100 Years Ago

The following news items are reprinted from the Manistee Daily News for the week ending October 12, 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

“AMERICANS SMAHS AHEAD 3 MILES. Many Prisoners and Guns Are Taken in the Attack. North of St. Quentin 4,000 Huns Are Captured By Haig’s Army.

“1,840,000 YANKS A NOW IN FRANCE, SENATE IS TOLD.

“LOS ANGELES. Cal., Oct. 4.—Spanish influenza is not without its compensation for the lemon growers.

“Reports received here show that the heavy demand for hot lemonade in eastern cities, notably by Boston, has sent lemon prices up to $7.65 a box. This is a $4 increase since influenza discovered America.

“WASHINGTON, Oct. 4.—Over-optimism because of military successes in tending to slow up the loan drive.

“This fact, coupled with the prevalence of influenza epidemics in many cities, is hampering the campaign.

“While there is no doubt that the loan will go over with a smash, war and treasury officials joined today in pointing out to America that it must put its money punch behind its men’s punch right now.

“Liberty Loan campaigners today surmounted the $500,000 hurdle with brightened hopes of making good on the county’s quota, $574,000.

“The campaign has reached its hardest stage, but the committees hand out the assurance that there will be no diminution of effort until the last necessary dollar has been subscribed. The easiest subscriptions have been secured, and now it remains to comb the county for those who have not done their duty.

“NEW YORK, Oct. 4.—Spanish influenza sweeping through the big cities and army camps has brought suffering to 175 soldiers and civilians, reports here today show.

“Death is occurring at the rate of one in each 27 cases.

“Federal and local health authorities are fighting desperately to check the spread of the disease and feel the epidemic is checked in army camps.

“The epidemic seems to be moving westward. Boston is still the worst afflicted city, with 30,000 cases and 1,912 deaths.

“The influenza has appeared in the navy department here, attacking several important staff officers. Their places have been filled so important navy work will go on unhampered. “The village of Wishawa, Pa., with 500 inhabitants, had 300 cases if influenza today, with nine deaths.

“The social festivities of the Country Club closed last evening in an atmosphere of good cheer, music and dancing after a sumptuous 6:30 o’clock spread. The tables were beautifully decorated with fall bouquets. Excellent music was furnished by Wallace Boulanger and Douglas Noble.

“The president of the society, C. N. Russell, and his social committee are to be highly commended for their thoughtful arrangements in observing war rules—which conflicted with the established order, and still kept up the club interest and social life.

“A warning to business men that the flat rate for water will be assessed unless they keep the meter in the basements of their stores accessible, has been given by City Manager P. H. Beauvais. According to this official, city meter readers have been unable to take readings because of the crates, boxes or coal piled in around the meters.

“EAST LANSING, Oct. 3.—The woman who would like to take the place of a departed husband, father or brother as a farm manager, or who simply has a ‘hankering’ to make herself useful in the present emergence, can learn the essentials of the agricultural business if she will report to M. A. C., an announcement from the college declares. The East Lansing institution, which heretofore has never considered agriculture as an especially attractive field for feminine enterprise, is offering a number of special courses designed particularly for present conditions, but containing at the same time features of permanent value.

“CITY MANAGER P. H. BEAUVAIS LEAVES tomorrow for Detroit to visit his wife who is critically ill there. The length of his stay is indefinite.

“EVEN THE MOST ENTHUSIASTIC MOTORIST must admit that the gasless order makes Sunday smell more like Sunday used to smell before the automobile’s arrival.

“THE CHILDREN’S STORY HOUR at the public library will commence tomorrow afternoon at 2:30 o’clock. All the little children are invited. Stories will be told to the little folks every Saturday now on until spring.

“THE WARMER YOU KEEP YOU HOME now the colder winter will seem.

“DO THE AUTHORITIES intend to investigate all the cider made this fall and determine just when it has reached the kick stage?

THE OATS RAISED ON SANDS PARK THIS summer netted the city 600 bushels of grain and 10 tons of straw. All of this will be used for city purposes.

THE NIGHT OF OCTOBER 26 IS WHEN THE clocks will be set back an hour. That’s when we catch up on the sleep we lost when they were turned ahead last spring.

