Monday, October 5, 2015


Cortland County Pay Plan, September 24, 2015 Meeting.
On motion of Whitney,              agenda item no. 23

Increase Annual Legislative Compensation - Cortland County Legislature.

              WHEREAS, the Cortland County Legislature is currently paid $6,000 per year, per Legislator, with the Chairman receiving $15,000 and the Majority and Minority Leaders receiving $6,500, AND

              WHEREAS, the above salary has remained the same for 25 years (1991 was raised from $5,000 to $6,000), AND

              WHEREAS, over the course of those 25 years additional compensation and/or benefits have been withdrawn, such as monthly meeting stipends ($25 per meeting), and eligibility to participate in the County Health/Dental/Vision insurance plan, AND

              WHEREAS, the Cortland County Budget & Finance Committee recommends an increase in salary for Legislators beginning in 2016, and an annual increase matching that of the Management Compensation Plan, NOW THEREFORE BE IT

              RESOLVED, that the Director of Budget & Finance, as Budget Officer, shall hereby include a Legislative salary of $10,000 per legislator, $19,000 for the Chairman and $10,500 for Majority and Minority Leaders in the 2016 budget, AND BE IT FURTHER

              RESOLVED, that effective January 1, 2017 any annual salary adjustment of Legislators shall match that provided to employees covered under the Management Compensation Plan.

   The Cortland Contrarian suggests that legislators review Local Law No. 6 for the year 1971, which has not been repealed or amended. It was in force when the September 24, 2015 vote was recorded. Annual raises suggested in Resolution 23 may be subject to an Article 78 challenge in Supreme Court.

              LOCAL LAW NO. 6 FOR THE YEAR 1971.
A Local Law Regarding Effective Date of Board of Supervisors or County Legislators’ Salaries.


   Section 1: Legislative intent. It is the expressed purpose and intent of this Local Law to provide that an election of supervisors or county legislators intervene between the time that the salary of supervisors or county legislators is approved by the legislative body and the time said adjustment becomes effective.

   Section 2: Section 200 of the County Law of the State of New York provides that the Board of Supervisors of a county shall have power from time to time to fix the compensation of its members for services rendered to the county.

   Section 3: The County Law does not expressly provide nor prohibit that an election of legislators intervene between the time that a legislative salary or expense adjustment is approved and the time said adjustment becomes effective.

   Section 4: Therefore, be it enacted by this Board of Supervisors that an election of Supervisors or County Legislators shall intervene between the time that a legislative salary is approved by the legislators and the time said adjustment becomes effective.

   Section 5: This Local Law shall take effect immediately.


Early Cortland County Alms House.
Cortland County Alms House (Closed) in 1982.
The Cortland Democrat, Friday, January 2, 1891.

Christmas at the Alms House.
   In spite of winter and storm last Friday afternoon, about fifteen ladies of the W. C. T. U. visited the County House, carrying with them baskets and boxes filled with gifts which were to make a merry Christmas for the inmates of that Institution. A general welcome was given them by Mr. and Mrs. Frisbee, who took them into the great kitchen, in the center of which a tree has been planted. The tree at once began to bud and blossom and ere long was hung from the lowest branch to highest peak with mittens, stockings, shoulder shawls, aprons, handkerchiefs, and mottoes, reminding one of the tree spoken of in scripture as "bearing twelve manner of fruit."
   When everything was ready, keepers Frisbee and Edwards brought in and seated at either end of the room all who were able to be present. Before the distribution of gifts the following programme was presented:
1. Singing from Gospel Hymn.
2. ReadingJohn XIV by Sarah Chapman.
3. Prayer by Mr. Parmeter.
4. Duet by Misses Chapman and [name missing—CC editor.]
5. Select Reading by Ina Parmeter.
6. Duet by Ina Parmeter and Grace Hare.
7. Violin solo by Mr. Lee (colored).
8. Remarks by Mr. Parmeter.
   Especially interesting was the reading by Miss Chapman who is wholly blind, and read from her bible having raised letters. The duet by Miss Chapman and another young lady who is also blind was exceedingly sweet.
   Mr. Parmeter visits the County House every other Sunday under the auspices of the W. C. T. U., and preaches to them.
   After the programme followed the picking of the fruit, apparently the most interesting part of the entertainment. Among the gifts too large for the tree were a number of pictures sent by the G's, a chair, handsomely painted and cushioned, two covered stools and a new sled, sent by a class of boys in Cortland, to the only boy in the house. Oranges and candies were given to all. Those confined in the hospital were visited and received their share of the gifts. If all who contributed to this object could have been present and seen the tears and smiles and heard the "God bless you's" they would have felt that it was indeed "more blessed to give than to receive."
   One of the present inmates was also in the Institution twenty-two years ago, when they had their last Christmas tree. "The poor ye have always with you, and when ye will, ye may do them good." Let us hope that twenty-two years will not roll away before something of the sort will again break the monotony in the lives of our poor. Many thanks are due Mr. and Mrs. Frisbie who so heartily co-operated with the ladies, to the Messrs. Decker, Schouten and Stone who furnished conveyances, and all who contributed in any way to the success of the enterprise. Oranges etc., had also been received from Glen Haven.


