100 Years Ago in Suffield

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From the pages of the Windsor Locks Journal, selected and lightly annotated by Lester Smith, Historian of the Town and the Suffield Historical Society

June 4

Frank Plascki, a resident of East street, was found unconscious near the Boston Neck bridge at Brookside last Sunday night. It was first thought that he had been struck by an automobile, but it was later believed that he fell off from a late trolley car as it rounded the curve. He was taken to his home on East street and is none the worse for his experience.

Nelson Talmadge, who enlisted in the navy last week, has been sent to Newport, and William Griffin, who enlisted as a civil engineer, is at Fort Slocum. W. H. Culver, who was in the limited service class, has been notified that he will have to go to Oregon to haul spruce for aeroplanes with a motor truck.

June 14

At a meeting of the school board held Tuesday evening it was decided to hold summer school in this town and arrangements will be made to hold a half-day session in each district every week of the summer vacation. The sessions will include all grades to the eighth and will be mostly for “war work” including readings on the war, Red Cross work, War Savings work and the activities of the junior food army.

Rev. Dr. Robert S. MacArthur of New York has opened his house on South Main street for the summer and Mrs. MacArthur, who has been seriously ill in New York, has been removed to Suffield.

A meeting of the guarantors of the Suffield Chautauqua [an adult education series] will be held at the vestry of the Second Baptist church Saturday evening at 8 o’clock. Mrs. Hershey will be present and will outline plans for the meetings in this town.

The new flag pole has been raised at the center [of West Suffield] and plans have been made for the formal exercises today, Flag Day. An American Flag and the honor flag of the Liberty Loan drive, with two stars, will be unfurled, and it is hoped that a service flag will soon be added, as there are already seventeen West Suffield boys in the service.

There will be no service in the Methodist church Sunday as the pastor, Rev. William Moore, is one of the graduating class at the Wesleyan University and will attend his commencement.

June 21

Rev. Kenneth C. MacArthur, pastor of the Second Baptist church, received his commission Wednesday as chaplain in the United States army with rank of 1st lieutenant, with orders to report to Camp Devons on or before June 24th. Mr. MacArthur offered his services to the government some time ago and passed the examinations.

Since this country went into the war, Mr. MacArthur has felt that it was his duty to give himself to the cause and had he not passed the army examination had planned to go into Y. M. C. A. work.

Jack C. Kulle is home from Camp Merritt, N. J., on a four days’ furlough.

[At the end of a list of 21 West Suffield “boys” in military service:] George and Christian Ahrens, and their sister, Miss Rena Ahrens, live in the town of East Granby, but have always attended church and school in West Suffield, and so are considered as belonging to West Suffield. The boys are expert electricians in the navy and Rena is a Red Cross nurse at the base hospital in Camp Devens.

June 28

Four alien German women registered at the post office in this town this week in compliance with the government regulations. One woman said that her first husband had been naturalized, which made her a citizen, but after his death she had married an alien German, which again made her an alien requiring registration.

Rev. Kenneth McArthur, who had supplied the pulpit at the First Baptist church for the past year, preached his farewell sermon at the service last Sunday afternoon. [He had resigned his position as pastor at Second Baptist that morning.] After the service two candidates were baptized, the ordinance being administered in the stream that flows through the meadows west of the church. . . . While the people regret to part with Mr. MacArthur, the best wishes go with him to his larger and new field as chaplain in the army.

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