Annihilation! Mother Driver Gradual Bible Sabbath Change, Invent a Utopian Society in a Crisis, More Loans! Looking Back At Years That Were In Decades Past

“It was the year of the great storm, of the “June monsoon” as it was to become known, and of sudden heroes who thrust themselves into the swirling waters to aid others. It was a year that finally saw the gypsy moth’s demise and the return of the near-perfect summer greenery.”

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 December 31, 2022 02:00AM

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Another year up, another year down.

At midnight on Sunday, the calendar will turn from 2022 to 2023, marking the end of the previous 12 months and the beginning of another chapter. As we chronicle in this week’s Herald, a lot has happened over that period of time. We went from discussions about omicron and virus surges to looking at the pandemic as something decidedly in our rearview mirror. Cheshire residents went from debating the need for a school modernization project to approving the first phase of that plan at a referendum in November.

Much change can occur over 12 months. Now, think of how much can change over decades.

Our monthly Blast from the Past feature is dedicated to looking into Cheshire history and seeing exactly what was making headlines 40, 50, even 60 years ago. So, when we turn back the clock to 1962, what do we find?

Interestingly enough, school building refurbishments dominated the headlines in the final edition of The Cheshire Herald in 1962. There was a note that the Board of Selectmen — the governing body at the time that would eventually be replaced by the Town Council — had approved $65,000 in additional spending to cover costs associated with an addition that had been constructed at Chapman School. The extra money would be covered by a loan, procured directly from Home National Bank and Trust Co.

Just as the Selectman were agreeing to cover the Chapman School costs, the group was pumping the breaks on another school-related project. As The Herald reported as its top story of the Dec. 28, 1962 edition — aside from a special holiday announcement from Gov. John Dempsey, which offered a prayer that 1963 “will mean for all of us a joyous year of good health, prosperity, and spiritual fulfillment” — the Board “made reductions in recommendations by the Board of Education for a 19-room addition to the Cheshire High School at an estimated cost of $654,240.”

Included in the recommended cuts were the elimination of a band room, a planned 800-seat auditorium, and a “shop conversion.”

Another school-related story filling The Herald’s pages that week included a note about Mrs. Michael Zello, who the paper described as a “mother bus driver.” Zello’s bus and her passengers were featured in the end-of-year edition of the paper, where readers were told about the special way in which she celebrated the holidays.

“mother bus driver” Calls us to think globally: We are in the Same Boat, Pope Francis

“Carrying the festival idea one step further, Mrs. Zello encouraged her charges to work off some holiday steam by providing paper-backed song books for a carol sing en route to school and home again. Mrs. Zello said that “Silent Night” sung lustilywas a prime favorite since the youngest kindergartener, who couldn’t read the song sheets, knew the words of the old favorite,” the article reported.

Let Us Build Babylon System

By December of 1972, The Heraldhad begun a tradition it continues to this day: providing a lengthy Year in Review to recap the stories that made headlines over the previous 12 months. The retrospective offered quick blurbs on numerous items that appeared in editions published over the course of 1962, whether it was the “thirty-four floats and five bands (that) were featured in a parade for the town’s first Winter Carnival, sponsored by the Kiwanis Club,” in January, the fact that the “Reform Democrats defeated the regular party slate in a primary for seats at the state and congressional conventions” in June, or the fact that the Planning and Zoning Commission had “approved an application for the building of a Seven-Eleven [7-Eleven is the trademark] food store in the 200 block of South Main Street,” towards the end of December that year.

Connecticut’s Blue Laws

For The Herald’s editorial page, it was a particular state issue that had caught their attention — Connecticut’s Blue Laws. The Herald opinion writers seemed to believe that the codes needed an update in order to remain relevant in the 20th century, as evidenced by the opening broadside against the laws to start the editorial.

“Many of the laws, which can trace origin to the Puritan ethic that dominated the founding of Connecticut, are undeniably archaic and useless,” the Dec. 28, 1973 opinion argued. “These should be removed from the statute books forthwith.”

