Blair County PAGenWeb


Blair County PAGenWeb





Blair County Newspaper Articles

News, obituaries, birth, marriage and death notices, by date.


Items from The Altoona Tribune, Altoona, Pa.,

Thursday, March 19, 1874


SUDDEN DEATH. - Thursday last a party returning from a vendue at Henry Miller's discovered the lifeless body of Mr. Lewis Knode, of Alexandria, lying in the road. Mr. Knode went to the sale in the morning on a spirited horse, and arrived there much fatigued by the exertion necessary to control his animal. Such was his condition that his neighbors advised him, at the close of the sale, to ride home in a vehicle and lead his horse, but, assuring them the horse could not be led, he mounted and started for home. It is supposed his efforts to control his horse brought on an attack of heart disease, and he either fell or slipped out of his saddle to the road, where he died before his neighbors, following him, had arrived. Every effort to restore him to life failed. Mr. Knode was a highly respected citizen, and his sudden death sent a thrill of regret throughout the neighborhood. - Huntingdon Monitor.


Altoona Tribune, Altoona, Pa., Thursday, March 19, 1874, page 1


[From Wednesday's Tribune.]


JURORS - April Term. - Following will be found a list of the Grand and Traverse Jurors drawn for the April term of court, commencing on the fourth Monday and 27th day of the month:




James Allinder, Josiah Arthurs, John Boyles, A. W. Beyers, C. R. Burley, James Capstick, John M. Clark, B. F. Cramer, Jno. Christian, Geo. Earman, Geo. Erb, W. H. Eicholtz, W. L. Garrett, Michael Geesy, John Hoover, Geo. W. Knee, Jacob Martin, Alex. Mock, John Metz, John E. Noble, Wm. Plaster, Job M. Spang, James M. Stiffler, Thomas G. Trout.




Henry L. Ake, Samuel Albright, John Alexander, Jos. H. Blackburn, William Brown, Geo. Barnes, John Coleman, Jr., Robert Cunning, Jacob Fries, A. W. Green, James Gibboney, Jona. Glunt, R. R. Hamilton, Jona. Hamilton, John Halfpenny, T. B. Heims, R. A. O. Kerr, Jacob Leighty, John Lykens, Sam'l L. Miller, C. W. Mason, Jere. Mentzer, Jas. Matingly, John Nolan, David Over, Daniel Paul, D. E. Powell, S. D. Ramey, Samuel Riddle, Geo. W. Stewart, John Slippey, Jacob Smith, Jesse Smith, Samuel Smith, Samuel Thompson, Isaac Thompson, Robert Waring, Curtis Young.




Samuel C. Black, Jacob Biddle, John Baughman, Jacob Burket, Jas. Clabaugh, Jacob Cowen, David Caldwell, Miller Calderwood, Robert Crawford, William Eakin, Samuel Fink, Sohn [sic] W. Frantz, Israel Grazier, M. B. Gates, H. R. Hammond, Jona. W. Hoover, John Hamilton, Geo. Hileman, G. D. Isett, Geo. A. Jacobs, Henry Kemberling, Henry Lantzer, Samuel C. Lloyd, Alvin McKenzie, Michael McIntosh, Daniel Noel, Jas. Pressell, Edward Patterson, Martin Runyen, Thomas Smith, Peter Showalter, James Smith, Joseph Slippey, Daniel Stultz, George Tyler, John Vanalman, Michael Ziegler.


A FEARFUL SLIDE - Probable Fatal Accident. - A flagman named Philip McGoe, employed on the local freight train running west from this city, met with an accident yesterday which will probably result in his death. In the vicinity of Kittanning Point, while he was standing on the bumper of a car, his dinner bucket fell to the ground and in making an effort to recover the same Mr. McGoe missed his footing and fell from the car with great violence. At the point where he came in contact with the hard frozen surface is a steep declivity for a distance of about fifty feet, down which the unfortunate man commenced to slide and was unable to help himself. On, on he continued to go with fearful rapidity, now coming in contact with some brush and anon being terribly jostled by striking a worn-out railway tie, until at last he is dashed against the ominous looking rocks in the channel below where he was picked up bruised, battered and bleeding and in an insensible condition. He was conveyed to Gallitzin for medical treatment.


