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The Case of the Missing Rabbits

UntitledThe Summit Record of July 26, 1902 reported that thieves broke into the rabbit coop behind the home of Mr. William Coggeshall, and stole 45 Belgian hares. Mr. Coggeshall had been raising the rabbits for sale, and said that particular breed was worth $5-$15 each. Estimated total value of the rabbits was $200. No one in the house heard anything during the night, and there was no clue to the identity of the thieves.

Summer activities offered both amusement and prizes to local residents and seasonal visitors. The YMCA lawn tennis tournament awarded a silver cup as the first prize, and a burnt wood ping-pong racquet as second prize. A euchre party at the Blackburn Hotel offered as prizes for women: a cut glass dish, a picture, and a silver hat pin. For men: a silver ash receiver, a silver match safe, and a funny picture. That final prize was won by Mrs. Thuman, who filled a male role due to the shortage of men players.

The Editor recommended that Summit consider an ordinance to require wagons with heavy loads to use wide tires, since narrow tires caused more damage to macadamized roads.

In the Classifieds: Lost, a green silk umbrella with a silver and mother-of-pearl handle. For Sale, a nearly-new gentleman's chainless 1900 Spalding bicycle for $25.

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And Down Comes Baby

dresses frumkinThe Summit Herald of July 19, 1929 reported that the year-and-a-half-old daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Wallace Lee fell from an upper-story porch through a gap in a the railing. She amazed everyone by surviving a story-and-a-half fall onto a concrete walk, and returned home after just a few days stay at Overlook Hospital.

The scheduled Common Council meeting had to be postponed, as four of the seven members were away on vacation or business trips, and there was no quorum. The Union County Mosquito Commission was concerned to discover unusual numbers of Mansonia Perturbans mosquitoes in the Summit/New Providence area. That particular species, rare in New Jersey, was known to give severe bites.

Recently arrived guests at the Hotel Suburban included travelers from Chicago, Boston, Brooklyn, Freehold, Newark, Philadelphia, and Short Hills. Miss Elsa, supervisor of dancing for the Union County Park Commission was giving lessons in folk dancing on the twelve playgrounds in the county park system. The Summit Kiwanis Club was planning a minstrel show in October to raise money for the underprivileged fund.

Charles Dawes, newly-appointed Ambassador to the United Kingdom, announced that he would not be serving liquor in the London embassy, even though alcohol was legal there.

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Dancing in the Street

klocksin2The Summit Herald of July 12, 1932 reported that the Board of Health passed an ordinance requiring owners of vacant lots to remove any ragweed growing on their property. The Board also discussed concerns about a health camp which was recently established on a 4-acre plot of land at 417 Morris Avenue. The camp, for undernourished Hebrew children from Newark, did not have a permit.

The city's Fourth of July celebrations, postponed due to rain, were held on the following Saturday. They concluded in the evening with a block dance in front of the YMCA. It was attended by 2,000 people. A local band, the 12-piece Aeolian Orchestra, began with military and patriotic tunes, then switched to contemporary popular music. Corn meal was scattered on the street to make a smooth surface for dancing.

At one point, attendees were startled to hear the sound of nearby gunshots. Police Officer Russell Leslie stopped a car whose driver appeared to be drunk. When ordered to step out of the car, the man sped away. Officer Leslie fired two shots, then pursued in a borrowed car. He was forced to abandon the chase, but as the driver left behind his licence, he was later arrested at his apartment in Vauxhall.

The Library has a searchable database of local historical newspapers. Search or browse at: