Transcribed by Becky Campbell
April 25, 1946
The editor is starting this week a column of his own with the above heading. Just how long we may be able to keep this up is not known. In this column the editor will try to speak his piece and give the readers something that may help them now and then. At other times perhaps the column may serve to let the editor "air out" some of his views. Anyway, it is to be hoped that nobody will ever be hurt by this column and that some good may be done.
In this column there may be some items of news interest, some unusual items, or strange occurances, some history, some genealogy, some things amusing, and perhaps now and then something that may be pathetic. We might even present a joke once in a while. Perhaps there may be a little rhyming, or verses by the editor. Nearly every man has a sort of poetic feeling in the spring time and sometimes it lasts through the entire year.
We plan to use the word, "we," for the writer of the column. By this we do not mean to insinuate that we are more than one person, In fact we often feel that we are like the case we once heard of: a man who had been married for a few months was approached by a good friend who said: "I suspose you and your new wife are one." The newly married man replied: "No, we are ten." The friend, astonished asked : "Well how do you make that out?" the answer was : "My wife is the one and I am the naught." So there are times when the editor feels that he is a naught. So when we use the the word, "we," the editor is talking about one little man. Once upon a time a Macon Countian who was representing the county in the Tennessee Legislature stated that his constituents were "small potatoes and only one in a hill." This description, it may be said, applies to part of our county newspaper editors.
We left on Saturday, April 13th, for a 1,200 mile trip by truck to points in Ohio. We took along some printing equipment, a book folder and feeder, that we could not use, and our paper cutter that burned in our last fire. We sold the folder and feeder and left the cutter to be repaired if such repairing is feasible. Unalbe to find a folder that will meet our needs, we had to come home without this much desired piece of equipment. However, we bought a folder today (Monday) from a paper in Chicago and we ought to have it in time for folding the paper next week. Since last fall we have been printing the Times here in Lafayette and have folded the paper by hand each week. This requires a lot of time, generally the greater part of one day and the work of four or five persons. Part of the latness in getting the paper to subscribers has been due to the length of time required to fold nearly 4,000 papers printed each week. The folder, when working right, ought to do this work in three hours, with one person operating it.
The shortage of machinery and equipment is now even worse than it was during the midst of the war. In our trip North, we found that reconversion is making hardly any progress at all. Practically all manufacturers of machinery predict at least a year will have gone by before equipment of many kinds will again be available. We saw trucks hundreds of miles from home on our trip, carrying small quantities of steel, which had been picked up just where it could be found. Such a trickle of steel will never fill the pressing needs of a nation that has made out with old cars, refrigerators, printing equipment and hundreds of other items for the past four years or more.
We visited our brother, Thomas M. Gregory, on the trip. It was the first time we had seen him since he came to Tennessee to attend the funeral of oiur youngest brother, Albert C. Gregory, who died December 21, 1935. Tom, as we have always called him, is manager of a chain grocery store in Toledo, Ohio, where he has been employed for the past 20 years. He and his family are doing very well. Like the editor, he is beginning to show the wear and tear of the years. In a few more years at the present rate he will be like the baldheaded man who testified in church : "Brethren, my way is perfectly clear. There is not a hair between me and heaven." Anyway, we spent some happy hours with our brother, who is only 15 months younger than the editor. Many reminiscences for forty years ago werre related.
Ohio is a highly industrialized State, with thousands of factories and hundreds of thousands of workers. From Cincinnati to Cleveland, there is but little open country, but towns and cities are to be found nearly all along the route. The upper part of Ohio has some of the finest farm lands we have ever seen. The land is almost as flat as the floor and soil is about the blackest we have ever seen. However, the season there is much later than it is in Tennessee. We saw not a row of corn planted and with virtually nothing in gardens. In fact the wind on Monday night from off Lake Erie was cold and a heavy frost and freeze were evident on Tuesday morning. Peach trees were in bloom but apples had not put forth their blossoms. From Cleveland westward along Lake Erie, the highway skirts the lake, this road being virtually a street 50 miles long with lights along it all the way.
Easter Sunday passed this time, with some of the finest weather we have had at the season in years. Our father used to call the unfavorabe weather of the season "the Easter Spell." We call to mind that some four or five years ago we had a snow five or six inches deep on Easter Sunday. In Northern Indiana, and parts of Ohio on Friday, April 12th, snow fell to an average depth of two inches and drifted in some places to three feet in depth. It did not last very long, just as late snows in this part of the country soon melt away. We even saw one snowstorm in May, with the green trees loaded down with the white flakes.
Indications are that this section is to have a good fruit crop this time. Peaches are growing rapidly and so are apples. Briars are about to burst into full bloom, with prospects good for a crop of blackberries. Pears are said to be about our poorest fruit crop prospect. Last year was one of our poorest apple seasons, but peaches were good. It appears that grapes "hit" with more regularity than any other fruit crop commonly grown in North Middle Tennessee, yet comparatively few farmers try to grow this desirable fruit.
Here goes this week's limerick:
A young man named Bealem,
Ate spuds and would not peel'em
When he ate a peck
They stuck in his neck;
"And now, " he said, "
I can feel'em."