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JIM: 100 years ago: Road construction, vapor trails, and more

News from a century ago, April 19, 1916: Road construction, vapor rails, and a revival; bottling plants and baseball; and sundry other front page items.
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By JIM

The News practically had to use smaller typeset to fit all the important items on the front page of the April 19, 1916 edition.

Front and center stood transportation, a topic near and dear to editor C.S. Harris. In this piece, more commentary than news, the nay-sayers of work on the Stanford Road drew considerable heat. That was the first stretch selected for improvement in Adair County under the state Good Roads act, and some folks were grumbling that not more than a mile or two would ever be built.

Not so, proclaimed the paper, informing readers that Mr. Stults, who had charge of construction from the city limits to the bridge, would soon complete his section, whereupon Mr. J.N. Coffey and his crew of hands would take over for the rest of the job. Thundered the paper's editorial voice,
"When the money has been spent, when a substantial road of four or five miles has been left as evidence of its spending, we predict that the people will be well pleased, and so much so, that this county will never again permit the work of road bulding to cease."
Railroad fever hit town

Railroad fever drew considerably more column-inks of ink than did the Stanford Road piece. In this latest go, an out of county investor offered to build a railroad to Columbia from Greensburg, Campbellsville, or some intermediate point between on the existing line. "All" Adair countians had to do was put up $50,000 -- refundable if the railroad didn't come to fruition -- and obtain the right of ways. Native son Melvin A. Traylor, by then a resident of Chicago, pledged fifty dollars to the cause. Implored the News of those who had the means,
"Do not wait for liberal men to double their subscriptions in order that you may be benefitted by their liberality, but subscribe what your conscience plainly tell you. You know the value of a railroad. Do your duty and your children and grandchildren will rise up and call you blessed."
Nell & Son's bottling plant had just opened

On the business scene, the brand new Nell & Son's bottling plant had just opened, and, stated the report, "is now doing a good business, orders coming in daily." The warm weather to date was interpreted as a sign of strong summer sales. (George Nell was named as the manufacturer; his son Guy managed the day to day operation.)

McCandless & Reed, bottlers, had plants in Columbia and Lebanon
R W.E. McCandless, of McCandless & Reed, another bottling firm, reported booming business both at the Lebanon and Columbia plants, "large sales being made daily."

Tobacco sales brought a lot of money into Adair County

Representatives of W.M. Buford & Co., out of Louisville, had been buying in Adair for the better part of two months and in that time, had taken in one hundred thousand pound of the product with 20 hogsheads already prized up and work on that aspect to start again in June. The paper, ever mindful of a dollar, remarked that "The sale of this tobacco has brought a great deal of money into Adair County." Grinstead poultry house was doing booming business

And too, the Columbia branch of the Grinstead poultry house had trade a-plenty, with the report that during the previous week, Grinstead received some 356 cases of eggs and just under 20,000 poultry, for which the firm paid in total the sum of $4,432.15.

Methodist Church was holding a revival

At the Methodist church, the revival led by the evangelist Rev. Wagoner and song leader Mr. Smith (whose "voice is soft but his words are clear and melodious ") continued apace, wresting soul after soul from the clutches of Satan. The News reported six profession of faith the previous Thursday night and a full dozen additions to the church Sunday forenoon. The Parlor Circle Theatre had new serial, "Broken Coin"

Those seeking entertainment didn't have far to look. At the Parlor Circle, a new episode of the serial Broken Coin played mid-week in addition to the regular Thursday and Saturday evening showings. Friday evening, April 21st, promised plenty of laughs up on Lindsey-Wilson hill with the presentation of a three-act comedy, The Time of His Life. For the price of admission -- 15c or 25c, depending on the depth of one's pocket -- those attending were promised "two hours of lively enjoyment." Campbellsville baseball team was coming to town

And for sports enthusiasts, baseball reigned. On Friday, the Campbellsville team was slated to arrive in Columbia for an afternoon game at Lindsey Wilson. The boys from Taylor County were still smarting from a 7-0 drubbing at the hands of St. Mary's several days earlier, a team the Lindseyites had since finished off in Columbia in spectacular fashion, to-wit: Late in the game, behind Burley Young's pitching and Leon Lewis' catching, Lindsey trailed 1-0. With the Lindsey team at the bat, bases loaded, and two out, pitcher Young stepped to the plate, and, in a manner reminiscent of Casey at the bat, took a mighty swing. Unlike Casey, however, Young connected and "knocked the ball out of sight, bringing home all three" and winding up on third base himself, and thus stood the final score of 4-2 of in favor of the home boys. Said the article of the fans' collective reaction to Young's Ruthian swat, "The yelling was terrific."


This story was posted on 2016-04-17 08:26:54
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