ANOTHER BRAKEMAN PRECIPITATED DOWN A STEEP DECLIVITY - Nobody Hurt. - Another brakeman had the misfortune to be precipitated down the steep declivity at Kittanning Point on Tuesday. This time it was a man named Cobaugh. On one of the trucks attached to a westward bound train a watch box had been consigned to a point west of the mountain, and for the purpose of protecting himself from the piercing wind that was blowing a fearful gale the brakeman sought shelter in the watchman's box. A few minutes later, while rounding the Point, a heavy blast of wind seized hold of the box, lifted it from the truck and with the brakeman snugly ensconced inside drove it down the declivity, a distance of about forty feet, at a rate of speed that would put to blush the winged lightning. If properly cared for by a gang of carpenters the watch-box will recover, while it was most fortunate that Mr. Cobaugh escaped uninjured, yet when he emerged from the box he looked more frightened than if he had been drafted into the army.


- The State Superintendent of Common Schools decides that all teachers' professional certificates issued prior to the first Monday in June, 1872, expired on the first Monday of June, 1873, basing the decision on the provision of the school law, which says: "A professional certificate shall license the holder to teach in the county, city, or borough of the Superintendent issuing it, and for one year thereafter." In all such cases, whether the applicant be re- examined or not, the Superintendent, if he sees proper to continue the professional certificate, is required to give a new one.


FINGERS MASHED. - If Mr. William H. Smith, of the Altoona Manufacturing Company, hadn't been fooling around a grindstone, a few days since, he would not now be compelled to undergo the pain and trouble consequent upon nursing the second finger of each hand, the ends of which were almost ground to a jelly and the nails torn off. The injuries sustained by Mr. Smith are quite severe and it will be several days before he will again have the use of either hand.


EIGHTEEN DOLLARS AND COSTS. - In the case of Mrs. John Irvin versus Mr. Plummer and wife, reported in the MORNING TRIBUNE yesterday, Alderman Poffenberger gave judgment for the plaintiff for eighteen dollars and costs. It will be remembered that Mrs. Irvin claimed damages in the sum of twenty dollars, less the cost of a turkey, for getting up a wedding supper for Mr. and Mrs. Plummer. The decision was a most righteous one.


ESCAPED FROM JAIL. - Two prisoners named Lutz and Hammer succeeded in effecting their escape from the Cambria county jail, at Ebensburg, sometime during Thursday night or yesterday morning. The new prison was finished in 1872 at a cost of $73,000, but like a majority of the expensive jails in the State, prisoners have succeeded in making their escape therefrom.


ANOTHER CANDIDATE. - It is said that Judge David Caldwell, of Hollidaysburg, will be a candidate for the Republican Legislative nomination next fall. Col. Rawlins doesn't like it by a mile.


BLOWN DOWN. - The skeleton of a building in course of erection on Loudon's Heights, in the Fifth Ward, was blown down by the high winds which prevailed on Tuesday.


PARTICULARS OF THE FRIGHTFUL DEATH OF JACOB CRUTHERS - The Unfortunate Young Man a Resident of Blair County. - A few days since we made mention of the terrible death of Mr. Jacob Cruthers which recently occurred at Osceola. From the Reveille we glean the following additional particulars:


In our last issue we made brief mention of the horrid accident which occurred at T. C. Heim's saw-mill, about one mile and a half west of this, at nine o'clock on Tuesday morning, 24 inst., in which a Mr. Jacob Cruthers, of Bell's Mills, Blair county, was sawed entirely in twain in three seconds, and are now enabled to give the particulars. We are induced to refer to this case again, not through a disposition to aggravate the mind with the relation of such sickening sights, but that it may be a warning to others employed in the dangerous avocations of all kinds, in this region, where the loss of human life has become so alarmingly fearful, and where we can trace so many of these fatal consequences to the reckless acts of the mangled victims. Mr. John Hays is the sawyer employed at this mill, and was in charge at the time.


