Sunday, May 20, 2018

Methodist Men Give Women Greater Say in Running Church, 1918

From the editorial page of the Hickory Daily Record, May 14, 1918, S.H. Farabee, editor

Methodist women have been given full lay status and hereafter will have as much say-so in the running of the church as the men. Since the women are the best church workers, this recognition was fully merited.

The Record is in hopes the general conference will not reconsider its action in modifying the time limit of preachers in the several Methodist conferences. It ought to be possible to retain a minister when he fits well in a community and to move a minister where the misfit is apparent. What the brethren are striving for is the greatest service and that will be secured when a strong man is kept on a charge which he is developing his greatest usefulness.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Eleanor Roosevelt's Visit to Western North Carolina, 1958

From Eleanor Roosevelt’s “My Day” column, published in various newspapers on May 20, 1958. She wrote about her visit to North Carolina in this column.

LAS VEGAS—I left New York in the rain on Wednesday afternoon for Baltimore, made a speech there and arrived at my son's house in Bethesda, outside Washington, around midnight. I had not meant to keep my son up that late, but my hosts had taken such precautions to get me over quickly that we waited at different spots for police escorts on the way and this made us a trifle later than I had expected.

James, Irene and I had a very pleasant breakfast next morning and then I took a plane to Asheville, North Carolina. From there I was driven the 40 miles to Culhowee, where I was to speak at the college. This western North Carolina college is situated in the most beautiful country. Its campus is unusually interesting; the buildings are all on different levels, for they had to be built on the sides of hills.

On the way there we drove through the Cherokee Indian reservation, to find that here, too, they are having difficulties in developing into full citizenship instead of being wards of the state. They have been fortunate, however, in having a very good school and high school run by the government. Some of their graduates are in the college and are well prepared, I was told, so that they have no difficulties in meeting requirements.

This college has a graduate school, and many teachers are prepared here. It also runs two summer sessions, so that some of the students are working all year round to finish college more quickly. In the daytime I began to wonder why I had not brought some summer clothes, but the evening in the mountains was cool and I was glad of my coat driving back to Asheville. There I slept for about five hours in the hotel, had breakfast at 6:30 next morning and then took a 7:45 plane for Cincinnati.

Changing there, I was in Chicago by one p.m. I was met by Mr. Eichelberger and his brother and we had a pleasant lunch in the airport restaurant. United's plane for Las Vegas did not leave until 4:00 p.m., so I sat in the little private waiting room and dozed for over an hour. Then Miss Baillargeon arrived with mail from New York and I was busy again until we were well on our way to Las Vegas.

In Asheville I was given a book of poems by Thomas Wolfe's sister, Mrs. Wheaton. Many people this year have seen the Broadway play based on Wolfe's book, "Look Homeward, Angel." It is a pleasure I am still looking forward to, but I am glad to be introduced to these poems—one of which, "This Is Man," will appeal to many of us. I think this volume is going to be one of the books I will keep near at hand and read from very often, for poetry is something you want to read over and over again until it stays in your memory.

I want to pay tribute here to Joseph E. Davies, who died a few days ago. He was an old friend of my husband's and one whom my husband found very worthy of his trust. Mr. Davies, as Ambassador to Russia, did a great deal to improve our understanding. When he was there it cannot have been a very easy life. Yet he saw through all the difficulties, appreciated that which was good in the people, and understood the struggle that they must go through. He has left his children a heritage of public service and of loyal friendship, as well as a record of business and professional achievements.