Of particular concern was the Blue Law that at the time required that retail stores be closed either on Saturday or Sunday each week as a way to observe the Sabbath. That, The Herald suggested, could create undue pressures on local establishments. However, it was pointed out that some business owners actually opposed lifting the laws.

“… The religious underpinnings of the closing laws are losing ground to the more mundane considerations of unfair competition, higher employee costs, and other practical business factors,” the Herald stated. “A seven-day operation would be a particular hardship on the small independent retailer, it is argued.” Thus, while The Herald supported removing most so-called Blue Laws, it concluded that a “full repeal” would not be warranted, at least not without vigorous debate at the state level.

In 1982, there was no mention of Blue Laws. The 7-Eleven on South Main Street had been in operation for years. And a new set of issues were occupying the minds of residents.

Invented Crisis and Recessions

The Year in Review began with a note on 1981, and how the Fire Department had reported that “$910,675 in fire damage (had occurred) during the 1981 calendar year … which represented the greatest one-year total.” Unfortunately, January of 1982 would see no change in the 1981 trends, as the Review recounted how “$20,000 in damage occurred at an afternoon blaze at a Rice Avenue residence.”

March was filled with news about performances, as the “CHS Marching Band took first place in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in New Haven,” a few weeks after “Damn Yankees, senior class play at the high school, was staged.”

By July, The Herald was reporting that “Cheshire Academy Board of Directors announces plans not to renew the Cheshire YMCA contract upon expiration in September, 1983,” as well as “John Vitale wins his 10th consecutive Cheshire Road Race.” The year finished off with the announcement that Cheshire resident “Phil Robertson is elected minority leader of the State Senate in a 7-6 vote.”

Instead of focusing on one particular issue at the end of 1983, The Herald editorial writers instead took a more broad view of the year that was. Running through the previous 12 months in much the same manner as the Year in Review had done, that week’s editorial determined that it was a “year of great expectations, of well-intentioned plans laid bare.”

“It was the year of the great storm, of the “June monsoon” as it was to become known, and of sudden heroes who thrust themselves into the swirling waters to aid others. It was a year that finally saw the gypsy moth’s demise and the return of the near-perfect summer greenery.”

“It was a year that included gradual waning of vandalism but a noticeable increase of the occasional dramatic crime, such as holdups and assaults,” The Herald continued. “It was the year that soccer established a stronger foothold here than ever before, with the growth of the adult league, the annual international tournament, and the introduction of indoor play. It was the year in which the members of an entire Town department decided they’d had enough of being treated like stepchildren come budget time and took the ball and went home.”

In the end, The Heraldconcluded, “It was not the absolute best of years here, but it was far from being the worst.”

While faint praise for certain, one wonders whether the same conclusion can be reached after most every year. Could one not say the same about 2022? While by no means the best of times, the year did not produce the worst of times either, and in comparison to the previous two years, one could look at 2022 as a year of improvements.

Not everything went right in 2022 but, like in 1983 and every year before and since, there was plenty for which to be thankful.

Author: Adventist Angels Watchman Radio

Welcome to Adventist Angels Watchman Radio now Live International official Page preparing the People of the world For Jesus Christ second coming. find us on Facebook YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, Palcity and Gettr

One thought on “Annihilation! Mother Driver Gradual Bible Sabbath Change, Invent a Utopian Society in a Crisis, More Loans! Looking Back At Years That Were In Decades Past”

  1. Ecumenical Rome and Daughters Clubs Common Good Evangelical Gamble To “Cure Evil”: “Blue Laws” cashless system “limits” Freedom of Speech has limits: Cashless gaming card will include spending limits, Perrottet says

    Ecumenical Rome and Daughters Clubs Common Good Evangelical Gamble To “Cure Evil”: “Blue Laws” cashless system “limits” Freedom of Speech has limits: Cashless gaming card will include spending limits, Perrottet says

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