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May 27 1921/2021

Let us celebrate the 100th birthday of a very special man, Harold Gary, born May 28, 1921 on the Gary family homestead, Devine Ridge, Rush Township, Susquehanna County. Harold graduated from Rush High school and after a year at Drew University he enlisted in the Navy during World War II. After the War he came back to Susquehanna County where he farmed and expanded his long list of accomplishments. Harold became, without doubt, THE knowledgeable historian of Rush Township. A trip on the back roads of the township provided this lady with over 20 pages, front and back, of Rush history and the people who lived there. At the end of his book, Nostalgia Revisited, Harold philosophized: “As I wrote the pages for my book, I began to wonder if I have been a little like my Dad….or my Grandfather…It feels good to think of that possibility. I’m not that naïve to think they would be happy with all aspects of my life, but I would like to know if I have “passed the test.” In the eyes of those who know you, Harold, you have “passed the test.” Happy Birthday!

If you know of other 100th birthday celebrations please contact

This is also the 31st anniversary of the weekly “100 Years Ago” column, started in 1990 to celebrate the 100th birthday of the Susquehanna County Historical Society. The column can be found in the Susquehanna County Independent, The Forest City News and the Susquehanna Transcript. Back issues will be found on our web site:

Forest City – Charles O’Malley, a former Forest City boy, and brother of Pat O’Malley, who has won fame in the movie world, has broken into the movies and was seen at Binghamton, Monday evening. A number from here were at Binghamton to witness this play. ALSO W. M. Clark, of Endicott, NY, for many years a resident of this place, accompanied by his son, Benjamin, daughter, Miss Louise Clark, and grandson, Manzer Clark, were guests at the home of Wm. Watkins over Sunday. Mr. Clark is 84 years young and is as spry as many men many years younger. He is a veteran of the Civil War [Co. G, 187th Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers] and for several years was the only veteran of that war residing here, an honor now resting upon Ludwig Conrad.

Great Bend – Fred Ives, Jr., who is employed at the new Erie terminal in Susquehanna, narrowly escaped drowning Tuesday morning. He accidentally slipped into an ask pit, 12 feet deep, which was nearly full of water. In falling he struck his head, rendering him unconscious and helpless. John Collins, a hostler, was nearby and he grabbed up a hook and succeeded in fastening it into the drowning man’s clothing and dragged him out. The man was later attended by a physician and is recovering.

Uniondale – So far as is known, Richard and Morris Davis, of this place, and James Keech, of South Gibson, are the only known survivors of Co. C, 151st Pennsylvania Volunteers. Mr. Keech is in poor health. The company was composed of Clifford, Gibson and Herrick township volunteers. They were organized at Montrose and after training at Harrisburg they were sent to the Army of the Potomac where they engaged in the battles of Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville and were nearly wiped out at Gettysburg.

Franklin Twp. – Newton W. Emmons, one of the best known and experienced geologists in North America, has been secured by the Montrose Gas, Oil & Coal Co. to make a geological survey of the region leased by the company at Salt Springs. By a careful system of working out the structure of the rock formation, he will be able to locate the anti-clines and select the places where the first holes are to be bored.

Brooklyn – Mrs. Aurllea Brown, celebrated her 98thbirthday on May 25, 1921. She is probably the oldest person in the county. Aurllea came to Pennsylvania from Rhode Island in an ox-cart when seven years old.

Thompson – The work of moving, repairing and remodeling the M. E. church is begun. A force of men were authorized to commence. The plan of the church was designed by Mr. Putnam of Corning, NY and when completed will present a most pleasing and picturesque appearance.

Harford – The Harford baseball team defeated the Dimock team in an exciting game on the Fair grounds. For the first seven innings the home team maintained a comfortable lead, but in the 8th the visitors rallied and succeeded in tying the score in the 9th, but Harford succeeded in bringing in the needed run, winning 10-9. The catching of Ray Tingley and fielding and hitting of Jay Fancher were features of the game.

Springville – Few men have more friends than Ed. Thomas and the source of his popularity is not difficult to trace—he is always most genial, and with a good story or two on tap: He was in town Tuesday and regaled his friends with stories of a new vintage. For many years Mr. Thomas conducted the grist mill at Springville, now owned by Brown & Fassett, of which Harry Turrell is manager, and when he tells of buckwheat flour selling at 35 cents a sack of 25 lbs., and cornmeal at $10 a ton years ago, he is often obliged to haul out his old books and prove his assertion, these prices seeming absolutely ridiculous at this time. Everything (barring potatoes at 30 cents a bushel) is different now. We are living in a different age. ALSO “Like father, like son,” is an old expression and was literally true in a sense at Brown & Fassett’s feed mill the other day, when the genial manager first weighed Ed Stockholm, of Franklin Forks, then his son, George, a lad of 14 years, and both tipped the scales at 200 pounds. Both are types of virulent American manhood.

Memorial Day: Soon after the close of the Civil War, in 1866, an organization composed of the discharged soldiers, sailors and marines was formed under the name of the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR). In May of 1868, a conference was held resulting in the famous Order, No 11, instituting the day, May 30th, as Memorial Day, which has been religiously and reverentially observed ever since by that organization and the good citizens generally.

Daughters of Veterans Will Sell Poppies: There will be a national movement to wear the poppy on Memorial Day, in memory of our brave boys “who sleep over there.” The poppies are made of silk and are sold for 10 cents each. The entire proceeds are to be sent to the relief of the little French orphans.

Compiled By: Betty Smith

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