Spilled milk; slide down prison hill; burnt books

January 12, 1844

We have a very large amount of snow on the ground (probably three feet on one level) so the roads have been almost impassable for several days. Western mail due Monday evening did not arrive until Wednesday evening. The weather forecast is fine, with the thermometer indicating 12 degrees below zero on Tuesday!

January 11, 1877

Belfast road freight traffic is good. Large quantities of hay are sent from the bus stations to the main line, while corn, flour and potatoes in abundance arrive in this city.

The horse tied to John Walton’s milk sleigh on Saturday morning got scared near the bridge, charged up the steep hill to City Point Road, then turned towards town, the sleigh swaying from side to side and the jugs of milk dancing. In Custom House Square, the animal turned into Main Street, everyone on the road moved away with great haste. Becoming Cross Street, this furious dairy on runners got mad at an unfortunate cat crossing the street, crushing the feline’s life and spilling milk in the snow. The poor cat was lying in her midst, having taken the Milky Way to cat paradise. The dairy team, led by Percy Edgecomb, also overturned and spilled a quantity of milk.

January 12, 1888

Mr Thomas Harrison, who was injured last week by boys slipping through the streets, is slowly recovering. The city will pay its doctor’s bills and for wasted time.

A place to slide. The City Marshal has reserved a space for children, that part of Spring Street starting at Jail Hill, so called, and continuing to Church Street, but not on the other side. Those found coasting on any other street in town will be quickly arrested and brought to court.

January 12, 1899

The fire alarm will be tested every Friday afternoon at 1 p.m., with a brief whistle from the shoe factory being sounded if the gong is functioning properly.

Urban and rural schools reopened on Monday after a two-week vacation with all teachers on duty and well above average attendance. All books used by children who have been exposed to scarlet fever have been burned.

January 12, 1911

The new telephone pole installed last week on Church Street near the Savings Bank building is a stick of green chestnut nearly 45 feet long (5 feet in the ground) and weighs three tons.

January 12, 1922

The Belfast Dance Club had a very enjoyable session last Thursday evening, with the novelty of the ladies having their choice of partners after the first dance. Some gentlemen have experienced several dances and wondered why. Sandwiches, donuts and coffee were served.

Compiled from the archival holdings of Sharon Pietryka, Special and Reference Collections Librarian at the Belfast Free Library.

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