July 12, 1901

Again the Fourth of July has come and again it has passed; again the bunting has been thrown to the breeze in commemoration of that grand act performed by a handful of patriots in 1776; again the thunder of cannon and the display of pyrotechnics announces that “Old Glory” still waves, and a jubilant people have not forgotten the events of their separation from that nation that broke the power pf the mighty Napoleon upon the plains of Belgium. In Milton, the characteristics of the day were closing of the stores, a suspension of business, and a cessation from work. The mail boy put in his time shooting off fireworks in the morning, and at intervals the rest of the day. The town was nearly deserted in the afternoon; the extreme hear of the day called many to Rehoboth. Over 150 tickets were sold at Milton station, and there must have been proportionately as many at other stations, as the two extras that went through had sixteen coaches attached to them. Others of our citizens enjoyed themselves at Broadkiln Beach and other places along the bay shore. The festival at Zion passed off pleasantly and so much were the people enamored and delighted that they have concluded to go into the festival business. The picnic at Lavinia’s was rather tame in the afternoon, on account of the weather and the absence of the Rev. Jesse B. Taylor, who was booked to speak at that time. Mr. Taylor was indisposed by sickness, and the disappointment of the people was great, as he is a man of fine oratorical power, well read, and is generally master of the subject on which he speaks. In the evening the Rev. Mr. Bryan if Georgetown was present, and gave zest to the occasion by a pretty speech, well chosen, patriotic and well delivered. The fay passes without accident of casualty of any kind to mar the happiness of those engaged in celebrating the “glorious Fourth.” But “the day after” there was a sick mess in Milton, principally amongst the young, the result of over-loaded stomachs and too much ice cream.

We were delighted in mind and exhilarated in body by the descent of a nice shower of rain on Saturday evening, unaccompanied by any fearful display of electricity. During a dry period when we need rain, and every one desires it, the people are yet grave when they see a thunderstorm arising on account of the many fatalities produced by the lightning. Some call this cowardice; but we are inclined to believe it is a natural awe that pervades the breast of every sensible person when in the presence of a power unseen, and which we cannot control. The refreshing rain of Saturday brought with it none of the fearful—on the contrary, it has invigorated vegetation, which was becoming dry and wilted, and infused new life into all growing crops.

We had the pleasure of riding into Prime Hook Neck two days since, and as it was our first visit to the country for a while, we were astonished at the fine fields of corn growing in this locality. It appears that the farmers along our route take an interest in sowing cow peas for the improvement of their lands. Doubtless their labor and capital expended will enhance the value of their lands, as it has those of other farmers south of Milton, who have tried this means of fertilization.

The old members and the newly elected ones of the School Board met last week and perfected an organization by re-electing David M. Conwell president, and Captain James C. Palmer Secretary; and electing David A. Wiltbank treasurer, and William H. Welch, assessor.

The hedge in front of the Odd Fellows Cemetery, near the end of Milton Lane, has been trimmed down closely and a new gate put in front of the lot.

Prof. W. G. Fearing has put up a tank in the rear of his dwelling.

Wesley Coverdale has finished papering the dwelling of Captain H. P. Burton, recently moved to the southern part of Federal Street; and Mr. George McGee will move therein Wednesday.

Tarantulas appear to be epidemic in banana bunches. C. A. Conner found two in a bunch recently which were properly disposed of.

Several of the Milton mechanics who are engaged at work in Wilmington spent the Fourth with their families in Milton.

Mr. J. R. Seligman, of Baltimore, proprietor of the “Big Store” in Milton, is in town in the interest of his business.

Mr. William Megee, of Wilmington, visited his mother and sister on the 4th.

The shirt factory of Douglass & White, which has been closed for two weeks, resumed operation on Monday.

The Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper was administered at the M. E. Church on Sunday morning by the Rev. L. P. Corkran.

I. T. Veasey has a drive pump put down on Saturday.

George W. Atkins, the hustler and general wholesale agent for C. H. Atkins’ wholesale house, left on Monday morning for a tour of Kent County. George is doing a good business in this line, and he is the man that can do it. On Sunday we noticed some beautiful combinations in the ladies’ show window at Atkins’. The variegations match well and the arrangement superb, giving one the idea that the little lady who presides over that department has an appreciation for the beautiful.

Master Robert Tomlinson, son of Dr. P. W. Tomlinson, of Wilmington, is visiting his grandfather, Mr. J. C. Hazzard.

During the hot weather, services will begin at the M. E. Church on Sunday evenings at 6.30 p. m. This is a good innovation, as it obviates the necessity of lighting the lamps, and the room is much cooler thereby.

I. L. Collins, Justice-of-the-Peace, has removed his office from the mayor’s office, to that formerly occupied by the late James Ponder, on the southeast corner of Union and Federal Streets.

Mr. James Mason has been quite sick, but is now convalescing.

I. W. Jones, formerly agent for the various daily papers, has sold his business to William R. Douglass, who will hereafter deliver them to subscribers, and dispense them to transient customers.

The mild and gentle rain “unaccompanied by any fearful electricity,” that we have mentioned above, was more than counterbalanced on Monday by a small deluge. About 11 o’clock it began to rain, and it rained, it thundered, it lightened, it hailed, and it blew for about one hour. The water went rushing down the gutters of Milton like the cataract at Ladore[i]. The lightning was vivid and the thunder terrific, but no damage was done that we know of, by it. The storm appears to have been most severe in South Milton, where the trees in many places were denuded of their branches. Large hailstones also fell, and the corn in gardens lies flat on the ground. In one hour the sun was shining; but in a short time the sky again became clouded, and a more moderate rain began to fall which continued until evening.

Miss Edna Johnson returned from Washington on Monday.


[i] This is a reference to the poem The Cataract of Lodore by Robert Southey (1774–1843), which is more of a child’s nursery rhyme than a “serious” poem.