.” Dr. Van Slyke worked for the Geneva station for 38 years, retiring in 1929.

Ninety-five years ago, the Andes Recorder of February 10, 1928 reported that "Courtney Currie was kept from his work at the creamery a few days the past week by boils."

137 years ago today, on February 11, 1886, as later reported in the Stamford Mirror, "The household goods of John Shanks, wagon maker, late of New Kingston, arrived in Brushland on Thursday, the 11th inst., and he will occupy the rooms, and carry on the business, in the shop lately occupied by J. Dietrich."

121 years ago today, on February 12, 1902, Fort-nightly Club lecture course hosted a lecture by Professor William Elliott Travis of Cornell University at Strangeway’s Hall. His subject was “Facts Fun and Fancy Concerning the Japanese.”

Fifty-four years ago today, on February 13, 1965, as later reported in the Bovina column of the Delaware Republican Express, "Mr. and Mrs. Fletcher Davidson and Mrs. William Storie attended the meeting of the Delaware County Historical Association at Roxbury…On their way home they called on Mr. and Mrs. Frank Miller at Stamford and found them in good health." The Millers used to live in Bovina in what is known as the Charlie and Eva McIntosh house.

135 years ago today, the Bovina column in the February 14, 1888 Stamford Mirror reported "A spelling school in the Pink Street District…attracted a large number of the young people, one sleigh load containing 19 persons going up from Bovina Center."

159 years ago today, on February 15, 1864, John Murray signed this oath of officer as overseer of the poor. 

101 years ago today, on February 16, 1922, Calvin Russell's team of horses got away from him. The Andes Recorder reported that "The team of Calvin Russell took fright at the creamery Thursday morning and had a lively run.  Coming onto Main street the team ran in at the Hastings feed store and onto the flat above the new street.  Continuing up the flat they went over the wall into a rocky pasture lot of Fred Bramley and were not caught until they reached Bramley’s.  No damage was done and not even the milk cans were thrown out.  How they avoided all the rocks is a miracle."

112 years ago today, on February 17, 1911, as later reported in the Andes Recorder, "The infant child of Mr. and Mrs. Robert Foreman, aged three months and four days, died with pneumonia... Rev. Robb officiated at the funeral Monday.  Child was their only daughter, Mary Elizabeth." The Foremans had three sons at the time of their daughter's death and would have two more after.

Eight-two years ago today, on February 18, 1941, as later reported in the Delaware Express, "Mrs. William J. Archibald and Miss Emily Archibald received medical advice in New York….They and Henry Monroe made the trip with the Rev. Harvey H. McClellan. Mr. Monroe visited an uncle in the Bronx."

Ninety-two years ago today, the Bovina column of the February 19, 1930 Delaware Republican reported "The two large smoke stacks on the Dry Milk Plant were raised….George Flowers of Hobart was in charge. They are putting in a new dry pan this week." Here's an undated photo of the creamery showing the smoke stacks. 

Forty-eight years ago today, The February 20, 1975 Delaware Republican-Express had as a front page story entitled "Bovina's Country Cupboard: Reflective of Community." The article reported on the Bovina Historical Society's cookbook, entitled Bovina's Country Cupboard. The article included this photograph of some of the committee members, namely, Ann Finn, Marjorie Russell, Marie Burns and Barbara Hilson. The committee also included Bea Thomson.

Sixty-five years ago today, the Bovina column of the February 21, 1958 Walton Reporter included this item: "An epidemic of real measles struck town. Some of the known families, who have from one to three children, are Milton Graham, Willard Chase, John Renner, Howard Conklin, the Hewitt boys of Mr. and Mrs. Imar Mondor and four children of Mr. and Mrs. Robert Barnhart." In the same column, several cancellations were announced, mainly due to bad roads and severe weather, including the Recreation Club and the Lake Delaware Demonstration unit. "Gene Vandenbord, director of the Bovina church choir, announces there will be no choir practice this week."

Seventy-eight years ago today, on February 22, 1945, Ethel DeSilva sent this V Postcard to her friend Marjorie Russell in Bovina. Ethel had enlisted in December 1944 as a WAVE in the Navy. She was discharged in November 1945. Ethel was the daughter of Harvey and Elizabeth Burgin (and a first cousin of Cliff Burgin). She was married to Fred DeSilva, who also served in the Second World War. Fred died in 1976, Ethel in 1986. The postcard is signed 'Pete,' which was Mrs. DeSilva's nickname.

