Monday, March 16, 2015


The Cortland Democrat, Friday, August 16, 1889.

   The Great Show rolled into town on Wednesday morning, on three immense trains of cars over the E. C. & N. road and unloaded in presence of the immense throng of people, from everywhere, who were out for a gala day, unmindful of the fact that there was every indication of a storm. The huge tents were erected on Prof. Milne's lot and promptly at 10 o'clock the parade commenced.
   Nothing like this immense pageant was ever before witnessed in Cortland. The new features were the rule and the old ones formed the exception. Chariot after chariot, drawn by beautiful horses and resplendent in gold and silver trappings, followed one another. Open cages, containing performing lions, tigers, leopards, bears, hyenas, and wolves, with a tamer in each "happy family" was a show that was offered to the public without money and without price.
   In the afternoon the tents were literally packed with people notwithstanding the fact that the rain came down in torrents. The outside show is but a sample of what may be seen inside. The very finest specimens of the animal creation are congregated here, and it would be useless to attempt an enumeration of them. The curiosities contained in the museum are wonderful and such only as could be gathered together by the immortal Barnum.
   The wonderful performances in the circus tent can only be appreciated by an attendance. The old chestnuts were conspicuous by their absence and the audiences were treated to new acts by old performers and new performers gave us old acts. The idea that a pair of steers could be made to do all the tricks in the ring that horses have heretofore done or that common south down sheep could be made to perform as well as more intelligent animals, would hardly have been believed had any one but Barnum advertised the fact.
   No one but Barnum would ever have conceived the idea of teaching seals to play the tambourine like the end man in a Minstrel show, much less to ring bells and fire off pistols. The wonderful sagacity of the learned pigs, who jumped hurdles, like race horses and performed many other novel feats, was especially noticeable. The gymnastic feats and the bareback riding was superb and the trained horses were elegant animals and exhibited marvelous intelligence.
   The only criticism we heard with reference to the exhibition was that there was too much of it and that it was simply impossible to take it all in. The criticism is correct. The wonders of the show cannot be seen and appreciated at any one performance. The great aggregation will be shipped to England in October where it will undoubtedly astonish the old people.

Death of Mrs. Fitzgerald.
(From the Syracuse Standard, Aug. 13.)
   Mrs. William Fitzgerald died suddenly of apoplexy on Sunday at her home in Chicago. For 15 years Mrs. Fitzgerald was a resident of this city, during the greater part of which time she was Mrs. Patrick Corbett. After Mr. Corbett died she married William Fitzgerald. Mr. Fitzgerald is a brother of State Treasurer Lawrence J. Fitzgerald, and is a wealthy citizen of Chicago.
   There is said to be a tinge of romance to their marriage. Fitzgerald was a Skaneateles boy and his now dead wife was a belle at Auburn, N. Y. A friendship sprang up between them, which ripened into a feeling more deep and tender. At the time Pat Corbett was making a bright name for himself as an orator and politician, and he proposed to the young lady and was accepted. When Mr. Corbett's death found Fitzgerald, too, a widower, after a becoming period elapsed the marriage of Mr. Fitzgerald and Mrs. Corbett took place.
   Mrs. Fitzgerald's maiden name was Rose Gavagan and she was a daughter of Capt. Gavagan, who formed a company in Auburn under W. S. Seward's patronage and served during the war. Her husband, father and a daughter, May Corbett, survive her. Miss May Corbett and deceased's stepdaughter, Miss Minnie Fitzgerald, have been visiting the latter's grandfather, James Fitzgerald, at Skaneateles, for the past week and were informed by telegraph Sunday of Mrs. Fitzgerald's death. They left Sunday night for Chicago. Mrs. Catharine Hughes of this city, wife of James Hughes, is an aunt of the deceased.