The Schools of the State.
   The annual report of State Superintendent Andrew S. Draper, which will be presented to the incoming legislature, shows some interesting statistics. The report covers the school year ended on July 25th last.
   During the year it cost $17,392,471.61 to maintain the common schools of the state, this being an increase of expenditure over the preceding year of $1,515,626.70. The number of children of the school age (5 to 21 years) was reported at 1,844,596, an increase of 40,929, of whom 1,042,160 attended school at some time during the year. Teachers employed continuously for 32 weeks or more numbered 23,865, while the whole number of teachers employed for any length of time was 31,703. The total amount paid for teachers' wages was $10,422,171.98, as increase of 617,567.98 over the school year of 1888-9. The sum of $4,593,264.97 was spent for new school houses and sites, furniture repairs and other items of current expenses, 12,022 school houses being required to accommodate the pupils in attendance.
   The average annual salary of teachers was $436.71, an increase of $17.95 over the average salary for the preceding year. The average weekly salary was $11.70, a decrease of nine cents a week, this decrease being accounted for by the lengthening of the legal term of instruction from 28 to 32 weeks. When the large salaries paid to many teachers are taken into consideration, the average annual pay of $436.71 shows that some teachers must receive extremely small compensation for their labors. During the year 18,594 teachers were examined by School Commissioners, a decrease of 1,057, a fact which shows that there is some hesitancy about adopting the pedagogic career, brought about, perhaps, by small average wages.
   Superintendent Draper's figures show what an important branch of the government is entrusted to his department. The expenditure of over $17,000,000 wisely and well in a single year calls for a high order of intelligence and good sense among school trustees, boards of education and school officers generally. The vast sum is a precious legacy to be used with the utmost care and honesty in the patriotic work for which it is intended, the making of good citizens. As in all great enterprises, however, there is certain to be waste somewhere, but it may safely be said that the school funds of our state are spent as honestly, as economically and as intelligently as any part of the money that falls into the hands of public officials. The growth of our schools is the pride of every patriot and marks another step upward in the progress of our civilization.

Death of Mrs. J. C. Gray.
   Last week Tuesday Mrs. Gray complained of severe pain about her lungs, but attributed it to a cold and medical assistance was not called until the following morning.
   Symptoms of pneumonia developed so rapidly as to resist all efforts to arrest the disease, which resulting in her death on Friday afternoon.
   Mrs. Gray, nee Miss Fannie Judd, was born in Litchfield, Conn. in the year 1838, subsequently coming to Broome county and afterward to Marathon with her parents. At the latter place in 1860, she was married to Mr. J. C. Gray, removing to Cortland in 1873, since which time she has been a resident of this place and an active and influential member of the Presbyterian church.
   The funeral services were conducted by the Rev. J. L. Robertson, Tuesday afternoon and the remains borne from the beautiful home on Lincoln-ave. to Marathon cemetery for interment. Besides her husband she leaves two sons, Harry P. and Chas B. Gray surviving her. She was a sister of Mr. Jesse L. Judd of this place and also of Mrs. O. M. Mitchell, of Marathon. Mrs. Gray was a most devoted wife and affectionate mother and was highly respected by all her acquaintances for her many virtues. The husband and family have the heartfelt sympathy of our citizens as was manifest from the large attendance at the last sad rites to the departed.

