Lookback: Week of Aug. 5 to Aug. 11

PRESS-REPUBLICAN ARCHIVESCassie Burrows of Ticonderoga (right) feeds corn curlers to piglets Cinnamon and Mr. Peabody while her sister, Stevie, watches. The piglets are owned by Bert Barber of Crown Point and get pulled around in a wooden wagon. (1994)

25 YEARS AGO — 1994

• Residents who oppose a Wal-Mart in Lake Placid held a news conference recently, playing out a scene that is becoming increasingly common across the United States. Groups of citizens are uniting in towns from Vermont to Washington state in an attempt to keep the country’s most successful retail chain out of their communities. The Lake Placid opposition is focusing mostly on the mountain village’s resort character and warn that tourists might be turned off by development that could make Lake Placid look like everywhere else.

• There are a lot of questions about the future of Plattsburgh Air Force Base, but one stood out at a recent public forum: How long before the property is successfully redeveloped? The answer: 20 years possibly. John Lynch of LDR International, the consulting firm hired by the Plattsburgh Intermunicipal Development Authority to develop a reuse plan for PAFB property, told the crowd of about 60 that in two to four years, the number of jobs currently at the base could be recovered. But it could be up to 20 years before employment is doubled or tripled.

• Future acid-rain pollution of the Adirondack region’s waterways will be significantly reduced under a settlement reached between New York state and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. That agreement essentially closes a loophole in the federal Clean Air Act of 1990 by eliminating “windfall” emission allowances that would have been available to industries and utilities under the law. “This gives the Adirondacks a fighting chance at recovery,” said John Sheehan, a spokesman for the Adirondack Council.

50 YEARS AGO — 1969

• Somewhere on the floor of Lake Champlain, there is what looks like a gunboat, perhaps 200 years old. At old Plattsburgh Air Force Base, there is a non-commissioned officers barracks, built in 1831. Can the barracks be converted into an historical museum with the boat as a star attraction? With the Clinton County Board of Legislators as sponsor, Clinton County might be able to lease an ancient but sturdy building at the old Plattsburgh Air Force Base for $1 a year for 99 years and use it for a museum. Something like that is in the realm of possibility, Col. Charles Gunn, the base commander, told area historians at a luncheon in the Officers Club.

• “College is no place to teach morality, if it hasn’t been done in the home long ago. We’re trying to make parents more responsible for their own children — this is what we’re trying to do.” Mr. Edward Siegel, a member of the Plattsburgh State University College’s College Council, offered the remarks in a discussion of seeming college-parent conflict over liberalization of campus regulations. Mr. Siegel seems a proposal to relax rules for dormitory visiting rights for members of the opposite sex as “a sign of maturity on the part of adults as well as young people.”

• An injured pilot from Long Island was rescued from a rainswept Adirondack peak more than 30 hours after his plane crashed during an approach to Saranac Lake airport. Peter Simons, 43, of Centerport was reported in fair condition at Placid Memorial Hospital, suffering from shock and severe cuts and bruises. A number of North Country men and women were involved in the search, directed by Civil Air Patrol Major Lynn H. Wilke of Peru. A ground party, including three Plattsburgh area Civil Air Patrol cadets, walked five and a half miles up the mountain to the plane wreckage.

75 YEARS AGO — 1944

• During the three weeks in which the community canning center at Peru has been in operation, the facilities have been widely used. Over 100 families have taken advantage of the center to put up 3,896 cans of food for the coming winter. Although all sorts of vegetables and fruit have been preserved, the overwhelming favorite with the canners seems to have been beans, with over 2,000 cans prepared. Eighty-two cans of chicken have also been processed.

• The movie “Going My Way” which played at the Strand Theater all last week, will be long remembered by the many people from Plattsburgh and vicinity. Chances are, however, that few will remember it with more pleasure than four elderly ladies from the Clinton County Home at Beekmantown. The women, accompanied by Mrs. S.E. Strack, matron at the home, attended the show and had an after-show treat of ice cream. For some of them, it was not merely the best show of the year, it was the first moving picture which they have ever seen.

• Battle-weary GI Joes soon will be enjoying the severely luxurious facilities of the famous Lake Placid Club. The War Department announced that it expected to take over the world-famous resort center which for many years has been a rendezvous of the international set. It was not indicated how many soldiers would be sent to the club for rest and recreation, but it is capable of accommodating approximately 1,200 guests.

100 YEARS AGO — 1919

• The Gods outdid themselves in furnishing a perfect day for the big Welcome Home celebration for the Clinton County boys in the armed services and apparently everyone in the county took advantage of the day and came out for the festivities. As early as six o’clock, automobiles and horse-drawn rigs began to unload their cargoes of human freight and by eight o’clock, when the special trains and boats began arriving, the town began to take on the appearance of a flock of circus days rolled into one. The feature of the morning was the parade which started quite promptly and wended its way down Broad Street and swung into Margaret Street through crowds which lined both sides of the street, leaving a bare passageway for the line.

• A quartet of celebrities, some of them of worldwide reputation, recently spent a few hours in taking in the sights of Plattsburgh and its surroundings. The party was composed of Thomas A. Edison, Henry Ford, naturalist John Burroughs and H.S. Firestone of the tire fame. While here, the party visited the M.P. Myers & Co. establishment, which has long dealt in the Firestone product. These men are annual visitors to the Adirondacks and take as much enjoyment out of their camping trips as they ever did when they were boys. Despite his four score years, the lovable Burroughs appeared to be the life of the party and is said to take his share of roughing it with the youngest member: Mr. Edison.

• Mr. and Mrs. Henry Scheler and Mr. and Mrs. David Merkel of Plattsburgh leave today by automobile for Ogdensburg. They will send the car home from Ogdensburg and will take a St. Lawrence river boat from that city to Montreal and down the river, taking in the Saguenay trip, thence to Halifax. From Halifax, the party will take a coast steamer and will sail down the Atlantic coast to New York, in this way ending a most delightful trip with an ocean voyage. The party expects to spend at least two weeks on the trip.

— Compiled by Night Editor Ben Rowe

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