Bluestocking Journal

Real history, through the eyes of a fictional person

Tag: automobiles

Friday, November 29, 1912

Two Mahomet men were on their way to Urbana in an automobile Wednesday evening when the machine ran off a bridge six miles west of Champaign. They were found an hour later, pinioned beneath the overturned vehicle, unconscious from exposure, with only their heads above water. Neither was hurt badly, but they are suffering from nervous shock and it is feared they may develop pneumonia. “It is almost certain that had relief come thirty minutes later, both men would have died. The water was freezing rapidly and Thursday morning the stream was covered with ice nearly an inch thick.”

Another letter-box outrage, supposed to be the work of militant suffragists, was committed in the center of London. Acid was poured into letter boxes throughout the financial district, including Threadneedle street, the stock exchange and the Mansion house, the official residence of the lord mayor of London. Many letters were destroyed and much inconvenience was caused.” I am not sure how this vandalism came to be associated with suffragists, for it makes no sense to do such a thing and not at least claim responsibility for it. Perhaps they are convenient scape-goats?

Saturday, November 9, 1912

The entire Champaign police force raided Hattie Gara’s notorious maison de joie at 201 North Water street in Champaign last night. Mrs. Gara, nine male patrons, and five female inmates were taken to the station. The patrons, whose names are listed in the paper, settled this morning for $7.50 each; Mrs. Gara and her girls await a hearing, but the usual fine is $27.50 for the proprietor and $17.50 for each girl.

A hardware store and a grocery were burglarized last night, although not much loot was taken: six razors, several knives, and a shaving brush from the hardware store, and nothing at all from the grocery, although a window had been pried open. The police have sent to Danville for bloodhounds.

A woman brought two boys who had been shooting pigeons into the Urbana police station. “Chief of Police Lindstrum disarmed them, taking an air rifle from one and a ‘nigger-shooter‘ from the other.”

The University of Illinois has opened a new archaeological museum in Lincoln Hall. Many interesting things are there, including the head of an Egyptian mummy!

A Chicago woman, the wife of a Democratic committeeman, sat in her home all night, reading election returns. She remarked, “I am glad Wilson won, because he is a good man.” A moment later, she fell dead, probably from strain caused by the election.

And finally, a hydroaeroplane beat an automobile in a race from Omaha to New Orleans. “The flying machine showed its ability to go about three miles to the automobile’s one, except when the automobile was using the best of roads.”

Auto Bargain

This ad appeared in the Urbana Courier-Herald on October 18, 1912.

Friday, October 11, 1912

On Wednesday, T. F. McCaferty ran his automobile through the plate glass window of the Kelley shoe store at Main and Neil streets in Champaign, but he “evidently was not content with so mild a form of excitement” and last evening drove his machine in front of a street car at State and Church streets. “The auto was smashed up, but McCaferty escaped with a severe shaking up.” Perhaps Mr. McCaferty should abandon the idea of motorcars altogether and get himself a nice horse and carriage.

The University senate may very well forbid the giving of the agricultural dance this year. “The chief objection against the dance is the large number that attend. The members of the senate committee are convinced that on this account the control of the dancers is well nigh impossible.” If you lose control of dancers, what happens? Do they careen into walls?

Monday, September 30, 1912

Two men claim to have seen a biplane fly over Urbana at ten o’clock this morning! “There is considerable speculation over the event as coming of the stranger of the air was not heralded.”

The sorority rushing season closed on Saturday “amid bedlam on John street. A burlesque band of students paraded in derision, while whirling autos driven by co-eds, carried pledges from their rooms to the sorority houses. There was plenty of excitement for two hours.”

John Philip Sousa, who will be here on Thursday, loves trap shooting. “Although he is an excellent shot, it is said he misses clay pigeons oftener than he allows a member of his band to play a false note.”

On Friday and Saturday at the state fair, Madame Somebody-or-Other from Cuba will drive her automobile down a 75-foot incline and turn a triple somersault! (I cannot make out her actual name, because there is a spot of jam over it. Strawberry, I believe.)

Illinois Socialists filed their list of presidential electors and University of Illinois trustees with the secretary of state; all of the trustee candidates are women of Chicago. And finally, the champion corn husker of Illinois sued another man for $20,000, charging “alienation of his wife’s affections.”