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From our archives: Telephone message discouraged ‘flirting’

What we thought: 125 years ago

Published: Monday, April 8, 2013 1:15 a.m. CDT

Note to readers – Sauk Valley Media reprints editorials from the past as a regular Monday feature. The following editorials appeared in the Telegraph on April 7, 1888.

Hannibal and

the telephone

An incident of the Grand Army Department camp fire in Portland, says the Lewiston (Me.) Journal, illustrated the fondness of the old soldiers for joking, and the equality between members that characterize their annual gatherings.

The venerable ex-Vice President Hannibal Hamlin, as honored guest and most distinguished person present, was one of the speakers of the evening. His address was an easy, off-hand talk, plainly upon the progress and great developments in science and the arts that characterize the present century.

In the course of it, he said, speaking of the telephone: “And yet, perhaps, more marvelous than all is that little instrument which puts us in communication with those we love a hundred miles away. My wife and your wives have tongues, as it were, a hundred miles long, and if by that little thing of a telephone I was in communication with my good wife at present, I should hear her saying: ‘Hannibal, be careful and not catch cold.’”

An hour or so after this, when the memory of Mr. Hamlin’s address had been partly obliterated by speakers who had followed him, past Commander Sawyer rapped to order and announced a telephone message from Bangor.

All eyes were turned in the direction of the venerable Bangor statesman, where he sat surrounded by a bevy of young ladies who were importuning him for autographs.

Mr. Sawyer, continuing, said, “Ladies and gentlemen, we have received a telephone message from Bangor. It says: ‘Hannibal, don’t flirt with the girls.’”

The applause that followed drowned the reply.

Dixon lawyers

About the only trouble we have had of late has resulted from the conduct of the lawyers, not that they have done anything bad or improper; but we did not suppose that our neighboring editors would be afflicted in the same way.

Now here comes the Amboy Journal with woe unutterable in the same line. We … must say that we do not agree with him in what he says, unless it is that if we are to have a Democrat for judge, we want Sherwood Dixon. We agree with editor Loomis in all he says about Dixon, but we beg leave to differ from his remarks regarding our lawyers.

If there is any one thing a Dixon lawyer knows, it is to know what he wants. The thing that we object to is that they do not accommodate themselves to our wants – indeed, very few people do that, however.

We, nevertheless, insist, Doctor, that Dixon lawyers know what they want. And we may further state that while we quarrel with our legal neighbors in a sort of a familiar family way, we now give notice that when our Dixon lawyers have once decided that they know a thing – and they usually decide that way – they never go behind the returns.

If the lawyers here say they want one of their number for judge, they must certainly want him.

Well qualified

General J.N. Neese, candidate for secretary of state, made a very good impression here looking after his fences. He is a pleasant gentleman and will make a competent officer.

Indeed, he has had considerable experience in the office of secretary of state, having been in that office with Col. Harlow, and no candidate in the field is so well qualified for the place. We shall be glad to see him elected.

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