The Westford Wardsman, July 5, 1919
Center. Dr. and Mrs. Edward Atwood have been visitors at the home of the Misses Atwood [4 Graniteville Rd.].
Mr. and Mrs. J. Herbert Fletcher and son John have taken a camp at Forge pond for the month of July. Mrs. Harry Prescott and daughter Betty are with them for the first of their stay and other guests are planned for during the month.
We regret that we failed to report last week reports from several of the early gardeners of their first green peas.
Frank C. Johnson has received his discharge and is at home after his army experiences. He is looking in the best of health, but has had sickness, being in the hospital at one time with a siege of pneumonia, and at another time with measles. He expresses himself as glad to have had a part in the great struggle and prizes the memory of his experiences, but now that they are over would not care to repeat them.
Mr. and Mrs. John P. Wright, who have opened their Westford home, will entertain a group of old friends for the holiday, who for a long time have held an annual reunion at Fourth of July.
The young veterans who are forming an organization are to have a dance at the town hall on Friday evening, July 11, to raise funds for the same. More particulars will be given later.
Miss A. Mabel Drew, while driving with her mother, Mrs. Sarah J. Drew, to Greenwich, Conn., to visit the George Albert Drews, met with an accident in Palmer, when her machine skidded and went over an embankment into water. Fortunately they or the machine were not injured seriously for which their friends are glad, for Mrs. Drew is well past eighty and such an experience would prove trying to one many years her junior.
Mr. and Mrs. Alec MacDougall are entertaining for two weeks their son Allister, his wife and two children, of Northampton.
Mr. and Mrs. Perry Shupe are at their farm in South Merrimack, N.H., attending to the hay harvest.
Miss Golda Alivietta McKinsbry and Winfred Ernest Whitton, of Westford, were married in Lowell on Monday evening.
At the Congregational church Sunday morning Rev. O. L. Brownsey will take for his subject, “The discerning eye,” and in the evening will speak from the topic, “Deep calling into deep.” At the annual meeting of the men’s class last Sunday Arthur E. Day was elected president and William R. Taylor, vice president.
Principal William C. Roudenbush, who was recently returned from the commencement exercises at Williams college, and where he enjoyed exercise of unusual interest tells of the splendid record of the class of 1917 in the great war. Out of a class of 103 men, who were graduated, 101 entered the military service. Of the other two one was in the public service and not permitted to resign. The remaining man was a cripple, but before the armistice came he was driving an ambulance at an army camp.
Mr. and Mrs. Charles L. Hildreth and son Roger spent the weekend with relatives in Sterling.
Mrs. Jennie Peterson and Miss Olga Stranberg, employed in the J. C. Abbot household, are going for a trip to their native Sweden.
Recently Mr. and Mrs. Donald M. Cameron drove up from Lowell with a friend, who was a guest in their home. This lady, whose married name we do not now recall, was the wife of a missionary [Rev. James Horace Pettee (1851-1920)] and had lived many years in Japan, and her home when in this country had been far removed from here, but Westford was her birthplace. She [Isabella Wilson (1853-1937)] was born here the daughter of Rev. and Mrs. Thomas Wilson. Mr. Wilson was the second pastor of the Congregational church [1852-1856], succeeding Rev. Leonard Luce, the first pastor, and probably lived in a house standing where H. V. Hildreth’s residence now is. The family removed from here when the subject of this sketch was two years old, but she was exceedingly anxious to see her native town which was at its best on that beautiful June afternoon.
[1918 Passport photograph of Rev. James H. & Isabella (Wilson) Pettee, missionaries to Japan. She was born in Westford in 1853. Her father, Rev. Thomas Wilson, was the second pastor of Westford’s Union Congregational Church (1852-1856), now the Parish Center for the Arts.]
The notorious old “brick tavern” at the north part of the town [266 Groton Rd.], which had been under suspicion for some time, was raided last Sunday by Chief Ripley and Officers Sutherland and Ball and Officer Mahan of Lowell. Six hundred bottles of beer were taken. There were also empty bottles and evidences of the sale and keeping of liquor. Matthew Downs, the aged proprietor of the place, is awaiting trial, charged with the illegal sale of liquor.