“Prepare To Do Your Christmas Shopping Early. The Merchants Will be Prepared so that You May Make Your Purchases During October. The Government Makes the Request That You Do This. BUY EARLY and DO IT WISELY. Save Extra Clerk Hire. Save Extra Deliveries.

“Even bread and butter and jam don’t tempt me, says Bobby, as long as I can have POST TOASTIES (MADE OF CORN).

“Mrs. J. M. Petersen and Mrs. F. SS. Roberts have been appointed as a committee for the purpose of collecting old records to be used in the cantonments in the United States and also for the boys overseas. Anyone having any Victrola or phonograph records which they would care to give for the pleasure of the boys in service will kindly notify these women. Further details will be given later. The state has asked to collect these records, and these women will obtain those given from Manistee.

“PARIS, Oct. 5.—France’s solemn warning that reprisals will be inflicted upon Germany in return for her devastation in France is meeting with widespread approval.

“The warning was times to save Lille and other industrial cities through which the boche is preparing to pass in retreat.

“Press comment on the warning intimates that all allies are likely to join in a warning that will state frankly to Germany that the martyred towns and cities of Belgium and France will be avenged.

“Manistee is for once favored in securing one date in the Michigan tour of the renowned suffrage speaker, Mary C. Craigie of Washington, D. C. She will lecture Monday evening at 7:30 in the Electric theatre under the auspices of the Suffrage society. The lecture is free and men and women are invited.

“Mrs. Craigie will arrive in Manistee in time Monday to attend the Lakeside club and give a brief address at the conclusion of the regular program.

“The High school team put over its second winning game this afternoon when it defeated the Ludington High school by the safe score of 36 to 0. This makes the second game won this year, having defeated Shelby last Saturday. The players and students are especially jubilant over the team’s excellent showing, as it is without a coach. Much credit must be given Captain Joe Piekarski for his work in managing the team.

“A petition signed by 52 high school students, expressing a desire to take a course in military training, was presented to the board of education last night. No action was taken pending receiving of a new government plan covering this work.

“A request from the Mothers’ club for the use of the school house on certain evenings of the week for the discussion of the suffrage problem was granted.

“Owing to the inability of the superintendent to find an agricultural teacher, that course has been dropped for the present semester at least, and the 14 students have been assigned to other subjects. It is practically impossible to secure a teacher, Superintendent Baker has found out, after fruitless efforts to fill the place vacated by W. S. Park.

“Having passed the physical examination, and asking no exemption, Harvey B. Larsen, head of the firm of Larsen Bros., Inc., has applied for the privilege of enlisting for immediate service in the army, and announces today that the grocery and hardware departments of the big River street store will be closed for the duration of the was as soon as the stocks can be disposed of.

“With Lawrence Larsen of the firm in government service in the food administration offices at Washington, and Harvey about to enter the service, the active management of the remaining departments of the Larsen store will be assumed by Mrs. A. T. Seeley, a director of the corporation, who has been in charge of the ready-to-wear and millinery departments since the firm’s organization.

“’Cure the grip and Spanish influenza by the use of tea made by steeping cinnamon bark,’ writes a lady from Brethren, to The News-Advocate.

“’For pity’s sake,’ she urges, ‘tell Uncle Sam a safe and sure cure is this cinnamon tea, given piping hot at bedtime every night for a week is necessary. No other medicine is needed.’

“She recites numerous instances of cures effected through its use.

“Certainly this is worth trying, especially where other reputed remedies have failed. Wife, mix us up some cinnamon tea. We’re tired of sneezing and snuffling.

“With nearly 100 men in attendance, the supper of the Forum class of the Congregational Church last night in the church parlors was a most enjoyable occasion to all present.

“Following a bounteous repast, Frank A. Mitchell, presiding as toastmaster, launched a program of deep interest. Patriotic songs were sung by the gathering, led by W. H. Markle, with Roy Overpack at the piano.

“Most Americans will be relieved when suffrage is finally granted to the women. Relieved if for no other reason because maybe it will give those White House pickets an opportunity to take up housework, or go to laying bricks, or something.

“The entrance of the William Miller Hardware company building is resplendent with a new coat of paint. The firm’s sign has also been renewed with the result that the store presents as neat an appearance as any business block on River street.

“Seemed natural for the reactionaries of both parties to get together in oppositions to suffrage progress.

