Center. Fisher Buckshorn, who has been pretty sick with the influenza, complicated with jaundice, is reported more comfortable. A trained nurse is in attendance.
Judge Frederick A. Fisher’s Westford friends are sorry to learn that he is confined to his home with influenza, although he is reported as not seriously sick.
Postmaster J. Herbert Fletcher has been in attendance at the New England Fox Hunters’ association in Pepperell from Monday until Thursday.
Miss Sarah W. Loker moved this last week into the west side of the Hamlin house. Mr. and Mrs. G. W. Goode close their camp at Forge Village and will occupy their apartments in the other side of this house, the same as last winter.
Mr. and Mrs. Preston H. Skidmore closed their summer home in this village, and with their daughter Elaine and Mrs. Skidmore’s step-father, Mr. Brigham, go to Florida to spend the winter.
Henry J. Murphy, living on the Groton road, lost a cow on Tuesday, the animal being struck by an automobile and so badly injured that it had to be killed. This is the second cow Mr. Murphy has lost in this way this season.
John M. Fletcher reports the thermometer at 80° Tuesday, at noon, at the postoffice [Lincoln St. general store], this being one of a series of pretty warm days for the time of year.
Rev. Oscar Wells and Mrs. Wells, of Rochester, Vt., are guests this week of Mrs. O. V. Wells.
At the Frost school and the academy the daily sessions have been extended in time one hour. This seemed the best way to make up the lost time on account of the enforced closing recently during the epidemic.
Word comes that J. Herbert Fletcher, who is attending the new England Fox Hunters’ meeting in Pepperell this week, is among the lucky ones securing a fox Wednesday morning.
Mrs. Clara Gray has been appointed a member of the home service committee in place of Mrs. Hammett D. Wright, as Mrs. Wright had assumed charge of the Red Cross work in Graniteville, taking Mrs. Warren H. Sherman’s place, which will take all extra time and strength.
Miss Jennie Ferguson is still staying with her home people, as the Springfield schools have not yet reopened on account of the epidemic.
A gang of men have been putting the roadbed of the electric line between the town house and the terminal at the end of the common in good condition this week, and the car now makes its stops at the end of the line and not in front of the town house as it has been doing for some time.
It was thought best by those having the decision concerning public gatherings to cancel the Grange meeting, which was scheduled for this week Tuesday evening, and the Halloween dance that was planned for Thursday evening by the senior class of the academy.
Mrs. Harold W. Hildreth received a letter from her husband in France this week, in which he tells of having just received eighteen letters and three bunches of papers, making pretty busy reading for a time. Of course, Uncle Sam has a big job to transport men and supplies, but we all wish the boys in the service could receive the home letters with a little more regularity.
The job of grading the grounds around the fire-house [now the Westford Museum] is being finished and when done, and especially when the grass and foliage are green another season will present a most attractive appearance. The old academy, remodeled into the firehouse has retained its simple lines and good type of Bullfinch belfry, and with a more appropriate setting than the conglomerate group of harness shop, blacksmith shop and all delapitable horse sheds and rubbishly grounds that formerly surrounded it makes a well preserved relic of the past and a useful adjunct of the community life of the present.
Regular services were resumed at the churches last Sunday. At the Congregational church the resignation of its pastor, Rev. Howard A. Lincoln, was read by the clerk at a meeting of the church members following the morning service. Mr. Lincoln resigns to enter war service, which in his case is a branch of war work for the rehabilitation of sick and wounded soldiers and sailors. Mr. and Mrs. Lincoln will move as soon as arrangements can be made. They have engaged a house in Winthrop and Mr. Lincoln will go to Boston each day. Mr. Lincoln came to this church two years ago from Rochester, Vt. He will occupy the pulpit this coming Sunday and conduct the communion service. Mr. and Mrs. Lincoln take with them every good wish of the parish and community in their new work.
