This Week in Rockland: Newspaper Excerpts: Flashback Friday: Week of February 21

2020-02-21 TWIR Image-Tigers Den

February 19, 1870 150 Years Ago
Rockland County Journal


     To the Editor of the Journal: —
     On Monday evening, 7th inst., two persons whose names we decline to mention, were on a freight train bound west, but intending to get off at Ramapo, where the train did not stop. To effect their purpose, they invited the brakemen who were then on their way home from their labors to participate freely in the contents of a jug in their possession; the brakemen promising to compensate them by putting on the brakes and so check the speed of the train as to allow their two enemies—not friends as falsely styled —to make good their landing on terra firma. One of the said brakemen, who was then top-heavy from an overdose from the jug, climbed to the top of the cars while between Suffern and Ramapo to put on the brakes, and fell off. His body was found about three hours afterwards literally cut to pieces. The remains were picked up and brought to Suffern and subsequently sent to his family in Chester.
     This should be a severe warning to his associates and brother workmen, to touch, taste or handle not that which makes a beast of a man. and which if continued or persisted in will bring him to a drunkard's grave.
               Tell me I hate the bowl?
               Hate is a feeble word:
               I loathe, abhor: my very soul
               With strong disgust is stirred.
               Whene'er I see, or hear, or tell
               Of the dark beverage of hell!

THE WYBLE CHILDREN FOUND The Wyble children, of Wynockie, were found about a week ago, by William Ramsey, son-in-law of Truxton Williams. They were found dead lying near a large rock, about two miles distant from their home. Your readers doubtless know already of the details connected with the discovery of the bodies, and so I shall not repeat them here. It was a sad and agonizing affair.

February 17, 1920 100 YEARS AGO
The Nyack Evening Journal

COST $3,300 FOR REMOVAL OF SNOW – Blow to Board of Trustees for That Sum Would Have Represented Balance at End of Fiscal Year  Nyackers again skidded to work over ice today, though not made so uncomfortable by an arctic gale that swept over the village yesterday. This morning several street workers continued handling picks in gutters, and, in some places, it required more than half an hour to remove a square yard.
     Thaw alone can relieve the grave condition of Nyack streets, but freezing weather still continues and there is no telling when the last of the ice and snow will be gone. The cost of removing snow from the streets so far is $3,300 and the expenditure of this money has put a crimp in the village bankroll.

Week of February 18, 197 50 YEARS AGO
The Journal News

Peaceful Revolution: Is It Possible?
[Image: Stanley Lachow (Judge Hoffman) and Sidney Curry (Bobby Seale) in dramatization of Chicago trial. Group gathered at Tiger's Den, Spring Valley, February 1970.]
The nation's blacks and draft-resisters are victims of "suppression" by an exploitive "system" which does not "make peaceful revolution possible," and thus is itself the real cause of violence in society.
     This was the promise of talks and playlets sponsored last night by the Rockland County Moratorium Committee at the Tiger’s Den, Spring Valley.
     At one point the group of 150 to 200 people were asked by a Spring Valley patrolman to remove illegally parked cars some of which extended halfway across the street.
     But the majority of the crowd vocally indicated they felt the policeman had “orders” to try to break up the meeting. The point was emphasized by the speaker, Robert Webb, a self-proclaimed violent revolutionary from the Brooklyn branch of the Black Panther party.
     Webb had been giving his views on a national "conspiracy," in which he said, "pigs" (policemen) were the government's civil rights repression weapon, when the patrolman entered the Tiger's Den.
     Questioned outside, the patrolman said it was "a shame it has to be this way," but he said cars were blocking the street and would have to be moved. At police headquarters, the desk sergeant said the patrolman had called in to ask what should be done and had been advised to enforce the parking ordinance.
     The topic of the meeting had not influenced the police decision, the sergeant said. He noted that the patrolman, seeing a traffic obstruction and a potential hazard, was carrying out "a normal part of his patrol duties."
     Webb told the crowd, after the patrolman had left, that "this is our country and why should anyone tell us where to park."
     As a Panther, he said he did not hate while people as such. "I hate a person because of his deeds," he said, adding that hatred was reserved for the "oppressors."
     He said he had gone on the integration marches in the South several years ago and had followed the non-violent doctrines of the late Dr. Martin Luther King.
     "But those rocks were putting knots on my head," he said, adding he had gradually become more militant as a counterbalance to the guns and strength of the establishment.
     "We want power to control our own community," he said.
     Ronald Young, a draft resister who is being defended by the American Civil Liberties Union, said some people advocate violent revolution because "they see no other way."
     He said Fortune magazine has reported that in the past several years corporations have increased their profits from 50 to 60 per cent while the working majority could not even keep abreast of dollar-loss inflation.
     That, along with politicians who vote for military spending while cutting back on funds for health, education and welfare, and courts which refuse to hear some civil liberties cases issue and the contested constitutionality of the draft, are the causes of social violence, he said.
     The meeting opened with a dramatization from the text of the Chicago Seven conspiracy trial. It presented an exchange between Bobby Seale, a Black Panther leader, and Judge Julius Hoffman, who separated Seale from the seven other alleged conspirators and sentenced him to more than four years in prison on several counts of contempt.
     Seale was played by Sidney Curry; Stanley Lachow played Judge Hoffman, and Robert DiMaggio was the defense lawyer, William Kuntzler.
     James Finney, a lawyer on leave from the Legal Defense fund, told of personal experiences which he said should make all people wary of distortions in reports about Black Panthers as presented by the news media.
     A local black militant, Walter Brooks, told of his experiences in the county. He said a recent knifing of a patrolman at a high school basketball game had involved police brutality and suppression of black citizens.

This Week in Rockland (#FBF Flashback Friday) is prepared by Clare Sheridan on behalf of the Historical Society of Rockland County. To learn about the HSRC's mission, upcoming events or programs, visit or call (845) 634-9629.


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