It was noticed that something was wrong with the carriage - a nut or something of the kind was loose on the under side of it. The carriage was standing in front of the saw, and Mr. Hays had crossed over for the purpose of adjusting whatever was wrong. Mr. Cruthers, who was his setter, took the sawyer's side of the carriage, threw himself flat upon the floor, within a few inches of the whirling saw, and endeavored to assist the sawyer in adjusting the difficulty. It is said that Mr. Hays warned him of his danger but he paid no attention to it; and Mr. Jack Speece, who is the engineer, and who was watching the efforts of the two men, told Mr. Cruthers of his proximity to the saw, but he remarked that an inch was as good as a mile.


In his endeavors to reach whatever was wrong with the under part of the carriage, he had to lie flat to the floor and partly across the carriage, and in this way his feet would be very near the lever which is used to gig back the carriage, and it is reasonable to infer from this that his feet struck the lever and started the carriage forward. After the carriage had started, two seconds could hardly elapse before the saw would be whirling into his body. Mr. Hays sprang from the position he was in, and rushed for the lever, Mr. Speece hurried below and stopped the engine; but all was of no avail. Two unearthly shrieks were uttered by the expiring victim, the saw passed entirely through the body, severing the upper from the lower extremities, and he was dead; and no power on earth could have saved him, considering the position he was in, after the carriage had once been put in motion. Dr. Blandy was at once sent for and done all that could be done - attach together the two parts with needle and thread. Mr. Cruthers was a young, unmarried man, his parents living in the neighborhood of Bell's Mills, in Blair county. They were telegraphed to at once, and on Thursday the remains were interred in the burial ground outside of our town.


AN AGED COUPLE COMMITTED TO THE POOR HOUSE - Their First and Probable Last Ride on the Railroad - Helpless for Sixteen Years. - In a card published in the Blair county Register, of yesterday, over the signature of H. P. McAllister and dated at Springfield Furnace, we find the following in reference to the Merrits family that was committed to the county poor house last week. It is a brief yet a peculiarly sad history:


Peter and Betsy Merrits are brother and sister. They have lived here at Springfield about 60 years. Peter worked on the farm and at other jobs as long as he had bodily strength, and was considered a faithful hand, but for the last sixteen years he has been sitting at home at his ease, and he and his sister fed and clothed by the firm of John Royer. Three or four years ago Betsy became blind, which made her a helpless charge. Then Peter lost the use of his limbs, and could only move about upon a chair. From day to day they seemed to grow more and more infirm, and helpless, until it was impossible to hire anybody to live with them, and at their own request were taken to the Poor House.


During the sixteen years, with the assistance of my daughters and the kind neighbors, I have given personal attention to the comfort of these old folks. They had medical attention when needed, and stated visits from ministers of the gospel.


On the evening of their departure, the train stopped in front of their house, and they were lifted in carefully, well clothed, well fed, and had a big basket containing cakes, ham and turkey to cheer them on their journey. Two of the men from Springfield went with them to the Poor House and remained all night, to have them comfortably settled.


After sixteen years of patient care of this old couple, at a cost of hundreds of dollars to the firm, and after spending several days to get them up in respectable style for their first and last trip by railroad, imagine our surprise and mortification upon looking over the county papers to read of their starving condition.


I have just given you a few facts to show that not only we who have had the care of these people, have been misrepresented, but Woodberry township.


If business calls you in the neighborhood of the Poor House, don't fail to ask for Peter, and have a talk with him, and you will find him intelligent and bright, his mental faculties active and unimpaired, although over 90 years of age.