Eleanor Roosevelt, "My Day, May 20, 1958," The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers Digital Edition (2017), accessed 10/21/2017,

Friday, May 18, 2018

Reforming the Average Medical Expert Witness, 1908

“Reform of the Medical Expert Witness” from the Editorial page of The Medical Brief: A Monthly Journal of Practical Medicine, May, 1908

There is a crying need for the reform of the medical expert witness. As constituted at the present time, he furnishes good material for the use of invective on the part of the newspaper editorial writer and is a veritable target for the “funny picture” man of the daily papers. There is a firm conviction (based upon repeated observations) in the mind of the average juror that one can get any kind of medical expert testimony that is needed if one has “the price.” And the more money there is to buy this testimony, the more experts can be produced. Under the American system, in a given case, each side is allowed to introduce as many experts as is “necessary” to “enlighten” the jury on technical medical matters. The average juror is correct in his belief that with money there is no cause so hopeless, no proposition so ridiculous and no crime so heinous but that you can procure a medical witness to swear that there is no cause for action, that the proposition is logical and that there has been no crime committed.

Does this state of affairs mean that the worship of Mammon is so all-powerful that the medical profession as a whole is ready and willing at times to prostitute itself for mere filthy lucre and swear away its honor for sordid wealth? Or does it mean that medicine in all branches is so empirical and so obscure that there can be an honest difference of opinion on any and all medical subjects?

The ignoble status of the medical expert witness can be explained in no other way, according to authorities on jurisprudence of this country. Harken to the words of Wharton in his work on “Evidence,” Section 454: “When expert testimony was first introduced, it was regarded with great respect. An expert was viewed as the representative of a science on which he was a professor, giving impartially its conclusions. Two conditions have combined to produce a change in this relation. In the first place, it has been discovered that no expert, no matter how learned and incorrupt, speaks for his science as a whole. Few specialties are so small as not to be torn by factions, and often the smaller the specialty the bitterer and more inflaming and distorting are the animosities by which these factions are possessed. Particularly in this the case in matters psychological, in which there is no hypothesis so monstrous that an expert can not be found to sweat to it on the stand, and defend it with vehemence. ‘Nihil tam absurdo,’ which being literally translated means that there is nothing so absurd that the philosophers will not say it. In the second place, the retaining of experts by a fee proportionate to the importance of their testimony is now as customary as is the retaining of lawyers.

No court would take as testimony the sworn statement of the law given by counsel retained by a particular side, for the reason as the most high-minded men are so swayed by an employment of this kind as to lose the power of impartial judgment; and so intense is this conviction that in every civilized community the retention of presents by a judge from suitors visits him not only with disqualification, but with disgrace. Hence it is, that, apart from the partisan character of their opinions, their utterances, now that they have as a class become the retained agents of the parties, have lost all judicial authority and are entitled only to the weight which sound and consistent criticism will award to the testimony itself. In making this criticism a large allowance must be made for the bias necessarily belonging to men retained to advocate a cause, who speak not as to fact, but as to opinion, and who are selected, on all moot questions, either from their prior advocacy of them or from their readiness to adopt the opinion to be proved. In this sense we may adopt the strong language of Lord Kenyon, that skilled witnesses come with such a bias on their minds to support the cause in which they are embarked, that hardly any weight should be given to their evidence.”

Such is the status of the medical witness, in the mind’s eye of the bar, bench and public. What are we going to do about it? Shall we point out the immorality of telling lies on the witness stand to members of a learned profession? Shall we advise members of an honorable body to cultivate the faculty of truth-telling and to disdain the fleeting pleasures that go with the possession of wealth? Are not these principles of conduct instilled in every one of us at the knees of our parents? Are they not further expounded from the pulpits of all creeds? Are they not further emphasized as we sit at the feet of our teachers in our medical schools? We must answer, yes, to all these queries. At our medical schools, the student is told to be honest and upright in his dealings with his patients and with his professional brethren. He is instructed in the so-called “ethics” of the profession, drilled in the niceties of conduct in consultation work with his fellow practitioners. But how much is he told of the dangers that beset his path when he is called upon to appear before the bar of justice as a medical witness, ordinary or expert? We venture to say that he is told little or nothing about this. Moreover, he has unfortunately possibly heard of this professor or that professor having acted as an expert in cases from time to time and knows the partisan character of the testimony given by his teacher. Naturally, like master, like man, he follows in his teacher’s wake when called upon later in life to act as an expert.

