Let’s not rush into things

From the February 8 1945 Toronto Daily Star:


You can’t criticize Paraguay for being too hasty about these things, but they were a bit late to do much to help the Allies against the Axis. Admittedly, news probably took a long time to reach parts of South America in those days.


City of bridges

The June 8 1960 edition of the Toronto Daily Star contains probably the ultimate piece of filler:


Google Maps informs me that Saskatoon has a total of seven bridges: five road bridges and two railroad bridges. So now you know.



From the January 4 1946 edition of the Toronto Daily Star:


You know, I don’t blame Mr. Liver for not wanting his neighbours to set off dynamite on New Year’s Eve.



The September 5 1913 Toronto Daily Star contains this terse comment:


J.M. Barrie is, of course, best known as the writer of Peter Pan, which will likely remain in our culture for as long as there is one. The Adored One doesn’t appear in the list of works by year in Barrie’s Wikipedia page (which possibly proves this writer’s point).

Mark Bostridge’s The Fateful Year: England 1914 mentions this play as having been written for Mrs. Patrick Campbell (“Mrs. Pat”), an English stage actress who became emotionally (but apparently not physically) involved with George Bernard Shaw.

For more on Barrie, you can read Anthony Lane’s Lost Boys or this article in the Telegraph.


Milk bottle thief jailed

From the Toronto Daily Star, November 22 1948:

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Was he really jailed for stealing $1.92? I suppose that might be $192, but it would take a lot of time to accumulate that much from milk bottles.


Man versus fox

From the November 22, 1948 Toronto Daily Star:

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On the one hand, this 81-year-old guy is pretty badass to be capturing a fox at his age. On the other hand, he was being rather cruel to the fox. Perhaps the fox had been damaging his plants for quite some time.


The princess and Abbey’s

From the April 8 1940 edition of the Toronto Daily Star, two unrelated items:

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Queen Farida (1921-1988) was the Queen of Egypt for nearly eleven years, between 1937 and 1948, before King Farouk divorced her. The daughter mentioned in this article was Princess Fawzia Farouk (1940-2005), who became an athlete, a pilot, a sailor, and a professional interpreter, becoming fluent in five languages; this last enabled her to earn her living after she lost her royal status. The last years of her life were tragic: she contracted multiple sclerosis, which left her paralyzed and bedridden.

Abbey’s Effervescent Salt appears to be yet another of the endless stream of patent medicines advertised in newspapers. I couldn’t find out what it was, but I did discover that the Klondike Official Guide recommended that gold-seekers bring an ample supply of Abbey’s Effervescent Salt to the north with them. Presumably, it was important to clear your system regularly while moiling for gold.


Canada brave and free

A small news item from the April 8 1940 edition of the Toronto Daily Star:

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I couldn’t find anything about the song on the Internet, but the Government of Canada website has a record of the burial site for Mrs. Tyas’s son. He is interred in the Vimy Memorial Cemetery in Pas de Calais, France.

From the “Ode of Remembrance”:
They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning,
We will remember them.


Ice cream by tricycles

Here’s a bit of filler from the October 1, 1928 Toronto Daily Star:

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I love this article – it has both too much detail and too little. We don’t know the name of the ice cream manufacturer, or which British towns the fleet operates in, but we do know that it contains 1100 tricycles.

A search for “ice cream tricycle 1928” uncovered this site, which suggests that the manufacturer might have been Wall’s. The photographs are fascinating. (Wall’s ice cream still exists, but the brand has been swallowed up by Unilever.)


Bird blamed for fire

Here’s another bit of filler from the August 25 1931 Toronto Daily Star:

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Those damned pyromaniac birds!

Elkader, Iowa, is southeast of Minneapolis-St. Paul and northeast of Des Moines. Its current population (as of 2010) is 1273, down from 1465 in 2000. It was named after the Algerian leader Abd al-Qadir al-Jaza’iri; when the town was founded in 1846, the founders wanted to honour him for resisting the French conquest of Algeria. Its sister city, appropriately enough, is Mascara, Algeria.