Mr. and Mrs. Arthur E. Day and their three daughters, Misses Edna, Viola and Marion, and their son Norman started Tuesday for a month’s automobile trip to Canada to visit Mrs. Day’s kinspeople, who live at Coe Hill in Ontario, two-days’ auto ride from Toronto. They have a most interesting itinerary mapped out and expect to see much interesting country.
Mr. and Mrs. Arthur G. Hildreth and little son [Robert Norris Hildreth, b. May 19, 1918, Springfield], of Monson, are spending their school vacation in town, living in Miss Ella Hildreth’s vacant house on [7?] Hildreth street. Mrs. Hildreth was formerly Miss Bertha Norris, a popular Westford academy teacher.
It was good news that Harold W. Hildreth cabled of sailing for home June 22, and he is expected in Westford the latter part of this week. Leon Hildreth was till at Brest, France, at las report, expecting to get started for home at any time.
The state guard members held their regular drill on Tuesday evening, assembling at the town hall and marching to Whitney playground for outdoor drill. Plans are being completed for their encampment at Boxford from July 12 to July 19.
Perley E. Wright made his first trip to Boston with his motor truck on Tuesday night and will go again on Saturday night.
Social. The committee for the June social, the last one of the season, closed the successful series of socials at the Congregational church on Friday evening of last week by giving the large gathering a good supper and a fine entertainment. There were fully 125 plates set for the strawberry shortcake supper and the committee being obliged to reset tables for a second group. A menu of cold ham, potato salad, rolls, coffee, strawberry shortcake, cake and ice cream and cake was most attractively served and cooked by Mrs. Ralph Bridgeford, Mrs. John Felch, Mrs. A. H. Burnham, Mrs. Parker and other helpers. Mrs. Bridgeford’s brother, Edward A. Felch, and a professional chef was chief assistant and results were greatly to his credit. He added the picturesque touch during the serving hour with his white suit and cap.
The entertainment was by an orchestra from the base hospital at Camp Devens, consisting of Sergt. C. H. Cable, piano; Private Anderson, violin, and Sergt. Scanlon, cornet, and were conveyed by Arthur Burnham, who gave his services. There were two other players and instruments that went with this orchestra, but this trio gave their audience a musical treat, playing a wide range of selections which conveyed the spirit of music, of youth, of the military camp and of old favorites and modern as well, and of the popular dance music. They were assisted in vocal solos and duets by Mrs. Smith, Mrs. Peterson, Miss Newbold and Edward A. Felch.
About Town. There was a light frost last week Tuesday evening which left its trade mark very lightly on an exposed hill of beans and some of the vine family. We did not mistrust frost so did not discover it in season to report last week.
A recent real estate transaction, the largest and most important in the Stony Brook valley, was the sale by George C. Moore of all of his real estate at Brookside, including mill property; also, all his real estate at Westford depot, including water power and buildings, to Abbot Worsted Co. Mr. Moore still retains his large farm at Nabnassett and his mill interests at North and West Chelmsford.
Mr. and Mrs. John McAlpine, of Cleveland, Ohio, after an absence of twenty-three years, are visiting relatives and friends in the east. They made a short call on relatives at the Old Oaken Bucket farm and later will make a more extended call. They will spend part of their vacation in Vermont. Mr. McAlpine is a brother of Hon. William T. McAlpine, of Lawrence. It is fifty years since he left Lowell for the west.
Amos Polley has bought all the grass on the south side of the Lowell road on the Charles Whitney farm.
The selectmen have oiled the Lowell road for a dust distance covering the dwelling houses.
Death. Ossian V. Robey died last week Thursday at the home of his brother-in-law, F. L. Soule, Lowell. He leaves four sons, Charles and Addison, of Westford, Edwin, of Boston, and Fred, of Lowell; two daughters, Mrs. Jennie Erickson, of Newport, R.I., and Miss Lillian Robey, of Westford; three sisters and two brothers, and several grandchildren. He was for several years a resident of Westford, living with his wife’s parents, Mr. and Mrs. Asa B. M. Eastman, of Leland road. While in town he was an active member of Westford Grange. He was an industrious and upright citizen, working at his trade as carpenter. In Lowell he was a member of Highland Veritas, a Pilgrim encampment, Lowell Nest of Owls and the united Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America. The funeral took place on Sunday afternoon, Rev. Thomas Laite conducting the services. The fraternal organizations to which he belonged were largely represented at the funeral. Burial was in Fairview cemetery, Westford.
