Peninsula Enterprise, February 18, 1899


reprinted from Baltimore American.Transportation -- Railroad - Corporate

At the meeting of the executive board of the directors of the Baltimore, Chesapeake and Atlantic Railway in March the by-laws will be so amended as to abolish the position of general manager, made vacant by the resignation of Captain Willard Thompson, and the position of general superintendent will be created. It is not known who will be selected general superintendent. Mr. Tully Joynes is acting general manager.


Weather -- Snow storms

Several of the men in the Life Saving Service along our coast report the weather of late the roughest in their experience since they have been in the service.


Weather -- Snow storms

No death of any citizen of the county, caused by the inclemency of the late weather, has been reported to us, but Henry Wise, colored, of near Parksley, it is said, had a "close call" last Monday night. On his way home that night blinded by the snow storm, and almost helpless, it is reported, he would have perished, had not some one heard him and gone to his rescue.


Infrastructure -- Utilities - Ice

Ice from six to eight inches thick was cut by some of our citizens during the cold weather.


Weather -- Snow storms

The road from Tasley to Onancock yesterday was still filled with snow in many places and travel almost cut off by that route not only for vehicles but even for pedestrians.


Tourists and sportsmen -- Other recreation - Horse racingMoral -- Other

C. A. Pusey, well known as a trainer and driver of trotters on the Eastern Shore and who during years past had on such good performers as Little Betz, 2:22 1/4; Signet, 2:27 1/4, is now doing work as special agent of a society for the prevention of cruelty to animals. His work is commended by the members of the society.


Weather -- Snow storms

Belle Haven.

The well known Italian George, of Exmore, a member of the section gang, had his ears so badly frosted on Friday that amputation will be necessary.

Coal, wood, eggs, water and newspapers have been at a premium in this market for the past week.

The road between this place and Exmore has been completely blocked and impassible except for walkers.

Richardson snow shoveling brigade has done effective work in clearing the sidewalks through the business part of the town.


Weather -- Snow stormsSea -- Shellfish - Oystering : Seaside


Our oldest inhabitant is not complaining of the mildness of the weather at present or trying to disparage it by comparing it with the weather when he was young. In the opinion of the most of us the weather is colder and snow deeper than was ever seen in this section, especially those of our people whom it caught without coal or wood.

Poor oysters have made hard times with us.


Weather -- Snow stormsTourists and sportsmen -- Field sports - Lodges


The old heads around here differ as to the severity of this snow storm and that of 1857. The young folks think this the worse they have ever seen.

Messrs. Wheeler, Ackush and Baldwin, New York capitalists, were caught at their club-house during the storm. They walked to the mainland over the ice and took a sleigh from Wachapreague to Keller, where they took the train to New York.

The birds have suffered greatly in this section during the cold weather and quite a number of them have died.

Mr. J. A. Winder, our road machine man, has made himself very agreeable to us this week by clearing our roads of snow with a small plow made by him. When anything is needed in the way of road work he can be counted on "for getting there" every time.


Weather -- Snow stormsWeather -- Freezes


The ice on our river is very heavy. After several days of past ice making last week came the thick coat of snow, then an overflow by a very full tide, which froze altogether -- one mass. Upon inquiring of a gentleman, who resides on the river below the town, as to the thickness of the ice, he said he did not know how thick it was, that he went out over the channel and cut in with an axe to the length of the handle and did not get through the mass. He said further that he was sure he could drive his horse on the ice to any point. Two young men in town went hunting on Wednesday and walked on the ice to the mouth of the river and said it appeared to be the same as far as they could see on the bay.

After almost forty-eight hours of snowing, it being on Monday a veritable blizzard, we were "snowed under." Our streets were filled from side to side, in many places the drifts being higher than the fences, and were practically impassible. The inhabitants were truly shut in, scarcely any one could be seen moving, and all work and business were suspended. Even the mail failed to come for some days. Most persons say this is the most snow we have had since 1857, which is probably true. The snow of the blizzard of March, 1872, was near this one in quantity. There was some suffering during this long severe weather, as some families were not prepared with fuel enough to carry them through. Some of our wood dealers worked hard on Tuesday to relieve the situation.

A number of persons who dwell on the river front a mile or so below the town have easy access here, walking over the ice. They were chief among our callers recently.

On last Saturday morning the cold reached its lowest point here, the thermometer having registered one degree above zero. This is the lowest by eight degrees, in eighteen years which is the length of time the writer has noted the register.

Skating was good on our river on Friday and Saturday last.

Our steamers will not be able to run their route for many days to come.

The schools of the town were closed for the week on account of the inclement weather.

Mayor Taylor issued an order that on Thursday all citizens should clear the sidewalk of snow in front of their respective dwellings.

During recent days a great many of the tender window-grown flowers, which the housewives have kept with loving care through the months of winter weather, have felt the touch of the frost king and now are a mass of sapless, withered leaves. Few were prepared to protect them from the extraordinary temperature.


Infrastructure -- Commercial - Real estateForests -- Barrel factories Weather -- Snow storms


The old barrel factory of A. F. Mears has been sold to M. W. Bull and will be pulled down.

The young men of our town organized themselves into a relief corps during the late cold weather and did some good work by cleaning up the paths for pedestrians.

