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The Way We Were, for the week ending January 26, 2017

Published: January 26, 2018

January 29, 1993

Major Robert E. Schmidle, Jr, received the Distinguished Flying Cross from Major General Jefferson D. Howell, Jr, Commanding General of the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing in a ceremony January 4 at the Marine Corps Air Station in Beaufort, S.C. He is the son of Mae and Robert Schmidle of Echo Valley Road. The Distinguished Flying Cross is earned when a pilot displays his superior flying skills in combat action above and beyond the call of duty. Major Schmidle showed his heroism while leading 50 aircraft including both Air Force and British aircraft as an F/A-18 pilot attached to Marine Righter Attack Squadron 333, Marine Aircraft Group 11, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing on January 17, 1991. He took off that night as the mission commander and flight leader of a coordinated deep air strike in Iraq.

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The new post office on Commerce Road will not be open as scheduled on February 16, and Newtown Postmaster Richard McGuire does not know when it will open. Under the original contract, he said the post office was scheduled for completion in September 1992. He said the contractor was then granted a one-month extension. Since then, postal officials had hoped it could open later in the fall; and later, they hoped it could open in January. But Mr McGuire said the US Postal Service still hasn’t accepted the building from the contractor. He said the Postal Service has been unable to get the contractor to fix numerous but minor problems. Mr McGuire said that now it was more of a legal problem than an operational one.

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OVER THE BACK FENCE: The weather grab bag continues. Thinking about the many changes and extremes we have had in the past year, I realize how much it makes for media stories, barbershop conversations, and general conversation in line at the bank. The changing New England weather serves this purpose well. This rainy winter day I have been moseying through the pages of old receipt books which were my grandmother’s and my great-grandmother’s. After a section in a small booklet of 1871 called “side dishes and relishes,” is a long section called, “Miscellany.” It is that! The section begins with a paragraph about how to remove stains, and continues on about how to remove dust, make a durable paint for outdoor work; how to cure freckles, how to cure wasp stings — using any available alkaline substance, such as paste of ashes, or a mud poultice. Paragraphs are devoted to “cottage deer,” making varnish for shoes, making indelible ink, and a cure for chilblains.  —Jean Loveland, columnist

***

Doug Rogers will present a slide lecture on the latest information on crop circles and the search for extra terrestrial intelligence at C.H. Booth Library, Tuesday, February 9, at 7:30 pm. Mr Rogers, a Newtown resident, has spent a lot of time on the issue since his last lecture on crop circles at the library in the fall of 1991. At the time he explained what was known and not known about the huge geometric shapes that seem to appear out of nowhere in fields in England and other places. He has traveled extensively to view and photograph these circles.

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The FAITH food pantry is going on the road. For a number of years, a food pantry has been kept in St John’s Church, Sandy Hook Center. Through this effort involving local churches, people needing food have been coming to the pantry to get it. Jo Morris said her organization is now bringing food to people who can’t get out. She said when FAITH members distributed Christmas baskets through The Newtown Fund, they met some people unable to leave their homes. “They had no way of getting out,” she said. “They had to depend on relatives, and they were getting short.”

 

February 2, 1968

Like the proverbial postman on vacation, we spent the weekend with several hundred other weekly newspaper editors and publishers. The occasion was the 19th annual New England Press Association winter convention, held in Boston. Beyond the good fellowship which the newsmen enjoy at these gatherings, there is a busy schedule of panel discussions, luncheons and dinner speakers of note, and an exhibit of the association’s annual newspaper contest. The Bee won second place in the special award classification for one of its antiques issues with its map of Connecticut antique dealers. This adds one more certification to the array already hung on the Bee’s office walls. The comment which the judges made is quite interesting, especially the reference to the fact that “antiques are becoming big business everywhere, which just shows that the rest of the country is finally catching up with New England.”

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The new high school on Route 34 in Sandy Hook will go out for bid on February 27, according to Harry F. Greenman, Public Building Committee chairman. The bidding documents are expected to be at the Town Clerk’s office at Edmond Town Hall Monday, February 26, where they may be picked up by contractors wishing to bid on the job. Three weeks are allowed for contractors to study the plans and specifications and to estimate costs of the job.

***

Petitions are being circulated asking for a referendum vote on the use of town equipment for snow removal from private roads. In answer to a previous petition, a town meeting has been scheduled for February 2 at 8 pm in Edmond Town Hall to consider and take action on the question. If the petitions are completed and filed on time, the vote will not be taken at the town meeting this Friday, but at a day-long referendum. To go to a referendum, state law requires that the names of 200 qualified voters be obtained and filed with the town clerk 24 hours before the town meeting. Friday night’s meeting will still serve a useful purpose, for it is here that questions can be asked, and differences of opinion aired.

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The “unknown benefactor” in the case of the Albert Sussman wallet, Mrs Leo Carbonneau of Pine Street, Sandy Hook, wishes to thank Mr Sussman and Mr Gellis for contributing $25 to the Scouts of Newtown, Inc, in gratitude for the return of the wallet.

***

Cardboard replicas of animal crackers will be used as decoration for the dessert fashion show, “Animal Cracker Fashions,” which will take place February 9 at the Edmond Town Hall for the benefit of St Rose School. Mother’s fashions will be modeled by Mrs David House, Mrs Manfred Weber, and Mrs Eugene Kaily Jr, while fashions for children will be modeled by Miss Margaret Geary, Miss Judy Scanlon, Miss Susan Kopp, Miss Kathy Mushett, Miss Monica Weber, and Master William Wheeler, Jr.

