Notes from the White County Historical Society

By Charlene Shields

Notes from the White County Historical Society as they appear in "The Carmi Times."

Copyright ©2002 by "The Carmi Times" Permission to reprint granted to Cindy Birk Conley and the ILGenWeb by Tammy Knox, editor, "The Carmi Times."

Odd machine, odd game

Have you ever heard of an electric paddling machine?

I have been reading "Working Without A Net," an autobiography by Dr.
Richard O. Fox, a surgeon at West Frankfort. As the author must be close
to my age, I can identify with many stories he tells about growing up in
Southern Illinois. However, the story of the electric paddling machine
which was in operation at Brush School in Carbondale was something of
which I'd never heard. It struck terror into the heart of the author
when he attended that school as a second grader. He said the principal
carried the keys, and only the worst discipline cases were exposed to
that electric paddling machine. Methinks the author was pulling the
Gentle Reader's leg!

Another item mentioned in the book was the death of President Roosevelt
in April 1945. Dr. Fox maintains the president did not die of stroke as
the public was led to believe, but of a melanoma which was removed
earlier from his left eyebrow and "which had spread and grown within the
patrician's brain."

In a recent column I mentioned a genealogist friend's find of a lady
relative in Ireland in the 1850s who attracted attention by her bizarre
appearance. The quote stated she enjoyed "stick fighting" at fairs. I
received an elaboration on stick fighting. This was a regular pastime in
that country at that time. Factions would meet on fair days to settle
disputes. The men came armed with fire-hardened sticks loaded with lead
in the tips and the women armed with baskets of rocks for chunking.
Great pastime!


Visiting genealogists from Virginia were in this past week. They were
trying to trace the steps of a great-great-grandfather, the Rev. Mr.
Delicate, a Methodist minister who was pastor in Edwards and White
counties. A serendipitous occasion took place, as Ron Bogart, a
retired Methodist minister, came into the library. He is moving to
Bloomington, where many of the Methodist archives are housed, and
volunteered to look up the records on the Rev. Mr. Delicate.

In addition to discussing genealogy, the Delicates from Virginia wanted
to know about this beautiful yellow plant which is covering so many
fields in Southern Illinois at this time!


Between rains there should surely be some tombstone-reading weather.
Hope all you volunteers can take advantage of it. In several townships,
we just lack a little more. If you have volunteered and are no longer
able to serve, please let me know by calling 966-3744.


The Genealogy Library is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2

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The Coordinator for the White County, Illinois ILGenWeb page is Cindy Birk Conley

Copyright © 2002 by Cindy Birk Conley, all rights reserved. For personal use only. Commercial use of the information contained in these pages is strictly prohibited without prior permission. If copied, this copyright notice must appear with the information.