Capture of Loomis.
   Sheriff Borthwick received word Christmas morning that a man corresponding with the description of John Loomis, the jail breaker, had been arrested at a small hamlet in the northern part of Bradford county, Penn., and was lodged in the county jail at Towanda. Deputy Sheriff John Borthwick left town on the 2:40 P. M. train, and found the prisoner in question to be the self-styled detective who figured at Blodgett's Mills on election day and more recently successfully accomplished an escape from the Cortland jail. He gave the name of Frank Johnson when arrested in the Keystone state, but the officer was posted and at once notified our officials that he was entitled to the reward offered.
   Loomis refused to return to Cortland without the requisition papers and under-sheriff Morns left for Auburn Friday, to secure affidavits and went to Albany after obtaining them to secure requisition papers.
   The man Loomis entered a store in West Leroy, Bradford county, on Christmas eve shortly after the proprietor had closed business for the day. In opening up the store Loomis let the watch dog out, the animal at once going to his master's residence. Knowing the dog had been locked in the store the merchant was suspicious and enlisting a constable, the pair reached the store in time to meet Loomis departing with a box containing some $10 in cash and a quantity of postage stamps.
   Early on the same evening a young fellow arrived in town and desired to have his horse and cutter cared for until he should call for the same later on. After the willowy Loomis was captured, the young man failed to appear and his description is identical with that of Frank Johnson, who broke jail with Loomis. Sheriff Borthwick called upon Loomis, but the latter would not visit with him, although he would address conversation to the deputy.
   Mr. John Loomis will, it is expected, reach Cortland on Friday of this week. Early in the week telegrams of inquiry were pouring in on the sheriff from outside officials to ascertain the whereabouts of the prisoner. Evidently he is an individual with an extensive acquaintance among the officials of the state.

Sunday, October 4, 2015


Spotted Elk (Big Foot) lies dead in the snow at Wounded Knee.

The Cortland Democrat, Friday, January 2, 1891.