 

February 5, 1943

NEWTOWN BOY WAS AT PEARL HARBOR DURING ATTACK; WILL RETURN AFTER FURLOUGH TO RESUME ACTIVE DUTY WITH HIS MARINE OUTFIT: A modest but well hardened and thoroughly trained United States Marine is enjoying a much-deserved furlough in town, the Marine being Platoon Sergeant Charles Dean Perry, who arrived home last Friday for the first visit with his mother, Mrs William C. Perry of Botsford Hill, and other members of his family in four years. He had expected to leave again on Wednesday morning to join his outfit in San Diego, Calif., but he has been granted an extended stay of fifteen days, after which he will return to active duty somewhere in the Pacific war zone.

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WE HOPE THEY’RE RIGHT ABOUT THE WEATHER! The first harbingers of spring arrived in Newtown last Saturday noon, when a full dozen bluebirds appeared for dinner on the back lawn at the home of Mr and Mrs W.M. McKenzie on Queen Street. Two years ago, Mrs McKenzie recalls, the first bluebirds arrived February 6. Whether this fleet of birds just got mixed up on its dates or set sail in time to arrive to argue the weather with Mr Groundhog, has not been determined. Nor do we know which to believe. Ration boards and rationed people will hope the bluebirds are right!

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Only seventeen days to win that National Essay Contest being sponsored by the Ladies Auxiliary of Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States, “United We Win.” So high school students, snap into it and be one of the winners on February 22. Rules and regulations can be had from principal Carl LeGrow, The Newtown Bee, or from Mrs Henry Detlefs.

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Readers of The Bee have been doubtless aware of the increasing number of advertisers who are making use of the classified page. And with most satisfactory results, in the great majority of cases. A recent letter to The Bee from Mrs C. Philippe of West Redding (Poppy Cannon Philippe of the Maxon Ad Agency in New York City) who ran an “ad” on our classified page, states, “We have had an excellent response to the ad, and thank you very much for your promptness in forwarding replies.” These are days when many people can well make use of The Bee’s classified page to buy, sell, or exchange.

***

Troop 70 did a good turn last Monday, and incidentally had a good time. They cut down a big tree that had been shading a garden for many years, and the owner had not been able to get it down. There was a lot of firewood in it and the boys learned how to use an axe and saw. The troop meetings are held each Monday after school. All boys 12 and over are welcome.

 

February 2, 1918

Newtown had some fire excitement Thursday morning. A Reo truck, belonging to John R. Peck, and driven by Wesley Peck, got on fire near Clark Blackman’s garage. Gasoline was being put in the tank and in some way fire started. The car was at once a mass of flames. Extinguishers were used and a hose was attached to the hydrant and a stream of water played on it saving the truck body. It is probable that the engine is more or less injured. The bell of Trinity church was rung and Foreman Cannon with the apparatus and a group of firemen hustled to the fire, but it was under control when they arrived.

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After notifying the telephone central of a fire in the Borough, the person doing so should call up 69, day time, or 34-13 at night, and John Ray, sexton of Trinity Church, will promptly ring the bell. Borough Warden Peck has arranged for the installation of a fire siren, and if this is in, of course the bell will not be rung.

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We have recently received a calendar from Henry B. Hawley, the real estate man, whose office is at 52 White Street, Danbury. It is a striking calendar and portrays “The Girl I Left Behind Me.” Mr Hawley always selects a good calendar and Hortense Bucher’s magic brush has here painted life’s sweetest story, the story of life itself, the story of love. “The Girl” had said good-bye to him at the station. It was a sad good-bye for her. For him, surrounded by cheering thousands, his young heart beating with the martial air, proud of his snug new uniform, the shining rifle at his shoulder, it was a glad good-bye, a temporary parting. He was off for the front at last. He would win honors, show the girl the stuff he was made of; he would deserve her love. Hortense, who painted “The Girl I Left Behind,” is a young woman of rare talent who has won wide success in recent years. Miss Bucher has already an international reputation as the portrayer of ideal feminine beauty. She has recently gone to France where she is nursing the sick soldiers back to health.

***

Two popular and enterprising Newtown young men, Paul Cavanaugh and Robert W. Tiemann, have embarked in business, having bought out the meat market of Deputy Sheriff Morris D. Beers. Mr Cavanaugh has been employed by Mr Beers for six months or more and has had experience in handling meat. By close attention to business, they hope to merit a generous share of the public patronage. Give the boys a good show, they are worthy of it and will work hard toward success.

***

Charles Liess of the Glen was so unfortunate as to chop off the end of one of his fingers. Dr W.H. Kiernan attended him.

Please consider sharing your old photographs of people and places from Newtown or Sandy Hook with readers. Images can be e-mailed to kendra@thebee.com, or brought to the office at 5 Church Hill Road to be scanned. When submitting photographs, please identify as many people as possible, the location, and the approximate date.

Reader Debra Bresnan sent a photo “found in an old desk left in our home when we purchased it in 1993,” according to a brief note she wrote to The Newtown Bee recently. Her home’s prior owner’s name was Orban. The photo appears to have once belonged to The Bee, and printed on the back are instructions: Front Page, Dixie bound, members of the “FBL,” or similar acronym. Thank you to Debra for sharing this Newtown memory. Does anyone recognize themselves, or anyone else, in this photo? We would love to learn more about these players.

Reader Debra Bresnan sent a photo “found in an old desk left in our home when we purchased it in 1993,” according to a brief note she wrote to The Newtown Bee recently. Her home’s prior owner’s name was Orban. The photo appears to have once belonged to The Bee, and printed on the back are instructions: Front Page, Dixie bound, members of the “FBL,” or similar acronym. Thank you to Debra for sharing this Newtown memory. Does anyone recognize themselves, or anyone else, in this photo? We would love to learn more about these players. 

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