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Thursday, March 31, 2011

Things Found in Books: HO-HUM Indeed!

I'm known for picking up books for the title alone. If the title is unique, then the contents might have something to say as well. This book is a good example, but any book with as many bookmarks as this one has must have had a unique experience.  "Newsbreaks" were and still may be a feature of New Yorker Magazine, in which little news items from other publications were collected for their poorly type-set, constructed, mis-worded, grammar-smashing way in which they presented whatever subject the were reporting. Not unlike "America's Funniest Home Videos" for the publishing industry: 

"Jury to try woman for murder not yet completed" -Headline in the Ithaca Journal News

Very funny, but maybe it was funnier to read this in the New Yorker, or in this book, which was published in 1931.  The golden ticket I hoped to find was handwritten on the pages of the inside cover. It looks like a significant entry:
Click for a more readable image, but it looks like a somewhat rowdy group of newspaper reporters, or related publishing field, were headed up to Syracuse for a convention (which I can't verify) of Newspaper reporters.  It could be some tongue and cheek entry written in a Martini induced moment, but the details belie some truth, I hope.  The Commodore Vanderbilt would have been the best and fastest, possibly most luxurious way to make the journey if this is a pre-war entry.  Passenger rail service between 1931 and 1950 hit its peak and what a picture I could paint if I could just figure out who these passengers were, and what year they were traveling.  They even went so far as to sign the book in some weird kind of "pact."
Ugh! Signatures of possible newspaper writers and I can't find them?  I must be looking in the wrong places. Here is where I need your help. There are no other clues, the bookmarks and pencil marks have no personal connection to the travelers. There has to be more on this group!  Your name in lights if you can help me solve this mystery.


  1. Love your humor - and you posts have lots of good 'stuff', just found you yesterday.
    - Joy

  2. Ah-ha! A Peter J. West Jr. wrote this article in 1927 in ... wait for it... Syracuse! http://newspaperarchive.com/syracuse-herald/1927-07-17/page-18

  3. Does that say E.A. Latimer? If it does, an E.A. Latimer corresponded with a Rebecca Latimer Felton, his daughter. Rebecca was an author, newspaper columnist and lecturer.


    If you type out the rest of the names for me, I can keep on searching. I can't read the rest of the names. :)


Found something unique? See something here you want to know more about? Start the discussion - I'll respond. Really!