Troops Fight Desperately—Hand to Hand Encounters—An Hundred of the Indians Wiped Out—Particulars of the Encounter.
   WASHINGTON, Dec. 30—Gen. Schofield, this afternoon, received a dispatch from Gen. Miles, dated Hermosa, S. D., Dec. 30, as follows: "Gen. Brooks telegraphs as follows: Col. Forsythe says sixty-two dead Indian men were counted on the plain where an attempt was made to disarm Big Foot's band and where the fight began. On other parts of the ground there were eighteen more. These, do not include those killed in ravines, where dead warriors were seen, but not counted. Six were brought in badly wounded and six others were with a party of twenty-three men and women, which Capt. Jackson had to abandon when attacked by about 150 Brule Indians from the agency. This accounts for ninety-two men killed and leaves but few alive and unhurt. The women and children broke for the hills when the night commenced and comparatively few of them were hurt and few brought in; thirty-nine are here, of which number twenty-one are wounded. Had it not been for the attack by the Brules an accurate count would have been made; but the ravines were not searched afterwards. I think this shows very little apprehension from Big Foot's band in the future. A party of forty is reported as held by the scouts at the head of the Mexican creek. These consist of all sizes and the cavalry from Rosebud will bring them in if it is true." (Signed) JOHN R. BROOKE.
   Those Indians, under Big Foot, were among the most desperate. There were thirty-eight of the most desperate of Sitting Bull's following that joined Big Foot on the Cheyenne river, and thirty that broke away from Humph's following when he took his band and Sitting Bull's Indians to Fort Bennett, making in all nearly 160 warriors. Before leaving their camps on the Fort Cheyenne river, they cut up their harness, mutilated their wagons, and started south for the Bad Lands, evidently intending not to return, but to go to war. Troops were placed between them and the Bad Lands, and they never succeeded in joining the hostiles there. All their movements were intercepted, and their severe loss at the hands of the Seventh cavalry may be a wholesome lesson to the other Sioux. (Signed) MILES.
   Gen. Schofield said the fight was a most unfortunate occurrence; but he did not see how it could have been avoided. He sent a telegram to Gen. Miles saying he regarded the news received from him as still encouraging and expressing the opinion that he, Miles, would be master of the situation very soon. He also expressed his thanks to the officers and men of the Seventh cavalry for the gallant conduct displayed by them.
   OMAHA, Dec. 30.—The Bee correspondent, at the camp on Wounded Knee creek, telegraphs as follows, concerning yesterdays battle. The military, not anticipating that the Indians would fire upon them, had gathered in very closely and the first firing was terribly disastrous to them. The reply was immediate, however. The soldiers, maddened at the sight of their falling comrades hardly awaited the command and in a moment the whole front was a sheet of fire, above which the smoke rolled, obscuring the central scene from view. Through this horrible curtain Indians could be seen at times flying before the fire, but after the first discharge from the carbines of the troopers there were few of them left. They fell on all sides like grain, in the course of the scythe. Indians and soldiers lay together and wounded fought on the ground. Off toward the bluffs, the few remaining warriors fled, turning occasionally to fire but evidently caring more for escape than battle. Only the wounded Indians seemed possessed of the courage of devils. From the ground where they had fallen they continued to fire until their ammunition was gone or until killed by the soldiers. Both sides forgot everything excepting only the loading and discharging of guns.
   It was only in the early part of the affray that hand to hand fighting was seen. Then carbines were clubbed, sabres gleamed and war clubs circled in the air came down like thunderbolts The Indians could not stand that storm from the soldiers; they had not hoped to. It was only a stroke of life before death. The remnant fled and the battle became a hunt. It was now that the artillery was called into requisition. Before, the fighting was so close that the guns could not be trained without danger of death to the soldiers.
   Now with the Indians flying where they might, it was easier to reach them. The Gatling and Hotchkiss guns began heavy firing, which lasted half an hour, with frequent heavy volleys of musketry and cannon. It was a war of extermination now with the troopers, and it was difficult to restrain them. Tactics were almost abandoned. About the only tactics was to kill while it could be done. Wherever an Indian could be seen, down into the creek and up over the bare hills, they were followed by artillery and musketry fire, and for several minutes the engagement went on until not a live Indian was in sight.
   The Bee's special from Rushville, Neb., says: "Advices from the seat of war give the news of another encounter between the troops and Indians, at a point within four miles of the agency. The Seventh and Ninth cavalry were just coming in from yesterday's battle field, followed at some distance by their provision train. On reaching the point named a large band of Indians, headed by Chief Two Strikes, dashed suddenly upon the train, captured it and were making off toward the Bad Lands when the cavalry wheeled and gave pursuit. In the battle which followed over thirty Indians were wounded, but no soldiers were killed. Two Strikes' Indians had yesterday been considered peaceable and subdued; but their sudden change of mind causes the gravest fears here that, perhaps, none of the so-called friendlies can be relied on. However, word from Gen. Brooke to the settlers, to-day, is somewhat reassuring, it being that a great body of the savages have remained loyal all the while, and that nearly all rebels are dead. He further says the settlers here are not now in danger. Col. Henry is now approaching the agency with 700 Indians captured in the Bad Lands. This is believed to include all the remnant of the rebels on the reservation and hopes are entertained of a speedy settlement. It has cost the lives of 250 Indians and twenty-five or thirty soldiers to bring about this result. The body of Capt. Wallace and the dead soldiers arrived here at noon from the agency and will be shipped to Fort Robinson, the nearest military post. Rushville is crowded with settlers. The churches and all public rooms are thrown open and no effort is being spared to make the refugees comfortable."
   ROSEBUD Agency, S. D., Dec. 30.—The troops of the Ninth cavalry and three companies of the Eighth infantry, last night, received orders to start at once for the Bad Lands. The pickets at Rosebud have seen Indians signalling with a looking glass. A scheme of twenty young men to steal horses and break for the Bad Lands was foiled by the arrest of the first man who tried it.
   WASHINGTON, Dec. 30.—The commissioner of Indian affairs, this afternoon, received a telegram from Special Agent Cooper, at Pine Ridge, dated to-day, saying that in yesterday's fight, at Wounded Knee, twenty-five soldiers were killed, 350 wounded and about 150 Indians were killed and thirty wounded and captured.

"Grimes' Cellar Door."
   Mr. James B. Mackie, the celebrated comedian, supported by a new and first class company, will present the above named musical burlesque in Cortland Opera House on Friday evening, January 2d, 1891. James B. Mackie is well and favorably remembered for his clever work as "Grimesey Me Boy," in "A Bunch of Keys," which part he played successfully for four seasons. His present work as Billy Grimes in Thos. Addison's burlesque, "Grimes Cellar Door," is by far the best he has ever done and firmly establishes him an original comedian of many accomplishments.
   Prices, 35, 50 and 75cents.

