In This Place: August 13, 2014

It’s Fair Time!

Looking back at the history of the Delaware County Fair decades ago, I was surprised to learn that what seems to us now as an ironclad tradition almost went under, more than once! It was also fun to read the attractions, as decades went by, to see what became antiquated and what never grew old — namely rides and livestock! Eventually horse races were replaced by “motorized” amusements such as demolition derbies, but the horses continued to hold their own well into the forties.

Feb. 14, 1913 — End of County Fair
A meeting is called for next Wednesday to take definite action in regard to either doing away with the county Fair property and discontinuing exhibitions here, or determining upon some course to resuscitate the society. It's about time a spirit of enterprise manifested towards the local fair. Next Wednesday will decide the fate of the fair. Local business men will have to come to the rescue or the institution will be sacrificed to those who have claims against the society's real estate. This isn't saying the farmers don't know where their interests lie.
Someone has got to get behind the fair or its fate is sealed.—Delhi Gazette.

In This Place: August 6, 2014

Who Shot the Sheriff? We did.
by Trish Adams
Here in upstate New York, 170 years ago, we had our very own version of the “Wild West meets Freedom Fighters.” At issue were centuries-old “durable” leases that held generations of farmers in thrall to absentee landlords; they and their children were doom­ed to pay rent, year after year, on land they had tilled and toiled but could never own.

In This Place: July 30, 2014

The Sad but Terribly Human Story of David Raleigh
by Trish Adams

I was intrigued by this clip from a July 3, 1959 Clarke Sanford column to investigate the full story.
The disappearance of little David Raleigh after he caught his first trout three weeks ago seems on the way to a legend if the lad’s body is not found. I have been told many times, “The boy is not in the mountains.” A man on the street said to me last week, “A million men could not find the boy.” I asked him why. He replied “Because he is not there.” The man expressed no notion of what he thought hap­pened to the boy.

In This Place: July 23, 2014

July 23 Potluck

A half-page ad from the July 23, 1915 edition.A half-page ad from the July 23, 1915 edition.

The middle of July can be a slow time for news. Folks are vacationing, and barring any fires, drownings, car wrecks or other tragedies of an “ambulance chas­ing” nature, a reporter can be hard pressed to deliver a zinger.
So I thought I’d fall back again on the tradition of summertime family reunions and give you a potluck from issues all dated the same day as this edition: July 23.

In This Place: July 16, 2014

Making Hay While the Sun Shines

A wonderful example of "neighbor helping neighbor" from the July 29, 1949 issue.A wonderful example of "neighbor helping neighbor" from the July 29, 1949 issue.