The Westford Wardsman, October 4, 1919
Center. Mr. and Mrs. Everett Lord and baby daughter, of Berwick, Me., have been in town this past week and Mrs. Lord, formerly Miss Evelyn Hamlin, has been attending to some furniture in her old home this last week, having been recently sold to Robert Prescott.
Dr. and Mrs. Edward Atwood and Miss Evelyn Atwood, of Daytona, Fla., are visiting at the home of the Misses Atwood.
Miss Libbie Cohen has resigned from the teaching staff of the academy to accept a more desirable position. This was the beginning of Miss Cohen’s second year in Westford.
Mrs. Jennie M. Fifield, of Nashua, N.H., has been visiting with Mr. and Mrs. H. A. Ferguson, and was present at the agricultural fair, greeting old friends.
While there has been frost in the lowlands on Westford hill, frost has held off well and corn and other garden stuff has not been injured.
Owing to prolonged duty in the state guard, Principal Roudenbush at the academy is to have a substitute until he is released.
The opening meeting of the Tadmuck club comes one week from next Tuesday, October 14. The president’s opening address, report from the annual meeting of the State Federation in June, a special speaker, music and a club tea all promise to make up a most attractive afternoon.
Sunday is to be rally day at the Congregational church. Mr. Brownsey will preach a brief sermon; subject, “The call of the new era,” and at 11:45 the Sunday school will have a specially prepared program. Subject for the evening service at 7:15 will be “How to live in a confused world.”
There will be a meeting of the Unitarian Alliance on Saturday afternoon, October 11, at the church parlors, and Miss Lucy Lowell, of National Alliance, will be the speaker.
The young people are arranging for one of their popular dancing parties at the town hall on Friday evening, October 10.
Still Doing Police Duty. Company H of the 11th Regiment of the state guard, which is the Westford company, about seventy-four in number, remain on active duty in Boston. They are quartered at the South Armory and are patrolling a district from Summer street to Park square and to Atlantic avenue and westward by South station. This is perhaps territory that contains property value per square foot as large as any in the city. Better sleeping arrangements are being made for the men, cots being provided instead of the pallets of straw, and better ventilation is being arranged for. The South Armory was never planned to house as large a number of men and with a prolonged stay better arrangements are being made. The hours of duty are from twelve midnight to eight in the morning. The men, while they get pretty tired, are well and game for what is expected of them, although much to the sacrifice of their own affairs. The men under forty-five years of age have been inoculated against typhoid fever.
Agricultural Fair. Notwithstanding so many families being affected by absences in the state guard, the annual agricultural fair of the Congregational church which has been an annual autumn event for thirty years, was held at the town hall last week Friday afternoon and evening and was very much of a success. The results were a good social time, a good sale and good financial returns. The committees in charge wish to express their very sincere appreciation for the generous support and patronage extended.
There were sales tables for aprons, fancy and useful articles and candy. Supper was served from six to eight and at eight o’clock an enjoyable entertainment was given. This consisted of singing by all from the community song sheets, and music by the Precious orchestra—Miss Carolyn Precious [age 18] piano, Miss Mildred Precious [age 15] violin, Miss Pamelia Precious [age 16] cornet. A pleasing one-act play, “An evening at home,” under the direction of Mrs. W. R. Taylor, was well given. Those who took the parts were Mr. and Mrs. W. R. Taylor, Mrs. Perley E. Wright, Mrs. Edna Woods, Gordon Seavey and Miss Ruth Johnson.
There were exhibits of fruits and vegetables from A. H. Burnham, the Cold Spring farm, the Drew Fruit farm, James Wilson, George W. Kimball, Perry Shupe, George Shaddick, Mrs. Lucy Keyes, Gordon Seavey, H. G. Osgood, 14 varieties of apples, Miss Lambert and a table of handsome produce from A. A. Hildreth and family.
The Girls’ Canning club had a handsome display of canned fruits and vegetables—Miss Anna Shaddick 1st prize, Miss Edna Sargent 2d, Miss Marion Woodbury 3d.