We would, therefore, offer as a suggestion for the relief of this condition that our medical colleges establish more complete courses on legal medicine; that such chairs be given to men of competence in medicine, not to lawyers, as is commonly done. Let the subject be hammered into the heads of the students. Let them learn from one of their honorable professors that a physician’s views and opinions when given in the white glare of the court room should not differ so immeasurably as when given in the mild light of the sick room. Another step in the right direction would be the formation of medico-legal societies in large cities where lawyers and doctors could meet and exchange views with the end in view of bring order out of this present-day chaos. In this way, members of the bar may learn from personal contact with physicians something of legal medicine and, at the same time, members of the medical profession may learn something of interest to them from the standpoint of medico-legal jurisprudence from their legal brethren. At present, the average lawyer views a doctor who is called to court as a target for his sarcasm and irony, while the doctor in turn looks upon the lawyer as one who has a little knowledge of perhaps the one single medical fact at issue in the case, and consequently hardly deserving of ordinary courtesy when presuming to cross-examine him (the learning doctor) upon the general broad propositions of medicine.

The partisan character of the medical witness’ employment necessarily is a heavy burden to bear and high-minded indeed is the man, no matter what his calling may be, who can stand out against it and give opinions contrary to the good of the cause upon which he has embarked and to protect whose interest he thinks he has been compensated. Nevertheless, it is possible for the medical man even to bear this burden and come out honorably if he only will bear in mind that he should give counsel and medical opinion to the jury just as he  would were he consulted on these self-same points in the privacy of his consultation chamber. In no other way can this begrimed and besmirched repute of the medical expert witness be cleaned and purified. The limitations of the United States Constitution in respect to the calling of witnesses for an accused person practically forbid the employment of commission of experts alone in settling moot points in medicine as applied to causes at law. Therefore, the slogan of the medical profession should be, self-purification and better medical education.

Municipal Public Works in North Carolina, 1910

From pages 674 and 683 of the Municipal Journal & Public Works, and Engineer, Vol. 28, May 4, 1910, and May 18, 1910, page 751, and May 25, 1910, page 781. This book is online at

Lobelia, N.C.—J.B. McQueen, Lakeview, has purchased Morrison Mill site on Lower Little River and will erect electric plant to supply power.
East Spencer, N.C.—City has selected J.B. McCrary & Co., Empire Bldg., Atlanta, Ga., to prepare plans and specifications for the water works—H.C. Hueck, Mayor.
Franklin, N.C.—Citizens have voted $29,000 bond issue for water works—F.L. Siler, Mayor.
Page 674:
May 6-7
Appalachian Engineering Association, Annual Meeting, Winston-Salem, N.C.—Harry M. Payne, Secretary, Morgantown, W. Va.
June 2-3
North Carolina Municipal Association—Annual Convention, Winston-Salem, N.C. O.B. Eaton, Secretary, Mayor Winston-Salem, N.C.
Page 751
Patent Claims
956.121 WATER METER. M’Kean Maffit and Patrick H. Williams, Charlotte, N.C. Serial No. 490,077.
A meter comprising a body, a disk-chamber located therein, a disk located in said chamber having a stem, a hood mounted upon the body, and having an externally threaded boss with an outstanding shoulder located thereon, a gear train located under the hood, the shaft passing concentrically through the boss and operatively connected with the gear train, a stuffing box located in the body and screw-threaded upon the boss and having a globular portion upon which the stem of the disk is adapted to operate, and an arm carried by the said shaft.
Burlington, N.C.—Street and Sidewalk Commission will advertise for bids after June 6 for sidewalk improvements—Jas. P. Montgomery, City Secretary.
Elizabeth City, N.C.—City is considering $120,000 bond issue for street paving.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Who Will Serve in Military, What They Will Be Paid, 1917

“Measures for Raising of Military Forces, as Agreed Upon by Congress,” from the May 17, 1917, issue of the High Point Review

Male Citizens and Those Who Have Declared Their Intention to Become Citizens, of That Age, Liable to Draft….Classes The Are Excused

Washington—The selective draft under which the new United States army will be raised will be applied under the following provisions of the army bill:

“That the enlisted men required to raise and maintain the organizations of the regular army and to complete and maintain the organizations embodying the members of the National Guard drafted into the service of the United States, at the maximum legal strength as by this act provided, shall be raised by voluntary enlistment, or if and whenever the president decides that they cannot effectually be so raised or maintained, then by selective draft; and all other forces hereby authorized shall be raised and maintained by selective draft exclusively; but this provision shall not prevent the transfer to any force of training cadres from other forces.