DETHRONED OF REASON - Crazy on the Subject of Religion - A Sad Case. - Insanity is deplorable at all times yet when the husband and father who has a family dependent upon him for support is suddenly dethroned of reason, the case becomes doubly sad. Thursday morning a middle-aged man named John Douglass, employed for some time past as a chopper by Mr. John E. Bell, and living on the ridge about two miles north of Bell's Mills, was taken through this city en route to the Poor House to be treated for a severe case of insanity. This unfortunate man has been dethroned of his reason for the past four or five days only, having gone crazy on the subject of religion occasioned by the excitement attendant upon a recent revival in one of the churches in the vicinity. While in the car Mr. Douglass was continually calling upon the Most High to have mercy on him, his lamentable pleadings calling for the compassion and sympathy from all who listened to him.


A BANKRUPT INEBRIATE. - An individual hailing from the Tuckeyhoe Valley, named Titus A. Brick, was picked up in a fearfully demoralized condition in the railroad company's ticket office, early on Friday morning, and carried to the lock-up by Chief Riley and Depot Policeman Clark. He was confined in the city prison until in the afternoon when he was escorted into the presence of Mayor Gilland and accorded a hearing. It having been clearly shown that Titus A. Brick was not accustomed to getting as tight as a brick, and as he was in a bankrupt condition and promised faithfully to never again indulge his appetite for strong drink when on a business visit to the city, he was reprimanded and discharged and immediately thereafter took up his line of march for the classic locality of Tuckeyhoe, a sadder yet a wiser man.


DANGEROUS LEAP. - Day before yesterday a young man named William Goughenour, employed as a fireman on the mountain, jumped from the engine hauling the Branch train while it was rounding the down-grade curve in the vicinity of Twentieth street at the rate of about thirty- five miles per hour. The passengers on the train and others who observed the young fireman making preparations for the frightful leap expected to see him seriously injured if not killed, yet he succeeded in accomplishing the feat with marked agility and without receiving a scratch.


(From Monday's Tribune.)
FRIGHTFUL ACCIDENT. A Runaway Locomotive - She Dashes Through the Round House, the Machine Shop and Into the Wheel Shop at the Rate of Thirty-Five Miles an Hour - One Man Fatally and Another Seriously Injured - Great Consternation Among the Shopmen - Several Miraculous Escapes.


One of the most frightful railway accidents, resulting in the death of a laboring man named George H. Curfman, and the serious injury of a machinist named James Bradley, and causing terrible consternation among a force of over two hundred working men, which has occurred in this city for a long time past, took place a few minutes after two o'clock on Saturday afternoon.


The accident was caused by a runaway locomotive, No. 266, employed in hauling a local freight train between this city and Huntingdon. On the afternoon in question the engineer and fireman had left their engine standing over an ash-pit, a short distance below the Eastern round house, for the purpose of having the ashes drawn from the ash- pan preparatory to housing the locomotive in the round-house. A man named William Kelly is employed for the purpose of cleaning out the ash-pans, but whether or not he is in the habit of housing locomotives we were unable to learn, however, in the performance of his labors, he mounted the engine for the purpose of moving it a short distance that he might be enabled to perform his work to better advantage. Seizing hold of the lever that controls the machine of wondrous power, the engine readily responded to his manipulation by starting backward at a pretty rapid rate and came in contact with another locomotive with such violence as to shiver the tool box on the rear of the tender of the 226. Kelly then hooked her forward and she plunged toward the round-house at a rapid rate of speed which was accelerated at every revolution of the driving wheels. On, on she continued passing into the round-house where she was deserted by the inexperienced man at the lever and alone and unattended permitted to take her own course. The turntable being in proper position the mad locomotive passes over it, in the language of the foreman and other employes, "at the rate of thirty-five miles an hour," and at the same instant batters down the door at the inside circumference of the round-house, shivering it to pieces and tearing out a portion of the brick wall, then passing through the main stall to the door at the outside circumference which is treated in a similar manner.


Crossing Twelfth street like a flash of lightning, with numbers of pedestrians on either side of the track the snorting engine of death with a frightful crash leaped into the machine shop proper, in which over two hundred of the brawny sons of toil are putting in their last half-day for the week. The track leading through the centre of the shop was free from any obstructions whatever, in consequence of which the grim monster which seemed to resemble a fiery dragon, had a clear course. The first intimation that the machinists had of the accident was the terrible crash which ensued when the locomotive battered down the doors leading into this department and at the same instant drove the bricks from the wall on either side among them and their machinery almost as thick and as fast as hailstones fall.