The committees in charge were Rev. O. L. Brownsey, Miss L. B. Atwood, arrangements; Misses S. W. Loker, C. S. Atwood, Mary Green, apron table; Miss Winnifred Green, Mrs. A. E. Day, Mrs. Roudenbush, Mrs. H. M. Bartlett, Ladies’ Aid; Mrs. L. W. Wheeler, Mrs. G. F. White, Mrs. S. B. Watson, Mrs. O. L. Brownsey, Mrs. C. L. Hildreth, fancy table; Mrs. Shupe, Miss Grace Ranney, fish pond for the children; Mrs. Blaney, Mrs. Gumb, Mrs. Felch, Mrs. Whitney, candy; Mrs. McMaster, Mrs. S. L. Taylor, Mrs. George Whitney, Miss Martha Hildreth, Mrs. Frank Chandler, Mrs. Perkins, Mrs. Banister, supper; Miss May Atwood, Mr. Rafter, display of fruits and vegetables; W. R. Taylor, assisted by Mr. Pollock and Otis Day, auctioneer for fruits and vegetables; Miss May E. Day, ticket seller for both afternoon and evening.
About Town. “The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof.” Interpreting this on a selfish basis the fruit farm of Dr. Varney on the hill overlooking West Chelmsford was relieved of forty bushels of McIntosh apples Tuesday evening. These intruders picked the apples from the trees, under the protest of Mrs. Lambert, the wife of the superintendent of the farm, he being in Boston as military police. Mrs. Lambert was threatened with free transportation to the unknown land if there was any attempt to call the police.
Mr. and Mrs. Welch, from Oklahoma, are visiting Arthur E. Day’s. Mrs. Welch is a cousin of Mrs. Arthur Day.
Mrs. Jones, of Ayer, is visiting with Mrs. Emma Day at the John Warren Day farm.
The Grange cancelled its neighbors’ night invitation with Stow Grange, owing to inconvenience of transportation, poor sleighing and other unforeseen hindrances.
Mrs. Ada Keizer and baby have been visiting her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Quincy Day, and her grandmother, Mrs. Emma Day.
Mr. and Mrs. Alison Kimball of Maine, and four children and two sisters and family have been visiting their sister, Mrs. Shay, on Cold Spring road. Sixteen in all sat down to dinner last Sunday. Mr. Kimball and family left Tuesday morning to visit his brother in California.
Mr. Hanscom is back from the west and with his usual interest in public affairs attended the adjourned town meeting.
The large crop of apples have made the limbs sag and prices are feeling the sag. Most all trees over-run the estimate; some trees are just packed with apples when you can pick ten barrels off a tree not yet arrived at more than half size.
Gardner W. Pearson, of Lowell, former adjutant, won in the recount for nomination as senator in the seventh district of Senator Eames by nineteen votes.
Special Town Meeting. The adjourned town meeting met on Wednesday evening with Sherman H. Fletcher as moderator; and Arthur E. Day, clerk.
Under Article 2 it was voted to choose a board of health at the next annual meeting.
Under Article 3 it was voted to appropriate the additional sum of $5000 for roads, largely on account of the Graniteville road which the state is building and the town is paying.
Article 4. Voted the additional sum of $2000 for schools, largely made necessary by transporting of scholars from Brookside to Westford.
Art. 5. It was voted to appropriate the additional sum of $300 for use of the public nurse.
Art. 6. To hear report of committee to investigate the feasibility of the town operating the electric railroad from Westford to Brookside. After a lengthy report on conditions from way back to the present, the report was unanimous and emphatic in deeming it unwise for the town to take over said road and operate it. The report was signed by the selectmen, Oscar R. Spalding, Sherman H. Fletcher, Frank L. Furbush, by the school committee, Charles O. Prescott, T. Arthur E. Wilson, John Spinner, Arthur E. Day and representing the finance committee, William R. Taylor, Elbert H. Flagg, Herbert V. Hildreth.
Graniteville. A series of motion pictures showing the value of following the rule of “Safety first” was shown in the Abbot clubhouse here on last Monday night to a large and appreciative audience. The show was given under the auspices of the Abbot Worsted Co. and will no doubt prove of great value to the employees as time goes on. A representative from one of the insurance companies also gave a brief talk during the evening.
The members of the American legion, composed of Westford service men, held a meeting here on last Tuesday evening with a large attendance. This branch now has about seventy members on the roster.
