This Was Hatboro-Horsham, 1924

A look back at Hatboro and Horsham, 88 years ago this week.

From the Public Spirit, Week of Nov. 25-Dec. 1, 1924

Horsham fire destroys barn, kills livestock 

Fourteen cows, three horses and sheep, and thousands of dollars worth of farm machinery and crops, were burned late Sunday night when flames, fanned by a high wind, destroyed a barn at the George Walters farm, off Limekiln pike below Prospectville.

Neighbors within a mile radius were awakened by the screaming and bellowing of the cattle and horses trapped in the blazing building, which is situated on the crest of a hill, near the Park creek. The fire cast a reflection in the sky which could be seen for miles around.

The Walters family had retired early Sunday night. They were awakened by the bawling of cows a few minutes after eleven o'clock. The barn already was enveloped in smoke and flames.

Two automobiles were taken from a shed near the barn which had caught fire. Mr. Walters hurried in one of the cars to the nearest telephone, a quarter of a mile away, and sent in an alarm.

The fire had gained such headway when discovered, that it was impossible to save anything but the two machines. The barn and several outbuildings were burned to the ground. The trapped livestock broke loose from their fastenings and tramped terror-stricken about the stables. One cow gained the doorway only to fall to the floor just inside the opening, blocking the passage for the others.

Members of the Pine Run Country Club, which adjoins the farm, set off volley after volley of gunshots, arousing neighbors in the vicinity who rendered valuable aid until the arrival of the firemen.

The Chalfont Fire Department, the first to reach the vicinity of the fire, skidded its engine in the muddy lane and snapped its driving gears. The Ambler trucks were ditched and caught fast in the mud before reaching the building. The new Horsham Fire Company machine, taking chances on a slippery corn field, left the roadway and managed to reach the burning buildings.

Water was pumped from the creek several hundred yards away, and the house, directly in line with the wind-driven flames, and another adjacent building, were saved.

The barn was well-filled with grain and hay, and considerable machinery was stored in the building and adjoining shed. The loss, approximately $15,000, was partly covered by insurance.

Chautauqua program coming to Hatboro

On Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, December 8, 9 and 10, the Swarthmore Chautauqua will hold its annual festival in the Hatboro Auditorium.

Editor's note - The Chautauqua Movement, which began at Lake Chautauqua, N.Y. in 1874, brought programs of education and entertaiment to small towns across America.

The program as outlined is the best in several years. The keynote will be the music on the opening day by the Festival Ladies Quintet. The lecture the first night will be on "World Building" by Hon. Frank B. Parsons, Commissioner of Education of Ohio.

There is a demand for better and higher-class entertainment each year. Those who have radios have become accustomed to hearing the very best in the musical line, while the auto has brought Philadelphia entertainments very close to home.

Hatboro was in past years a center for lecture courses. Some of the finest speakers in America have brought an educational message to this countryside, but now Chautauqua is alone in the lecture course for this community. On the second night, Arthur Walwyn Evans will give his lecture, "Our Uncrowned Kings."

In this jazz era, Chautauqua brings its message and clean entertainment to this town, and it deserves the support of those who stand for the better things in entertainment and lectures.

The children derive much pleasure from the Junior Chautauqua and in giving a program on the closing afternoon. There is never a play, lecture or expression permitted on the Chautauqua platform that you would be ashamed to have your children hear.

Remember, the tickets for the six performances may be transferred from one person to another and may be secured at a very reasonable price. Arrangements are being made for coffee to be served at the auditorium for those who bring a box supper and remain from the afternoon to the evening session.


AN EARLY CHRISTMAS SUGGESTION...We have a new, large stock of Eveready and Ray-O-Lite Flashlights and Batteries for our Christmas trade. Prices range from 65c to $4.00. Get Yours early...YERKES HARDWARE STORE, Hatboro, Penna...Bell Phone, Hatboro 29-W.

Driver escapes gunman in Horsham 

A Doylestown taxi driver escaped from a gunman by a ruse in Horsham on Saturday.

Harvey Johnson, the driver, had the thrill of his life when he was held up at the point of a hungry-looking .38-caliber revolver by a stickup man.

About 6 o'clock Saturday morning, a man entered the office at the Fretz livery in the rear of the Fountain House in Doylestown, and said that his truck had broken down at Gravel Siding, near New Britain. He asked Johnson what he would charge to take him to Philadelphia, after going to New Britain and loading some of the goods in the taxi. A price was made and the pair started for New Britain.

