Wednesday, September 7, 2016


Three jug telephone.

Cortland Evening Standard, Saturday, January 28, 1893.

Will Stick It Out.
The action of the meeting of the former telephone users held last Thursday evening indicates that they propose to stand by the action which they have taken, and to put no telephones in till the company meet them at least half way, and that they will not pay more than $36.00 a year until they have some guaranty that the service will be a substantial improvement on what it has been in the past. While some few of the signers of the original agreement have put in their phones, it seemed to be the general impression at the meeting that this had been done through misunderstanding, and that some, if not all, would again refuse to use the instruments when they knew the real facts of the case.
◘ Should the company consent to put in the phones till Jan. 1, 1894, at $36 a year, with the understanding that after that date the price would be $48, and that those who thought the service worth the price could then continue it and those who did not could again drop off, we should judge from the temper of the meeting that a compromise on this basis could be arranged, but unless this is done the war bids fair to be to the knife and the knife to the hilt.
◘ The committee declared that the company's representatives had offered no terms other than $48 a year, except to charge $8 for the first quarter of 1893, which was substantially no compromise at all. When any man or company, in this age of the world, attempts to force the public to buy or use something which they can get along without, and for which they feel that an exorbitant price is charged, the task is always a hard one. The public must be convinced by facts and arguments that the price is fair, and the matter must meanwhile be treated in a conciliatory spirit, or else there will be trouble and loss to both sides, and the public will stand a great deal of inconvenience before they will yield.
◘ Even if it is granted that the new telephone service is worth $48 the public do not yet believe it, and do not propose to pay this price until they are convinced. They know that for the kind of service they have been having, poor, indistinct and impertinent, where a man could some times ring for five minutes and get no reply, and, when the telephone was once connected, be out [or] off three or four times before he was through, $36 was a princely price. This feeling the company will have to overcome, not by promises but by performance, and the sooner it realizes this the better it will be both for it and the public. We believe that if the company [Empire State Telephone] will give the citizens of Cortland a service which is better worth $48 than the old service was $36, there will be no haggling about price—but this must be done before an advance is demanded.
◘ It would be a great deal of money in pocket for the company, and would make the public its friends instead of its enemies, if it would say frankly: "Gentlemen, we know we have given you a mighty poor service in the past, and that no such service is worth any $48 a year. We are now going to give you a first-class service, and we are not going to ask you to pay $48 a year for it until we demonstrate that it is well worth that price. You can try this new service during 1893 at the old rate. Then we shall advance the price." We believe this would end the entire trouble.
◘ The telephone users who signed the pledge to stop the use of the instruments until a price of $36 a year was made to all, have bound themselves by a solemn pledge. If they did not mean to stand by it, they ought not to have signed it. Having signed it, they should stay there till the cows come home—or until peace is declared—and we believe that almost every one of them will.
◘ The STANDARD has no grievance against the telephone company. No notice of a raise in price was ever served on us. We are, moreover, under obligations to the company for substantial favors, and we are free to say that if the service promised is given, in our opinion it is worth $48 a year. But we think that a grievous mistake was made in the curt and dictatorial notice of a raise in price which was served on subscribers, unaccompanied by any guaranty of an increase in value of service, and in the "what are you going to do about it" attitude which was assumed. If the company is wise enough to take hold of this matter, even at this late day, in a conciliatory spirit, it ought to be easily arranged. If the citizens' committee, however, is to be ignored or snubbed, we shall be greatly mistaken if there is not music in the air very soon, and martial music at that. Rochester had a long contest with a telephone company once and came off victorious—and for stubbornness we will match Cortland against Rochester or against the world.