Age Limits Are Fixed

“Such draft as herein provided shall be based upon liability to military service of all male citizens or mail persons not alien enemies who have declared their intention to become citizens, between the ages of 21 and 30 years, both inclusive, and shall take place and be maintained under such regulations as the president may prescribe not inconsistent with the terms of this act.

“Quotas for the several states, territories and the District of Columbia, or subdivisions thereof, shall be determined in proportion to the population thereof and credit shall be given to any state, territory, district, or subdivision thereof for the number of men who were in the military service of the United States as members of the National Guard on April 1, 1917, or who have since said date entered the military service of the United States from any such state, territory, district, or subdivision, either as members of the regular army or the National Guard.

Provides for Military Law

“All persons drafted into the service of the United States and all officers herein provided for shall, from the date of said draft or acceptance, be subject to the laws and regulations governing the regular army, except as to promotions, so far as such laws and regulations are applicable to persons whose permanent retention in the military service on the active or retired list is not contemplated by existing law, and those drafted shall be required to serve for the period of the existing emergency unless sooner discharged, provided that the president is authorized to raise and maintain by voluntary enlistment or draft, as herein provided, special and technical troops, as he may deem necessary, and to employ them into organizations and to officer them as provided in the third paragraph of section 1 and section 9 of this act.

“Organizations of the force herein provided for, except the regular army, shall, as far as the interests of the service permit, be composed of men who come, and of officers who are appointed from, the state or locality.”

No person liable to military service will be permitted to escape therefrom by furnishing a substitute or the payment of money, and the payment of bounties for recruits is prohibited.

Men Who Are Exempt

The persons who will be exempted from military service are thus designated by the provision of the bill:

“That the vice president of the United States, the officers, legislative, executive, and judicial, of the United States and of the several states, territories, and the District of Columbia, regular or duly ordained ministers of religion, students who at the time of the approval of this act are preparing for the ministry in recognized theological or divinity schools, and all persons in the naval service of the United States shall be exempt from the selective draft herein prescribed.

“Nothing in this act contained shall be construed to require or compel another person to serve in any of the forces herein provided for who is found to be a member of any well-recognized religious sect or organization at present organized and existing and whose existing creed or principles forbid its members to participate in war in any form and whose religious convictions are against war or participation therein in accordance with the creed or principles of said religious organization; but no person so exempted shall be exempted from service in any capacity that the president shall declare to be noncombatant.

Certain Classes to Be Excused

“The president is hereby authorized to exclude or discharge from said selective service draft and from the draft under the second paragraph of section 1 hereof, or to draft from partial military service only from those liable to draft as in this act provided, persons of the following classes: county and municipal officers, customhouse clerks, persons employed by the United States in the transmission of the mails, artificers and workmen employed in the armories, arsenals and navy yards of the United States, and such persons employed in the service of the United States as the president may designate; pilots, mariners actually employed in the sea service of any citizen or merchant within the United States; persons engaged in industries, including agriculture, found to be necessary to the maintenance of the military establishment or the effective operation of the military forces or the maintenance of national interest during the emergency; those in the status with respect to persons dependent upon them for support which renders their inclusion or discharge advisable; and those found to be physically or morally deficient.”

[Who determine who is exempt? Each county will establish a draft board, one for approximately each 30,000 of population in a city, according to the census. Boards shall have three or more members, none of whom shall be connected with the military establishment, to be chosen by local authorities. A district board will be appointed for appeals, and its findings will be final. All men between the ages of 21 and 30 must register and may be imprisoned for a year if they fail to register. Those temporarily absent from their legal residence may register by mail.