The fearful spectacle presented by that runaway locomotive passing through the railroad company's extensive machine shop at a speed of thirty five miles an hour can be more vividly imagined than described. At first carrying consternation and fear to the hearts of the two hundred employes many of whom were apprehensive lest the roof of the building was about to fall in, whilst when the true state of affairs became known the excitement was intensified three fold. Once inside the shop the mad engine apparently picked up a heavy brass driving box and threw it a distance of thirty or forty feet, alighting between the feet of a machinist and breaking an expensive piece of machinery; again sending bars and rods of iron whizzing past the heads of men and boys, while barely allowing scores of employes an opportunity of escaping from the track with their lives.


On she goes in her mad career, now severing in twain large numbers of the straps and belting, and anon picking up an aged employe named James Bradley, and carrying him on the pilot a distance of fifty or sixty feet and then ruthlessly throwing him on the hard floor with a broken leg and a bruised and battered body, yet only to pick up another aged husband and father, named Geo. H. Curfman, carrying him a like distance, and then, too, toss him to the side with a mangled and bleeding body, and in an insensible and fast-dying condition. But does the grim engine stop here in its work of destruction? No! It passes through the entire length of the shop and emerges at the other end, where it encounters a deep and wide pit which it would seem to be sheer folly to attempt to cross, as the transfer table is not in proper position, yet evidently bent on continuing its work of destruction, the effort to o'erleap the chasm is determined upon, and barely fails of success, the "pony" wheels of the locomotive striking the stone coping on the opposite side, are broken off and lodge in the pit which aid the driving wheels to ascend the acclevity, and then, minus the front trucks, the speed at which the locomotive was traveling actually caused it to slide a distance of about thirty feet, notwithstanding it had to first batter down another massive door and parts of a heavy brick wall. Here the engine brought up, but not until after poking its ominous looking head into the wheel shop and carrying dread consternation to the hearts of the employes therein.


It was most fortunate that the transfer table was not in proper position to allow the locomotive to pass from the machine shop to the wheel-shop, else the destruction of property and loss of life in all probability would have been much greater, as the engine would have been enabled to continue on its course through the wheel shop and from thence into the foundry. The 266 was pretty badly-used up, by the accident, the stack having been broken off as also the front trucks, while she sustained considerable other damage. In the machine shop several lathes, drill presses, compound planers, etc., were broken and other damage done. The total loss by the accident we are unable to give, yet we have the authority of those supposed to know that it will foot up into the thousands. The distance traveled by the locomotive was about one quarter of a mile. The accident had scarcely occurred until the entire force of workmen in the machine shop was employed to clear up the work of destruction.


Medical attendance was promptly summoned in the case of both Mr. Bradley and Mr. Curfman, and soon thereafter they were both conveyed to their homes - the former residing on Fifth avenue and the latter on Sixth avenue. Mr. Curfman died between five and six o'clock the same evening. He was unconscious from the time of the accident until his death. Mr. Bradley, who was severely injured, was formerly employed as an engineer on the road, but quit the business some time ago, since when he has followed his occupation as a machinist, believing it to be less hazardous.


Several other employes narrowly escaped serious injury, sustaining only a few slight scratches. Among them we note Coroner John Humes, who is employed in the capacity of watchman at the Twelfth street entrance to the machine shop. Mr. Humes was standing between the round-house and the machine shop when the locomotive crossed Twelfth street, and unfortunately was knocked down by one of the round-house doors. Had he been occupying his accustomed seat in all probability he would have been killed.


FATAL RAILROAD ACCIDENT AT SANG HOLLOW. - Between ten and eleven o'clock on Friday evening an aged man named James Lawson was killed at a point on the railroad known as Sang Hollow, four miles distant from Johnstown. Mr. Lawson has a son who has been engaged for some time past in attending to the watering trough at the place named, and the old gentleman, whose home is at Nineveh, has been in the habit of coming up to that point to assist him in his duties, the son having lost a limb in one of the battles of the late rebellion, and who is thus incapacitated from moving around as freely as he otherwise might.