Miss Isabelle Carpentier, whose approaching marriage to William F. Buckingham is among the events of the near future, was tendered a miscellaneous shower at her home here on last Monday evening. Miss Carpentier was the recipient of many pretty gifts from her numerous friends. During the evening refreshments were served. A very pleasing entertainment was given and a good time enjoyed by all.
A party of young men from Nashua, N.H., while driving a Ford car through here late Saturday night, crashed into the fence near Abbot’s corner and but for the post the machine would have toppled into the pond, where there is forty feet of water at this point. None of the party were injured, but the machine was badly damaged and on Sunday was towed to the local garage.
Many from this vicinity took in the many attractions at the Groton fair last week and report a very enjoyable time.
Forge Village. A very pleasant surprise party was held at the home of Mrs. Charles Smith, recently, when their daughter, Miss Veronica, was presented with a large traveling bag. Miss Smith was greatly surprised, but expressed her appreciation. A general good time was enjoyed by all, and refreshments were served. Miss Smith, who has been a great social favorite among her many friends here, left Monday morning to attend school in Manchester, N.H.
Mrs. Jane Dare and daughter Clara spent the weekend at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Edwin C. Harrigan of Boston.
Miss Margaret O’Hara has returned to Camp Lee, Va., after a ten-days’ furlough spent here at the home of her sister, Mrs. Jane Dare, and her many friends. Miss O’Hara spent many months in France with the A.E.F., and in Germany with the army of occupation.
Mr. and Mrs. Carl Lydia and son Charles are spending a two-weeks’ vacation at the home of Mrs. Lydia’s parents, of Fitzwilliam, N.H.
Mrs. Elmer E. Nutting, who has resigned from the postoffice here, has been succeeded by Mrs. William Couchaine.
Miss Sarah J. Precious spent the weekend at the home of her sister, Mrs. Michael Keefe, in Townsend Harbor.
Miss Ethel Baker, of Amsterdam, N.Y., is visiting her aunt, Mrs. Fred Davis.
Miss Beatrice Hosmer substituted for Mrs. Nelson O’Clair at Cameron school on Monday. Mr. and Mrs. O’Clair have moved into the lower half of the house owned by Miss Abbie Splaine. Miss Abbie Splaine, who has been seriously ill and under the care of a trained nurse, is resting more comfortably.
Joseph Ricard has been very ill and under the care of Dr. Harry Colburn.
Miss Edith Forster, of Cambridge, spent the weekend with friends here.
Moreland Wetmore, of Brookline, was the guest of George L. P. Shaddick over the weekend.
Principal William C. Roudenbush has now been on guard duty in Boston since the strike, and unless he is discharged from duty an effort will be made to secure a substitute teacher for French and Latin at the academy. Mrs. Harold W. Hildreth has been acting principal.
W.C.C.S. Notes. A meeting was held at the Soldiers’ club on West street on Tuesday evening in the interest of the American Legion, and as part of the national drive for members, which is now being carried on. The local post of the Legion, as well as the Shirley post and the Camp Devens post, were invited to be present. The local post attended in a body and the other two posts were well represented. Dr. H. B. Hopkins, commander of the Joseph Connors post [139 of Ayer] and Commander Grant of the Camp Devens post occupied seats on the speakers platform. The state committee of the American Legion provided two speakers for the meeting—Henry R. Williams of the Somerville post and Howard H. Norton of the navy.
The two speakers outlined the advantages of the Legion and told of the work of their own posts. They also touched on the influence that the posts have in Washington, where a post of the Legion can accomplish much that an individual alone could not do. Commanders Hopkins and Grant also addressed the meeting.
A contribution of the War Camp Community Service to this meeting was the services of the Ives brass quartet of Boston, who gave a fine program of musical selections. Song leader Dane of Boston, a well known W.C.C.S. song leader, was present and led the singing, while Mrs. Robinson of Groton presided at the piano.
War Camp Community Service work will close all over the country on October 31. This is occasioned by an order of the war department that no more funds are to be used for war camp purposes after October 31. The local organization plans to operate until this order becomes effective, but unless some community organization takes charge of the work here it will close on that date.