Home Service Branch. A branch of the home service of the North Middlesex County chapter of the Red Cross has been formed in Westford. The purpose of home service is to assist the families of soldiers and sailors, both our own and those of the allies. Men before and after leaving home and their families wish information concerning various laws passed for the benefit of the soldier, sailor and his family. It may be mothers or wives are unable to pay the rent or cannot get word from the soldier, or are troubled about the non-receipt of allotments, about taxes, mortgages, insurance, etc.
Each camp in America and Europe and each city and town has a representative of home service who cooperates in relieving the men and their families from anxiety concerning each other. The committee in Westford has been formed, Capt. Sherman H. Fletcher serving as chairman, and the committee is as follows: Mrs. Adeline M. Buckshorn, Westford and vicinity; Wesley O. Hawkes and Mrs. Hammett D. Wright, Graniteville; John Edwards and Miss Grace Lawrence, Forge Village. For the purpose of explaining all important legal matters, a lawyer, Charles L. Hildreth, town clerk, has offered his services and will be glad to meet anyone.
The committee, through the home service section in Lowell, headquarters for the North Middlesex chapter, which is in touch with the Red Cross in Washington, is also prepared to furnish information in regard to men who are injured, killed, or taken as prisoners.
The committee has on hand a supply of little books, entitled “Before you go,” giving valuable information in regard to allotments, family allowance, government insurance, and everything pertaining to the welfare of the soldier and his family, which will be gladly furnished by any member of the committee to those who enter the army on application, or will be mailed to them if they will send their address.
About Town. After postponing the jury session in Lowell for four weeks on account of the influenza epidemic, it has again been postponed on the pleas of lawyers that they are busy writing out questionnaires, for two weeks.
We are told that the initiative and referendum is a safe and much-needed medicine to take, and in the same breath the same folks warn us of a list of questions longer than a two-horse sled.
To prevent further spread of the European corn borer, a dangerous insect that has gained a foothold in 135 square miles in Massachusetts, the secretary of agriculture has placed a quarantine on the interstate movement from the area infected of corn fodder, green sweet corn, corn on the cob and corn cobs. This area includes parts of four counties, Essex, Suffolk, Middlesex, Norfolk. This quarantine follows a hearing before the federal horticultural board in Washington. This insect was discovered near Boston in 1917. It is thought to have been introduced from Europe-Asia or Japan. It is especially dangerous to corn in foreign countries and is menacing here.
The old-time friends of the Dupee family, who used to live at Westford depot, will be much interested to hear that C. Frank Dupee, now living in Lowell, has received a commission in the army. It will be Lieut. Dupee now, as he has been made a lieutenant in the ordnance department. He reported to the ordnance department in Washington for duty last Monday. Lieut. Dupee married Miss Edith Richardson, of Lowell, and has two children, a son and a daughter.
Hon. and Mrs. Charles S. Hamlin introduced their daughter Anna to society on last Saturday afternoon at an informal reception and tea at their home. It was the first debutante reception of the season in Boston and Mr. and Mrs. Hamlin came in from their summer home at Mattapoisett for the occasion. Later, they will go to Washington for the winter as Mr. Hamlin is on the federal reserve board. Miss Hamlin is a member of the Sewing circle, Boston and the officers poured. Mrs. E. F. Greene gave a luncheon at the Somerset club the same day in honor of Miss Hamlin.
It is with deepest regret that we learn of the death of Mrs. Lucy H. Zappey, of Greenwich. She was a talented and superior young woman, the daughter of Alice Read Houghton, of Littleton, who was born here and always was beloved. Her grandparents were the late Hon. and Mrs. J. Henry Read, so prominent in our town life.
Mrs. Mervin Steele continues to gain slowly. She has been under the care of a trained nurse for five weeks.
