Way Back When

(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 28, 1897

P.P. Long's Store Burned
P.P. Long, of the Punxsutawney Bargain Store, who also owned a store at Potters Mills, Centre County, received a telegram last Saturday informing him that his store had been destroyed by fire.

He set out immediately for that place, and will not be home for about two weeks. The fire occurred about 1 o'clock in the morning. Mr. Long's brother and sister, who lived over the store, had to save themselves by jumping from a second story porch.

The loss is about $3,000. Mr. Long's sister came to Punxsutawney, where she will remain for several weeks.

August 4, 1897
Doctors Have a Picnic

The physicians of Jefferson county had their annual picnic at Punxsutawney last Friday.

The intention was to hold it in a grove, but the weather was not suitable, and it was held in the K. of P. hall. About forty physicians and their wives were in attendance.

Everything in the line of edibles that could be secured were there to eat, and it was duly and properly eaten. The aesculapians left their prescription cases (formerly saddle bags) at home, but they brought their appetites with them.

After dinner they had a dance which they all seemed to enjoy, and in the early evening they departed for their homes, all fully imbued with the notion that they had spent one of the most enjoyable days since their advent on earth.

A Few Sage Observations
The B. R. & P. railroad will undoubtedly be extended to Pittsburgh. Just when we do not know. But the company is evidently contemplating something of the kind, else why would it secure the right of way from Punxsutawney to Butler, go to the expense of a survey, and keep Charley Burnham employed all summer debating with farmers with a view of inducing them to be reasonable?

Why, we ask, would this be done? If the officials of the company merely wanted amusement — something to occupy their minds — they could play pool, or go fishing, or something of that sort.

It is therefore fair to presume that they are not doing this merely as a means of diversion, and we have a grave suspicion that this road will be built just as soon as the advancing hosts of prosperity, the vanguard of which can already be seen, have encamped in our territory.