THE BETHEL JOURNALS
January 3, 2009
All areas comment on the nice spring weather.
State news: The legislature has ended its session. It passed a free text book bill which obliges towns to furnish school books fro the use of scholars in public schools. The act will take effect on August 1, 1890.
Bethel: Dr. J. G. Gehring and Mrs. Gehring have gone to Boston on a business trip. The South Paris Dramatic Club presented the popular drama “Marion Moore” at Ideal Hall. Social dancing followed with music by the Bethel Orchestra.
Albany: Mr. Cobb and his wife of Westbrook were visiting in town. Mr. Cobb is about to publish a weekly paper at Bethel Hill, the “Bethel News”.
Bethel: Corn is selling at 55 cents a bushel according to quality, oats retail at 44 cents a bushel; eggs 14 cents a dozen; butter 20 cents a pound. Mason: J. C. Bean and A. H. Wiltham have tapped their sugar orchards.
West Bethel: Lovejoy is still hauling poplar to the station and A. S. Bean is still hauling from the bog.
Newry: With snow going fast it is feared that much lumber for mill will be stranded in yards.
Gilead: Rob Hastings has sent to S. B. Twitchell in Bethel the frames and boarding for a large barn.
Albany: Albany as a town is out of debt with about “$500 in the locker” deposited in the Norway National Bank.
Bethel: J and E. A. Wyman of Woburn, Mass., have purchased the corn packing business in Bethel from Wolff and Reesing of New York and will carry it on for the present. Their agent, A. M. Carter, Esq., is now signing contracts with farmers for planting. The river drivers are now waiting for water to start their logs. Dr. J. G. Gehring and wife have returned from Boston with a car load of household furniture.
Newry: Wheeling (wheels instead of runners) in March this year. It has been a long time since this thing has happened before. The logging camps in Ketchum are being deserted. Two million feet of spruce are lying at their landings on the head waters of Sunday River and their branches. The maple is now yielding.
West Bethel: Lumbering interests are pretty much at a close except for small operations where loads can be handled on wheels.
Bethel: The new lock-up: Committee to select a lot and superintend the building is A. E. Herrick, Cm. M. Wormell and A. D. Godwin. They have a contract with Gilbert Tuell to do the carpenter work and with Benjamin Bryant to do the foundation. They have purchased a lot from J. B. Chapman near Rialto Hall. Bethel Chair Company is driven on orders sending away large quantities of chairs both finished and in the knock down. E. Richardson and Son are sawing spool strips which the sell to W. E. and J. P. Skillings, the largest spool manufactures in Maine.
South Bethel: R. J. Virgin has moved his shingle machine from his saw mill to his dowel mill. He has a lot of sawing of his own to do before taking on any custom orders. The boys in town are talking of organizing a baseball club soon and doing a little playing this summer.
Gilead: It has snowed everyday since Monday. Richardson and Bennett are making lots of maple sugar. East Bethel: No crossing the river with teams.
Newry: Parties are throwing pulp wood into Bear River. Prospects look dim for an early drive of logs.
Bethel: Bethel Dramatic Club performed the “Orphan” at Ideal Hall. A party of four ladies took the morning train from Bethel to Portland.
Gilead: “Gus” Carter, the sweet corn man has been through the town contracting with farmers to plant corn and beans for the Bethel Corn Factory. The dry house and it contents near J. W. Bennett’s mill burned – loss of about $300.
Bethel: The thermometer registered 90 degrees in the shade at Bethel, Friday. Sunday and Bear Rivers are at good driving height and the drivers are improving it. The Bethel Village corporators are notified to meet at Ideal Hall Saturday, the 27th at 2 PM, to see if they will accept the act of incorporation granted by the last legislature. Isaac Crocker received a new 40 hp engine from Boston and J. F. Eames moved it from the Bethel depot to Newry by a team of 12 oxen.
South Bethel: The sugar season has closed and all that have tapped their trees feel well repaid.
Newry: The river drivers are sill idle because there is not enough water to float logs.
General: All areas reported on spring season activities such as orchard trimming, some were starting to plant, dry land was in good condition to work but the river drives were held up due to cold weather and lack of water.
Newry: Thurston’s drive is hung up for lack of water; the rear (of the drive) is almost two miles from the Androscoggin. Bethel: Mr. S. B. Twitchell is completing the foundation for his new barn. Edmund Merrill has the frame ready as soon as the foundation is complete.
State News: The commission for the enlargement of the statehouse met in Augusta, April 24th. Full arrangements were made to advertise with a few days for proposals for building the addition.
Gilead: This week we received a few flakes of snow and a few cold days. “William Chapman received two car loads of lumber and two cars of fertilizer and plaster for his own use.”
Newry: Bear River is clear of logs. The drive got out last Sunday. On Sunday River they made good progress a few days but the water is so low now it is slow work running logs.
Bethel: C. H. Cobb (Is this the prospective newspaper Cobb?) has moved into the rent on Main Street vacated by Wentworth. The citizens of school district 15 and 30 comprising Bethel Hill village met at Ideal Hall, Saturday, April 27th, and voted to accept the charter (for Bethel Village Corporation) granted by the last legislature. On Friday, May 3, they met again to elect officers and adopt a code of by-laws. The road machine goes on to the roads Monday in charge of I. G. Kimball. The town has purchased four oxen from St. John Hastings to work it.