Is Mormon Polygamy Dead?
   It is hard to tell. President Harrison's amnesty proclamation, granting unconditional pardon and freedom from further legal prosecution to all Mormons who have lived monogamously since Nov. 1, 1890, and will continue to do so, implies that in the opinion of persons in high government quarters the many wived practice has been abandoned. In October, 1890, the sixty-first semiannual conference of the Latter Day Saints issued a manifesto to all Mormons prohibiting any member hereafter to enter into the plural marriage relation. They did this on the recommendation of Wilfred Woodruff, president of the church. In September of 1890 Woodruff declared that Mormon preachers were no longer teaching that disobedience to the marriage laws of the United States was obedience to God. Woodruff recommended the abandonment of polygamy on the ground of its conflicting with the laws of the United States, and not from any change of heart. Leading Mormons have said in the most sincere and solemn manner that polygamy has been abandoned forever.
   Nevertheless, if this be true, what mean the swarms of foreign steerage passenger women who still, up to the time of the cholera quarantining, continued to enter our ports from Europe, always under the wing of cunning faced, sharp-eyed old Mormon elders, who watched them like a hawk lest any of them got away? The Wyoming, the ship that was detained so long at quarantine in New York’s bay last November, brought seventy-six Mormon converts—eleven men and sixty-five women. In addition to this the shrewd old Mormon rascals who had the party in tow mingled freely with the steerage passengers in general and tried to persuade other women to join the Utah contingent and go off with them. Polygamy may be abandoned, as the Mormons say, but all the same these little facts have a queer look.

Answered by the 45th Company—A Proposition made for a Grand Contest between the Three Companies to be held in Cortland.
   It was plainly observed by all at the armory last evening that the athletic team from the 26th Separate Company of Elmira [New York National Guard] was composed almost entirely of "kickers." They seemed to kick on principle, but because they were the guests of the 45th company, the members of the latter were disposed to try to overlook the matter and wished to say nothing about it. The Elmira Gazette of Thursday, however, published an interview with Mr. Eugene Van Buskirk, captain of the team, which is so full of misstatements that the members of the 45th feel that they are relieved of any further obligations of silence as hosts, and wish to make public some facts in the case.
   Mr. Van Buskirk states that "prior to the entertainment the 26th company received a letter from one of the head men of the 45th company stating that the tug of war team would be limited to 700 pounds weight." It is true. Mr. Van Buskirk states that he was told that the weight of the Cortland team was 740 pounds. If he was told that he was misinformed, for the weight of the four men with heavy winter clothing on is 718 pounds. They have not been weighed stripped for the pull, but any one who knows anything about the weight of men's clothing will be assured that the heavy winter clothing of four men will exceed 18 pounds in weight, so that the weight of the Cortland, team was inside the limit.
   Mr. Van Buskirk further states that all tug of war rules call for five-minute pulls and he protests against a three-minute pull. The 45th company did not advertise their contest according to any particular tug of war rules. They advertised a three-minute pull, and all contestants were so informed in advance, and the Elmira team entered the contest with that understanding, so that they have no ground for kicking afterwards.
   Mr. Van Buskirk then states that "the first pull was won by Cortland against Syracuse." In that he is mistaken, for Syracuse won that pull by three inches. "Elmira and Syracuse then pulled and the 26th boys won the heat by an inch and half." Correct, Mr. Van Buskirk. "In the second heat Elmira pulled against Cortland, the latter team having substituted two new men." This is another of Mr. Van Buskirk's misstatements. Mr. Harkness of the 45th had just fainted at the end of the relay race and was under a doctor's care and wholly unable to pull. The Cortland men, under the circumstances, asked to substitute a man, but, as Elmira objected, Cortland, as hosts, rather than to have any failure in their program, proceeded to the contest with three men. It was of course only a form. They knew they would get pulled, as of course they were by Elmira's full team.
   Mr. Van Buskirk proceeds, "The Elmira boys claim that they were cheated out of the third heat. The referee claimed that they dropped too soon. The referee, contrary to rules called the home (Elmira) team off and made them pull this heat over again. Syracuse finally claimed this heat by a quarter of an inch. The rules call for at least half an inch to win a heat. Thus another rank decision was made. It was by such miserable and mean tactics that Syracuse can claim the handsome silver vase awarded for the contest." In answer to these statements the 45th company would say that Mr. Van Buskirk, the anchor of the Elmira team, plainly dropped before the pistol shot, pulling the rope from under the lever and the referee very properly decided it a foul and made them start over again. Mr. Van Buskirk should be thankful that he was not disqualified from the contest for a false start. As to the amount of rope to the credit of Syracuse it was the unanimous opinion of all three judges that it was a good and full half inch.
   Mr. Van Buskirk says that the Elmira team refused to enter the relay foot race because of their ill treatment in the tug of war. As a matter of fact the Elmira team had not had a chance to pull in the tug of war at all when the relay race occurred. The relay race was run after the first heat of the tug of war which was between Syracuse and Cortland. In the opinion of the 45th boys the real reason why the Elmira team would not enter the relay race was because Elmira failed that night in her attempts to persuade Cortland to change the previously advertised conditions of the race. It had been advertised that the banner would be passed and runners changed every eighth of a mile, and the race was so run. Elmira had some long distance runners and that night tried by every means to induce Cortland to change the men every quarter of a mile, which under the circumstances would have been clearly for the advantage of Elmira. But the conditions of the race had been laid down weeks before, and fifty copies of the program containing the conditions had been sent to the Twenty-sixth company at Elmira and the same number to the Forty-first company at Syracuse, and teams had been entered from both those places and from Cortland with a full knowledge of those conditions, so that it would have been manifestly unfair to have changed them upon the night of the annual.
   Of course it is customary for defeated champions to cast around for a plausible excuse to give their admiring friends when they meet with reverses, but it is seldom that they resort to absolute misstatements, as in this case, for accomplishing that end. In conclusion, we quote from a letter of Dr. E. M. Santee, the chairman of the committee of arrangements of the 45th Separate company, the following proposition made by the 45th company to the 26th and 41st companies. "Now I will make the following proposition, and I have good assurance that my company will stand by it: If the Elmira and Syracuse teams will meet here between now and April 1, 1893, we will put up a trophy worth $50 to be given to the winning team; and after they have had time to rest we will furnish a team from our company to pull the winners for another trophy of the same value to be paid for by us. Conditions are to be governed by tug of war rules, judges and referee to be selected by the three companies, none of them to reside in Elmira, Syracuse or Cortland; and no spectator to be within fifteen feet of the contestants when pulling."

