Out of the Past – April 2017

Vol. 1, Issue 4

50 Years Ago – 1967

April 28th
I. J. Dallas of Elba was sentenced to life in prison following his conviction of first degree murder. Dallas was found guilty of shooting Willie Carruth of Buffalo with a 12-gauge shotgun at a migrant labor camp south of Albion.

75 Years Ago – 1942

April 1st
Eugene “Bud” Wilcox is forced to close the doors of his hardware store in Albion due to the uncertainty of the war. A veteran of the U.S. Navy during WWI, Wilcox submitted his papers in hopes of receiving a commission with the U.S. Naval Reserves.

April 8th
One of the largest real estate transactions in the history of Albion took place between Thomas J. Sweet and Bert Crego, owners of the Thomas J. Sweet Canning Company, to Continental Foods, Inc., owned by the Thomas Lipton Corporation.

April 16th
Word is received at Albion that Lieutenant Commander and Mrs. Carl Egner were captured and interred by the Japanese at Santo Tonas University in Manila. Mrs. Egner was the former Miss Doris Chapman, a 1919 graduate of Albion High School who met and married Lt. Com. Egner of Richfield Park, NJ while the two were stationed in the Philippines.

April 30th
Lt. Eugene E. Barnum, Jr., a 1936 graduate of Albion High School, received his wings as an Air Cadet at Ellington Field, Texas.

April 30th
John G. Donoghue, a former resident of Albion, is reported missing overseas with the Royal Canadian Air Force. Donoghue graduated from Holley High School and was an instructor at the CCC Camp at Letchworth. Donoghue was a sergeant with the 97th Squadron of the Royal Air Force – it was later determined that during a daytime raid over Augsburg as part of Operation Margin on April 17th, his plane received heavy fire from flak, caught fire, and crashed near the target.

100 Years Ago – 1917

April 5th
Howard J. Ludington, son of V. D. Ludington of Albion, is one of 22 Cornell students who enlisted with the American Ambulance Corps for service in France. This was the first unit of its kind sent from Cornell to Europe.

April 12th
The Albion SPCA has appropriated $175.00 to erect a five and a half foot tall, bronze finished drinking fountain to be placed at Court House Square. The device will have three separate basins; one for dogs, one for humans, and one for horses.

April 19th
Amidst the chaos and concern of World War One, Sheriff Swart of Orleans County issues a proclamation stating that all foreign-born citizens will not be bothered by authorities if they “properly conduct themselves.”

April 26th
Albion remains the only wet town in Orleans County, much to the dismay of our two-legged and four-legged friends alike. The Medina Tribune cites the following incident: A farmer was driving a herd of cattle through Albion along Bank Street when a steer broke loose and ran into Young’s Hotel. Barreling through the front door, the steer charged straight for the bar. Out of fear, the bartender ducked under the sink and the men around the bar dodged out of the way to avoid injury. Three of Sylvester Bragg’s top customers signed the temperance oath soon after.

125 Years Ago – 1892

April 7th
a brick dwelling at the site of the Western House of Refuge was demolished. Upon closer examination of the bricks, it was discovered that many were stamped “Newport,” the name of Albion before Gideon Hard suggested the name change in 1828.

April 14th
Several men were moving a safe belonging to Charles Gorman from his office over Kersburg’s store. The tackle came undone as the nearly one-ton safe reached the top of the stairs, giving way, and rolling down to the street. No one was injured, but “some very narrow escapes are reported.”

April 14th
Samuel Wayman, a former resident of Ridgeway convicted in the 1885 murder of Emery Thayer at Avon, is found to be innocent after his accomplice in the alleged crime confessed to his sole guilt in the act. Governor Hill had recently commuted Wayman’s sentence to life in prison – the accomplice, a man named Swartz, made a deathbed confession in Auburn Prison.

April 21st
The divorce trial of George Ough and his wife, Anne, comes to a conclusion granting Ms. Ough a lump sum to be used for the “care and support [of] herself for the future at her own expense.” The trial attracted considerable attention throughout the county as Ough vocally claimed that his wife was committing adultery with numerous prominent men throughout the vicinity.

150 Years Ago – 1867

April 1st
A resolution to incorporate the Orleans Savings Bank of Albion was passed by both Houses of the NYS Legislature and signed by the governor.

April 18th
Sanford E. Church is named as a delegate at large to the NYS Constitutional Convention by the Democratic State Committee.

April 23rd
Lorenzo Burrows of Albion is selected as a vice president of the American Bethel Society during the organization’s 31st annual meeting held at the Lafayette Street Church in Buffalo.

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