“Consumers who do not apply for their household sugar cards before October 8, will be cut one-fourth in their allotment. This ruling is announced today by the county food administration, with the request that it be followed by faster application for the cards, which give the holder sugar to the amount of two pounds per person per month.

“U. S. TO REJECT HUN PEACE OFFER. GERMANY SEEKS TOO SAVE HERSELF BY NEGOTIATION. Offer Is Recognized As Next Step of Foe Statesmen To Rescue Something From Wreckage of Dream For World Domination.

“Retreating Germans Spread Destruction. BURN VILLAGES AND TOWNS FROM LILLE TO RHEIMS. Scores of Places Are In Flames As Huns Are Driven Back By Allies Forces.

“Meanwhile, Manistee may congratulate itself in not having been led to indulge in a premature celebration of something that has not happened, greatly as we desire it.

“The heavy inroads on the best citizenship of Manistee made by war’s demands will be more seriously felt than ever through the requisitioning of the services of Dr. Lewis S. Ramsdell, who yesterday received 24 hours’ notice to report for Active duty.

“The absence of Dr. Ramsdell will be keenly felt in Manistee,, compensated only by the thought of the vast good he can do in the active service of his country. One of Michigan’s most eminent surgeons and a veteran of the Spanish war, his talents and experience exceptionally qualify him for the duty to which he will be assigned.

“Capt. Ramsdel is a member of the city commission, and of the school board, in both of which bodies his counsel will be keenly missed during the period of his absence. He also has the most extensive medical and surgical practice in this section of the state, which he is now compelled to forego. During his absence his medical practice will be turned over to Dr. Homer Ramsdell, and arrangements are being made with a competent surgeon to take over his work in this department.

“Mrs. Ramsdell and son Tom will remain here for a time, but expect to go in the not-distant future to Washington, where Mrs. Ramsdell will enter the government service in some capacity.

“The Spanish influenza epidemic at Camp Custer has claimed one Manistee victim, word of the death from pneumonia in the base hospital there Sunday morning of Axel E. Anderson being received here by relatives yesterday.

“He was a native of Sweden, 31 years old, and came to Manistee at the age of 16. He made home here with the family of Jonas Johnson of Parkdale, an uncle. He was a cousin of Gust Johnson, whose death from the same malady, pneumonia, occurred in Grand Rapids last Wednesday, the day on which Axel was stricken at the cantonment.

“Owing to the congestion of cases at Camp Custer, the remains could not be shipped from there until tomorrow. The timing [of the services are] contingent on that of the arrival of the body here.

“August Mueckler, 288 Sixth St., received word this morning announcing the serious sounding of his son, Private August C. Mueckler, in the fighting around Soissons on August 28. The telegram conveyed no detailed information.

“Recent letters from the soldier indicated that he had been through the vicious fighting at Chateau-Thierry, and had come through unscratched. The last letter received was dated August 15th, 13 days before a Hun bullet laid him low.

“Making jack-o’-lanterns of pumpkins this year will be distinctly anti-Hoover.

Last night was one of the coldest of the fall, and a very heavy frost was reported from the county districts. The frost in some of the lowlands resembles a light snowfall. Ice atop water troughs and along the edges of creeks was also reported.

“Sergeant Joseph Pomeroy, of Newland, who was recently wounded while fighting in France, is convalescing in Bordeaux, according to information received by Sheriff and Mrs. Morris Waal.

“HUN RETREAT BECOMES GENERAL. HIGH COMMAND IS READY TO RETIRE 20 TO 40 MILES. This is Result of Shattering of Hindenburg Line and Pressure Along Entire Front—Germans Evacuate Champagne Territory Opposite Americans.

“An audience which taxed the capacity of the circuit court room in the county building was present this morning at the convening of the state tax commission with the city assessors and supervisors of Filer and Manistee townships as a board of review of the assessments for the tax rolls of the city of Manistee and the two townships named, as fixed by the local assessors and revised by experts of the board of state tax commissioners.

“With reports of oversubscriptions from seven of the 14 townships in Manistee county, the prospects for meeting the county’s quota for the Fourth Liberty loan today took a far more hopeful turn.

“Two more Manistee county boys at Camp Custer have succumbed to Spanish influenza, according to word received here, and at least two others are critically ill.

