Saranac Lake news — May 5, 1934

President Biden begins his first day.

Try to imagine what it was like trying to adopt a village budget during the depression. [As an aside, the Social Security Act was not passed until 1935.] That is what was facing Mayor Seaver Miller and his Board of Trustees: George Carson (later mayor), Henry Homburger, James LaPan and Grant Cane, none of whom were named in the story.

That Saturday was the running of the Kentucky Derby, and the Enterprise reported “many thousands are attending the Derby and many more thousands throughout the country eagerly await the results.” And not to keep my readers in suspense, the Derby was won in 1934 by Cavalade.

Prohibition had been repealed only six months earlier, on Dec. 6, 1933, and the John LaPan & Sons company of Ampersand Avenue advertised: “NOTICE: Due to a new ruling of the Alcohol Beverage Control Board that no deliveries can be made on Sundays, we will make deliveries on our ‘Beers — Ales and Ginger Ales’ up until 8 p.m. Saturday evenings.”

Public hearing on the budget

The rules on the adoption of the village budget must have been different in 1934. Here it is May 5, and the lead sentence on the budget hearing reads: “The adjourned public hearing on the village budget for the coming year will be held at 7:30 o’clock Monday evening [May 7] at the village hall.”

Today the village budget must be presented to the board no later than March 31, there must be a public hearing by April 15, and it must be adopted by May 1.

Very few details

The story does not reveal the amount of the village budget or any details at all about the financing amount for sewer, water, police, fire department or administration.

Here are excerpts from the story:

“The original hearing was held April 27, but at that time increased appropriations were asked of the village by the General Hospital, the Saranac Lake Free Library and the Saranac Lake Municipal League, in the process of formation, asked to have the hearing held over.

“Thomas P. Ward headed the hospital delegation seeking $5,000 in funding. Mayor Seaver A. Miller said there was some legal doubt if the village could aid financially a private-owned hospital.

“Dr. J. Woods Price, seeking increased library funds, said the library suffered a deficit and might have to drastically curtail service. He asked that the board increase the library budget from $500 to $1,000.

“The Municipal League which would be the advertising arm of the village [no C of C yet] was asking for an increase of the $2,000 already in the budget slated for advertising. There will be a committee meeting this evening of the League now chaired by B. T. Fay of the D&H railroad.”

Trudeau School plans

But first, the following story is for my friend Amy Catania, executive director of Historic Saranac Lake.

She has done an incredible job in securing grants and traveling to far-off places to meet with potential donors, and I just love her newspaper columns about all things Trudeau.

“Two important departures from former curricula are announced in the schedule of the 1934 Trudeau School of Tuberculosis which will begin at the Saranac Lake Laboratory on Monday, May 21. Twenty-three students are enrolled for the session, which is the twentieth held by the school since its inception in 1916, it was announced this morning by Dr. E. R. Baldwin, director of the school.

“An affiliation with Bellevue Hospital in New York City is one of the important innovations this year. The course will be presented in six weeks, but students will have the privilege of taking the last two weeks at Bellevue, where the work will be under the direction of Dr. James A. Miller and Dr. J. Burns Amberson, or students may take the full six weeks in Saranac Lake.

“The fifth week of the session here will be devoted to a symposium on silicosis, which has been the major work of the Saranac Laboratory for the past fifteen years. In addition to the staff of local teachers, Dr. Leroy E. Gardner has secured the cooperation of the outstanding silicosis specialists of the country, including Dr. R. R. Sayres of the U.S. Public Health Service, Dr. Henry K. Pancoast of the University of Pennsylvania, Mr. Paul Folger of Syracuse, Prof. Philip Drinker of Harvard University and Dr. A. J. Lanza of the Metropolitan Life Insurance company.

“Sixteen physicians engaged in industrial medicine have asked permission to come for the silicosis symposium, in addition to the 23 who are enrolled for the full school course. It is probable that the list will be further expanded before June 18th, when the silicosis work will start.

“Evening lectures from out of town this year will be Dr. Anthony Cipollora of the New York Postgraduate School, who will talk on ‘Tuberculosis of the Skin’ and Dr. William S. McCann of the University of Rochester, whose subject will be ‘Fibrosis in Lung Disease’.”

Internet explains silicosis

“Silica is a tiny crystal found in rock and sand and in mineral ores like quartz. Silica dust can build up in the lungs and cause silicosis, which increases the risk of tuberculosis infection.”


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