Veteran Soldiers and Sailors.
   The annual meeting of "The Soldiers and Sailors' Veteran Association'' of Cortland county was held in Homer on Thursday August 8. Very pleasant arrangements had been made for the meeting on the beautiful park of that village in front of the Union school building. Beneath the ample shade of the large maples standing upon those grounds a broad and convenient platform had been erected for the speakers and officers of the association and comfortable seats were provided for the audience that was gathered around it. And the weather being just about perfect for such an outdoor gathering made the meeting a really pleasant one for the "old soldiers" as they came together once more to greet each other with the cordiality of "fellow soldiers," to revive the memoirs of the now quite distant past, and to renew the friendships formed and cemented by mutual trials and hardships endured in the camp, upon the weary march and on the field of battle.
   Quite a number gathered upon the grounds during the forenoon, and at noon partook of the ample refreshments which had been provided for their dinner. The rations were not exactly after the old army order. They were not limited to "hardtack and salt pork," but those things which were considered quite luxuries in the old army times.
   At about half past one the president of the association, Frank Newcomb, of Homer, called the meeting to order. An appropriate prayer was offered by the Rev. Mr. Damon, pastor of the M. E. church of Homer. Franklin Pierce, Esq., of the same place then gave the members of the association an eloquent and hearty address of welcome on behalf of the citizens of Homer. To this President Newcomb made an appropriate response.
   And then the regular battle of speech making was opened and there was a continuous firing off of speeches for nearly an hour. The Hon. A. P. Smith of Cortland—who is usually present and always ready for any gathering of old soldiers, loaded and primed and needing only to be "touched off" by a call to the front and off goes a good speech that delights the soldiers and entertains the audience—was on hand now and came forward with one of his happiest efforts of the kind. Happily mingling mirth and humor with earnest and impressive words and patriotic sentiments he was listened to with great pleasure by the whole audience.
   After the judge, comrade and secretary of the association, C. W. Wiles, presented a carefully prepared and very interesting and instructive paper giving some impressive statistics concerning the war of the rebellion, the number of men engaged, and the number or ratio and percentage of the killed and wounded from certain regiments in various battles. He presented figures which impressively, if not eloquently showed the desperate and distinctive character of the fighting that was done in that war and the bravery of the men who waged such battles.
   Mr. Wiles was followed with brief addresses, talks, and narratives of some sad and mournful and some amusing incidents of the war, by Maj. A. Sager of Cortland, C. H. Spaulding, Rev. J. A. Robinson of Cortland, and Rev. W. A. Robinson of Homer, and Geo. Webster, one of the veterans who stood up before the audience with his one empty coat sleeve which spoke eloquently for itself and impressively told the story of his losing the arm which was missing from the empty sleeve by his side.
   After singing the song of "The old army bean," the meeting adjourned with the feeling on the part of all present that the gathering had been decidedly a pleasant one.
   The most of the heavy guns through all the speeches were aimed directly at the large "surplus" at present in Uncle Sam's treasury; and if such heavy firing is directed by all the army associations and re-unions throughout our country at the same object those in charge of that surplus will find, before long, that they must surrender the fortress and give up the "treasure."

William Jones Attempts to Jump from a Moving Train and has his Foot Smashed.
   Last Tuesday evening William Jones, a painter by trade, boarded the passenger train at Tully, which is due here at 10 P. M. He was riding on the forward end of the baggage car, next the tender, and when the train reached the vicinity of the Hitchcock Mfg. Company's shops on Elm street in this place he jumped off.  
  Andrew Carpenter and another man from this village were with him and after he struck the ground they heard him cry out. After the train reached the station Carpenter and several others returned to the place where he jumped off and found him lying at the side of the track with his left foot smashed. He was carried to the station where his injuries were examined. His foot and ankle for about two inches above the ankle joint were found to be smashed to a jelly and only hung to the rest of the leg by two of the cords. The cords were cut and the foot removed, and the man was taken to the Grand Jury room in the Court House where the leg was amputated below the knee by Dr. Dana, assisted by Dr. A. J. White and Dr. Hughes and son.
   His collar bone was also broken and the fracture was reduced by Dr. Dana. At this writing the patient is doing as well as could be expected and it is thought he will recover.
   Jones is 33 years of age and is said to be pretty fast. His home is in Norwich, where he has a sister, Mrs. Munson. Mr. Hall the keeper of the Chenango County Poor House is his brother-in-law. He has worked for D. D. Hamill and others in this place the past summer, and went to Tully to work only a few days since. He is a single man.

Hints for Writers.
   We join in the announcement that in writing for the press, use nothing smaller than note paper, as anything written on a small slip is liable to get lost. Don't abbreviate; it is an abomination to write "pres." and "v. pres." for president and vice president, "Thurs. eve." for Thursday evening. Do not omit words and expect the editor or printer to supply them. Do not crowd lines too near together. In changing a word, cross it out and write the word wanted directly over the one crossed. Do not make a "short &" when you want a long "and" to appear in print. Write proper names very plainly, so there may be no mistaking them. In the beginning of an article, leave space at the top, so the editor may write a head for it without pasting on another sheet. Never write up on both sides of the paper, unless you desire the contempt of everybody in the printing office. In writing items of news, make a paragraph of each subject. Above all confine yourself strictly to facts, and write in the fewest possible number of words.

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