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75 Maple Street
Summit, NJ 07901
908.273.0350

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"Spider" Murphy Comes to Summit

llamaThe Summit Record of April 19, 1902 reported that the Board of Education discussed adopting a system used by other towns, in which teachers' salaries would be set according to the number of years of service in the district.

Common Council voted down a pay increase in for police officers, but approved a raise for the Police Captain, from $720 to $1,000 per year. The Editor expressed the opinion that the Captain's increased duties entitled him to a raise, but not as large a one as Council decided on. Another editorial criticised President Roosevelt for employing a press agent who only released such information as "the autocratic Rough Rider" decided to make public. He also criticized the leading U.S. daily newspapers for following the wishes of "America's Czar" and printing the press releases exactly as given.

Police Captain Brown arrested a man who had been going from house to house in Summit, asking for money. He claimed to be deaf and mute, with paralysed arms, and communicated with notes written by a pencil held in his mouth. He remained mute for most of the day after his arrest, and wrote that his name was James Davis. Captain Brown visited police headquarters in New York, and described the man and his activities. The officials informed him that his prisoner matched the description of "Spider" Murphy, a well-known New York crook. On returning to Summit, the Captain confronted the man, who dropped his pretense of muteness, and pleaded guilty to obtaining money under false pretenses.

New regulations of the Lackawanna Railroad decreed that cabbies and express drivers could not go onto the platform to solicit passengers, but would have to wait by their carriages.

Over fifty Summit residents were rehearsing daily for performances of "The Mikado", to be given at the Beechwood Hotel.

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

http://www.digifind-it.com/summit/home.php