February 19, 1909

Strange how things will change and private and public sentiment are as capricious in this regard as anything can be. On Friday the Public Schools of Milton celebrated the One Hundredth Anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s birthday; and throughout the land there were decorations and pageants, and speeches and orations were delivered in eulogy and commemoration of the “Immortal Lincoln.” Forty years ago the element that is the most demonstrative today, the element that wants to “get into it” is the element that was cursing Abraham Lincoln, and branding him as the wort and meanest d—d abolitionist upon earth.[i] “Strange how things will change and public sentiment are as capricious in this regard as anything can be.”

A Farmer’s Institute was held in School Hall on Thursday morning, afternoon, and evening. At the afternoon and evening sessions there were many farmers from the surrounding country present; and the speakers announced the attendance at Milton was better than anywhere else they had held meetings in the country. Firemen Band furnished the music.

The M. D. & V. R. R. Co. has trimmed the trees, to the extent of their ownership, on each side of the track near Milton. The undergrowth and bramble have also been cleared away. This work may have been done to give a better view up and down the road; or, viewing the result of the work, it may have been done to get bean poles.

Around the warm stoves of the loafing places, the gatherers are now “running” the man who went into a dealer’s and wanted to buy a hind quarter of a muskrat. The dealer did not want to carve the animal. When questioned more carefully about the matter, Mr. ____ said, he had no one but his wife and did not wish to have too much fresh meat on hand, at one time.

J. M. Markell, senior partner in the “big store,” has removed his family from Shrewsboro, Pa., to this town, and occupies the property lately purchased on Federal Street. Mr. Markell is a financier and businessman and no doubt will infuse new life into this already busy town.

The Presbyterian Cemetery on Jones Street and back of the A. M. E. Church has been cleaned off. This is a work that has long been needed; but heretofore it has been almost impossible to get anyone to take an interest in it.

The nineteen-month-old child of Mr. and Mrs. London Nelson died at Sleepy Valley, on Wednesday. Interment took place on Thursday, at the A. M. E. Cemetery near town, by J. R. Atkins.

The barge built at Carey’s Landing by J. P. Davidson was launched on Thursday. She will be brought to Milton Dock where her cabin will be built, and she will be otherwise fitted out before leaving for her […].

Captain William Lank of Philadelphia is visiting his sister Mrs. John Black, and many other Milton friends.

There have been several cases of meningitis in town of late. They have all recovered.

The Fourth Quarterly Conference of the M. E. Church was held on Friday afternoon. The Board of Stewards voted for the return of the Rev. A. C. McGilton for another year.

Schooner John A. Lingo, Captain Zadoc Outten, formerly of this town, capsized in Salem Cove, N. J., during the gale of Wednesday last. She was stone laden from the Brandywine.

C. G. Waples is enlarging the planning department to his mill on the depot.

Asa F. Conwell of Midway spent a few days in Milton last week. Mr. Conwell is over eighty years of age, tall and straight as an arrow, and active withal.

It was quite a busy season, in town on Saturday afternoon. We counted fifty-seven carriages and buggies hitched in the business parts of Front and Union Streets.

Captain Tillie McCoy has had her launch Ramona removed from the waters of the Broadkiln, to the waters around, and near Milford. She was taken from Milton on Saturday, to her destination, on wheels.

J. M. Lank, trust officer of the S. S. T. T. & D. Co., made a business trip to Wilmington on Monday, returning on Wednesday.

Rev. A. C. McGilton, D. D., preached to Golden Rule Lodge No. 17, I. O. O. F. at the M. E. Church on Sunday morning. There was a small number of the Order in attendance, but a large congregation was present. This mode of preaching to an organization in a body is not appreciated by many, but it calls several to the church who seldom come at another time and by this means some may be attached to attend again. It does no harm, and may do much good.

K. P. Burton and Mrs. Jennie Atkins, borther and niece of Benjamin F. Burton, attended the funeral of the latter of Frederica on Sunday. We are very sorry to hear of Mr. Burton’s decease. He and I were young men together; and he was my sponsor for marriage license at the office of the Clerk-of-the-Peace, at Georgetown forty-four years ago.

John Pettyjohn, a demented colored man, who has been living with his daughters on Mulberry Street, was taken to Farnhurst on Monday by Postmaster John Black and […] Campbell.

The lemon that Hettie Conner is growing in a warm room now measure twelve and a half inches in circumference.

Memorial services will be held for Mrs. Frances Willard at the M. E. Church by the W. C. T. U. on Thursday evening.

A dog was found dead near the railroad track on Sunday morning supposed to have been killed by the Saturday evening train.

The gypsy wagon that […] Stephens contract to build for a band of gypsies some weeks ago was finished last week. The parties […].

Miss Laura M. Conner has been confined to her home for over a week with meningitis. The forced indoor life has been irksome to a girl of her spirit. We expect her to be out again by the time this paper is read.

In many deliberative bodies there are often a set of wranglers who make it miserable to the conservatively inclined. According to our information, a meeting of this kind was developed at the M. E. Quarterly Conference on Friday afternoon. And the question is asked, “What are you going to do about it?” We can only reply by quoting the trite adage: “It is not the fault of the church that bad men get into it; but it is the fault of the church if they stay there.” Nota bene; and act accordingly.

F. B. Carey, E. W. Warren, W. W. Stephens, and Thomas Spencer attended Wilmington on Tuesday and Wednesday, as delegates of the Hr. O. U. A. M. to the State Council of that body that held its sessions there.

A Mr. Spicer of Laurel has opened a meat store, at the famous stand corner, Federal and Mulberry Streets.

Steamer Marie Thomas arrived on Monday. She had two flanges of her propeller broken, in the recent storm at Cape May. She is now backed up in one of the Goodwin docks, at Mount Ararat, and is expecting a new wheel form the Pusey & Co.’s works, at Wilmington, which will be put on.

Both of the Methodist protracted meetings have closed. We are informed the young converts to the M. P. Church met on Monday evening, and organized a Young Men’s Christian Association. The names of the officers are not given.

LeRoi H. Johnson is convalescing from a two weeks’ illness.


[i] Delaware was a border state with a long history of slavery, and there were still a few hundred African American slaves in the state by 1865, when the 13th Amendment took effect on a national level. Lincoln himself was never popular in Delaware; even though he had proposed a plan in 1862 to generously compensate slave owners in the state for the manumission of their property, Delaware politicians were disinclined to help the Federal government in this respect. There was abundant rhetoric in the press about “states’ rights” as the basis for rejecting Federal interference on the issue of slavery, but the language masked a very real fear that freeing the slaves would be the first step in elevating the black man to social equality with whites, which was anathema to a much greater proportion of the population, North and South.