At about 10 o'clock, on the night in question Mr. James Lawson started out for the purpose of filling the trough at this point with water to be taken by the engine drawing the Fast Line east, and while attending to this duty the Oil Express west, a freight train, came along. It may have been owing to the high wind prevailing, that prevented him from hearing the approach of the train, but at any rate he failed to leave the track in time to avoid it, and he was consequently struck and knocked under the wheels, several of which passed over his body, and it is stated that his head was completely severed from the trunk. The body of the deceased was taken to Nineveh for interment.


Interesting Letter from Semi-Occasional.
For the Tribune.
SABBATH Rest, March 10, 1874.


The passenger station at Elizabeth Furnace, as at present located, while it accommodates that portion of the community living east of the Pennsylvania rail road, necessitates those living on the Western side to walk a distance of half a mile on the railroad tracks, in going to or from the station, thus exposing them to the danger of being injured or killed by some of the many trains which are constantly passing. Since the completion of the third track at this point this danger has largely increased, and hence an effort is being made to have the station removed to the public road crossing, one-half mile further east. The new location will be equally convenient for persons living on either side of the railroad, and being accessible by public road, will obviate the necessity for pedestrians to use the railroad tracks. Mr. John M. Root has offered to donate to the railroad company all the land they may require for station purposes, and will also give land for a foreman's house for this division.


In close proximity to the proposed station is a very beautiful piece of woods, known as "Salem Park," which it is designed to fit up for picnic purposes. The park contains upwards of twenty acres, with two good springs of water, and is near several streams where good fishing can always be found. The fish are not very large, but they make up in numbers what they lack in size.


In anticipation of the removal of the station, a number of lots have already been sold, on one of which Mr. William McMullin is now erecting a building. Mac. is a modest but enterprising citizen, who does not believe in permitting panics to interfere with progress, and while others were bewailing hard times he took his little hatchet and a few other tools, and without any assistance has nearly completed an edifice that would reflect credit on many first-class builders. He is proud of his own handiwork, and says that, although his building may outwardly present an aspect of Quaker-like simplicity, yet for comfort it will answer the same purpose as if ornamented with a Mansard roof and mortgage. Mac. was delayed in his work for a few days on account of his absence at Huntingdon, telling the Guss Investigating Committee what he knows about some things.


The Pennsylvania railroad company purchased three lots here about six months ago, but after excavating a very large foundation for some purpose, suspended work. Rumor has it that Mr. James Cullen, the Supervisor, may take these lots and build himself a summer cottage, but the report cannot be traced to any reliable source.


The season for auction sales has opened up very lively. Two auctioneers got off the train this morning to view the ground where they must shortly lie.


A freight brakeman in some unknown manner fell off his train, near Ale's crossing, on Saturday evening, but was fortunately not injured any. He refused to explain how it happened, but his language, as he cleared the beautiful snow out of his eyes and ears, indicated that he didn't appreciate the joke.


William Burley took passage at Altoona, one day last week, for this station, and in his hurry to get off the train he left his overcoat lying on one of the seats. He wishes now he hadn't done it as he is suffering from a severe cold in his mind. -




MARKS - REEZ - On the 15th inst., by the Rev. M. Wolf, Mr. Nicolaus Marks, Jr., to Miss Elizabeth Reez.




MILLER - In this city on the morning of the 16th inst., Mrs. Mary J. Miller, wife of Wm. Miller, age 29 years.


BURKET - In this city, on the 15th inst., Mrs. Jennie Burket, wife of J. B. Burket.
Jennie, dear, thou hast left us,
And thy loss we deeply feel;
But 'tis God who has bereft us,
He can all our sorrows heal. - G. W. B.


CRAWFORD - In Sinking Valley, on the 9th inst., Mrs. Fannie Crawford, aged 79 years and 5 months.