131 years ago today, February 23, 1892, Ralph Miller Barnhart was born, the son of Jeremy Barnhart and Kate Miller.  Ralph was married and widowed three times and would live to be 96, dying on Christmas Day, 1988. He would have one son, Donald, from his first marriage to Anna Ruland. He is buried in Bovina. Ralph was my great-uncle. He's the boy in this picture, with his sisters Edith and Anna Bell. He would be joined by a brother Wilford in 1901. 

138 years ago today, the February 24, 1885 Stamford Mirror had this item about the recent town election (which took place in February until the early 20th century). 

203 years ago today on February 25, 1820, the New York State legislature passed an act creating the Town of Bovina. The town's bicentennial was belatedly celebrated in July 2022. We are 22 years away from the town's 225th birthday.

119 years ago today, on February 26, 1904, Mary Gordon McLean, the sister of Bovina's town clerk Tom Gordon, penned this letter to him from her home in Laurel Bank, Gatehouse, Scotland.  The letter arrived around March 4, based on the postmark from Bloomville on the back envelope. The transcript of the letter: 

"My Dear Brother. I was delighted to have your last letter, and the photograph of the children. They are really beautiful. I had to send the first one to Bella and she is awfully pleased with it. She thinks he is a fine boy. I am sending you Addie's second youngest boy, taken when he was between 2 and 3. Alexander Gordon Jardin. She will send you one of her baby as soon as the weather is good enough to have it done. I got 2 bundles of comic coloured papers from you but never received any from John. We have had a very long and severe winter. I was pleased to hear Mary and you got home with Baby before it got so cold. 

It is just 10 years now since I was in America. I am always glad to hear of all the people I met when there. I am afraid there is poor prospects of Ann's recovery. Does Jessie Granley face ever give her trouble, or is it better now. I send you a copy of the Castle Douglas paper sometimes. Do you ever get it. Castle Douglas has grown immensely since your day. There is some beautiful buildings in it now. I had a letter from Bella the other ay. She is feeling a little better when she wrote. The are all well at Alderlea. Addie wishes to be remembered to you. Brother John & Jack Broadfoot [her nephew] are both well. Hoping you are all keeping well. Believe me your loving Sister Mary.

PS. Be sure and tell John how please I was with the photo of the children. They are just beautiful through the stereoscope. You can see them so plainly. M.M.L. [These children likely are Thomas's son John's son and Thomas's son, both named William.]

The baby she mentions in her letter when she ways "I was pleased to hear Mary and you got home with Baby before it got so cold" was William, who was the older brother of Margaret Gordon, who was a Social Studies teacher in Delhi for many years. 

128 years ago today, on February 27, 1895, Jennie E. Hilson, the daughter of Thomas and Jenneatte Orr Stott Hilson was married to Lewis W. Cooper. Lewis was from Massachusetts. They would have nine children.  Here is the invitation to the wedding. They would be married until Lewis’s death in 1923. Jennie would remarry in 1928 to Olin Evans. What happened to her after about 1930 I have not been able to determine. Her second husband died in 1936. She was alive that year but beyond that I’ve had no luck tracking her down. 

111 years ago today, this item appeared in the February 28, 1912 Delaware Gazette: "James C. Mabon and John Whitson have sold their farms in southern Bovina to Robert L. Gerry. The options were given several days ago and the writings will be drawn Friday Both Mabon and Whitson can, if they choose, remain on the farms until September. It is stated that Mr. Mabon receives $15,000 and Mr. Whitson $5,250 for their respective farms. Mr. Mabon has his eye on a small place at East Delhi It is understood that Mr. Gerry will erect a large summer home heights of the Mabon farm." This is where in 1915 Gerry built Aknusti. 

Friday, February 10, 2023

February 1923 - 100 Years Ago in "That Thriving Town"


Here's what the Andes Recorder was reporting about Bovina 100 years ago this month. 

February 2, 1923
Sheffield Smith has a snow plow on his truck.
Mrs. Howard McPherson is ill with whooping cough.
Mrs. Richard James at Lake Delaware, is unable to speak from a shock.
Mrs. Lancelot Thomson is ill with pneumonia and Mrs. Lucy Coulter is the nurse in charge.
Fred Johnson has suffered another shock, which has left both legs helpless below the knees.
The Bovina Center Co-operative Creamery company finished filling their ice house Monday.