“Maurice Buckner of Bear Lake died Sunday and his body was received in his home today. Funeral services will be held tomorrow.

“Oscar L. Larson of Kaleva is the other victim. He left here July 24, in the same contingent with Buckner, and was ill only a short time.

“Private Buckner’s death was a distinct shock to the community in which he lived, where he was held in high esteem. He was a progressive young man of wide popularity. He had been married only few months before being called into the service.

“With the report of Buckner’s death, came also the news of the serious illness of Cefas Jones, son of Mrs. E. Jones, a widow, of Pleasanton township. Mrs. Jones has left for Battle Creek.

“A telegram was also received by John Meyers, also of Pleasanton,, advising him that his son, Private Edwin Meyers, was in a critical condition at the Camp Custer hospital, from influenza. Mr. and Mrs. Meyers have gone to Battle Creek.

“Forty-seven years ago today [Oct. 8], Manistee was the scene of a raging fire which swept nearly all of the city, excepting the more favorably situated buildings in the Fourth ward along Lake Manistee, although the fire started there.

“The fire began on Sunday morning at 9 o’clock on the Gifford and Ruddock property in the Fourth ward. The fire department was called and succeeded in extinguishing this. But at 2 o’clock in the afternoon another fire broke out across the lake in the Magill and Canfield steam saw mills on Blackbird Island.

Toward evening another blaze started in the southwestern part of the city along Lake Michigan and at 9:30 p. m. another alarm came from near the mouth of the river. In the latter area flames lapped up [burned] the government lighthouse, several vessels and almost everything that appeared to be a building. The streets were covered with sawdust at that time and were also burned up. Next a fire started in the farming regions, two miles south of the city, and many farmers lost everything they possessed. Shortly after midnight a veritable tornado was raging and flames were leaping to the tops of 80-foot pines as the flames marched northward.

“Thousands of people were made homeless, many had very narrow escapes and even the steam fire engine was burned in the street. It was not until three o’clock in the afternoon of October 9 that the flames had subsided.

“At that time Manistee was 80 miles from a railroad with no telegraphic connection and mails only three times weekly. It was not until several days after that Manistee learned of the great Chicago fire, on account of the destruction of wires.

“Through the instrumentality of Judge Stacey C. Thompson, street car service which has been denied the north side for nearly a year now is to be restored to that section of the city, as far as the north city limits, or what is known as ‘Peanut Junction.’

“A shelter station enclosed on three sides will be erected…for the comfort and convenience of waiting patrons, and this will be kept lighted through the twilight and evening hours.

“…The company will resume northside service the year ‘round, a half-hour schedule being maintained.

“On the theory that partial service is vastly preferable to none whatever, the north side is to be congratulated. People living in that direction inside the city confines may now ride the full distance to the north limits, while the Parkdale people doubtless will often be glad of the opportunity to ride half the distance to their homes.

“The greatest collection of war trophies that has ever been gathered together, which is being taken through the seventh Federal Reserve District, will arrive in Manistee next Saturday afternoon at 4 o’clock and will remain here for about two and one half hours. The train is one of three which is being sent out to aid in the Fourth Liberty Loan drive.

“Among the trophies is a captured German airplane, one of the high speed Fokkers which the Germans believed to be too fast to be shot down by the allied aviators.

“The German trophies, however, are only a small part of the interesting contents of this train which will give Manistee stay-at-homes a greater conception of just what war is. The exhibit gives an opportunity to every Liberty bond buyer to see just what his money is buying.

“How to stop the spread of influenza is the question. We’re liable yet to all of us have to wear gas masks.

“Archaeologists have discovered a safety pin 3,000 years old. Evidently there is nothing new under the sun.

“Who says the dollar does not go as far as it used to? Look at ‘em going to France.

“Another ideal day for a trip through the woods on foot. There is nothing that hustles one back to the days of kidhood so fast as kicking through the leaves in the woods after the trees have turned to brilliant colors.

“ALLIES PUSH AHEAD RELENTLESSLY.

“Washington, Oct. 9.—A crisis is fast approaching in the Fourth Liberty loan campaign.

“The goal of six billion dollars may not be subscribes in the allotted time, treasury officials said today. Half of the period is gone and only $1,650,000,000 has been raised.

“Subscribers are urged to double their Third Loan pledges. Discouraging reports are forcing officials to hunt for new means to awaken the nation.

