Friday, November 28, 2014

Great links: Everything you need to spend the day reading, not shopping


I'm all for a vibrant and robust American economy, but you really don't want to go out shopping today, do you? Assuming that you're not working, wouldn't it be more relaxing to spend part of the day catching up on some smart and stimulating reading?

Here's my latest collection of great links that caught my eye, broken down into longer and shorter reads. I hope you find some of them enjoyable.




1. Full disclosure: Blanchard is a tremendous editor and was a colleague of mine when I worked at the York Daily Record/Sunday News.
2. That story contains an infuriating quote from Gunter Guy, commissioner of the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. With regard to spending $60 million on a beachfront hotel and conference center, with those funds coming from the money that BP is paying out to remedy environmental damage from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil rig explosion, Guy states: "Sure, we could try to spend that on some more quote-unquote environmental projects, but we chose to do it on what we did because we think it's the right thing to do."

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Public service announcement that's still relevant for Thanksgiving 2014


Happy Thanksgiving! This vintage postcard, which features a very large axe, was mailed to Master John Miller of Delta, Pennsylvania, in November 1917.

The note on the back states:
"York, Pa.
Tues. Morning.
Hello John: I suppose you are having a great time this week, doing a little of everything.
Miss Thompson"

For some perspective, York and Delta are about 30 to 35 miles apart, depending on the route taken. It's a slower and curvy drive today and I'm guessing it was still a full day's trip in 1917.

Previous Thanksgiving posts

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Reader comments: Irvin Barto, Spider-Man and beloved old books

There wasn't an office party or anything, but yesterday was the four-year anniversary of Papergreat's first post. One of the cool things about the constant stream of reader comments is that those comments might be posted on a story that's two, three or even four years old. It's neat to see readers connecting with this material years after it was originally posted.

Seven sons from Lancaster County family served during World War II: Chris Caplinger writes: "Irvin Barto Jr. did not survive, as he was KIA on Feb. 9, 1945..."

Caplinger provided this link to a webpage by the American Battle Monuments Commmission. It indicates that Irvin, one of seven Barto brothers who served in the miliary, is buried in Lorraine American Cemetery in France.

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Finding a new job in 1973 with Spider-Man's help: Elizabeth J. Neal writes: "I'm guessing that two factors came into play here. First, were readers of Spider-Man comics slightly older than readers of other types of comics? An older demographic might have been more interested in finding a career than in buying cardboard submarines and X-ray specs."

* * *

Photograph of creepy old house for thunderstorm-filled June day: Winston C writes: "Beautiful Second Empire. So sad it's dilapidated and in such rough shape. This one truly is the quintessence of late 1800s Victorians."

The house, by the way, is located in Coudersport, Pennsylvania. This webpage on has some additional photos and details.

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Anyone remember Sath Book Shop in Staunton, Virginia? Anonymous writes: "I found a bookmark just like this one in a 1976 hardback book ... Robbers Roost Ranch or something like that."

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Scholastic Fest: #12, Witch in the House: Anonymous writes: "Oh my gosh! This was a favourite of mine as a child and I have been looking through used book stores for years to find a copy."

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"Jim and Judy," a 1939 grade-school textbook with a York connection: Anonymous writes: "I have this book! Saved it from 1st grade!!! It got wet in my basement last year but I still have it and I'm looking for a clean copy! I can't believe there is a site on it! Thank you!!"

[Note to anyone seeking this book: Used copies are available on Amazon for fairly reasonable prices.]

* * *

Farewell Floyd, a good boy: Nina, who authors the blog Quilts, Life and Balance, writes: "My sympathies on Floyd's passing. This past year we lost our 13 year old Golden Retriever. I felt like my arm had been cut off. I still get sad when I think about him. Pets are such a gift to us."

Monday, November 24, 2014

1915 postcard: "What the matter with you."

This postcard, which was made in Germany, was mailed to Mr. Albert Reed of Bridgeport, Connecticut, in May 1915. The note states:
"Dear Friend, I was supprise to hear that you was away from New London. What the matter with you. From Mary Cable."
New London and Bridgeport, both coastal cities, are only about 65 miles apart. But apparently this was enough distance to cause some consternation for Mary. What was the matter with Albert?

There's a little hole on the right side of the postcard. There used to be an extra piece attached there. (A star, I imagine.) You could spin it downward to reveal the "I'm lonely without you" portion of the message on the front.

Here's what a similar postcard of this type would have looked like. (Found this image on the Internet.)