This Was Hatboro-Horsham, 1930
A look back at Hatboro and Horsham, 82 years ago this week.
From the Public Spriit, Week of April 17-23, 1930
Police investigate man's death at Hallowell Hotel -
Byron Thompson, 62, of Hatboro, died Saturday night of dilation of the heart aggravated by a kidney ailment, according to a report made this week by Dr. John C. Simpson of Norristown, Montgomery County Coroner's physician.
Thompson, a long-time resident of Hatboro, died suddenly in the Hallowell Hotel [now the Horsham Inn] on Easton road, conducted by Robert Burns. It was reported at first that he had strangled to death on a large clam which he had attempted to swallow. This was denied by the physician.
The unusual circumstances surrounding the death actuated a search of the inn by state police officers, and a quantity of illegal liquor was discovered [Prohibition was still in effect]. As a result, Mrs. Burns, wife of the proprietor, who was present in the hotel at the time, was arrested and is now held on $1,000 bail for court. She is charged with illegal possession of intoxicating liquor.
According to a police report, Thompson and a companion, John Roberts, also of Hatboro, had been making a tour of hotels through the Easton road section Saturday afternoon and wound up early Saturday evening at the Hallowell establishment. They were in the kitchen sitting at a table when Thompson slumped forward in his chair unconscious. The Abington Hospital Ambulance was summoned and upon its arrival the accompanying physician pronounced the man dead.
Highway patrolman Kelly of the Edison Sub-Station, who had been notified, called the state police at Doylestown, who in turn turned the investigation over to the state police at Norristown, in whose jurisdiction the death occurred. They conducted the investigation which led to Mrs. Burns' arrest.
Mrs. Burns was given a hearing before Squire Conrad of Horsham, and was held for a further hearing along with Roberts and Earl DeCoursey of Jamison, material witnesses. The second hearing was held Tuesday evening, when Mrs. Burns was held for court.
Funeral services for Byron Thompson were held Wednesday afternoon from the Walton and Felty Funeral Home in Hatboro, with burial in Lakeview cemetery. He was a widower and is survived by his mother, Mrs. Mary Thompson, and a sister, Miss Eleanor Thompson, both of Hatboro.
Union Library raises money on eve of 175th anniversary -
The campaign to increase the Endowment Fund of the Union Library, Hatboro, is progressing in a manner highly satisfactory to the officers and directors of the institution.
At a meeting held at the Library on Tuesday morning, it was reported that close to $5,000 had been pledged to date, with ten days of the active campaign still open. It is confidently expected that this amount will be increased by several thousand dollars before May first, when the campaign will be concluded and the Library will commemorate the 175th anniversary of its founding with an all-day celebration.
The character of a town is established by the character of its public institutions, its schools, its churches, its libraries, its memorials. To the traveller passing through Hatboro, four points of interest will impress them--our public school, our library, Crooked Billet Inn and the Battle Monument.
Without a shadow of doubt, the Union Library is the most notable point of interest in Hatboro. It stamps the borough as a library town, just the same as Princeton University stamps Princeton as a college town. It gives character to Hatboro.
The campaign to place this old and revered institution on a perfectly sound basis is making progress. Already, over $2,000 is paid in and over $1,000 more pledged.
A very commendable feature among the contributors is making their contributions a memorial to someone in the family who in past years took an active interest in its welfare.
Already, almost $1,000 has been given in this way. What more appropriate or worthwhile memorial can be suggested than to place it in an institution which will not only endure but through the years and centuries be a force for good to coming generations.
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Pitcairn Aviation Field humming with activity -
Chairs, blackboards, desks and maps have been purchased and are ready for installation in the new classroom being fitted out in the No. 2 hangar at Pitcairn Aviation Field in Horsham.
Three motors for student instructors will be kept in this hangar. They are a Curtiss K-6, a Curtiss OX-5, and a Wright Whirlwind.
A sprinkling system has been installed at the Field so that those watching the flying may not be troubled by the dust. Another innovation to entertain the watchers is a Victrola [phonograph] with a loudspeaker by which music is furnished on weekdays and Sunday.
