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Stray bullet crashes through window of Catonsville residence in 1914

February 26, 2014

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An article in the Feb. 28, 1914, edition of The Argus reported a close call for local resident.

A bullet from a small caliber rifle crashed through a window at the home of Dr. Henry F. Hill, Melvin and Edmondson avenues, late Wednesday afternoon and fell at the feet of his daughter, Miss Katherine Hill.

Miss Hill was seated in the library playing cards and as the crash of the window-pane came, she heard the bullet drop on the floor. Dr. Hill went to the front of the house and looked in all directions, but could see no one with a rifle. It is believed that boys opened fire on a bird in a tree and that the bullet was deflected through the window.

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The Woman's Christian Temperance Union of Catonsville has started a vigorous campaign against the local saloons. Letters have been sent to almost every resident, giving the names of the signers of last year's liquor license applications and asking them to stop and consider before again attaching their names to them this year.

Among the signers for licenses of the 10 saloons in Catonsville are a number of prominent and large taxpayers, and the action of the league in scattering their names broadcast was censored.

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The sixteenth annual mask ball and carnival of the patients and attendants of Spring Grove State Hospital, Dr. J. Percy Wade, superintendent, was held Tuesday night in the assembly hall of the institution, and was largely attended by the relatives and friends of the patients.

In the hall where the entertainment was given, decorative efficiency was exemplified in a striking manner. American flags covered the walls and over the balconies was red, white and blue bunting. Inlaid in the woodwork were large electric lights which shone through the bunting, producing a charming effect. The affair was given in honor of Washington's Birthday and there were about 35 couples in costume, historical, comic and classical.

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A burst steam pipe of the heating apparatus of the Catonsville High School Thursday morning resulted in all pupils on the first floor of the building being dismissed for the day. Repairs are being made to the pipes.

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Seeing that our winter did not really begin until about the twelfth of this month, we have no right in this latitude to be severe on the Weather Man. At the same time it may be noticed that during the last two weeks nobody has been wondering what has become of our "old-fashioned winters," or deploring the failure of the "beautiful snow" to put in an appearance.

75 Years Ago

An article in the Feb. 24, 1939 edition of The Catonsville Herald and Baltimore Countian described a man determined not to go back to prison.

Arrested as a suspicious character by Sergeant Jesse Moore and Patrolman M.E. Kimmelshue of the Catonsville police station, a man who gave the name of John Quinn, a wanderer, was placed in a cell at the station house awaiting a hearing. Quinn had been seen wandering aimlessly on Edmondson avenue near Ingleside avenue, and was arrested on complaint of residents.

A few minutes after he was locked in the cell, Quinn began making queer noises, and Turnkey Harry Mengers, on investigation, found the prisoner slashing his throat with a safety razor blade that had eluded the search of his clothing.

He was taken to St. Agnes' Hospital, where he was treated for minor cuts, and then brought back to the station house. Shortly afterward, Turnkey Mengers again went to the cell block and found Quinn with a shoe string tied tightly around his neck. The string was cut loose, and the prisoner was then stripped of everything that he might use in a further attempt to commit suicide.

It was found that the man had been released from the House of Correction about two weeks ago. He told Magistrate John W. Loeber that he tried to kill himself because he would rather die than return to the House of Correction. No charge was lodged against him, and he was released.

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The Alberton band gave its premier concert at a card and bingo party held last Saturday evening in the Alberton hall. The band is directed by J. Morgan Sweet, of Oella and rehearsals are being held every Sunday by band members.

Fourteen beginners applied for membership last week and there are still a few vacancies to be filled. Those interested should contact Leslie Rudacille at the Alberton store.

Parents of children under 10 are invited to enroll them in the "Tonette Band," which is a preparatory course for senior band members.

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Catonsville firemen turned in an exceptionally good job of fire fighting in the small hours of Wednesday morning, when a blaze at the home of Robert Hilton, 917 Frederick road, was brought under control after a stiff battle with mounting flames, fanned by a high wind.

The fire was discovered by Mr. Hilton, who was awakened by the smell of smoke to find the rear of his home a mass of crackling flames. He awakened his mother, Mrs. Lillian Hilton, his brother, Charles, and two sisters, Doris and Lucille. All fled the burning house in their night clothing.

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A Safety drive is being sponsored in the thirteenth district by the Patapsco Democratic and Improvement Association. Stop signs have been placed on Oregon avenue, Carville avenue and East Drive where these streets cross Sulphur Spring road.

The waiting station at Carville avenue and Sulphur Spring road will be moved about thirty feet to prevent it from obstructing the view of motorists. The move will also permit widening of the intersection. This work is expected to begin at once.

50 Years Ago

An article in the Feb. 27, 1964 edition of the Herald Argus and Baltimore Countian reported on the ongoing dispute over a new bus route.

On Feb. 18, the first half of a two-day hearing before the Metropolitan Transit Authority on the Dutton avenue bus route took place in the State Office Building. The hearing was scheduled after a December court order called upon the Baltimore Transit Company to investigate alternate routes which had received little or no consideration in preparation for the original hearing on Oct. 28, 1963, hastily granted by the MTA at the insistence of the Dutton avenue residents.

Most of Feb. 18 was used by the transit company to set forth alternate routes and declare them undesirable.

On Feb. 24, the second half of the hearing took place. Dr. Worthington Ewell, consulting engineer employed by the beleaguered Dutton avenue residents, presented a route through Beechwood avenue, along Edmondson avenue, through the Rollingwood area and back by Frederick road to comply with the transit company's insistence that a junction between the No. 8 and No. 23 lines be retained.

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The Catonsville Post Office will be expanded and modernized at an estimated cost of $300,000.

Invitations for bids on the project were submitted to the General Services Administration by Feb. 25 and will be opened March 25.

Improvements at the postal branch, at Frederick road and Sanford avenue, include a new driveway, air conditioning, heating plant and extension of the present building, according to Congressman Clarence D. Long.

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Winner of a recent essay contest entitled "Young People and the Church Today," held by Madonna Council No. 3964, Knights of Columbus, Arbutus, is Marcia Stewart, eighth grade student at St. Clement's School, Lansdowne. She received a United States Savings Bond from Father Joseph Martin of St. Charles College, judge of the contest. There were 18 finalists.

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The executive board of the Catonsville Jaycees, at the monthly meeting, unanimously voted to support Catonsville as the site of the University of Maryland campus. Jaycee President, Gordon E. Reese, issued the following statement;

"The Executive Board was unanimous in its support of the location of a branch of the University of Maryland in the Catonsville area. The Jaycees, being very much interested in civic and community improvement, feel that such a branch of the University would add much to this community and would provide much needed facilities for the ever expanding educational needs of Maryland's young people."

Material from the archives courtesy of Catonsville Historical Society.