Graniteville. The St. Peters A.A. of Lowell defeated the Abbot Worsted Company team here last Saturday afternoon in a well played game by the score of 5 to 2. Garrity, the Lowell pitcher, was batted freely, but the A.W.C. could not hit safely, sixteen fly balls being caught by the St. Peters fielders. The Lowell club did practically all of their scoring in the first inning, Falls holding them safe the rest of the game. The Abbot team will play the Silesia Mills club in North Chelmsford on Saturday, July 5. No game will be played on July 4.
The mill and shop teams here are playing a series of games for the cigars. The series is the best three out of five games, and so far each team has won one game each. More games will be played next week.
The Graniteville A.C. lost to West Chelmsford last Saturday by the score of 3 to 2.
Misses Etta May Sheahan, Elizabeth Devine and Alice C. Sheahan, of Lowell, have been visitors here recently.
The Misses May C. and Cecilia A. Wall are spending a few days of this summer vacation with Mr. and Mrs. Frank D. Riney in Lowell.
The formal celebration of the “Glorious Fourth” was held here this year, many of the people spending the weekend at the beaches.
The Abbot Worsted Company band held a rehearsal here on Monday night, and although the band has not been organized but a short time, the members are making great progress and are showing good results under the leadership of James P Larkin. It is thought that the band will give a public concert in the early fall.
Forge Village. The Sunday school children of St. Andrew’s mission held a very enjoyable picnic last Saturday afternoon at Cameron park. Ideal weather helped make the occasion more interesting. A fine list of sports were run off under the direction of the pastor, Rev. Leslie Wallace. The prizes were very good and the children all report having had a fine time. Ice cream and cake was served.
The Boy Scouts, recently organized under the leadership of Rev. Leslie Wallace, enjoyed their first outing on Tuesday and Wednesday, camping out over night.
The many friends of George Cotterell [sic, Cottrell] will be sorry to learn that while attending his work in Boston last week a 500-pound weight fell and struck his leg, breaking it in three places. The bone came out through his stocking. It was a narrow escape from death. His home is in Jamaica Plain. He formerly lived here and also resided in Groton. His sister, Mrs. William Blodgett, of the Ridges, is visiting him.
Mr. and Mrs. John Kavanaugh attended the wedding of their niece in Providence, R.I., this week.
Mr. and Mrs. J. E. Burnett, of Clinton, are visiting this week with Mr. and Mrs. Chester Blodgett, of the Ridges, and Mr. and Mrs. William Blodgett.
Miss Helen Lord is enjoying a twenty-four days furlough from the naval hospital in Newport, R.I., arriving the same night as her sister, Miss E. Mae, from overseas. They are having a family reunion for the first time in nearly two years. Both nurses are very much interested in their work. Miss Mae Lord tells some very interesting stories about the war which never reaches the newspapers.
Mrs. Michael Keefe, of Townsend Harbor, visited relatives here last Saturday. Mr. and Mrs. Alvah Bicknell, of Somerville, spent Sunday here with relatives.
Death. Adino P. Northrup died at the home of his daughter, Mrs. Fennimore Morton, Saturday evening, June 28, after an illness of several weeks, at the age of 90 years and 7 months. Mr. Northrup was born on November 18, 1829, at Kingston, King’s County, N.B. He married Miss Eliza P. Benson on December 29, 1856, in Springfield, King’s County, N.B. Eleven children were born to them, four of whom are living—Mrs. Lillian Morton, with whom he made his home; Mrs. Sarah French, of Nashua, N.H.; Mrs. Rosella Morton, of Lowell, and Mrs. Hattie M. Shaw, of Derby, Me.; also, fourteen grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
The funeral services were held at the home on Tuesday afternoon at two o’clock, Rev. William Anderson, pastor of the Methodist church, Graniteville, officiating. Mrs. Charles Wright sang “Will there be any stars in my crown?” and “When the roll is called up yonder.” Burial was in the family lot in Fairview cemetery. The bearers were John and James Ewings, of Littleton, John Spinner and Herbert Flavell.
