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News from 100 years ago

Mail Tribune 100, July 9, 1918

The following news items were drawn from the archives of the Mail Tribune 100 years ago.

July 9, 1918

ESCAPES PRISON BY ENLISTMENT TO FIGHT HUNS

Hal Harrington, former well known Medford and Jacksonville resident, who had been in the vacuum cleaning business at Corvallis for some time, was given a sentence of from two to five years in the penitentiary last week in that city and then was paroled on condition that he enlist in the army at once. The Corvallis Gazette Times contains the following account of Harrington’s troubles and his trial in court:

“The case of the state vs. Harrington was called this afternoon before Judge Shipworth. Harrington is the young man who ran the vacuum cleaning business here for so long and was accused of stealing various mechanical appliances and at one time breaking into a laundry and taking a blower.

He pleaded guilty. The court appointed Jay Lewis to represent him. Mr. Lewis stated that this was the boy’s first offense, that he had not only immediately pleaded guilty when confronted with the fact of his crime, but that he had helped the officers to locate other missing articles that he had taken and which they knew nothing about; that while he was lying here in jail he had gone out because of a defective lock and that after the county refused to let him go to war when his draft number was called, he notified the sheriff about the lock so that it could be fixed; that he has a wife and baby and was not in any sense a degenerate but had hitherto borne a good reputation; that he had tried to enlist in the Canadian army, immediately after the sinking of the Lusitania but that his wife wouldn’t let him; therefore he asked that he be sentenced and paroled on condition that he volunteer to join the army. Mr. Harrington said he was anxious to do so, so the judge sentenced him to from two to five years in the penitentiary and paroled him.”

CROWN FIRE RAGES ON MIDDLE FORK

Fanned by a strong wind last Sunday the forest fire which had been burning for a week or two in the Halifax Creek section of the middle fork of the Rogue river, extended into the tops of the trees and made a lively crown fire, that dread of the fire fighters, which lasted until some time after the wind died down. The fire has now assumed threatening proportions, and this morning Federal Forest Supervisor Rankin rushed ten men from this city to aid the force fighting the flames.

All the other fires in the county are reported under control. The smoke from the various forest fires hung thick over the valley today along with a cloudiness that made it seem as if rain were threatened.

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