Officers and Crowd Pursue a Thief Nearly to McGrawville.
[Cortland Evening Standard, Friday, Jan.27.]
   Cortland has not been so excited for a long time as it was from 1 to
2:30 o'clock this afternoon. A man giving his name as DeVer Richards and claiming to be a Pennsylvania wood cutter has been hanging about town for a number of weeks. He was always recognized by his variegated suit of many colors. Last night he stayed at the Farmer's Hotel on Port Watson-st. and this morning Mr. Dowd, the proprietor, missed a fine fur cap valued at $5. This was reported to Sheriff John Miller and the suspicions were communicated that Richards was the thief. Officer Miller also heard from another source that he had in his possession a fine clock and two coats which it was not believed that he came honestly by. At about 1 o'clock he was seen near the Messenger House and the sheriff was notified.
   Meanwhile Richards started down Main st. and took to the fields south of the armory, a crowd of men and boys following and keeping him in sight. He struck out for the woods on south hill where the sheriff, who was accompanied by a STANDARD reporter sighted him. The crowd headed him off and he altered his course to Port Watson-st. He had quite a start of his pursuers.
   In front of the residence of Mr. E. A. Fish Officer Miller obtained the loan of a two-horse sleigh which was turned around and the sheriff, the STANDARD man and one other man followed and overtook Richards, who at once drew and brandished a long and ugly-looking sheath knife. None of the party were armed and no one cared to walk up on that knife in the hands of a determined looking man. The man then backed off and skipped across lots toward the Cortland Wagon works. The team was turned around and driven rapidly back to the sheriff's office, where Officer Miller procured his revolver.
   The next trace of the fugitive was obtained on Crandall-st., where it appeared that in front of the residence of James Lynch he had found unhitched a two-horse sleigh belonging to H. M. Champlin of 180 Railroad-st. Before the astonished face and eyes of Mr. Champlin Richards jumped into the sleigh and drove off at full speed. Mr. Champlin jumped into a passing cutter in which were Messrs. George and Edward Wilcox and started in pursuit toward McGrawville.
   When the sheriff heard the direction in which they had gone he returned to the court house for his own horse and cutter and the STANDARD man hastened to the central office and telephoned to McGrawville a description of Richards and asked an officer to go out to meet him. Constable D. H. Crane and Albert Wheeler started out behind the fast horse of the latter.
   Meanwhile Champlin and the Wilcox brothers had overtaken Richards at Polkville. They attempted to seize him, but he jumped from the sleigh and started across the fields toward the McGrawviile road. They secured their horses and stabled them there and continued the pursuit. Just as Richards emerged from the fields upon the McGrawville road he met Messrs. Crane and Wheeler.
The former asked him how far it was to Blodgett Mills and as he stopped to answer Crane seized him. A violent struggle ensued in which Richards tried to get at his knife, but the other two were too many for him and he was at length overpowered and laid on his face with his hands tied behind his back.
   It was not long before Champlin and the Wilcox brothers arrived and the prisoner was unceremoniously bundled into a cutter and started for Cortland. Officer Miller soon met them and returned with them. A great crowd had for a long time gathered about the court house waiting to see the outcome, and when the prisoner was brought back the excitement knew no bounds. Richards is at present locked up in a cell.