   Hugh Duffey, of this place, has been granted letters patent on a railroad cart.
   The annual meeting of the Erie & Central New York railroad will be held in this place Feb. 17th.
   Miss Lizzie Boyd, the evangelist, opened a series of meetings at the M. E. church in Homer, last Sunday evening.
   The next meeting of the Chautauqua Circle will be held at the home of Mrs. James Tanner, No. 17 Lincoln Ave., January 5th.
   There are several huge piles of snow which for nearly two weeks have caused no small amount of annoyance to traffic on our principal streets.
   Retiring Justice of the Peace Jerome Squires will continue to occupy his old offices and attend to the wants of all callers as an attorney.
   Quarterly communion at the Universalist church, Sunday morning. In the evening the topic will be, "Crumbling Continents." Free seats. All are invited.
   The funeral of Miss Ella Dobbins, the daughter of Mr. Dennis Dobbins, who was suffocated by coal gas at her residence in Homer about two weeks ago, occurred on Monday.
   Kellar, the world-renowned magician, will give one of his wonderful entertainments in Cortland Opera House on the evening of January 15th, 1891. Be sure and see him.
   The interior of G. J. Maycumber's insurance office is being improved by the addition of a neat ceiling of pine, transom and other requisites for comfort and health.
   Albert Haskell is the proud possessor of a litter of six English greyhound pups. The father and mother are from the celebrated Hornell-Harmony kennels at Covert, N. Y., and are direct descendant from noted prize winners.
   An exchange puts it as follows: "It seems difficult for many people who attend entertainments to get enough for their money. On no other ground can be explained the senseless demands in the shape of encores for the repetition of nearly every song or dance or part rendered. To the actor the encore has lost its old significance, and to the major part of the audience it is an irritating bore."
   Seventy-five couples attended the Christmas party given by Mr. W. S. Freer, at his hall in Higginsville, and all who attended pronounce it to be one of the pleasantest parties of the season. The music was excellent, and the supper was all that; the most devoted epicure could have desired. In fact, the reputation of the hostess, who gives her especial attention to the cuisine department, has long been established and thoroughly tested, and never fails to come up to the mark.
   The Cortland Wheel Club will give an opening reception in their rooms in the Democrat building the fore part of this month.
   Mr. C. W. Wiles, of this place, has been appointed Superintendent of the Water Works at Homer. The appointment is a good one.
   Dunning Bros. have sold their stock of groceries in the Churchill building to Mr. F. W. Clark, of Nassau, N. Y., who has taken possession.
   Mr. J. D. Doran had a force of men employed filling his mammoth ice house with clear, crystal ice just prior to the recent heavy fall of snow.
   A large force of men were engaged in unloading ice at the D. L. & W. station, Wednesday. It was shipped in from the field of the Little York ice company, and was stored in individual houses.
   The following are the officers of the Normal base ball nine for the ensuing year: A. D. Call, president and manager; S. Slauson, secretary; E. D. Clark, treasurer; F. Hulse, captain, and L. A. Squires, scorer.
   Miss M. F. Hendrick will give a description of her visit to the Yellowstone Park and Garden of the Gods, illustrated with stereopticon views, at the parlors of the Presbyterian church on Friday evening, Jan. 2d, at 8 o'clock. Admission 15 cents.
   The two new additions, 104x36 feet, three stories high, to the works of the Cortland Manufacturing company, are sided up and the metal roof has been put on during the favorable days of the past month. It is expected that the buildings will be ready for occupancy early in February.
   The stock of Lewis & Kalvrisky, for a few years past proprietors of the Boston variety store on Main street, was sold at sheriff's tale at 10 o'clock, Tuesday morning, to Mr. Solomon Harris, of Syracuse. Price bid being $2,500. The firm closed up business on Christmas evening. Mr. Harris has moved the stock of goods to Syracuse.
   The lease of the Cortland steam laundry to Messrs. Amerman and Knickerbocker expired last Saturday. Mr. H. C. Beebe took possession of the same on Monday morning, where he will be pleased to see the numerous patrons of the establishment and all who desire their laundry work done well. Mr. Beebe still remains as proprietor of the "Model" market on North Main street.
   Christmas eve, of 1890 will long be remembered by Mrs. A. T. Smith, of Freetown, as the time of her narrow escape from fatal injury. At that time she and another lady were engaged in quilting at her home. Upon the frames was laid a board, upon which were two lighted kerosene lamps. One of these exploded, throwing burning oil upon Mrs. Smith, setting fire to her garments. In leaping back from the blazing oil she overturned the other lamp, which also exploded, setting the quilt on fire. Mrs. Smith at once ran out of doors and extinguished her burning clothes by rolling in the snow. She then re-entered the house and assisted in carrying the burning goods out of doors. Her hands were burned so that the flesh almost fell from the bones; and her clothing was completely burned from her body, which was also fearfully burned.