Middle Interval: R. Cummings is in town trying to sell the farm known as the Williamson place.
County: Harold B. Chapman of Bethel is on the newly impaneled jury.
Newry: M.L. Thurston got the last of his logs into the Androscoggin Wednesday. “He treated the boys on candy when they got through.” Miss H. Jewett is teaching at No 2, Newry Corner; Leona Willard at the Branch and Ada Eames at No.1, Sunday River.
Grafton: The Lakeside coach commenced its first trip of the season last Thursday. It has the same driver as last year, Pearly Wight.
Bethel: Six white tents at the mouth of Alder River signaled the presence fo the river drivers. C. F. Aller in charge of Brown and Wilson’s drive and C. W. McPherson with the Androscoggin Water Power Company’s logs have the rear near Bethel village. The water is so low that driving is very difficult. The thermometer has been in the nineties all the week in Bethel. Gilbert Tuell has begun work on the new lock-up. Edwin C. Rowe, our popular trader, has returned from Boston last week with a large lot of new goods. (The next week’s paper repeated basically the same item but reported that Rowe had returned from the “Hub”.) Bethel Library Association met last week to elect new officers. A large number of new books have been received-more to follow. The library now contains more than one thousand volumes comprising the standard works of history, biography and fiction.
Gilead: William Chapman has put in a four ton hay scales.
Mason: Our summer school commenced on Monday, Miss Alsena Kendall, teacher, 27 scholars and not a foreigner among them. Apple trees in full bloom-rains during the week were gratefully received by all areas.
West Bethel: corn will be planted this year from May 10 to June 1. The boys are “spotting” the crows’ nests for a little extra money. Correspondent commented: “Three mowing machine agents and four peddlers in one day.”
Bethel: F. S. Willis of West Paris received at Bethel depot a board machine from Lane Mfg Company of Burlington, Vermont, which he took to his mill in Albany - he can saw lumber in this machine 45 feet in length. The row of elms has been extended from the upper end of the common to the southern end of Broad Street. This fives a double row of trees on the left hand side-29 new trees. It is the work of individual owners. Village schools opened Monday, May 13. The Broad Street school (District 15) will be taught by Mary Chapman and Mary Eames; the Mechanic Street school (District 30) will be taught by Miss Stewart.
Bethel: An unexpected blowing of the steam whistle at the spool mill of W. E. and J. P. Skillings aroused Bethel Hill people at 3 AM on Sunday morning. The whistle went off on its own and it was some time before it was stopped. Bethel Chair Factory has more orders that it has capacity to fill (right away). “At a meeting of the corporation of the Bethel Water Company Thursday evening, they voted to accept the charter and adopt a code of by-laws. Meeting adjourned until next Monday when necessary officers will be elected and measures adopted to supply the village with pure water.” Gould Academy closing exercises will occur May 29th. Proceeds from the entertainment after the exercises will be devoted to the (Gould) library. Correspondent reported that W. L. Whitney of the Bethel Marble Works is doing an increasing business in this section of the county. A load of work was taken to Dixfield where it will be emplaced.
Gilead: William Chapman has received a car load of farm machinery from Milwaukee and some thoroughbred Holstein stock.
Gould Academy: The correspondent notes that Professors Dresser and Linscott as well as Miss Wingate close their year with Gould and it is much to be regretted that they sever their connection with the school.
Bethel: Brown Post GAR decorated graves of their dead comrades. There were evening speeches at the Congregational church and prayers to commemorate the day and the patriotism of the soldiers from Bethel “and the devotion and sacrifice of her noble women Cold weather of the past week has killed oak leaves and some pieces of corn and beans. Mr. Farwell is making improvements to his residence which lies on the line of the projected new street which will connect Broad Street with Chapman Street. A game of baseball between the merchants and the clerk was announced for Memorial Day; the clerks won. Bethel boasts of her fast horses. Each Friday night there is a trial of speed on the flat in Mayville and if the report is true many trotters are being developed.
West Bethel: Decoration opened pleasantly. Details from Brown Post visited all the cemeteries where their comrades were buried and decorated their graves with flags, leaves and flowers, the latter being furnish by ladies of the Relief Corps.
Albany: Reports observing Memorial Day and decorating graves. E.L. Tebbets of Locke Mills visited in town.
Newry: S. P. Davis is running a meat cart from Grafton to Newry Corner.
Gilead: Memorial Day was celebrated with church services.
Maine News: It is estimated that the state has paid the bounty of 5,000 crows already und the law which went into effect the first of April. The annual report of the Maine State Insurance Commissioner shows that 1888 was the most favorable year for fire insurance companies in Maine since 1875. Report also notes that life insurance grew during the year.
Bethel: The new steamboat on the Androscoggin running from Rumford Falls to Bethel arrived at Bethel Friday afternoon with 15 passengers. A large number of onlookers were on hand for the landing; several took passage to Kendall’s Ferry (near the mouth of Sunday River) and return home by teams. The vicinity of Pattee’s Hall was the scene of unusual activity last week – Pomona Grange met there. Dr. Gehring and his wife left for Cleveland last week.
Newry: April showers seem to have arrived in June. A special appropriation of $75 has been expended on Sunday River road above Lewis Eames. Twenty-five dollars was contributed for the same purpose by Thurston and Merrill.