Death. Mrs. Matthew F. Downs died at her home, the old brick house, on the Groton road, Monday morning, from old age, she being eighty-seven years old. Last Thanksgiving Mr. and Mrs. Downs celebrated their seventieth anniversary of their marriage. To but few is it allotted to celebrate the seventieth wedding anniversary in health and in the full orb of all their faculties as Mr. and Mrs. Downs did at that time. Matthew Downs and Miss Mary Prentiss were married in Concord, N.H., Thanksgiving day, November 29, 1847. Five children were born to them, Joshua, Frank, Florence, Fred and a boy who died in infancy. Mrs. Downs was born in Cambridge, but had been a resident of Westford for nearly half a century and was industriously engaged in fidelity to the duties of wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother and had neither time nor desire of the street corner. She had a devotion to the home department of life that is so sadly overlooked in our audit of the valuable assets that make up a mother’s life.
Besides her husband, who is past ninety-three years, she leaves a daughter, Mrs. Florence Hutchins; a son, Joshua Downs; three grandchildren, Harry and Fred Downs and Mrs. Hazel Blades, and four great-grandchildren, Ethel Mae and Howard Blades and Harold and Evelyn Downs.
The funeral was held on Wednesday afternoon from her home, the old brick house, Groton road. Rev. L. H. Buckshorn of the First parish church conducted the services. The bearers were Harry L. Downs, Fred C. Downs, Henry M. Hutchins and Harold L. Blades. Burial was in the Hillside cemetery beside loved ones.
Letter from France. The following is another letter from John A. Taylor, dated September 8:
Dear Father and Mother—Sunday morning again! I am no longer in famous London, but in beautiful Paris. We came across the dangerous channel a few days ago and landed safely at a certain French port. Before treading on French soil we had to have our passports, credentials and baggage thoroughly examined.
Paris is truly the most beautiful city in the world. Everywhere one sees evidence of French genius and French love of beauty. I have been about admiring the beautiful gardens, the majestic cathedrals, the spacious boulevards and the lovely chateaus. The grandeur and beauty of this “grande ville” (big city) far surpasses anything I have seen in America or in London. Paris, with her sublime career in this great war, now stands as the capitol of modern civilization, and I want to tell you that Paris is not the frivolous, artificial place we used to read about. If ever she was of the earth earthy [sic] she certainly has had a rebirth. There is a normal, wholesome, almost peace-time spirit about the city. The thousands of military uniforms on the street, the sand bags about the art galleries, the completely dark streets at night, the grand palaces now converted into hospitals for the wounded, the refuge places against the air-raids, all betoken the awful presence of “la guerre” (the war), and the spirit or moral of the French people is truly sublime.
Riding down to Paris I caught glimpses of what France had suffered; I talked on the train with several French widows and crippled soldiers. There was never a complaint or utterance of bitterness—nor are they down in the mouth. They talk as serenely and normally as though war had not ravaged their villages and desecrated their homes. You may bend and twist the French spirit, but you can never break it. As Richard Harding Davis said in the early days of the war, “Two things will save us, God and France.”
Today we are celebrating the fourth anniversary of the battle of the Marne. You remember it looked as though Paris surely would be captured; but French military genius triumphed. Marshal Joffre said “We will stop at the Marne,” and his poilu backed him up with the statement, “They shall not pass,” and the thousands of wooden crosses marking the graves of the British and French soldiers there on the Marne indicated what it cost to save the republic of France and preserve the civilization of the world.
I wish you could see these wonderful French officers. They are unlike most military men you have seen—they are mature, dignified, scholarly and extremely polite. How gracefully they walk up the boulevard in their fashionable blue uniforms—they remind one of the knights of old.
I presume you wonder how I get along speaking French. Well, I am progressing encouragingly well. I can already ask hundreds of questions in French.
Living here in Paris is, as you might suppose, very expensive. I have to figure very carefully to live within my allowance. It doesn’t cost me anything for butter and sugar, for there isn’t any. But there is never a thought of complaint. People over here take such trivial annoyances cheerfully. Nor can one order bread at a restaurant unless he has a bread ticket issued by the government. Aside from this food is in abundance and the French are superb cooks. Of course there is no longer the French pastry.