Our road machine manager, Capt. J. T. Burton, has rendered us great service this week, by opening up roads for us this week with a snow plow. He got some fun out of it too by covering up with snow several whose curiosity tempted them too near to it.


Infrastructure -- Utilities - IceWeather -- Snow stormsForests -- Forest products - Stove WoodProfessionals -- Doctors


Several of our ice houses were filled during this last freeze. The ice was about 4 inches thick.

Many of our citizens run short of wood this week and some cut their shade trees down for fire.

The fall of snow in this section was about 18 inches, but in many places it was piled up from five to seven feet high and blocked up the roads in many places so as to make them impassable.

During the snowstorm last Monday, Doctors F. C. A. Kellam and G. L. Ames had urgent calls and they faced the storm like warriors to save their fellow man. Dr. Kellam used a horse cart to ride in and was out from 12 m. till 7 p.m. Part of the way his horse could not get through the snow and he walked. Dr. Ames being more nimble tried it on horse back and made his trip with safety though with severe punishment. Their patients are improving.

We had no mail this week till Thursday afternoon.

Messrs. J. W. G. Ayres and W. M. Taylor, each lost a horse during this severs storm.

All of our schools were closed this week, but the Principal of Pungoteague Academy reported regularly every morning for duty. His pupils did'nt show up.


Transportation -- Water - WrecksInfrastructure -- Public - Government : Life-saving service

Crew Rescued by Life Saving Force.

Schooner Annie M. Reynolds, bound from James River to Chincoteague with cargo of oysters, was disabled by having a part of her sails blown away while off Chincoteague Thursday night of last week, and from that time until 9 o'clock on Friday morning, when her crew succeeded in anchoring her off Metompkin beach, she was practically at the mercy of the winds and waves. Soon after reaching the latter point, Capt. Lynn F. Taylor and force of the Metompkin Life Saving Station, responded promptly to their signal and rescued the captain and his crew, benumbed and frostbitten, from their perilous position. The schooner sank on Saturday and is now lying in three fathom's water at the point where she went down, about a mile north of the station.

The crew of the boat, consisting of William C. Pruitt, Captain, of Franklin City, John Cropper, ________ Derickson and Richard Rowley, colored, of Maryland, after being kindly cared for by Capt. Taylor and force until Wednesday left for their homes attended by Capt. Taylor, through ice and snow, to Accomac C. H. The foundered boat belonged to Messrs. F. Elton and Samuel Jones, of Stockton, Md., and is valued at $1,500, the cargo of 2,100 bushels of oysters was worth about $300. Both will probably be a total loss.

The men in the Reynolds, after she was disabled on Thursday night, experienced many of the "perils of the deep." They could not get the boat in her unmanageable condition into harbor and as she wallowed in the sea, drifting wherever the winds and waves carried her, they were fearful all the time if she did not roll over, she would be taken out to sea, and realized, that if that did occur, only watery graves awaited them. The winds and the waves fortunately favored them and took them to a point where they could lay at anchor and their distress signals could be seen.


Infrastructure -- Public - Government : Life-saving service

The value of the Life Saving Service is forcibly illustrated by an article which appears in our columns in this issue. As will be noted the force of Metompkin Station rescued four men last week who, without their assistance, would have gone down with their boat to watery graves. The report does not differ materially from many others which are made from time to time and to many this will only be as "an oft repeated tale." So many lives of late years have been saved by the faithful sentinels who stand guard along our coast, that it has to be brought home to us as in this instance, it seems, for us to appreciate really what the value of the Service is. No one ought, however, to doubt what its value is who is at all posted as to the number of lives placed to the credit of the Service in late years. It must be a comforting thought too to the tempest-tossed mariner that the Service is being made more efficient every year and that the average life-saver does not consider the risk to himself when he is called upon to help them when in distress. But the Service, humane as it is and great as has been its results in saving lives and property, is sadly deficient in some respects, viz: in not giving the life-savers sufficient compensation for their services and in not providing a pension for them when worn out in the Service and for their families after they are dead. That they should be neglected in the latter particular is especially discreditable to our Government and the injustice to them in this respect is apparent to everyone who has given it a moment's thought. If the soldier, who is called upon to take the life of his fellow man in the service of his country is entitled to a pension when disabled, there certainly is as good reason for pensioning those whose duty is to risk their lives oftentimes to save others. That the injustice will be much longer permitted, we cannot believe, and will not be if the representatives in Congress along the sea-coast bring the matter to the attention of that body as it is their duty to do.


Weather -- Snow storms

The snow storm, which swept our Peninsula from Saturday afternoon to Tuesday night, was the severest in the recollection of the most of our people and the quantity of the "beautiful" which has fallen has so impressed the "oldest inhabitants" that they are at a loss even in their calculations and are not loud in claiming a greater "fall" in the years ago. Those who remember the snow of 1857 say that higher winds prevailed during that snow and piled it up higher in many places, but are not prepared to say that the quantity was greater. There is one thing though about which all who were living in 1857 agree, that the snow of this year is nearer up to the one of 1857 than any that has fallen during the intervening period. This snow storm at least "fills the bill too well" in suspending for a few days practically all business, in stopping all travel and in the suffering it has occasioned to some, to be soon forgotten.

Peninsula Enterprise
Accomac Court House
February 18, 1899