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This Week In History, 6-25-09


Updated on Wednesday*:

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The following reports are taken from The Calhoun Chronicle archives:


1909, 100 years ago

You can’t always tell what will happen. For instance, there is the story of a man who was determined to commit suicide. He went to the store and bought a rope, can of oil, box of matches, dose of arsenic and a revolver. He went down to the river and pushed a boat out from the shore and went to where a limb hung over the water. He saturated his clothing with oil, lit a match, set fire to his clothing, took the arsenic, put the muzzle of the revolver to his temple, pushed the boat from under him and pulled the trigger. The bullet glanced and cut the rope above him, and he fell into the river, which put out the fire. He got strangulated and coughed up the arsenic, and at the next election was a candidate for the legislature on the reform ticket.


1959, 50 years ago

The American public went deeper in debt in 1958 than it is has ever gone before, according to the Dept. of Commerce, but the situation is not viewed as an alarming one by economists.


It was said that ever increasing debt is a continuing trend, partly caused by an increasing population and rising incomes of the average American.


The rise in national debt in 1958 was some $18.7 trillion, thus the private debts of Americans reached the record total of $239 trillion.


The Commerce department said that the different economic trends in 1958 directly affected the character and volume of debt financing. In the first part of 1958, when the recession was still in progress, and the business outlook seemed rather bleak, consumer borrowing fell off, but when the upturn became apparent, late in the year, consumer borrowing increased.


This reflects the mental attitude of many borrowers, and increasing job security, or job income. We suspect, very naturally, that the debt increase will be even greater this year than it was in 1958.



 1984, 25 years ago

Last Friday, a prisoner being transported to Weston by the Jackson County Sheriff’s Dept. escaped from a bathroom at Brannon’s Exxon in Arnoldsburg.


Waldon Keith Davis of Charleston, under extradition order, had expressed his need for use of a lavatory. There have been conflicting reports as to the circumstances of his escape, but it seems that he had been left unattended, during which time he made good his escape.


State police helicopter ser-vice, members of Calhoun and Jackson County sheriff’s departments, state police personnel, and volunteers immediately organized search teams. A roadblock network was formed, effectively sealing the Arnoldsburg area. Search parties scoured the countryside from Friday night into Sunday morning, aided by local residents who provided food and drink.


By early Sunday, most of the area had been searched when, for reasons unknown, the escaped prisoner showed himself to area residents, asking for an automobile ride and the chance to use a telephone. One of those he approached called police, and within a short time, Davis was apprehended by Trooper Donnie Carder of the Grantsville detachment. Before Carder arrived, several Arnoldsburg citizens kept close watch, preventing another escape.

This Week's Editorial:

By Helen Morris:

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