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 Texas : Features : Old News
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Old News

No news is good news 
Old news is amusing

Old News Gleaned from the Brenham Banner-Press

The time was 1936. The place was Brenham Texas. Sauerkraut was .11 per can and potatoes were 1.70 for 100 lbs. A quart of oysters was .60 and crabmeat was .40 per lb. Shrimp was .18 per lb. and you could sweep the mess out the back door with a Brenham made broom for .25. You could enter or leave Brenham on a Bee-Line bus with the tickets available from the lobby of the Saint Anthony Hotel. 

If you were headed to San Antonio, the Crockett Hotel would put you up for 1.50 per night and that included a private bath. Their ad touted "comfortable rooms" with "sleep inspiring beds". 

The Light Crust Doughboys were to appear at Fireman's Park ("Pass the Fire Extinguishers, Pappy") and Falstaff and Grand Prize both made a "heavy Winter Beer".

The distributor for Grand Prize beer explained what they advertised as "winter warmth":

"Winter warmth, he said, in a few moments after consumption will develop the effect of a tingling glow in one's system which creates a desirable warmth". 

He went on to say: Bock "as most people know", is a tonic and consumed only during the spring. "Honey, it's spring. I'm going to go have a few "tonics" with the boys."

This was the era of self-improvement and half-truths and quasi science was better than no truth and real science. Professor J. Harvey Black at Baylor University at Dallas stated that "children with hay fever are more intelligent than children not so afflicted". The local tire distributor was quoted as saying "new tires wear longer if broken in during the winter". 

Editors note: Please don't write telling me this is true. I don't care.

A bold headline under "Local News" caught our attention: "BRENHAM MAN HOOKS 50 LB. YELLOW CAT". This event occurred at the Navasota River Lock and Dam. We'll assume this was a finned creature and not feline. It may have happened at the Navasota Lock and Dam, but I'm sure the size increased when the story was told at the Navasota Bar and Grill. In distant Bryan: Mr. August Straub called his cows one morning and when they came to him, a three year old Buffalo cow was mixed in with the herd. Unfortunately the cow charged a horse and broke it's neck before it was able to answer any questions as to her origins. In the same issue there was a story about a Buffalo "Ghost Herd" which was spotted back in 1894 and was pursued by agents of the "Texas Game, Fish, and Oyster Commission". They lost the herd when the trail disappeared into Mexico from Val Verde County.

Starting with the next installment of OLD NEWS, we'll celebrate the turn of the century with our newspaper amusements coming from papers printed during the last days of the 19th Century.

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This page last modified: October 16, 2006