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Two Ashwood women work in mercury mine during World War II to assist war effort.

MADRAS PIONEER LOGO - The Madras Pioneer looks back through the past 100 years of newspaper archives.100 YEARS AGO

August 14, 1919

There are several ways in which we learn the things we know. Everyone knows about that old "experience" one. It is not for being the most expensive method. After that we learn from what we see and what we read.

Naturally, our greatest opportunity lies in the latter method. All business is conducted upon lines which are printed, with but very few exceptions. The best habit a modern man or woman can get into is the habit of reading the magazines and newspapers of the day. But in the stress and hurry of modern times the fact is noticeable that the good reading is getting less and less attention.

How many of the younger folks today read Scott, Dickens, or Thackery and Byron? It is a fact that the delights of these authors are largely unknown to the younger generation. The Pioneer seriously advises the people of Jefferson County to take advantage of the books of this nature which can be easily secured free of charge from the Jefferson County Library Association. Reading them will be found a delightful change to sandwich in with our rushing type of modern literature.

75 YEARS AGO

August 10, 1944

Two Jefferson County women are certainly doing their bit in the war effort. The operations of Horseheaven Mercury mines, which most women are afraid to enter, now have two women on their crew.

Miss Alice Gill, of Ashwood, is operator of an electric hoist about a mile underground, lowering the men and material to different mine levels and bringing up the ore. Mrs. Bettie Bannon, also of Ashwood, is swing shift operator of the plant. Her main duties consist of cooking the ore in the furnace, serving the diesel motors, dynamos and compressor and tramming calcine.

Miss Gill is the daughter of Frank Gill, for many years an employee of Horseheaven mine, and Mrs. Bannon is the wife of W.J. Bannon, a well-known rancher of Ashwood.

50 YEARS AGO

August 14, 1969

Editor's note: The following story is not intended to bring offense to members of the local medical profession nor to area residents who may feel the causes of death listed below pertain to any of their late relatives. Names of the victims and dates of death have been purposely omitted as are the names of the physicians who wrote the following quotations. The quotations were gleaned from death certificate files in the Jefferson County Courthouse which are open to the public.

Last week, a number of daily newspapers across the nation carried a United Press International wire service story which contained some grim humor. The story, datelined Merillian, Wisconsin, listed a number of causes of death written on death certificates by doctors for the chief statistician in Wisconsin.

Among the causes of death written by the doctors in Merillian in 1917 were:

"A mother died in infancy," "The deceased had never been fatally sick," "Died suddenly, at the age of 103," "Went to bed feeling well, but woke up dead," "Kicked by horse shod on left kidney," "Pulmonary hemmorage, sudden death. Duration four years," "Deceased died from blood poisoning, caused by a broken ankle, which is remarkable, as the automobile that struck him between the lamp and the radiator."

Residents of Jefferson County would probably prefer to believe their doctors some 50-off years ago were somewhat more literate than that. Perhaps they were. The Pioneer was unable to find any death certificates dating back that far. It is a certainty that the doctors in the area at the present are more literate. Modern technology has made them capable, as well.

However, a recent perusal of a small pile of death certificates found in an obscure corner of the Jefferson County Courthouse, dating between 1921 and 1944, also revealed some grim humor. Examples of some of the causes of death in Jefferson County back then are as follows:

"Poisoning from drinking a mixture of snooze (snuff), coffee and lemon extract," "Dropped dead while herding sheep," "Complete disintegration," "Just wasted away," "Whooping cough. Nothing of importance," Mountain climbing after a heavy meal," "Overwork and acute indigestion," "Drank too much moonshine," "Body was somewhat blistered from falling on hot stones as a result of heart failure while taking an Indian sweat bath at home," "I only saw this woman in bed. I did not examine her," "Deceased alone apparently drove off a grade with a truck which killed and upset him."

It is apparent after looking through the files of more recent death certificates that doctors have come a long way in the last several decades.

25 YEARS AGO

August 10, 1994

A driver told deputies he was toying with th idea of joining a nudist camp following a traffic stop where he was discovered to be buck naked, except for a white baseball cap and socks.

The officer stopped the Bend man at the Ogden Park Wayside on the Crooked River Gorge for a traffic violation. When he asked the man why he was nude, the man replied "he liked the feel of it and had thought of joining a nudist camp," the deputy's report said.

After instructing the man to put his clothes on and getting an okay to search his car, the deputy found a plastic baggie with what appeared to be methamphetamine drugs inside. The man was arrested.


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