100 Years Ago

The following news items are reprinted from the Manistee Daily News for the week ending March 9, 1918 and are compiled by Teena Kracht from the newspaper archives of the Manistee County Historical Museum. Read more of her 100 Years Ago column at www.manisteenews.com:100 Years Ago

“The Michigan East & West Railway will not be junked and abandoned immediately.

“Better opportunity is given for the sale of the road in its entirely as a going concern. If piecemeal proves to be the last resort, each sale must be based on bids subject to review in court by all parties interested.

“These are the salient points in the decision given yesterday in connection with the request for a decree of foreclosure involving the right to tear up the road and discontinue its operation. The court granted the foreclosure decree, but with such provisions as protected the rights of the state and others who may not have been parties to the suit, but who had a material interest in the case.

“In the United Press account of the gas attack by Germans on American troops in France, in which six Americans were killed, published in the News-Advocate Feb. 17, referring to time fuses used for the first time, is seen a striking coincidence with the testimony given concerning the boasted invention of Louis Gering, one of the two Manistee Iron Works draftsmen recently examined in U. S. Commissioner C. N. Belcher’s tribunal and held to the federal grand jury at Grand Rapids on a serious charge of disloyalty to the government.

“A marked similarity between the idea born of Gering’s ‘dream,’ as it was re recounted to [his landlady] Mrs. Munson, and the latest German device of frightfulness certainly exists, which the recent attack justifies calling to attention.

“The federal grand jury is expected to convene in Grand Rapids next week, when the cases of Gering and Gudart are subject to call.

“The boys of the seventh and eighth grades of the Union school are devoting much of their time and work to making wooden supplies for various games for the boys at Camp Custer, that they may have plenty of diversions during their leisure hours in camp.

“Under the supervision of Mr. Torrent the boys have made 100 cribbage boards, which were shipped today to the Y. M. C. A. at the Custer cantonment. Next week 10 checkerboards will be sent, and from now on until June 1 the boys will devote their time to the war work. The manual training rooms have been literally turned into a war workshop, which no doubt resembles in miniature form, the war factories throughout the country.

“Not only are the boys anxious to ‘do their bit’ through their craftsmanship but they have been packing boxes for the Red Cross and Junior Red Cross, which are shipped to the Red Cross headquarters in the country.

“The lads are enthusiastic in their efforts to be of assistance and to help provide a few of the comforts and pleasures to their soldier brothers who they know are doing so much for them.

“The Martha Washington ‘tea party’ at the Congregational church parlors yesterday afternoon was a happy affair and well attended.

“The quaint costumes of the hostesses, with their powdered hair, colonial capes and caps, and the presence of ‘George and Martha’ in old time portraits lent an atmosphere for the attractive word picture of colonial days.

“THERE IS TODAY, so to speak, an innuendo of spring.

“SOME WOMEN are naturally built for short skirts, others show their ignorance.

“ANOTHER LIBERTY LOAN drive approaches. This is our chance to prove to our recent January that we, at least, have not forgotten how to thaw.

“’THE WAR,’ said Mrs. Thomas Preston, Jr., (formerly Mrs. Grover Cleveland) ‘has ended the poodle dog class of women.’ At least everybody hopes it has.

“The involved litigation growing out of the dissolution proceedings of the moribund Michigan East & West railway is still further complicated by the latest developments, which intervening petitioners are seeking to establish the merit of their claims.

“No decree has yet been entered in favor of any party, the proceedings in Judge Sessions’ court thus far having been merely for the purpose of making a record of whether the road can be sold as a going concern.

“WHEAT FLOUR SHORTAGE NEAR; FOOD STATUS AS A WHOLE VERY SERIOUS.

“Jobbers and Retailers Will Be Unable to Get More Wheat Flour for Some Time; Present Supplies Must Be Carefully Husbanded.

“TRANSPORTATION IS AMERICA’S BIG PROBLEM.

“Food Saved West of Mississippi of Little Use for Lack of Cars; Germany Stronger, England and France Weaker as to Food Declares Hoover’s Assistant.

“[Telegram to] J. C. Beukema, Acting Food Administrator, Manistee.

“Beginning Monday morning March 4, all dealers in flour must sell on the following basis: One pound of substitutes with every pound of flour. Potatoes considered substitutes. Four pounds of potatoes equal to one pound of other substitutes.