Richer’s Examination Postponed.
   A STANDARD reporter called on Richer yesterday, understood to be Richards, the man who gave Sheriff Miller and others such a chase yesterday afternoon. He is a finely built specimen of a man, and when seen was attired in the well-known checkered, knit lumberman's suit of variegated colors, which he has worn about town lately. He is a man about twenty-five years of age, has dark brown eyes, dark hair, which was neatly combed, and measures six feet four in his slippers. He is a man that few would like to tackle alone, much less when he was armed with an ugly looking knife. When asked where his knife was, as it was not found on his person when he was placed in jail, he denied ever having one or brandishing one. The reporter told him that he saw the knife himself and that he had had lots of opportunities of getting rid of it. This rather disconcerted the prisoner.
   The STANDARD man asked him if he was guilty of stealing the articles as accused. He stated that he intended to plead "not guilty" to the charge. On being asked if he did not think it best to plead guilty and ask the leniency of the court, he said that he would probably get sixty or ninety days or possibly six months on the hill any way and it mattered little whether he pleaded guilty or not guilty.
   He was brought before Justice Dorr C. Smith at 10:45 this morning and gave as his name Charles Richer. This is stated by many who know him to be wrong as they claim that his given name is DeVere. Mr. Smith told the prisoner that he had the right to procure counsel if he desired. The man stated that he would send to Ithaca for counsel. This seems to be a very foolish proceeding, as he was arraigned on the charge of public intoxication only. The other things of which he is accused, larceny and assault, will have to lay over till the case of public intoxication is disposed of, and, should he be sent up "on the hill," the authorities will be obliged to wait till he has served his term and then recapture him. The examination was set down for next Tuesday at 2 P. M.
   He is certainly a desperate character. He told the reporter this morning that when he got out he would make some of the authorities in this county suffer for "misusing" him in capturing him. When asked if he would do it with his physical strength or the law, he doubled up his fists and said that he had had enough of law.

An Oil Derrick.
   A window in town that is attracting a good deal of attention at present is that of Brown & Maybury's. A miniature oil derrick and pump are shown in full working order. It is run by a Knapp motor, No. 2, and is a perfect piece of mechanism. The base is nearly three feet in length and about a foot in width. On the left is a small house in which the motor is placed. A belt runs from the motor to a wheel which is in the center of the apparatus and on the right is a large derrick several feet in height. A pump is placed directly under the derrick and the oil is pumped from the receptacle under the base into a tub by means of a shaft running from the wheel in the center to the pump. The oil runs out of the bottom of the tub into the receptacle and is used over and over again.
   The attraction was presented to the firm to advertise the natural white oil which is claimed to be the only white oil in the world. It is said to grow hair on the head, in a very natural way, cure dandruff, to stop the hair from falling out and is a good hair tonic generally. It comes to Messrs. Brown & Maybury very highly recommended.

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