Miss Higgins, a native of Omaha, Neb., who is connected with the New York headquarters of the W.C.C.S., has been secured to arrange and stage a pageant in town. Miss Higgins is a national pageant worker and has just finished the production of a large outdoor pageant, which was given in New London, Conn. Miss Higgins will need about one hundred persons for the local pageant, which will be put on at the Soldiers’ club on West street late this month. Committees from the ladies of Ayer are to be formed to assist in the work.
Mrs. Tuttle of New London, Conn., a prominent W.C.C.S. worker in Connecticut, is visiting Miss Higgins at the Soldiers’ club for a few days.
Clipping. The following, addressed to the editor, was taken from a recent issue of the Boston Herald:
I read in this morning’s issue of the Herald the editorial “Bring the invalids to Devens hospital” and I am glad that there is a Boston paper that will stand for the New England boys who in these so-called days of peace are apparently side-tracked and temporarily forgotten. I regret that public sentiment isn’t stronger and that it doesn’t reach the ears of the directors in Washington so that these homesick, heartsick, battered heroes, at distant hospitals like Plattsburg, N.Y., and Fox Hill, Staten Island, might be returned to their home territory, at least.
I have been a weekly worker and visitor at the base hospital at Camp Devens for several months, and have known several hundred men. Scores of them I can call by name, my visits were so frequent. I also had many men at my country place here in Pepperell for a day or weekend, averaging about twenty each week, for rest and recuperation. I came to know them very well and when they were suddenly notified of their “move on” to Plattsburg, fifteen of them who were able came to say goodbye. They left very reluctantly and since then I have received many letters of discontent and deep regret for their transfers, with many a good word for “old Devens” and the good people who came in to cheer them up while there and lend them a helping hand.
I hope your paper may impress on the minds of our influential public-spirited, patriotic New England citizens that the human thing to do is to restore our boys to their home territory when Plattsburg closes October first, and why not back to old Camp Devens hospital? Personally, I have opened my home here in Pepperell to convalescent and disabled soldiers and sailors and could the boys come back to Devens they would be within a few miles of it and enjoy its privileges.
I hope something may occur to bring about this result. C. B. Hamilton.
The editorial above referred to was as follows:
We have been thrilled with the spectacle of our returned heroes marching by with gleaming bayonets and the engines of war. The parades show the boys are back, the war is over, the various communities rejoice and welcome their own. We are filled with pride and joy. We think of them all as home, but they are not all home. Many are in army hospitals still, under army control and army discipline. Hundreds of our Massachusetts boys are lying in beds in hospitals, or slowly and painfully moving about in the wards in a long fight with gas-infected, filth-infected wounds. And these are of the bravest and best of our sons. We must not forget them. They must be made to realize that we “know how it is.”
Most of the New England sick and wounded boys were brought to Camp Devens from overseas, and here the old base hospital was the scene of hundreds of family reunions too full of joy for words. But during the summer disquieting rumors arose and finally the hard fact, and most of these boys were shipped away from Camp Devens hospital out of New England to hospitals in Plattsburg, Staten Island and the south. Some of these transfers have been necessary, being special cases in need of very special treatment not procurable at Camp Devens. But the rank and file of cases could be cared for here certainly as well as at Plattsburg.
Now comes the announcement that the Plattsburg hospital closes the first of October, and that our Massachusetts boys are once more to be tilted through the train windows on litters or loaded on with crutches and canes, or hobbled on to be shipped along to the next place, which may be Staten Island, Walter Reed or what not, but which is certainly not home or near home. All reports from Plattsburg agree on the one point “the boys are homesick for Devens; they gather round and each contributes his bit of news from the home camp.” As one boy expresses it, “I had contentment at Camp Devens, and one can gain if he has contentment.”
Why should these boys who have been up against the horrors of hell, whose souls have been seared beyond cure, be denied so simple a thing as the chance to be near home, where they can be visited by the home people or where they can go home on a weekend pass while this long drawn out healing takes place?
Let us make every effort with the war department to arrange for the return of all possible Massachusetts boys from Plattsburg to Camp Devens on the first of October, and then to transfer an additional force of the most skillful physicians and surgeons to hasten cures, to open up the physical therapy work again, and finally to return the boys to their homes with wounds healed and muscles and nerves restored as much as possible to normal and with spirit calm and reposeful.