January 7, 2013

Lookback: Jan. 7 to 13


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25 years – 1988

As part of a fundraising effort to establish a scholarship and a medical emergency fund for residents of Plattsburgh’s sister city, the guided missile cruiser USS Lake Champlain, the ship’s captain and many local dignitaries attended a ceremony to unveil an original painting of the 1814 Battle of Plattsburgh. Prints of the painting, which is valued at $250,000, will be available for donations of $100.

A section of Main Street and Broadway in downtown Saranac Lake has been named to the New York state register of historic places. Called the Berkeley Square Historic District, it is expected to be listed on the National Register of Historic Places in the near future.

Bending to the will of budget protesters, city leaders laid off eight workers and cut the salaries of many more. Combining these workforce cuts with yet to be approved reductions proposed earlier by Mayor Carlton Rennell, the city tax rate could drop as much as 10 percent.

The sale of the former Harris graphics plant in Champlain to a Québec-based snowmobile and all-terrain vehicle parts manufacturer and distributor has been finalized. The Press-Republican learned that Kimpex of Drummondville, Quebec, has now taken over the former Harris building, and a handful of Harris employees still on the job have been moved to temporary quarters in classrooms at St. Patrick’s school on Maple Street in Rouses Point.

50 years – 1963

Residents along the Saranac riverbanks started mopping-up operations this weekend after a weeklong flood. Demolition crews from the Saranac Volunteer Fire Department finally blasted a channel through the mammoth ice jam that has been threatening this village all week.

Officials of Plattsburgh Air Force Base will deed 9.75 acres of land over to the Federal Housing and Home Finance Agency soon for the purpose of building a new 16-room school. The site of the new school would be between the base service station on the new base, and the Non-Commissioned Officers Club.

Four original members of the Peru Apple Co-op streamlined their new organization and incorporated it Monday. Rising from the ashes of the old cooperative was the Champlain Valley Apple Storage Inc., a corporation with many of the same functions as the original co-op, but without its tax hazards.

A Syracuse firm is proposing to start east-west airline service from Plattsburgh starting April 15, on a trial basis. The once-a-day flight would start early mornings in Plattsburgh and stop over at Malone, Massena, Ogdensburg and Watertown on its way to Syracuse.

Clinton Prison employees asked State Assemblyman Robert Feinberg to help them get salary and fringe benefit increases, the right of their union to strike and adequate parking facilities in the prison village. The requests were part of an eight-point document submitted to Feinberg in a meeting designed to air the proposals that the prison employees union wants pushed in the legislative session this year.

75 years – 1938

Sen. Gibson predicted today the possibility of future construction of a proposed Lake Champlain canal, despite a report of an international joint commission recommending delay. Gibson said, “The commission’s report dealing with one phase of the Champlain canal is not a rejection of the proposition but a finding that should await the outcome the St. Lawrence Seaway treaty now pending in Congress.”

Bernadette Silver, 2-year-old daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Lloyd Silver of Churubusco, is well as a result of a comparatively rare and extremely delicate operation performed at the Saranac Lake General Hospital. A bronchoscope had revealed that a small particle of rubber, apparently the tip of an eraser off a pencil, had lodged at the entrance of her left lung, and was removed during the surgery.

Three fire departments were engaged in combating a stubborn fire that had already destroyed the Riley and Rugar block, and a three-story apartment house adjoining it, on Main Street in Morrisonville. Firemen were working desperately, pouring streams of water and attempting to save the two-story residence of Earl Thompson, principal of the Morrisonville High School, located within a few feet from the blazing apartment house.

Gov. Lehman, under his budget plans submitted to the Legislature, proposes improvements at Clinton Prison as follows: $650,000 for a new hospital building; $850,000 for construction of cell block “F”; $675,000 for construction of cell block “H”; and $125,000 for construction of Ward building “H.”

100 years – 1913

Louis Wolfe, who operates a shoe store at the corner of Bridge and River streets, met with a severe loss when a large amount of his best stock was damaged or entirely ruined by fire. Wolfe’s daughter, who is employed in the store as a clerk, discovered smoke emerging from the west wall of the store and ran to the door and called a truckman standing on the opposite side of the street, telling him that the place was on fire.

City Engineer Henry J. Langlois in his first annual report to the Board of Public Works made numerous and valuable suggestions as to improvements in the department of the city government in which he is employed. Chief among these Improvements, Langlois cites the need for the immediate care of several city streets.

A peculiar accident to the machinery of the New York and Pennsylvania Pulp Mill at Willsboro has put the company in considerable inconvenience. Due to sleet and snow, several air holes in the flu that conducts water through the running machinery were plugged recently, causing the entire mill to shut down for a considerable time, at no small cost to the mill.

Barns on Elizabeth Street were destroyed by fire yesterday morning as temperatures registered 10 below zero, causing great difficulty in the firefighting effort. Firemen were able to save a horse from the conflagration, however at great difficulty.

— Compiled by Contributing Writer Shawn Ryan