April Fools’ Day: Greenville History Edition

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Image by Jordan Dean.

Editor’s Note: We often turn to our Greenville newspaper archives here at the library when we’re doing research for local history stories. We have almost all of the Greenville papers dating back to the late 1800s on microfilm, and they offer a wealth of historical information. They also occasionally offer some laughs. The Local Matters section of the Greenville Democrat newspaper printed short community news and announcement blurbs for many years. Some of these were contributed by the public, some were reported by the paper, and some were requested by government or business entities, and there were dozens of them in every weekly edition. They are only one or two sentences long, but they provide some fascinating glimpses into Darke County life in times past.

For April Fools’ Day we’ve assembled a little challenge for our readers. The news (mostly humorous) snippets below are from the Local Matters section of Greenville Democrat newspapers from 1899 through 1901. At least, most of them are. Eighteen of the twenty are absolutely real, but two of them we completely made up. Can you guess which ones are fake? Read through them and then comment with your guesses, or comment on our post on Facebook. We’ll reveal the correct answers on Monday morning, April 4. Share this post (or our Facebook or Twitter posts) with your friends so they can guess too. Have fun!


“Mr. Hitchcock, a traveling salesman, who left Greenville last week in a Thompson livery rig, was severely injured by his horse running off near Rossville, being frightened by a bear and Italians along the road. The buggy was also badly damaged.”

“Bowman, the bill poster, is getting himself in trim for an exhibition as a lion tamer that will beat the World’s Fair show. Bill Meeker and Henry Miller will sell tickets.”

“Two fellows of west precinct ate dinner at a restaurant in Greenville last Saturday, and the boys say they ate so much that the proprietor had to charge some extra, which they paid under protest.”

“Mail carrier O’Brien’s horse was kicked by another in the stable last week and injured so it had to be shot.”

“When the Republicans have a hot time in the local conventions, they ain’t aware of it, according to some observers–only a few.”

“The gas jet in Frank Laurimore’s restaurant show window set fire to the decoration therein; loss of $8 promptly settled by insurance agent Lawrence.”

“Liss McConnell, the baker, is 70 years old and more particular and neat in his ways than ever, and he is a man proud of his beard which he has worn continuously since 19 years of age.”

“Greenville residents are to be generally advised all livestock must be kept off public streets within one block of Broadway this Saturday, August 11, when the wife of Rev. Eustace Moore of Boston will deliver a speech to the ladies of Greenville on public square.”

“The city has been sued by Mary M. Stoddard for $3000 damages for injuries sustained by falling on the sidewalk when stepping off a little raised place at J. C. Turpen’s office on Broadway between 3rd and public square.”

“John Suter is well fixed in the manufacture of weinerwurst and bologna, and he knows exactly how to make it.”

“‘Crazy Joe,’ the Hungarian, who has been confined in the jail four or five years, was taken to the Infirmary last Monday by order of the Court.”

“Mrs. Margaret Marker, of Versailles, has been declared insane. During the recent fire she went about thanking God that the saloons were burning.”

“To-morrow evening is Halloween, and a great jollification is promised in Greenville.”

“The drinking-club association at Pittsburg, this county, has about come to taking water first and letting it go at that.”

“Darke is to-day the first county in the State in the production of tobacco, the crop of 1900 being 11,-06,872 pounds, or 783,000 more than Montgomery that has held the lead.”

“Fireman Bob Nembly is recovering after falling from a tree in the yard of Mrs. Ethel Smith of East 4th in an attempt to rescue a cat. The cat safely descended the tree of its own accord while Nembly’s injuries were being attended to.”

“A FINE deer from Wisconsin was received by express Saturday for the Red Man’s Lodge supper. The feast was a very enjoyable one.”

“Watch the streets at noon on Monday, April 22, and you will see Hi Henry in his new horseless wagon, the Automobile, said to be the latest and best of these numerous horseless inventions.”

“Last Friday a snake 7 feet long was killed on Wm. Webb’s porch near the Pan Handle railroad.”

“‘Who killed the chickens?’ is the question. They belonged to Bud Brewer and Wm. Marker, of near Beamsville, and are said to have been shot last Thursday by two hunters from Greenville.”

 

2 comments

  1. “John Suter is well fixed in the manufacture of weinerwurst and bologna, and he knows exactly how to make it.”

    “Mrs. Margaret Marker, of Versailles, has been declared insane. During the recent fire she went about thanking God that the saloons were burning.”

    Like

  2. Thanks to everyone who commented with guesses here and elsewhere! The correct answers for the two fake news blurbs are…*drumroll*…
    “Greenville residents are to be generally advised all livestock must be kept off public streets within one block of Broadway this Saturday, August 11, when the wife of Rev. Eustace Moore of Boston will deliver a speech to the ladies of Greenville on public square.”
    And…
    “Fireman Bob Nembly is recovering after falling from a tree in the yard of Mrs. Ethel Smith of East 4th in an attempt to rescue a cat. The cat safely descended the tree of its own accord while Nembly’s injuries were being attended to.”
    Like · Reply · Just now

    Like

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