The following letter, written a little later tells of the work of the “Y” men:
I have been assigned to my definite job and to my definite post. Like most everyone else I had hoped to do something outside by shop work, but it seems there is a big demand in the Red Triangle for educators. The head of the educational activity in France is Dr. Erskine, a former English instructor at Amherst, whom I knew. In less than five minutes he had an assignment for me. I am to go to a fine old city, not so far from Paris. From all reports it will be hard work, but that’s what I’m here for. The Y.M.C.A. is still very short of workers. We need 4000 men right now in France. If you know of good available men at home get them to enlist. There is a call for motor drivers, stenographers, business men, canteen clerks, entertainers, educators and all-around handy chaps, and when the Y.M.C.A. financial drive comes along, tell people to loosen up. You have no conception of what it costs to run an organization like this.
The scene has changed immensely from the big hotel in Paris, from which I last wrote. Now I am writing in a barracks hut in one of the large base camps. Coming down here I was privileged to ride first-class with the French officers. In my compartment was a captain decorated with the croix de guerre, Legion of Honor, wound stripes and other insignia. Yesterday, here at the station there came in three carloads (sounds like produce) of Red Cross nurses. Among their songs was one about Boston. I immediately went up and spoke to them. Sure enough it was a Boston unit made up of Massachusetts girls. They had just come over and were bound for the front. How heroically they sang and cheered, but I feel many of them will not return from the gas and shell of the war front. American girls—the right sort—have good stuff in them. There are four Y.M.C.A. women workers right here in this camp. Their barracks is right beside ours. Among the men workers is a former superintendent of schools of Boxborough, who knows all my Littleton friends; a music teacher from a North Dakota normal school, and a graduate from Ricker Classical Institute at Houlton, Me., where I used to teach.
Friday evening I attended a mammoth concert and vaudeville given at a certain French city. The entire program was presented by the enlisted men themselves. It is astonishing how much talent can be recruited from our American privates. Our work is largely to organize it. The general spirit of the whole entertainment was wholesome and hilarious. One forgot for an evening the horrors of war. Twice, though, in the performance, came thrilling moments. An officer would step forward and announce, “Capt. _____ and his company report immediately with their packs.” We knew what it meant. They were ordered to the front. There was no hysteria; they left the hall quietly and cheerfully. Our program continued.
To learn the ropes I have been assisting in the library, canteen and office. You don’t realize the difficulty of keeping the canteen stocked up with candy, cookies and biscuits. Here in this camp alone are 20,000 soldiers. Then consider all the other camps in France up to the extent of a million and a half soldiers—all murmuring for candy, jam or eats and you see the problem. The problem of transportation is stupendous. But most of the boys are encouragingly patient. Several times an hour we hear “Any chocolate?” “No.” “Any cakes?” “No.” “Any canned beans?” “No.” “Well, then give me a franc’s worth of chewing tobacco.” The enormous consumption of tobacco could be reduced if we only could keep in stock certain sweets and cookies which the boys crave. As it is we do several hundred dollars’ worth of sales every day in our canteen alone. And there are four others in this camp. Just now most of the supplies are rushed to the front.
I particularly enjoy the library work. I like to chat with the boys about what they read and what they are thinking about. It is astonishing how much they read. Every day 100 to 300 books are taken from our library. It’s a problem to keep the book shelves from getting empty—magazines we simply can’t keep on hand. We give many to the troop trains going to the front and of course they don’t come back. Tell all the people in the states that the books and magazines they donate are in constant use. Many are reading more than they ever did in their lives. And there is an increasing call for educational and scientific books. We cannot supply the demand.
And I wish you could see how much the boys write letters. There is scarcely a vacant seat in our library and writing-room all day long. Even when movies are on in the adjoining hall they remain at their post. Encouragement to write home is the thing the Y.M.C.A. fosters. We do an enormous business in sending money home. We have a special arrangement by which the money is cabled across from our Paris headquarters.
