Breaking news from 1912


By Jeff Gilliland - [email protected]



By the time you read this a new year will have been ushered in, which provides an opportune time to reflect back on years past. Or, in this case on a year long past.

As I was cleaning some old files from my computer recently, I came across a copy of the front page of the Aug. 1, 1912 edition of The News-Herald, a forerunner of the paper, or online edition, you’re reading.

As I glanced over the page I was taken aback by how little, in some ways, the print edition of newspapers have changed in 100-plus years. Then again there are stark differences. This 1912 front page had no photos (or art, as newspaper people call it). That would be pretty much unthinkable today. The placement of stories and which ones were deemed page 1 worthy were quite different than they are today. Real estate transfers, marriage licenses and meeting notices were all front page news in 1912. Today we don’t report on much of that stuff period.

There were 24 stories on the front page on the Aug. 1, 1912 The News-Herald. Today we average three to four front page stories.

The Aug. 1, 1912 News-Herald front page had six stories, all one column in width and all with what we call bumping headlines, across the top of page. They were: Court News, Heroic Effort, Committee Appointed, Over Billion Dollars, Teachers To Be Paid and Dillon Withdraw. Each of those “lead” stories had a “subhead,” or a smaller, more descriptive headline below the main headline.

As is usually the case when I look over old newspapers, I couldn’t help but read several of the stories. There were penned in a much different style, but the idea is still the same – to let the reader know what’s going on in their community.

Following are some of the stories I found the most interesting, with some minor editing:

To Rescue Two Drowning Girls, Results in Death of Priest Known Here – Father Francis E. Klauder, of Annapolis, Md., died in a hospital in that city Monday. Death resulted from pneumonia contracted in an effort to save two girls from drowning. Klauder conducted a mission at St. Mary’s Catholic Church here the last two years. The following telegram taken from Tuesday’s Cincinnati Enquirer tells of his death and his heroic effort to save the lives of the young girls: Father Francis E. Klauder, rector of St. Mary’s Catholic Church, died this morning at the Annapolis Emergency Hospital from pneumonia, which developed as a result of exposure and strain during his heroic efforts to save the lives of two girls last Friday at Horse Shoe Point, three miles above Annapolis. Though Klauder could not swim he rushed to their assistance and was beyond his depth and unconscious when rescued by a boy in a launch. Klauder was 51 years of age and of splendid physique. Klauder showed courage of the highest order in attempting the rescue of the young women, though unable to swim and there is no doubt that he sacrificed his life in doing so.

Death of Ira F. Hiestand – Ira F. Hiestand, aged 61 years, died at his home on W. Walnut street at 9:45 o’clock Saturday night. Mr. Hiestand was one of Highland County’s most progressive and successful farmers. The following sketch of his life was read at the funeral: Ira F. Hiestand, the oldest child of Joseph S. and Nancy Hiestand, was born at Hillsboro, Ohio, March 16, 1861 and spent the 61 years, 4 months and 11 days of his life near the place of his birth. On Sept. 10, 1871 he was united in marriage to Mary E. Fawley. To this union five children were born, one dying in infancy. The remaining four, Harry, Luna, Dorsa and Gladys, are still living. At the age of 14 he united with the M. E. Church at Pike Chapel and gave himself to God. For 47 years he was a faithful member to his church and a firm believer in Christ. His life was an open book. He had nothing to hide, nothing to fear, casting all upon his master. Over two years ago he became afflicted with that dreaded disease, paralysis. While he feared it would prove fatal he complained little, enduring his suffering with Christian fortitude and expressing himself ready for the end. At 9:45 Saturday evening he passed beyond as peacefully as one wrapping a mantle about himself and lying down for pleasant dreams. His past life and his belief in the future is shown in the words chosen by himself. “I shall be satisfied when I awake with thy likeness.”

Dam Project Revived – The project to build dams across Paint and Rocky Fork creeks near the Point has again been revived. The dams are for the purpose of securing power for the generating of electricity for heat, light and power. The project was agitated a few years ago and considerable preliminary work done at that time, such as surveying and locating the best places for the construction of the dams. Last week surveyors were again on the ground and it was understood that Columbus capitalists are now behind the movement. It would cost in the neighborhood of a million and a half dollars to carry the movement through. That the power can be secured for the generating of the electricity is undoubted. Whether capitalists can be made to see that it would be a paying proposition when completed is the main question.

Notice Farmers – Anyone wishing ground limestone for the soil apply to Highland Crushing Co. or I. W. Carey, Hillsboro, O. Plant is located at Stonypoint, near the farm of Thomas Nelson. As every progressive farmer knows, raw, pulverized limestone is of immense value in securing a stand and continued growth of alfalfa and for sweetening sour soil. Next location will be at Fallsville, 2 miles south of Careytown. Leave orders at plant or with I. W. Carey, Hillsboro, Ohio.

Rough House – A general rough house was had at the home of Frank Johnson Monday night. Johnson and his wife live in half of the house belonging to Rachel Ash, which is located in the alley running from Walnut to Main street. Johnson and his wife come from Bellhollow, Pike county. They had taken in a man by the name of Sam Williamson and a woman known both as Lizzie Dunn and Lizzie Gibson, who also are from Bellhollow. They are a tough set and when the Dunn woman got too much whiskey she started trouble. The Johnsons tried to get her to leave the house. During the fight which followed Williamson hit Mrs. Johnson with a rock and Mrs. Johnson hit Mrs. Dunn over the eye with a piece of crockery of some kind. Mrs. Johnson and Mrs. Dunn were arrested and taken before Mayor Wilkins Tuesday. They pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct and were each fined $25 and costs. They failed to settle and were taken to the Cincinnati workhouse Wednesday. Frank Johnson’s trial is set for Friday and the police are looking for Williamson, who is thought to have gone to Pike county.

Reach Jeff Gilliland at 937-402-2522 or on Twitter @13gillilandj.

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By Jeff Gilliland

[email protected]

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