Tuesday, September 3, 1912

by Elizabeth

Finally I can write about what is in the Urbana Courier-Herald!

“Progressive headquarters have been established at 214 Main street, in the rooms formerly occupied by Claude E. Binyon.” This appeared in the personals column, amid all of the usual snippets about who visited whom, who is ill, and why one ought to shop for wall-paper at Leslie’s Drug Store. Later, on page 4, there is a notice about their campaign opening and a first meeting scheduled for tomorrow night. Among the speakers present will be a Rev. Otho Bartholow of Mt. Vernon, New York, whose “reputation as a speaker is well known.” I have heard Papa mention the new Progressive party—Mr. Roosevelt is their candidate. Mr. Roosevelt was our president before Mr. Taft—whom he selected to succeed him, but evidently now they are no longer friendly toward one another, as they are battling it out for the presidency, along with Mr. Wilson, the Democratic candidate. I would like to go to this meeting to hear what Rev. Bartholow has to say, but Papa says I am too young, and Mother says that ladies should leave politics to the men.

In the section with Illinois news by telegraph, there is a sad story from a town called Elizabeth about a woman who held her dead baby in her arms for six hours on a train, “fearful that she would be obliged to leave the train if she revealed the fact that her baby had died.”

There is also a report of a clever but unscrupulous Chicago fellow who was arrested by postal inspectors for fraud—he would read obituary columns in the public library to obtain names and then send cheap fountain pens to their addresses along with a bill for a far greater amount than their worth. “Many relatives paid the bills,” according to the report.

I am going to copy the full text of this item from Rockford that caught my eye, only because it is too sad for words. “The body of Miss Ludvicka Reder of Aurora, a nurse in a sanitarium here, who disappeared, was taken from Rock river. It is believed she committed suicide while temporarily deranged.” Yet in an article about a rich drowned man, investigators seem slower to jump to conclusions. I think I will just cut out the whole thing and paste it here.

In classified advertisements, I read how a man’s pocketbook was stolen at the fairgrounds by “a sneak thief in the jam at the flying machine.” Professor Wick continues to offer his services as a clairvoyant in his parlors on Church street in Champaign. And there is a weird advertisement of sorts under the heading CEMETERY—at least I think it may be an advertisement: “A piano, an auto, an outing and mother’s grave not endowed. Wonder if my children will be so ungrateful. Improvements and beauty being added to Mt. Hope daily.”

Finally, in St. Paul, Minnesota, a municipal court judge has ordered policemen, “Get the mashers parading St. Paul streets and insulting women. If caught red-handed give them a good clubbing, besides arresting them.”

My hand is cramping from all this writing. I suppose I had better go outside and air it out, lest it become twisted and ugly.