Every evening we have an entertainment or lecture of some type and there are no vacant seats to be had for “fun, money or marbles.” Friday evening I had the privilege of introducing Mr. Rodeheaver, Billy Sunday’s famous music leader. He played the cornet, sang, recited, joked, and did sleight-of-hand tricks, preached and prayed, all in the compass of an hour. He had the immortal Billy’s methods all worked out and knew how to get things across with the boys.
Last evening I introduced my good friend Prof. S. H. Clark of the University of Chicago. For the past year he has been connected with the bureau of public information, and hence had some good first-hand information to impart. His subject was “Good news from home.” He told how the big ships are being built in sixty days and how a vessel is leaving some American port every thirty minutes, night and day. He told how America is finally coming to take the war seriously; labor is behaving itself and everybody is digging in. Not a soldier left the hall and that is unusual. If the soldiers don’t like a speaker in a few minutes they leave by whole platoons.
This week I am to start to organize some educational work in the camp. For one thing there are ever so many illiterate negroes and whites. We propose to teach them to read and write. It will be a crime to let them return to civil life illiterate. Then we have a French professor, detailed by the French government, to teach the Yanks how to “parley-vous.” Also, I intend to do what I can to help some of the ambitious ones to improve their English. We intend to use the experienced and educated soldiers to teach the untrained. The educational program here is difficult because this is a working camp. The men get up at 5:30 and are busy until six at night. Do you wonder they crave a movie?
Do you remember the references to the mud and rain of France? They are both very much in evidence now. It has rained at least twice a day since I have been here and sometimes we have a shower every other hour. Of course an umbrella is unmilitary, but rubber boots are not.
I am well provided for in regard to clothes, room and meals. The office of mess serves abundance of good food, and we are allowed to buy all the clothes we need very reasonably at the quartermaster’s. My room here in the barracks is not half bad. I have a little wood stove that generates sufficient heat, and the army furnishes a community woodpile. I feel sure that am going to enjoy my new surroundings. A “Y” man tells me there is a Westford boy in his camp a short distance from here. I must look him up.
Of course we are all elated over the recent successes on the entire war front. Already some are proclaiming “the beginning of the end.” But Germany is going to fight fiercely to the very end. Many of the casual[tie]s are sent down here for rest and treatment. They seem anxious to get back into the fray again. The absorbing passion of every last soldier is to get back to America just as soon as peace is declared. I won’t say the boys are homesick, for they are not, but still there is a longing to get back to the normal, wholesome life in America. What a day it will be when we can shout with Henry Van Dyke—
Oh, it’s home again, and home again for me,
I want a ship that’s westward bound to plough the rolling sea,
To the Blessed Land of room enough beyond the ocean bae,
Where the air is full of sunshine and the flag is full of stars.
Graniteville. Dr. W. H. Sherman has received his commission as first lieutenant in the Medical Reserve Corps, arranging his business at present preparatory to leaving for Camp Oglethorpe, Ga., on November 3.
The local committee of the American Red Cross requests that all who have any peach or prune stones or nut shells of any kind to bring them to the postoffice, where there will be a box or barrel to receive them. This is a very important matter as these nuts and shells are to be used in making carbon for gas masks for the soldiers. Don’t wait for the other fellow to do this, but get busy and help out all you can along this line.
Mrs. Mary A. Downs, wife of Matthew Downs, an old and highly respected resident of this village for many years, died at her home in North Westford early Monday morning, after a brief illness. Her age was 87 years. Death was due to old age. Beside her husband she leaves one daughter, Mrs. Florence Hutchins, and one son, Joshua Downs; also, three grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. She was a woman greatly devoted to her home and family and will be greatly missed by the household. The funeral was held from her home on Wednesday afternoon at two o’clock and was largely attended. Burial was in Hillside cemetery.