When they arrived at Gravel Siding, the passenger exclaimed, "Why, my truck is gone, but here is the stuff in the field." Nearby were several bags containing about seventy-five chickens, fifty of which had been smothered to death.

Johnson placed the bags in the rear of the livery car and left Gravel Siding. When the machine reached Washington street in Doylestown, the man pulled his gun on Johnson and said, "Old timer, we are going direct to Philadelphia, and you go just the way I want you to go or there will be something doing."

Johnson, minus a gun, offered no resistance and carried his passenger and the loot as far as Horsham, where Johnson asked permission to go in the store of J.W. Freas to purchase a cigar. The gunman consented.

In the store, Johnson requested of Freas that he call the Abington Police at once and tell them to stop the car when they arrived there. Freas, for no apparent reason, said to Johnson, "Call the police yourself."

By that time, the gunman made his appearance in the store and demanded that Johnson come out. Johnson refused to leave the store, and the man left the premises in a hurry and ran in the direction of Hatboro. Johnson then called the State Police at Doylestown, and later the Abington Police were notified.

It is believed the chickens were stolen from the hennery of Elmer Hoffman at New Britain.

Hatboro High basketball team defeats Langhorne 

Hatboro High School's basketball team hung up an easy victory in its second game of the season Friday night when it defeated Langhorne High, 51 to 14.

The Red and Black quintet jumped into the lead after a rather slow start, and at the end of the first half had run the score up to 25 to 3. In the third quarter, an entire second team was put on the floor and held their own with the Bucks Countians.

In the last quarter, the first-string men were sent in with instructions to run up the score. They checked a Langhorne rally and pushed the total to 51 points.

Cornell and Mason, Hatboro veterans, were the high scorers of the game, each accounting for nine double-deckers. Weikel, a new name in the regular lineup this season, showed some great floor playing and tightened his hold on a permanent berth by whipping the strings for five two-pointers and a foul goal.

This youngster at forward and Rubinkam at guard are filling out their positions in great style, and are rounding out a combination that many Bux-Mont teams will find trouble in solving. Manager Miller played his usual star game.


This Saturday, Zane Grey's "The Heritage of the Desert"...Wednesday, Betty Compson in "The Female"...Thursday, Gloria Swanson in "Her Love Story"...HATBORO AUDITORIUM, Old York Road, Hatboro, Pa....Two Shows, 7:15 and 9. Admission, 25c; Children, 15c.

Hatboro and Horsham Happenings

Miss Rachel Jarrett is having alterations made to the parlor of her home on Moreland avenue, Hatboro, to convert it into the Cheer-E Shop, which will open on December 1. Christmas toys and cards and articles for children's wear will be her specialty.

Dr. W.L. Shoemaker, of Philadelphia, visited his farm on Maple avenue, Horsham, on Sunday.

Warren M. Cornell, of Hatboro, has returned from a hunting trip to Maine, where he bagged a fine deer.

An excellent chicken supper with all the "fixins" and pie for dessert will be served by the Horsham Fire Company and Ladies Auxiliary on Saturday evening from 5:30 to 9 o'clock. There will be a bazaar in the upstairs room followed by a dance.

Leisen E. Chapman is slowly convalescing at his home on County Line road, Hatboro, after a stay of four weeks at the Northwestern Hospital, following a serious operation for appendicitis and gall stones.

At a special meeting of the Sunday school board of Grace Union Church, Horsham, on Sunday afternoon, it was decided to donate the flags to the Horsham Boy Scouts.

The old brick pavement [sidewalk] has been removed from Mrs. Curtis Rogers' property on the upper side of Moreland avenue, Hatboro, preparatory to laying a concrete pavement there. This will complete the concrete pavement on both sides of Moreland avenue from York road to Penn street.

Mrs. Chester Duckworth, of Horsham, is recovering from the illness which confined her to bed for several weeks, and is able to be about her room.

Joseph Lannon will convert the former Railroad Hotel, at York road and Moreland avenue, Hatboro, into apartments. A caretaker will be in charge during the winter and work will start in the early spring.

Arthur Jarrett and Ralph Bissey, of Horsham, accompanied by William Twining, of Johnsville, have been at White Pines, New York on a gunning trip.

Mr. and Mrs. Byron Fisher of East Monument avenue, Hatboro, announce the birth of a daughter last Friday night.

The cellar is being dug for the new stores to be erected at the corner of Easton road and Birch avenue, Horsham, by Contactor William F. Tyson. Rumor has it that one is to be a grocery store and the other a drug store.


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