Sunday, January 01, 2006

Where There's Smoke...

January 1, 1947

The lady on Bunker Hill saw smoke drifting and phoned the fire department. "Hurry! City Hall's on fire!" All available trucks raced to the scene, and uniformed firemen scaled the steps with crowbars and axes at the ready, caught the express elevator and searched out the flames--but there were none. It seems the caller had merely seen a small cloud pass before the venerable tower, and the cloud had passed by, leaving no destruction in its wake.

1 comment:

Larry said...

Noo Yars Day, 1947
Spoke by Pansy Yokum
Writ (by hand) by Available Jones

Deer Fokes:

All us 100% red blooded Americans done our customary number of stooped things in 1946 an no doubt will do ‘em all over again come 1947.

Likewise we done some good things. Fo’ instance Mistah Capp done tole me how, visitin’ Army horse-pittles, he seen us doin’ a good job for our handy-capped boys whose laigs an eyes an innards we had to use up during the late, lamented (espeshly by our enemies) war.

But thers lots of other handy-capped youngsters we seem to of forgot about. Them which is handy-capped by being of a little different race than most of us, or a different way of worshippin, mebbe.

Funny thing is during the war these things warnt no handy-caps. Irregardless of race or relig-un we didn’t exclose these youngsters fum our casualty lists. We give ‘em jest as good a chance as anyone else to get kilt or crippled, an we kin be mitey proud of that.

But now they is back an it seems to me we oughta keep on given ‘em a eek-wal chance. When the fack that a American is a little different in looks or name or way of worship HAINT no handy-cap, then it will be a real happy noo yar for all irregardless an irrespective.

Ah has spoken.


Pansy Yokum,
Her mark.

+ + +

The air of idealistic optimism is inescapable as the curtain fell on 1946 and the world edged toward 1947. The Times noted in its editorial “A Mild Case for 1947 Optimism” that “Hope was the last creature to escape from Pandora’s box.”

Looking back at the past is like being able to read all the cards in a poker game. We know—or like to think we know—how every hand should be played. Being human, the people living in 1947 made some bad—and in fact absolutely horrible—decisions. But I always urge compassion for them—as I hope the future will be compassionate about the things we do in 2006.

As The Times noted: “A.D. 1946 ended well and A.D. 1947 begins with promise. A new year is not a sovereign remedy but it usually cures something.”

Bonus factoids:

* World War II ended Dec. 31, 1946, according to an official proclamation by President Truman, which received a banner headline in The Times.

* The Times saved newsprint, which was scarce, by not publishing classified ads on New Year’s Day so that it could present more news. A significant financial sacrifice that is unimaginable today.

Quote of the day: “I love thee dearly. I would like to buy thee but such riches are not for me. Thus conscience does make cowards of us all.”

Calvin Moore, 18, in a note returning $1,200 ($11,357.02 USD 2005) worth of antiques he had stolen a few days before.