“This rule must be enforced. All bakers in the state must use 20 percent wheat flour substitutes in making bread or rolls on and after the above date. All bakers openly disregarding Victory bread rule are subject to having license revoked. [Signed] PRESCOTT, Federal Food Administrator.

“B. R. Hendel has received an appointment as director for the United States Boys’ Working Reserve for Manistee county.

“The reserve is an emergence war organization under the department of labor cooperating with the Council of National Defense, the State War Board and the county preparedness committees for the enlistment of young men from 16 through 21 for service in food production.

“It is aimed to enlist first boys on farms, impress on them the importance of their sticking to their task on the farm in food production until called by Uncle Sam for other service, and giving them for the first time in the history of the country government recognition for service in agriculture. Secondly, boys from the towns and cities as a reserve labor supply for the farms of the country.

“This work was carried on in many sections of the country last year and thousands of crops, which otherwise would have been lost for lack of labor to care for them, were harvested by boys of this organization.

“The local Boy Scouts, under the direction of Dr. James A. King, county war savings stamps director, opened the campaign for selling war savings stamps this morning with a canvass of the city, in which they distributed advertising matter concerning the W. S. S. plan to every house in the city.

“An audience that crowded the First M. E. church to full capacity greeted Dr. Wentworth F. Stewart for his third Christian and patriotic lecture yesterday evening, when he discussed religious and loyalty topics under the head of ‘Keep the Home Fires Burning.’

“’Speaking of sentiment,’ [said Dr. Stewart,] ‘the presence of any home tinged with pro-German is an insult to you and yours and you should make it your duty to report any evidence of this nature to the proper authorities. The presence of such people weakens the sentiment for the war and gives aid and comfort to thee Kaiser.

’We have serious duties here at home in our fight for true democracy. There are enemies of democracy in our nation and it is our duty to make war on them so that this country, for which the boys over there are fighting, will have been worth fighting for.

“Since Jan…. 1 the local Red Cross chapter has shipped to the Red Cross headquarters 256 pairs of socks, which included 100 pairs that were shipped only this week.

“Knitters throughout the city are responding enthusiastically to the call for more socks, for it has been impressed upon them that at the present time socks are the most urgent demand.

“Now that the winter is breaking, the warm helmets and snug sweaters will soon be discarded, but the socks will be worn year ‘round. The Red Cross can always use more knitters, and those who haven’t learned should do so now. There is an expert instructor at the Red Cross every day in the week, who will be only too glad to assist in every way.

“In the death of Mrs. Ada S. Dunlap, Manistee loses one of her oldest and most esteemed residents.

“Mrs. Dunlap was a woman of gentle birth and breeding, having descended from some of the most distinguished of the early New England colonists. The direct genealogy of several branches of her family dating back several centuries are published in the historical books of Maine, where she was born I York county, Sept. 7, 1834.

“She was the daughter of Rev. Samuel Poindexter, whose family, as well as that of her mother, whose maiden name was Catherine Morill, have given to state and nation a number of famous statesmen.

“She had the advantage of a thorough classical education which enabled her in her young days to teach in several high schools and seminaries, French, geology and astronomy, in which studies, in addition to others, she continued her interest to the last.

“At an early age she married Alexander H. Dunlap, who will be remembered as a Civil War veteran and well known lawyer of Manistee.

“Her indomitable courage, her keen intelligence and tireless energy rendered her a force in the community and a never-ending source of interest to her friends, up to the last days of her life.

“MANISTEE RETAIL GROCERS will have a meeting at the public library auditorium at 7:30 this evening to discuss the new food regulations and outline a uniform plan of action complying with patriotic demands and the needs off their patrons.

“GEORGE WASHINGTON sawed down a plum tree and Betsy Ross didn’t make the first American flag! What satisfaction do so-called searchers after truth get by throwing a monkey wrench into tradition?

“CAMP CUSTER, March 5.—Michigan soldiers need more socks. The war department requires shoes to be fitted over two socks to each foot. The present stock provides only one sock per foot.

“Army men are wondering how Michigan soldiers will fill their shoes unless Michigan’s ‘knitting brigade’ speeds up needles and comes to the rescue.

