A program for the poor, a train wreck, and a man of future fame buys a farm [Lancaster That Was] | LancLife

Excerpts and summaries of news stories from the former Intelligencer Journal, Lancaster New Era and Sunday News that focus on the events in the county’s past that are noteworthy, newsworthy or just strange. 

A legislative pay raise in 1995 was enough to get some Lancaster County residents to travel to Harrisburg and protest – even if they had never been politically active before.

The $8,800 pay raise for legislators – voted on by them and signed into law by Republican Gov. Tom Ridge – led to hundreds of people gathering on the Capitol steps to protest the “out of touch” lawmakers.

One of those protesters, Pauline Forney of Lititz, said of herself and her husband, “We’ve never done anything like this before. Our sons will just pass out when they hear.”

In the headlines:

Clinton steadies ties with China

GOP contenders blast Powell

Ridge signs ‘Megan’s Law’ to create sex offender registry

Check out the Oct. 25, 1995, Lancaster New Era here.

A federal program aimed at fighting poverty and malnutrition came to Lancaster County in 1970, with the goal of helping 200 families that were determined to be the county’s poorest.

The Emergency Food and Medical Services Program, administered locally by the Community Action Program of Lancaster, was “an all-out war on hunger, malnutrition and starvation and its medical, psychological and social side effects.”

Goals of the program included providing education about health and nutrition to at-risk families, as well as getting them into federal programs such as Food Stamps and providing funds to cover medical services and supplies.

The initiative grew out of a 1969 study of 4- and 5-year-old children in Lancaster. The study found many instances of malnutrition, with effects ranging from anemia to cardiac defects to dental problems.

In the headlines:

Detroit cop slain, siege ‘stalemated’

Lutherans OK women ministers

Check out the Oct. 25, 1970, Sunday News here.

A personal real estate purchase doesn’t often make the front page of the newspaper, but one did on Oct. 25, 1945. The sale is even more noteworthy when one considers the future of the people involved.

David Ogilvy – misidentified in the Intelligencer Journal as David Agilvy – was a Scotsman who was attached to the British embassy in Washington, D.C., during the Second World War. On previous visits to Lancaster County, he became fascinated with the Amish, and vowed to buy a farm here after the war ended.

Which, indeed, he did – the Intelligencer Journal reported he bought an 81-acre farm in Salisbury Township for $257 per acre.

That in itself is somewhat interesting, but the best was yet to come. 

Ogilvy turned out to be a terrible farmer, and after a few years, he moved to Manhattan, where in 1948 he founded the venerable Ogilvy & Mather ad agency, part of the mid-century advertising boom glamorized in “Mad Men.” 

Ogilvy’s exploits – both on the farm and on Madison Avenue – are detailed in the book “The King of Madison Avenue,” by Ken Roman.

His most enduring legacy, aside from helping to revolutionize the advertising industry, may be a simple slogan: Maxwell House’s “Good to the last drop.”

In the headlines:

United Nations now in existence

Senate votes $5,788,000,000 tax cut

Violence-marked film strike ends after conference

Check out the Oct. 25, 1945, Intelligencer Journal here.

Several hundred Pennsylvania Railroad employees from Lancaster County were rushed to Radnor in 1920 to help clear a train wreck.

Sixty coal cars, each holding 100,000 pounds of coal, derailed at the Radnor station while moving at 50 miles per hour.

The station was completely destroyed, and the train “was converted into a mountain of coal and twisted and broken wreckage,”

More than a thousand workers were laboring to clear the tracks and sift through the rubble. It was rumored that a family was seen on the station platform shortly before the wreck, but no bodies had been found.

In the headlines:

MacSwiney dies in Brixton prison after hunger strike of 73 days

British coal strike nears settlement 

Check out the Oct. 25, 1920, Lancaster Intelligencer here.

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