A son [Henry Alfred LeDuc] was born to Mr. and Mrs. Henry LeDuc on Saturday, October 26 [27, per 1918 Westford Annual Reports].
Committees Appointed for Drive. There was a largely attended meeting in St. Catherine's church on last Sunday afternoon for the purpose of interesting the members of the parish in the work of the National Catholic War Council, which with other kindred organizations, including the Y.M.C.A., Red Cross and others, are to make a big drive between November 8 and 11 for the purpose of raising $170,500,000 throughout the country for the moral and physical welfare of the United States soldiers and sailors. The meeting was called to order by the pastor, Rev. C. P. Heaney, who in a short but highly interesting and patriotic address outlined the work to be done at this time. A. R. Wall was elected chairman of the meeting and John F. Kavanaugh, secretary. During the meeting the following committees were appointed: Contribution, J. A. Healy, chairman, Misses Rebecca LeDuc, Catherine Hanley, Catherine Conley, Winnifred Thompson; recruiting, John J. McNiff, chairman, Misses Rachel Wall, Isabelle Carpentier, Rebecca LeDuc; women’s cooperative, Mrs. Emma Carpentier; victory boys’ committee, A. R. Wall, chairman, Joseph LeClair, James Kelley; victory girls’ committee, Miss Catherine Hanley; speakers’ committee, Joseph Wall. The pastor was highly pleased with the deep interest shown by the parishioners in this noble work and of the large number that attended the meeting.
Forge Village. A large number from here attended the parish meeting held at St. Andrew’s Episcopal church in Ayer last week Friday evening. Brief services were held. Dr. Endicott Peabody officiated, assisted by Rev. Angus Dun. At the conclusion the rector, Dr. Peabody, called the meeting to order. C. S. Griswold read the minutes of the last meeting. Treasurer Burton Williams then read the expenses of the parish and the amount received towards the support from the different organizations. At the conclusion of his report he handed in his resignation, which was received with much regret. Mr. Williams has been the efficient treasurer for many years, but owing to business interests was obliged to resign. After various other matters were discussed the parishioners then went to the vicarage, where a reception was held by the rector and Mrs. Endicott Peabody and the vicar Rev. Angus Dun, and Mrs. Dun. Dainty refreshments were served.
Motion pictures are to be given in Abbot’s hall two nights a week, beginning in the near future. The Abbot Worsted Company have purchased a machine and the hall has been arranged to meet the needs of a motion picture requirement.
The Ladies’ Sewing circle will meet Thursday afternoon at St. Andrew’s mission at 2:30. Any new members will be greatly appreciated.
The members of the Red Cross will meet on Thursday evenings and save heating the building twice. A large attendance is requested as there is a large amount of work on hand.
On last Sunday evening a party of twenty-two journeyed to St. Andrew’s church, Ayer, and listened to a forceful sermon on “Loyalty” by Dr. Van Allen, rector of the Church of the Advent, Boston.
On November first the price of milk was raised to thirteen cents per quart, an increase of two cents. The increase is due to the high cost of grain.
H. W. Flavell refused to raise the price of his milk last August when other dealers did.
The Halloween party that was to have been held by the senior class of Westford academy, Thursday evening, was postponed indefinitely by order of the board of health.
Mr. and Mrs. John Merrick were guests at the home of Mr. and Mrs. J. H. Brown, Clinton, Sunday.
The schools in town are making up their lost time by being kept in session an hour later each day. This will be continued for the remainder of the term.
Ellsworth Rose, of the students’ army training school, spent the weekend with relatives here.
Mrs. Rose Merrick, until recently employed at a fruit store in Ayer, is now at Wellesley college, where she has an excellent position.
Mr. and Mrs. Matthew Elliott have been notified by the war department that their son, Matthew, Jr., has been wounded in France. This is the second time this year.
Miss Margaret O’Hara, who has been at Camp Devens in the base hospital for a year, has volunteered for overseas service and left for New York last Saturday.