“LANSING, Oct. 9.—The lower peninsula of Michigan lacks $41,900,000 of its $147,900,000 quota, according to information from the headquarters of the seventh reserve district in Chicago yesterday.

“The upper peninsula in the ninth district is withholding all figures on bond sales until the last prospective buyer has bought.

“CAMP CUSTER, Oct. 9.—Camp Custer is gaining in its fight against Spanish influenza.

“Tuesday’s figures show a net reduction of 500 cases, as compared with the preceding 24 hours, though there were 28 deaths from pneumonia.

“For the first time in several days the sick at Camp Custer numbered below 6,000—5,795 to be exact.

“The last 24-hour toll brought the number of deaths since September 28 to 120, which, while abnormal, is small as compared with other camps.

“Another Manistee girl is in France. Miss Ethel LaPoint, a former Manistee girl who has been stationed as a Red Cross nurse in Waco, Texas, for the past six months, has gone abroad and is now a part of the regular army nurses’ corps.

“The government has requested that a concerted effort be made by merchants throughout the United States to make earnest efforts to encourage early Christmas shopping. The object of this idea is to, if possible, save unnecessary fuel and light expense later on, to lighten the burden of extra deliveries and to save, as much as possible, long and tiresome hours of clerks’ labor and to obviate the hiring of extra help.

“Posters calling attention to the influenza epidemic were received today by City Clerk Graves this morning from the state board of health for display in the city.

“The influenza, the poster states, is the same disease that swept over the country in 1889 and 1890, and is disseminated directly from one person to another by coughing, sneezing or violent talking directly into another’s face, against which practices warning is directed. It is a crowd disease…

“Influenza is not, it states, of itself a highly fatal disease. The danger lies in its being a starter for pneumonia.

“There have been no fatalities yet from this cause in Manistee, and health Officer Ellis stated today that there are at present no cases of the malady in the city under the observance of his department.

“GERMANS IN WILD RETREAT AS FOCH’S FORCES FORGE FORWARD. GERMANS ARE STAGGERING UNDER HEAVY BLOWS AND ON VERGE OF UTTER ROUT.

“Word of the death from Spanish influenza of Corporal Leo O. Willers at Camp Custer hospital, was received this morning in a telegram to his father, J. H. Willers, the Washington street grocer. The soldier’s sister, Miss Agnes Willers, was with him when the end came, but his mother, who left yesterday morning, failed to arrive in time, it is believed.

“Corporal Willers was widely known in Manistee, having lived here practically all of his life. He was 27 years old. He had been ill only three days previous to his death, his parents receiving word that his condition was critical only yesterday. He was one of the biggest men Manistee county gave to the colors. Standing six feet high, he weighed in the neighborhood of 250 pounds when he left here last June.

“Corporal Willers is the fourth Manistee county soldier to die of Spanish influenza at Camp Custer….

“KANSAS CITY, MO., Oct. 10.—No more music written by living or dead German composers will be performed by members of the Kansas City Musical Club for the duration of the war. This ban was decreed by this city’s oldest and largest musical organization in a resolution adopted at a general meeting of the club and drew objections from a number of the members, but these were withdrawn as the sentiment favoring it became more pronounced.

“Manistee’s quota of 850 men for the call into special training this month at the University of Michigan and School of Mines at Houghton has been fixed at 20, according to an order received by Sheriff Waal of the draft board this morning.

“When the first call for volunteers for this training was made last weekk only four registrants responded and these all expressed a preference for the Ann Arbor training. Sheriff Waal announces that other volunteers will be received up to Friday noon, and then if the quota is not filled, the board will draft enough to fill the contingent.

“Just For PRECAUTION. It is conceded that most disease germs enter the mouth or nose. Then you daily use a mouth, throat and nose spray of NYAL’S NAATISEPTIC COMPOUD the precautionary measure is full taken and health and cleanliness and good feeling will result. This makes a wonderful mouth wash to use for this purpose, anyway. Has a good effect on catarrhal disease. City Drug Store.”

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Posted by Ken Grabowski

Ken is News Advocate’s education reporter. He coordinates coverage for all Manistee County schools and West Shore Community College. He can be reached by phone at (231) 398-3125 or by email at kgrabowski@pioneergroup.com.

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