“The little detachment off 10 selects representing the county’s apportionment of the contingent of five per cent sent from Michigan and Wisconsin to Fort Oglethorpe left this morning at 6 o’clock under command of Henry Giegling and Adolph Johnson, appointed officers for the trip by Sheriff Waal.

“A crowd of relatives and friends was present at the train to cheer the departing men.

“Manistee grocers, who met at the Manistee public library auditorium last night, pledged compliance to the order and regulations of the federal food administration and demonstrated in no uncertain way that they will support the government in all that may be necessary in the way of a food conservation program to help win the war.

“Flour sales will be strictly limited hereafter. Grocers learned last night that the flour shortage is almost certain to be much more serious than the sugar shortage that has confronted Manistee for several weeks.

“The federal district grand jury meets today in Grand Rapids and it is before this body that Arthur Gudart and Louis Gering will be tried on a charge of stealing valuable blue prints and drawings from the Manistee Iron Works Co. with the intention of disposing them to the injury of the United States government, during the present session.

“It is reported that action by the federal authorities will follow an expression of pro-German sentiment said to have been made Saturday by Reinhold Radke, 306 Fourth St., a laborer employed by the Buckley & Douglas Lumber Co.

“Radke, while engaged in an argument in John Carlson’s saloon in Sibben Street, is reported to have made statements under the influence of liquor concerning the president and the government of the United States for which he was knocked down and rather roughly handled. This is by no means the first evidence of his sentiments attributed to Radke and will not be the first to cause serious consequences, it is said.

“The petition of the Manistee street railway for the right to charge increased fares and to discontinue service on the north side during the winter months did not come up for action at the city council meeting last night. What had been expected to be one of the most important sessions of the winter therefore reverted back into the perfunctory class, as there was but little business to dispose of.

“Frank’s booster club, composed entirely of employees of Frank’s big store, held their regular monthly meeting last night in the store. A supper was served at the usual hour, followed by an evening of pleasure and business combined.

“Mr. Zielinski made a short talk on the business of the past and plans of the future, and many of the clerks spoke briefly.

“After the business matters for the year was taken up, suggestions and ideas for the benefit of the different departments were talked over and after several interesting little campaigns were suggested for the coming year, the meeting adjourned until the first Tuesday in April.

“Thomas B. Jones has been appointed director of the U. S. Public Service Reserve for Manistee county and has accepted the position and is ready to begin active duty.

“The purpose of the Reserve, which is a government organization with branches in every county, is to assist Uncle Sam in getting men needed for particular service to operate industries turning out necessaries for the war. It is not planned to take men now engaged in necessary occupations at home. The desire is to secure men who are unemployed or engaged in only temporary or unessential occupations who are to leave the city to do their bit for the nation by working where their services will help most to relieve the labor shortage. No inroads on the force of employees in local plants will be made. Only surplus labor is sought.

“The boys who pledged various sums of money for the Y. M. C. A. during the December holiday drive are reminded that the pledges are to be paid by April 1. Payment may be made at the Board of Commerce or at the bank that was named on the pledge. It is hoped and expected that before the month is up the lads will have made good on the 100 per cent habit that Manistee is acquiring in patriotic work.

“LUDINGTON, March 7.—A dusty warehouse, littered with boxes, can yield lost treasures quite as precious as any from the bottom of the sea.

“One thousand pounds of sugar, forgotten and given up as lost, were discovered recently in the Pere Marquette warehouse. The sweetness was consigned to a lumber company.

“The consignee turned the shipment over to the county food administrator, who distributed it in 100-pound lots among grocers out of sugar.

“At its regular weekly meeting, held yesterday afternoon, the board of directors of the Manistee Board of Commerce officially endorsed the Calder more-daylight bill now before congress.

“The purpose of this bill is to secure more daylight working hours by turning the clock ahead one hour. Many cities have already done this, but the drawback has been that other communities did not fall in line and the result has been a confusion of times as bad as the confusion of tongues in the biblical days. In some instances it led to three kinds of time—sun time, standard and the more-daylight variety.

“If national legislation is secured, with the country divided into zones just as it is now for standard time, uniformity will be obtained.

“LET’S SEE, what were we doing when this last cold wave hit us? Oh, yes; reading the seed catalog with which we started the fire this morning.

“THIS SPRING’S ASH PILES represent a heap of worry.

“NUMEROUS AUTO OWNERS are beginning to slick up their cars for the coming ‘spring drive.’”

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