Miss Helen Lord is stationed at the Newport naval hospital. She has just recovered from an attack of the influenza.
At Page’s hall theatre, Ayer, will be shown on next week Wednesday and Thursday the big attraction, “To hell with the Kaiser.” Four performances daily—2, 4, 6:30 and 8:15 o’clock.
Interesting Letter. Among other interesting letters received here recently, was a letter from Miss E. Mae Lord, who is now in charge of Base Hospital 66 in France. Miss Lord’s letter is as follows:
Still no letters from you; it sure is a long time since I heard from home, I know you will feel better when I tell you I have gained twelve pounds. We were all sick at first, but the weather is so cool that we soon recovered. The other night we had a little excitement: a Boche sent down his respects with nine bombs. A house was damaged, but no one was hurt. Just a few minutes before I was out to get some water and I saw a machine in the air. I said, “Wouldn’t it be funny if it was a German?” and about fifteen minutes later we heard the crash. One of the girls was in our room and she got under the bed. Alice and I ran out in our bath robes as we wanted to see the fun. This is the second time we have been visited. They don’t want us, it is the ammunition camps, and the railroads and bridges they would like to get.
We had a regular Thanksgiving dinner today. This hospital raises all its own food and the day before yesterday they killed a pig, and we had tomatoes, squash, potatoes and roast pork with dressing. It did taste good. I suppose the apples are ripe at home. I would like about a bushel of them. I have not seen one here, and fruit is very expensive. I paid thirty cents for one pear, and grapes are sixty cents a pound.
I have the pneumonia ward now and I have some mighty sick boys. The other night I went out with an ambulance driver to an old village and brought in some patients. The town is over 2000 years old and the street is just wide enough for the machine to go through. All the houses are stone and the people wear wooden clogs. Hope you are all well. Don’t worry about me; everything is sport. With the best love to all.
–Eva Mae Lord, A.N.C., Base Hospital 66, A.E.F., France
Miss Lord has been very ill with pneumonia and for a time things looked serious for her. She was the first from this town to volunteer and she was considered a very efficient nurse, having received her training in the Framingham hospital. She was district nurse for two years in Springfield and also in East Jaffrey, N.H. All her letters are cheerful and her chief concern is for her patients. In a recent letter she wrote about a soldier who was brought in wounded. His left arm was blown away and he admitted he was only sixteen years old, and was sorry he didn’t get the Germans first.
News Items. Federation House moving picture program—Saturday, November 2, 2:30 and 7:30, Pathe news, Hayakawa in “The white man’s law” and Arbuckle comedy. Wednesday, November 6, 7:30, Pathe news, Alfred Whitman in “Sunlight’s last raid,” and “Bobby, the boy scout.” Saturday, November 9, 2:30 and 7:30, Pathe news, George Cohan in “Seven keys to Baldpate” and Arbuckle comedy. Price for civilians fifteen cents.
The twentieth birthday of the Ayer Woman’s club will be celebrated by a Red Cross day held at the Unitarian vestry, Wednesday, November 6. R. M. Cushman, associate field director for home service at Camp Devens, American Red Cross, will speak on “Home service in the camp.” Good music has been arranged….
One of the greatest crowds that has ever come to Camp Devens since it was opened poured into the camp last Sunday, it being estimated that the number was 100,000. In addition to those coming in the 10,000 automobiles, a great many came in special trains, electric cars and on foot. The crowd was handled by the provost guards in a perfect manner, not a single accident of any kind being reported. Officers returning to division headquarters from Boston state that they passed a solid stream of automobiles from Boston to the camp. It being the first Sunday since the ban was removed on account of influenza, after being closed for several weeks, there was a large number of soldiers who went home over the weekend, the number being 15,000.
Cardinal O’Connell, of Boston, is expected to attend the military mass at Camp Devens on Sunday, the mass to be said at 10:30 in the morning. A special musical program has been arranged for the occasion. Visitors will be permitted to attend.