Provisions for Volunteers

The provisions governing voluntary enlistment in the regular army and National Guard follow:
That the qualifications and conditions for voluntary enlistment as herein provided shall be the same as those prescribed by existing law for enlistments in the regular army, except that recruits must be between the ages of 18 and 40, both inclusive, at the time of their enlistment, and such enlistment shall be for the period of the emergency unless sooner discharged.

Provision for Increased Pay

The army pay increases are set forth in the following provisions:

“That all officers and enlisted men of the forces herein provided for other than the regular army shall be in all respects on the same footing as to pay, allowances, and pensions as officers and enlisted men of corresponding grades and length of service in the regular army; and commencing June 1, 1917, and continuing until the termination of the emergency, all enlisted men of the army of the United States in active service whose base pay does not exceed $24, an increase of $8 per month; those whose base pay is $30, $36, or $40, an increase of $6 per month; and those whose base pay is $45 or more, an increase of $5 per month.

Sheriff Fitzgerald Brings Auto Thieves and Car They Stole Back From Illinois, 1930

The Johnsonian-Sun, Selma, N.C., Thursday, May 15, 1930

Sheriff Fitzgerald Brings Auto Thieves Back from Illinois

Sheriff Fitzgerald, accompanied by Deputies J.O. Hinton and Eugene Caudill, left Smithfield on Thursday morning, May 8, for Carbondale, Ill., and returned Sunday night, May 11, bringing with them the Ford car which was stolen in Smithfield from Paul R. Newman of Lillington, N.C., on Easter Sunday night; also bringing the two prisoners who had been occupants of the stolen car when arrested in Carbondale.

The prisoners, who gave their names as John Doran and Claude Williams, had been arrested and held by the police in Carbondale—an account of which was given in the Johnstonian-Sun last week.
The car, which was a new one when stolen, shows considerable signs of use. It appears to be in good running order, but there is a hole in the body just above the running board, which was made by a machine gun when the men failed to obey the command of the police and stop the car.

The man who gives his name as John Doran admits the theft of the car and says that Williams was picked up by him in Memphis, Tenn., to drive the car. Williams was at the wheel when they were arrested.

The immediate cause of their arrest was the fact that they stopped at a filling station about 2 o’clock in the morning and had their tank filled with gasoline, then ordered patching rubber, and while the service man was getting the rubber they drove off without paying their bills. They were going in the direction of Carbondale and a telephone message to the police station there did the work for them.

The car still carried the North Carolina license plates, and in possession of the men were found Mr. Newman’s identification card, his check book and some letters, all of which the men are alleged to have been using for identification purposes in passing forged checks.

One thing that was a great help in bringing about their downfall was a letter which Doran had written to a Selma girl. The letter which was headed Memphis, Tenn., had been placed in an envelope that had been addressed was found in his pocket.

In the letter, which was a rather long one, he asked the Selma girl whether or not she had heard anything about him since he left, and said he could “laugh at them now.” It was supposed that he meant that he could laugh at the officers who were trying to catch him.

Duran says that he was born on the Caleb Penny farm in Wake County 23 years ago, but has not lived there for several years. He claims to have traveled over several states within the last few years. He says he joined the U.S. Army at Fort Bragg on July 13, 1925, and was discharged at San Francisco, Cal., on July 14, 1928.

It is thought probable that both men might have been connected with a band of automobile thieves. There appears to be very little difference in their ages.

Sheriff Fitzgerald in speaking of his trip said that if he had not been in such a hurry to get back home, he could have enjoyed his trip much more than he did.

They traveled by automobile and spent Thursday night in Knoxville, Tenn. Friday they drove through Nashvile, Tenn., Hopkinsonville and Paducah, Ky. They crossed the Ohio River at Paducah, which is something over 100 miles on this side of Carbondale, Ill., which place they reached Friday night.
Sheriff Fitzgerald says that after crossing the Allegheny Mountains the greater part of their trip was made in the rain, and that in many places the fields were almost covered with water.

