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Way Back When

June 10, 2012

(The Spirit is pleased to share with our readers vignettes of life in the 19th century as originally reported in past issues of the newspapers. These reproduced stories include their original headlines and spelling.)

Local Intelligence
(July 22, 1896)

ROBERT CLARKE DEAD
Robert, son of Prothonotary W. D. Clarke, of Brookville, died this morning of typhoid fever, after an illness of two weeks, aged about twenty years. The deceased was a very promising young man. Possessing genial manners, courteous and obliging, he was popular with everybody with whom he came in contact. He had been acting as clerk in his father's office, where he exhibited a high degree of competency. The loss of their only son will be severe blow to Mr. and Mrs. Clarke.

The Iron Works
The Construction of the Plant is Progressing Rapidly
During the past week workingmen at the iron plant have been erecting boilers. There are thirty-six of them, and they are being placed on iron framework, some of them high in the air. Most of the stonework is already completed, and in a short time the construction of the framework will begin.

This plant, when completed, will be one of the largest, as well as the most modern, in the world. Nowhere will there be an iron plant more perfectly equipped with all the improved facilities for the manufacture of pig iron. Indeed it is doubtful if it will have an equal on earth in this regard.

With a capacity of 250 tons of iron a day, it will employ over two hundred men and that cannot help but add materially to the prosperity of the town. And it may be put down as almost an assured fact that it will be the cause of bringing other industries, for whose product iron is the principal raw material, to this town.

"Whirlwind" Williams
In its account of a game of baseball between Bradford and Oil City yesterday, to-day's Bradford Era said: "When the Bradford team went to bat in the ninth inning, they found that Berry had been removed from the box and a young man with raven locks and a piercing eye had taken his place. The new man was Williams, the star twirler of the Oil City aggregation.

After calmly sizing up the situation, Williams ground the ball into his hip, sawed the air wildly with his arms and then let go. Nobody saw the ball again until Catcher Nelson threw it back to the pitcher. Williams continued to bombard the home plate with balls that flew through space with the speed of a rifle projectile, until three men were struck out, and the Bradford club retired."

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