IRVINE - In Antis township, on the 11th inst., Mrs. Catharine Irvine, relict of the late Daniel Irvine.


STRONG - In this city, on the 14th inst., Annie Gertrude, daughter of William and Mary Strong, aged 17 months.


GRISE - In this city, on the 13th inst., Amindie, daughter of Charles and Corneli [sic] Grise, aged 7 years, 9 months and 5 days.


DARON - On the 9th inst., William Walter, infant son of Mary E. and Edward Daron, aged 3 months and 5 days.


Snow Shoe - The Coal Mines - Personal, etc.


Special Correspondence of the Tribune.
Snow Shoe, March 14, 1874.


A trip from Bellefonte to Snow Shoe on the top of one of the spurs of the Allegheny mountain, is attended with novelty to a visitor for the first time, in consequence of the zig-zag route by which the top of the mountain is reached. The grade is too steep for regular ascent and the top is gained by the "switch-back" process, a kind of grape- vine swing arrangement, each vibration of which carries you higher up, notwithstanding you seem to be swaying back and forth over the same track. The summit reached you may imagine yourself high up in the world - some twenty-three hundred feet above sea-level.


Snow Shoe is a right smart little place, the population of the village and adjacent mines numbers about 1500. The people are notably social, courteous and accommodating. Of stores, churches and hotels there is a good supply of good ones, and an excellent school house in the village. Lots in the town plot are selling rapidly to persons who intend making this place their permanent home. The M. E. Church, Rev. J. Gray pastor, is a new edifice, not large but very neatly finished within and without. The Catholic Church is a very handsome building, indicating a strong membership and liberality in church enterprise.


The hotels are first-class for the seemingly out-of-the-way place. The "Mountain House," by Robert J. Haynes, and the Washington House, by J. S. Uzzell are equal to any found in country towns.


The school building is large and comfortable, and the teacher, J. B. Newcomer, is a gentle man and scholar, and not slow at speech making. I heard him.


The mercantile business of this locality is well represented by J. H. Crissman & Bro., who keep a full country store, embracing everything in the dry goods, grocery, queensware, and drug line, and Homer Crissman acts as postmaster. Herbert Williams, formerly of Pittsburgh, presides over an establishment of the same kind. Dr. J. P. Glenn does the physicing and dissecting for this locality. Although high up, he reports a good practice, and not "distressingly healthy."


They make boards and lumber of all kinds away up here. Two miles from Snow Shoe, I found the extensive mills of J. B. Crider & Son, who manufacture from 12,000 to 20,000 feet of lumber per day.




It would be difficult to describe the mines of this locality without making a trip through them. In company with several other explorers I had the pleasure of making a tour of them. Some of the openings were made years ago, but only three of them are now being worked. The coal averages 4 1/2 to 5 feet in thickness, and about thirty cars loads per day are mined. The entire works are superintended by J. S. Somerville, who understands the philosophy of ventilating every part of the mines, and the secret of keeping his men out of danger.


The miners here receive sixty cents per ton for mining and now have plenty of work. The charge made against your correspondent, while in Snow Shoe, that he was "hunting miners," is incorrect. That is not my business, I know where miners were wanted, and may have so stated in my conversations with them at Snow Shoe, but no one among them will say that I "tried to hire them." My only object in mentioning a place where miners were wanted was to benefit any who might be idle at Snow Shoe. Since there were no idle ones, at least none that I saw, I do not think I hired any, at least not that I know of, if I did I don't know where they went to.


The Snow Shoe Land Association and Railroad Company, it is said, owns about 47,000 acres of coal and timber lands in this vicinity. Certainly they cannot say, "No foot of land do we possess."


At the junction of the Snow Shoe and B. E. V. R. R., is located the large tannery of J. L. Somerville. He was awarded the diploma for best oak sole leather by the American Institute exhibition of 1873. At another time I will visit this locality, and have more to say about the tannery. - J. S. S.


Altoona Tribune, Altoona, Pa., Thursday, March 19, 1874, page 3




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