He says he passed through the most beautiful farming country that he has ever seen anywhere. He says that after crossing over our North Carolina mountains he did not see a bag of guano or fertilizer of any sort until he got back to North Carolina, but that all through Tennessee, Kentucky and Illinois a good portion of each farm was in pasture, where horses, mules, cows, hogs and sheep were grazing. There were also many fields of wheat and other small grain, the homes and arms were beautiful and the people appeared to be prosperous.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Around the Farm and In the Home by Virginia Godwin, Tabor City, 1951

“About the Farm and In the Home,” by Virginia D. Godwin, from the May 16, 1951, issue of The Tabor City Tribune.

This past Sunday has been one of the most pleasant that I have experienced in several years. It was wonderful to see so many “Happy” Mothers. So many who have boys in Service were lucky enough to have them home this past week, and those who do not have someone Service were happily remembered just the same. The day was beautiful and it seemed that love shown forth and made hearts radiantly happy with almost everyone. Mother’s Day was really a day of love and friendship to all.

I was so glad to see Mrs. Retha Hinson (who has been seriously ill) at church and looking so well, and indeed she had a right to be very happy for her oldest son who is in The Coast Guard is home on leave. Delmas is a S-A and has been stationed for the past several months at Alameda, California. Now he is going to Staton Island, New York. He plans to go to Sea for a while and then take a course in Radar. I am so glad Delmas that you could be home for Mother’s Day.

I had the pleasure of talking with Stedman Ward also and he, too, is in The Coast Guard. He is one of the boys who has grown up since I have been away and is now a handsome young man. Stedman is a S-A and has been stationed at Camp May, New Jersey. Now he is going to Boston, Mass. He plans to take a course in Electronics and hopes to become an Electrician’s Mate. I wish you the best success, Stedman and it was a pleasure talking with you.

Another very happy mother is Mrs. Bessie Ward who also has her son home on leave. He is Pvt. Wilbert Ward and is stationed at Atlanta, Georgia. Wilbert is in The Army and is in the Signal Corps. Division. I understand that he likes his work fine, and Wilbert I am glad that you coujld come home at this time.

Pfc. James Garrell of The U.S. Air Force is also home, so of course it was a special day for his mother, too. James spent the afternoon with me recently and I am glad that he is so happy in his work. He is at the present stationed permanently at Lackland Air Force Base, Texas. He likes his work so well that he is thinking of making a career of The Air Foce. Best of luck always, James.

Mother’s Day was made very happy for Mrs. Kate Reaves, when she received word from her son that he will be home the last of this month. Sprunt is in the Marines, and has been in Korea for several months. I am glad Kate for both you and Sprunt.

I hear that one of our younger boys, Jackson Gore, made his mother, Mrs. Joe Gore, very happy when he presented her with several lovely and unexpected gifts. That was very nice, Jackson, and I know your mother is very proud of you.

The day was very nice for me, too, especially when my son Mitchell presented me with a beautiful pin. And since it was the first time in several years that both my sister and myself have been home together on Mother’s Day, it was an unusually happy day for our mother, Mrs. Burton Long.

For the mothers who have boys that will soon be leaving for Service the day served as a special day to them, too, in still being able to have their boys with them. Mrs. Walter Ward because Norman will soon be leaving, Mrs. S.P. Gore because Sam will soon be entering Service, Mrs. J.E. Long because of Elbert, and Mrs. Sally Ward who still has H.C. here with her.

To the Mothers who could not have their boys home, I would like to say that I sincerely hope the day was nice for them also, and that next year their boys will be home, too. If I have forgotten to mention any-one, please remember that it was not intentional. I thank all of you for your friendliness which helps me with my work very much. Now in closing, Friends remember: Dear hands that rest upon the Bible. Dear hands that trace the old loved lines, beneath those hands springs forth the richly embered core of life to guide us safely onward. They are Mother’s Hands.