• High hats and Parasols, July 2nd, 2010

    The News From 100 years Ago

    Carnegie visits the Grove
    In case you have wondered about that opulent railroad car set out on a siding not far from the center of Pacific Grove, you can now put your curiosity to rest. The car,
    privately owned, is serving as a mobile home for Mr. Andrew Carnegie, one of the world’s most famous industrialists, and his wife Mrs. Louise Whitfield Carnegie. The couple are touring the sites of Carnegie libraries around the nation. After gazing upon the Grove structure, Carnegie whispered to his spouse: “Thank God I do not have to deal with that nonsense again,” but declined further comment to elucidate his meaning1. The Carnegies, who were accompanied by H. R. Warner, Manager of Hotel Del Monte, have been the inspiration for “rags to riches” tales. Mr. Carnegie was born in Dunfermline, Fife, Scotland, in 1835, of a family so poor that their minuscule, one-room cottage was shared with another family. Andrew was still a boy when he followed his parents to the United States where he put his mind to learning speedreading the code of telegraphy. He later worked for the Ohio Telegraph Company, earning $2.50 weekly after being made manager. Carnegie is today worth more than an estimated $200 billion as a result of founding the Carnegie Steel Company, recently sold to J. P. Morgan, and other successful business ventures. Carnegie is considered the second richest man on earth with John D. Rockefeller being the richest.
    After building a library in his home town in Scotland, Mr. Carnegie decided to bring that philanthropy to the United States. He is responsible for funding more than 2,000 public libraries. Mr. and Mrs. Carnegie were accompanied around Pacific Grove by Rev. J. H. N. Williams, Miss Abbie Beggar, Dr. W. T. Jamison, Mr. A. E. Bunker, and Mr. W. F. Smith.
    Mr. Carnegie expressed himself as delighted with the library. He also complimented the Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History and the Chautauqua Institute.

    Post Office cutting back
    In his effort to economize post office operations, A. B. Hitchcock announced that he is reorganizing and retrenching the registry and money order departments. According to Hitchcock, it is very probable that the “advice” on money orders will have to depart along with other services. Writing obsolete, ineffective checks is serving to clog the dispatch of business and pile up increased need for clerk hire 2.
    When considered that many money orders are sent out each week, it can be easily understood what a vast labor and financial drain this means. Hitchcock said that every means possible will be taken to speed up postal operations.

    Notes from around the area…

    • The ladies of the Ladies Aid of the Christian Church are going to fund-raise by
      offering their services as seamstresses. Get on the list to have sewing done by
      telephoning Red 395.
    • Mr. N. B. Burlingame has reached San Francisco on his return from Missouri,
      and will be home in the Grove soon.
    • A Grove visitor, Mr. Percy Newlove, who was here as the guest of his mother,
      returned today to his home in San Diego.
    • The Ladies of the Episcopal church will hold a cooked food sale on Saturday.
      The sale, which commences at 10 o’clock, will be held in front of the store of
      F. J. Wyeth.
    • The rising divorce rate is said to stem from the inability of men and women to
      become chums. That topic will be one of the very subjects presented at this
      summer’s Chautauqua Institute. Sign up and learn how!

    The cost of living…

    • Enjoy a ride in a glass-bottomed “swan” boat. Visit underwater life. Board
      near the bath house. 15¢.
    • Very polite vaudeville will be offered this weekend at the Work Theater. 20¢
      seated in the first two rows, 10¢ in back rows3.
    • Call upon J. A. Pell for your funeral needs and get the use of our parlor for a
      wake … free! Services start at $10, including embalming.
    • Culp Brothers are offering your choice of paperback book for two half-dimes!
      Buy three paperbacks for 25¢.
    • Annual dog licenses are now available. $1 for male. $2 for female. Stop by
      the PG animal pound.
    • One pound packages of Thompson seedless raisins are on the shelf at the
      Oliver Grocery Company. 2 for 15¢.
    • Safe deposit boxes available at the Bank of Pacific Grove. We’re a commercial
      and savings institution. $2.50 by the year.

    Notes
    1. Although the 1910 editor of the Pacific Grove Review was not privy to the information, Carnegie’s statement was based on an experience that occurred in Guthrie, Oklahoma, earlier in this nationwide tour. Walking down the main street of Guthrie, Carnegie pulled up and stared at the new library … being built with an ornate dome. On the spot, Carnegie said that any other library
    using a domed structure would lose its funding. The mogul asked: “Can you imagine how many books can be bought for the price of one dome?”
    2. The money order “advices” referred to were in fact duplicates of the original money order written out in longhand to be used as a receipt. Although not specifically mentioned in this article, in 1910 nepotism also posed a significant factor in losing money.
    3. To counter the intrusion of living pictures (flickers), vaudeville had been assuming a decidedly carnal nature, even introducing female performers who performed almost unclothed

    posted to Cedar Street Times on July 2, 2010

    Topics: Columns & Contributors, High Hats and Parasols

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