With the increases in the demand for electric power caused by the installation of new machinery in the Pitcairn Aviation Factory, it became necessary last week to greatly enlarge the transforming system by which power is run into the factory from the main power lines along Easton road.
A large brick transformer and switchboard room have been built along the right inside wall of the plant. A macadam runway has been built from the main factory doors into the field.
During the heavy windstorm on Monday afternoon, one of the planes was carried across the ground against the ticket booth on the field. A corner of the plane's wing was broken off and the plane was thrown about five feet in the air. One of the boys who was nearby had his leg hurt when the plane came down.
Editor's note - The federal government bought Pitcairn Aviation Field in 1942 and transformed it into Willow Grove Naval Air Station in January 1943.
Hatboro council awards sewer contract -
The contract for the construction of the initial unit of Hatboro's sanitary sewer system was awarded at a special meeting of borough council held Monday night in the town hall.
The Suburban Construction Company of Ardmore was found to be the lowest responsible bidder following an analysis of the bids by the Sewer Committee and Borough Engineer William T. Muldrew. Their figure for the work was $59,419.75.
Execution of the contract was ordered withheld, however, pending the completion of an agreement between the borough and the Roberts and Mander Company and the Oscar Nebel Company in reference to their donations totaling $40,000 offered the borough to apply against the cost of the sewers. It is believed arrangements will be completed this week and actual construction work started within a fortnight.
The work on the first unit will include the main trunk sewer to Old York road at Horsham road and a spur south to the borough schools. The line will run under Byberry, Penn, East Moreland, New, East Montgomery, Jacksonville, Wood, Tanner, Lincoln, Summit and West Moreland. Sewers will be laid in the middle of all streets with the exception of Old York road, where it will be placed beneath the sidewalk.
The subject of a sewerage disposal plant was discussed at length. Inasmuch as it is problematical when a joint plant serving Hatboro and Upper Moreland Township will be feasible, council voted to commission Albright and Mebus, a Glenside engineering firm experienced in this type of work, to prepare plans for a plant for Hatboro alone.
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Hatboro and Horsham Happenings -
Shrubbery, a gift from Mrs. O.P. Smith and Mrs. Maude C. Worstall; and iris roots from the C.E. Frick place, have been planted on the Horsham School grounds under the direction of Charles S. Mann, secretary of the School Board.
Hatboro Road Supervisor White has a force of men repairing that portion of West Moreland avenue beyond the borough line which passes through Upper Moreland township.
A new roof is being placed on the barn on the Teubner place in Horsham, the former D.W. Sill property.
The Sophomore Class of Hatboro High School will have a cake sale in the Enterprise Fire Hall on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Clarence Stout and Fred Golla have gone into partnership as painters and paperhangers. They are painting George Marple's house on Easton road, Horsham, this week.
Mr. and Mrs. Charles Keisel, of Ocean Gate, New Jersey, have been visiting Mrs. Charlotte S. Twining of Central avenue, Hatboro; and Mr. and Mrs. J. Howard Twining of Linden avenue.
A two-hour comedy, "The District School," will be presented on Thursday at 8 o'clock in the Horsham Fire Hall by the Montgomeryville P.T.A., under the auspices of the Aid Society.
Reuben Hockman is having his house on West Moreland avenue, Hatboro, repainted.
Mr. and Mrs. H. Zeigler entertained Mr. and Mrs. Robert S. Graham, of Roslyn, at their home in Hatboro Farms on Saturday.
Rudolph Funk and family will move from Willow Grove to the house of A. Funk on Moreland road, Horsham.
The Orpheum Quartet of Philadelphia will sing in the Lehman Memorial Methodist Episcopal Church, Hatboro, on Sunday morning.
Bud Mason, of Hatboro, will manage the Horsham baseball team this season. Other teams in the Bux-Mont League are Chalfont, Ambler, Fort Washington, Willow Grove and Roslyn. Horsham goes to Roslyn on April 26 for the first game this year.