News Items. The following clipping was taken from last Sunday’s Boston Globe: “United States Attorney Thomas J. Boynton yesterday took the first step toward the condemnation in the federal court of ninety-five acres of land at Camp Devens, which is wanted by the war department as the site for a permanent training camp. The land is all located in Ayer, Harvard and Lancaster. That in Lancaster is the largest tract—containing thirty-two acres—and it is alleged to be owned by Della D. Marshall of Lancaster and the heirs of Herman L. Marshall. Mr. Boynton’s petition, filed in court, declares that the owners have refused to sell at any price.” The Marshall family are well known in Shirley. The late Herman L. Marshall was a deacon at the Shirley Congregational church.
Camp News. On last Saturday construction at Camp Devens ceased for the time since the camp came into existence two years ago. The last quota of 100 workmen were discharged at that time. Construction at the camp began in 1917 with about 1500 men employed, and the continued progress of the work has cost the government a total of approximately $13,500,000. The camp is two miles long and one and a quarter miles wide, and covers an area of about 10,000 acres. It is regarded as one of the best built camps in the country. There are at present 1505 buildings of various types making up the camp, in which 1,000,000 men have been taught the science of war, have returned from war, and have received their discharges.
The end of the war finds the army, as represented by the garrison at this camp, reduced to a peace basis. The men of the 36th Infantry, 2nd Battalion, who were on duty as provost guards in Boston, returned to camp Saturday night. The men of this regiment and the few hundred in the demobilization group represent all the line soldiers on duty here. In the quartermaster corps there is a detachment operating tracks [sic] and others employed on regular quartermaster duties. The return of peace has long been anticipated by men of the regular army who are allowed by army regulation to don civilian clothing when on leave of absence and away from their army station. It also brings back the formalities of full dress uniform on formal functions requiring their presence. While the camp is in the transition of being changed from a field camp to a permanent army post the officers and men will continue to wear olive drab uniforms for field service. Later, they may return to the blue army uniform which was the customary dress. Little interest in the actual fact that the treaty of peace was signed was evidenced in camp, most of the command being absent on short time passes. “Well, we’re glad it’s over,” said a veteran regular. “I wonder when, if ever, they will want us for another war.” An attitude which is becoming more and more general among army men is that, with the league of nations in force, they may never be called on again to fight a real war, although they may occasionally be called on for campaigns for pacification or to handle insurrections. Officers are devoting their thoughts to the manner in which the “preparedness” army is to be trained.
Discharging 375 soldiers three hours after reaching camp was the record established last Saturday morning. Camp Mills sent 67 New England men of the 7th Division; Upton sent 87 men of the 42nd Infantry, and Merritt 220 casuals. The men detrained in time for breakfast at six o’clock and received their final pay at nine o’clock.
Further steps toward making Camp Devens a permanent military camp have been in proceedings instituted in the federal district court seeking the condemnation of ninety-five acres of land within the camp, which the war department has been unable to buy either because the owners would not sell or because they are unknown to the government, and in one instance been so the government and the owners have been unable to agree on a satisfactory purchase price. Nine tracts of land are involved, located in Lancaster, Harvard and Ayer. The largest lot of land is a tract of thirty-two acres in Lancaster, which the government’s petition sets forth is owned by Della D. Marshall of Lancaster, and the heirs of Herman L. Marshall. This land the government has been unable to purchase, the petition states because the owners have refused to sell at any price. On a lot, which the petition states is apparently owned by the town of Ayer, the parties have been unable to agree on a purchase price. This lot contains five acres.
The other seven lots are in the town of Harvard. The largest is a tract of thirty acres, owned by the heirs of Stowell W. Davis. The rest are four acres apparently owned by John W. Dickinson in 1884; 3 ½ acres apparently owned by Levi Reed in 1903; five acres apparently owned by Caleb Warner in 1815; 4 ½ acres apparently owned by Chapman Whitcomb in 1884; 8 ½ acres apparently owned by Emma N. Webb and one Burke; and 3 ½ acres apparently owned by John Farwell in 1861. Ownership and fair purchase prices for all the lands will be established after a jury trial in the federal district court.
The Curtis D plane will begin its work in the interest of recruiting at once. The machine was able to make a short flight on Tuesday and Wednesday, and on July 4 Lieut. R. C. Moffat will fly to Gardner, Athol, Orange and Greenfield with the camp recruiting officer, Capt. John C. Macdonald. On the afternoon of July 4 Lieut. Charles D. Bourcier will fly to Worcester, Grafton and Hudson to deliver talks on recruiting. Lieut. Moffat will make a longer flight on July 5, going to Northampton, Holyoke, Springfield, New Haven, New London, Hartford and Providence before returning to camp.