Bovina Man Victim of Pneumonia
Herman Johnson, who lived on the old homestead in Upper Bovina, died in New York city, Thursday night, January 25, from pneumonia at the age of 42 years.  He had gone there on a visit two weeks before.  The funeral was held in the Bovina U.P. church on Saturday.

February 9, 1923
William Robson is proud over the shooting of a large fox.
The doctor was called for Mrs. Lucy Coulter during Tuesday night.
A great amount of sickness prevails in town and some schools are closed.
Miss Kate Muller is confined to bed and under the doctor’s care again this week.
Howard McPherson has been confined to the house the past week with neuralgia.
Mr. and Mrs. John Hilson entertained her father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. Thos C. Strangeway, at dinner Wednesday, it being their wedding anniversary.
The machinery for the Dry Milk plant at the Bovina Center Co-Operative Creamery arrived last week and is being installed under the supervision [of] Mr. Jones, of Roxbury.

James Davidson, who was a mason on the church buildings at Lake Delaware, died at Delhi with pneumonia.  He was a Scotchman, 23 years old, and came to this country two years ago.  Two brothers are also on the Lake Delaware job.

February 16, 1923
The Courtney Trio gave an entertainment here Monday evening.
Mrs. George Decker and Mrs. Arthur Decker have both been under the doctors’ care the past week.
Mrs. Walter Wilson, collector for the town of Bovina, went to Delhi on Thursday to settle with the County Treasurer.
Mr. and Mrs. William Thomson, of Binghamton, came the latter part of last week, and Mrs. Thomson remained to care for her mother, Mrs. Alex Myers who is now better, and to assist in the telephone central.

Bovina Woman Takes Own Life
Mrs. Fred Johnson committed suicide at her home in Bovina Center by cutting her throat with a razor sometime between midnight last Thursday and daylight Friday morning, February 9.  The funeral was held Monday from the Church of the Covenanters, Rev. F.N. Crawford officiating.
The cause was probably over wrought nerves.  Mr. Johnson had been ill for several weeks and is helpless in bed from a shock.  Mrs. Johnson was tired out and had not been feeling well since Sabbath, suffering from a re-occurrence of a kidney trouble from which she had suffered two or three years ago, and the doctor had told her that she must get some rest.  Thursday night a niece, Mrs. McArthur, was going to care for Mr. Johnson so Mrs. Johnson and her sister, Mrs. Jas Russell went up stairs and went to bed about 9 o’clock.  Sometime later Mrs. Russell heard her sister get up, but thought that she had gone down stairs and went back to sleep. When Mrs. Russell went down stairs about daylight she remarked “my partner left me last night” and inquired where she was.  Mr. Johnson and Mrs. McArthur replied that they had not seen her since she went to bed.  Search was commenced and after looking in every room down stairs and up they opened the door to the attic and found her lifeless body at the top of the stairs with the razor with which she had committed the rash act grasped in her hand.
Mrs. Johnson was born in Bovina 73 years ago, her maiden name being Lydia Thomson.  After their marriage the couple lived on a farm in upper Bovina until a few years ago when they moved to the village.  They had no children. [Fred survived his wife by almost two years, dying in January 1925.]

Bovina Girl Injured
Irene, the young daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Chaney, on the Maynard farm in upper Bovina, while investigating a dynamite cartridge which she found in the attic of the house, was badly injured.  The cartridge exploded in her hands, tearing off the ends of two fingers of the right hand, and injuring the left hand and also making flesh wound on the abdomen.

February 23, 1923
Walter G. Coulter has been clearing out the road this week for traffic toward Delhi.
J. Douglas Burns, one of Bovina’s progressive farmers, is confined to his home by illness.
James Fisk, the 9 year old son of Earl Fisk at Lake Delaware, broke his leg above the knee recently while riding down hill.  His sled collided with a tree.
Ward Bramley, who is employed at Andes, was called here this week to do the chores for his brother, James H. Bramley, on the Bloomville road, who is on the sick list.
Mrs. Fred More, of Hobart, who was formerly Margaret Miller of Bovina, underwent a successful major operation for the removal of goiter Friday at an Ithaca hospital.  About ten days previous she underwent a minor operation making it possible for the major one.