Thousands of soldiers cast their ballots during the week for the state election, the voting taking place in Y.M.C.A. hut No. 23. The ballots for the Massachusetts voters were brought to camp by Albert P. Langtry, secretary of state, Louis R. Sullivan and Charles S. Baxter.
The first degree was exemplified under the direction of Ayer Council, K.C., in Knights of Columbus hut No. 3, Camp Devens, Tuesday night, on a class of forty soldiers. The second degree was worked on the same class in the council chamber on Thursday night. The third degree will be exemplified on Monday evening in the quarters of the council in Ayer.
Italian Day. It was “Italian day” at Camp Devens last Saturday when several distinguished citizens of Italian birth were guests of honor. In the morning there was a review of the Foreign Legion (3rd Development Battalion). In the afternoon hundreds of Italian soldiers and a large number of civilian Italians and others were addressed by the visiting dignitaries in their own language. The speaking took place in Liberty theatre. The principal speaker was Major General Guglielmotti of the Royal Italian Embassy in Washington, a veteran of the present war, whose eloquence brought his large audience to their feet cheering. Major General McCain, the camp commander, sat on the platform with the speakers.
Signor De Rosa, the Italian consul general at Boston, and a Mr. Guidi, a business man of that city, were the other speakers. Between the speeches musical numbers and recitations were given.
The speakers were introduced by Col. George L. Bywade, commander of the Depot Brigade, who welcomed the distinguished guests and paid a high tribute to Italy’s service in the war. An impressive feature of the review was the presentation to the Foreign Legion of silken American colors which were donated by D. C. Brewer, of Boston, who made the presentation speech.
Following the review the guests were taken sight-seeing about the camp. Gen. Guglielmotti lunched with Gen. McCain. On the second staff at division headquarters a large Italian flag was flying all day.
The Federation House. The people of Ayer are exceedingly fortunate in having an opportunity to hear Dr. Joseph C. Robbins, foreign secretary of the Northern Baptist convention Sunday evening. Dr. Robbins has just returned from an extended tour through Asia and though a comparatively young man, is a recognized authority on matters pertaining to the far East. As a public speaker he is widely known for his manly vigor, enthusiasm and candor and is always heard with great interest. The hour of the Sunday night service has been changed to 7:30 for the fall and winter.
After weeks of suspended activities in which the Federation House staff devoted itself to the welfare of the relatives of stricken soldiers, the house this week resumed its weekly program of activities.
The Friday night entertainment each week is given by churches and other organizations, and is especially for the soldiers, their relatives and friends. All the other public activities, however, are for civilians as well, and the people of Ayer are cordially invited to have a large share therein. The Sunday evening services are religious and patriotic in character and the foremost public speakers are being booked for it. The moving picture entertainments on Monday, Wednesday and Saturday evenings and Sunday afternoons, consist of the greatest photo plays that can be procured, and the music also is made a special feature. The equipment for these entertainments is now complete in every detail, and unexcelled by even the most expensive houses. When this fact is generally known, the townspeople as well as the soldiers will welcome these superior entertainments.
The attractiveness of the Federation House for the soldiers is in part due to the opportunity it affords them to mingle with folks from civil life. For this reason, a large participation on the part of the community in all of its activities is earnestly solicited.
New Lot of Draftees. The following named draftees will be inducted into military service from District 15, between November 11 and 16, the men being sent in equal numbers to Camp Lee, Va., and Camp Sevier, S.C., the list being subject to minor changes later: …
Westford—Alfred A. Sutherland, Joseph A. Dureault, Henry F. Sears, Albert Duffy, Ralph W. Farnham, Joseph V. Dureault, Frithjof Angesen, Walter W. Fletcher, Joseph E. Cote, John A. Eliason, Alderic J. Cantara, Edward M. Abbott [sic], Joseph Orange. …
Graniteville—Wilfred Marron, Fortune Gaidel. …
Forge Village—William J. Mulligan, Edward T. Handley.