Col. George L. Byroade was appointed supervisor of the camp school, together with a board of control which includes Capt. John F. Connolly, camp chaplain and school director; Lieut. Thomas J. McCrossin, director motor transport school; Major A. B. Hitchcock, morale officer; Lieut. Col. C. C. McCormack, camp surgeon; Major William A. Turnbull, judge-advocate; Capt. Mylon D. Merchant, 1st Lieut. Charles J. Harriman and 1st Lieut. Andrew O. Dodge, chaplains.
Major General McCain visited the camp school while it was in session and encouraged the enlisted men studying there to make the most of the educational opportunity offered.
The R.O.T.C. infantry camp demonstrated its excellence in elementary military art Tuesday before representatives of the general staff and the movies. Two camera operators cranked off hundreds of feet of film, recording army officers at work and play.
The students formed a battalion on the parade field and entirely unassisted by coaching from the officers, executed close order drill, physical drill, parade and battalion review. The camera men were posted on a scaffolding and made a picture of the students as they formed the letters “R O T C.”
In the equitation exhibition the students astonished the visitors with their stunts on the cavalry mounts, forming pyramids and showing early proficiency as horsemen. At Robbins pond the students were filmed in swimming, many of whom never swam a stroke ten days ago. The boys dove through the auto tire inner tubes furnished them for life preservers. Although not proficient, the students were also able to demonstrate simple exercises in bayonet drill on the bayonet combat field. Next week the students take up Herbert gymnastics. The gallery practice showed their advancement in preliminary rifle firing.
In one week the students have put on an average of about five pounds in weight. This was discovered by Col. Guy G. Palmer, the school commander, by the reports made by a number of the students. As a result he had ordered a weekly physical examination and measurement made to keep a chart on the development of the boys.
The ages of the students are between 16 and 22. They are from 29 colleges in New England, New York and New Jersey, and six high schools. There are two companies in the junior and three in the senior unit. Rifle practice taught the students is course C, which is identical with that taught soldiers preparing to fight in France.
The ordnance depot is receiving much obsolete material from returning units. New issue in rifles and machine guns are model 1917 Springfield and the Brownings. Old guns being withdrawn include Gatling guns, Colt’s machine guns, 1902 model; Maxim machine guns, 1904 model; Bent-Mercier machine guns, 1909 model; Colt’s machine guns, 1917 model; Lewis machine guns, .303 caliber, ground type, and Lewis machine guns, 1917 model, ground type; Chauchat machine rifles, .30 caliber, 1916 model; Chauchat machine rifles, 8 millimeter caliber, 1915 model and Hotchkiss machine guns, 1914 model, 8 millimeter caliber.
Maj. Gen. McCain opened Hell pond Monday for swimming. Lieut. Philip H. Didrickson, 36th infantry, was appointed swimming instructor and will conduct classes. Life lines have been extended across the inlet. The officer in charge may permit expert swimmers to go into deep water and the pond is 75 feet deep.
Major Paul G. Woolley, assistant camp surgeon, formerly health officer in the kingdom of Siam, was discharged Monday. Major Roderick W. Brown of the 36th infantry was transferred to the Parker Hill hospital, Brookline, to assume charge under the U.S. health service.
U.S. Commissioner J. M. Maloney held Roy M. Winch of Clinton in $300 for the U.S. district court grand jury on charges of having army clothing in his possession illegally. Department of justice agents made a raid of civilian workmen’s quarters.
Clipping. The following editorial was taken from the Boston American on last Saturday:
There is a persistent rumor that Henry Ford proposes to locate a factory at Camp Devens in Massachusetts. Two men, alleged to be his representatives, were seen the other day investigating, in company with an officer, the government camp at Ayer.
It is almost too good to be true. Nothing could please the people of Massachusetts more than to have Henry Ford come among us with his business methods, his public spirit and his volume of business.
It would do us a world of good to have Henry Ford in Massachusetts. The good would not come any more in dollars and cents than in the influence of the man and his principles and his methods. He is one of the finest business men America has ever produced. He has shown the world how to make money and yet how to render service in its process without a stain on the process, without a law violated or a public servant corrupted, or a single cent ground out of the sweat of an employee.
What a pleasant world ours would be if it were full of Henry Fords!