Out of the Past
100 years ago
The Virginia Corporation Commission has granted the Winchester and Washington City Railway Co. permission to change its name to the Northern Virginia Power Co., and the change was made a few days ago.
The change in name was made principally, according to President Lewis F. Cooper of Winchester, on account of the fact that the company does not intend to engage in the electric railway business but to confine its effort to supplying electricity for municipalities generally in Virginia, Maryland, and West Virginia.
It has been operating very extensively in these three states, furnishing power for a large number of stone and lime plants and numerous manufacturing concerns.
May 5, 1913
STEPHENS CITY — All the people of this place and its immediate vicinity were greatly shocked and startled about 2:30 o’clock yesterday afternoon, when a telephone message was received stating that Mr. J. William Lemley, one of the most prominent and popular residents of Stephens City, had died suddenly of heart disease near the Cedar Creek battlefield while piloting a party of young people over that famous ground where one of the most noted battles of the Civil War was fought.
It is said that Mr. Lemley was pointing out a place where he and two others, then mere boys, were injured by the explosion of a shell half a century ago, from the effects of which he was always slightly lame thereafter.
He was 63 years old.
May 6, 1913
Over his signature, Harry K. Thaw, in the Matewan, (N.Y.) State Hospital, made emphatic denial that by any possibility he could be the father of Russell Thaw, the two and a half-year-old child, who was taken abroad Sunday by Mrs Evelyn Nesbit Thaw, who proclaimed him as her son.
The picture of Mrs. Thaw and her son interested him greatly. He read the account of the sailing of his wife and closely scanned the reproduction of the photograph of the child.
He declared he and his wife had been permanently separated for more than five years.
May 7, 1913
General approval is being given in Alabama to Dr. George H. Denny, president of the university of that state, and formerly head of Washington and Lee University at Lexington, for his action in barring the turkey trot and similar dances in his institution.
In publishing the regulations to this effect, Dr. Denny, who has many friends in Winchester, said the moral tone at the University of Alabama has always been good, and he proposes to keep it so.
Commenting on the approval given him all over the state, he says that one statement to the effect that nothing occurred at recent dances given by the students that is not constantly occurring at social functions in other communities, is not to the point.
Believing that the turkey trot, the tango and similar dances are immoral and indecent, he has resolved they shall not be danced at the university.
May 8, 1913
Snowballs in bloom are blamed for the recent cold snap. Persons who observe early spring changes assert that a cold wave always comes when snowballs bloom.
The temperature fell to 40 degrees and overcoats and furs came out of their hiding places where they had been stored away in a bath of mothballs for the summer.
May 13, 1913
75 years ago
Dr. Walter S. Hough, entomologist at the Winchester Research Laboratory, has identified a rare insect found in the Skyline Caverns, near Front Royal, as the camel cricket, it was learned today. The insect was discovered by Walter Amos, under whose direction the cavern is being developed. It will be opened to the public early this summer.
Mr. Amos said he has learned that similar insects have been found in the Mammoth Cave in Kentucky. The specimens he has found are about the size of a house cricket, have a back with a hump like that of a camel, and are brownish green in color.
April 19, 1938
At a recent meeting of the Quarterly Conference of Braddock Street Methodist Episcopal Church, South, called especially for that purpose, approval was given to a transaction whereby the Dandridge property on North Braddock Street will be made available to the Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Co. for the erection of a super-store.
It is the plan of the A&P Co. to merge their three local stores. The lot obtained for this purpose lends itself well to the construction of a super store in that there will be considerably more space at the proposed site for parking than is the case at any of the three stores now operated.
April 30, 1938
Wilbur Johnston, a member of the local post office staff, said today that the special cachet designed by himself and drawn by George Jones, also a member of the post office force, has attracted much attention among stamp collectors all over the eastern part of the nation.
Covers are being sent here from as distant points as Vermont, Illinois, Florida and many more nearby states. This cachet will be imprinted on air mail letters leaving Winchester on May 19 on the first official flight to Washington, a part of the local celebration of Air Mail week, May 15-21, inclusive.
Anyone in Winchester or Frederick County wishing to send a letter on that day should have it in the post office by the morning of Thursday, May 19, on which day the flight will be made.
May 13, 1938
50 years ago
BERRVYILLE — Mary Helen Ramsburg, 17-year-old Clarke County 4H Club member, has won first place in a contest of egg cookery in the state.
Miss Ramsburg, and Miss Edith Quinley of Pennington Gap, have been chosen to compete in the National Cook-off set for May 16 and 17 in Chicago.
She was awarded a $50 war bond by the Virginia Egg Council, Richmond.
May 8, 1963
25 years ago
Winchester made history in Tuesday’s municipal election when Elizabeth Glaize Helm was elected as the city’s first woman mayor.
Mrs. Helm, 56, is president of Glaize Developments and former chairman of the Downtown Development Board. Her father, Fred L. Glaize Sr. was a Democratic councilman, and was president of the council from 1948 to 1950.
May 11, 1988
— Compiled by Priscilla Lehman (firstname.lastname@example.org)