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VOLUME LXXIH BLUFFTON AGLOW WITH LIGHTS FOR YULETIDE SEASON RufIi of Pre-Christmas Activity Ends: Town Looks Forward to Christmastide Hobday Mail Heavy Carolers Make Rounds and Church Programs Are Presented With the rush of pre-Christmas activity drawing to a close, Bluffton area residents this Thursday are putting finishing touches to plans for their annual celebration of America's best-loved holiday season. Dressed in brilliant holiday rai ment and aglow with lights, the town’s homes, lawns and business places provide a colorful setting for the observance of the Yuletide. During the past week there has been a busy rush of activity, reach ing a peak over the weekend. A four-inch snowfall Saturday night and early Sunday morning added materially to the holiday spirit of the community. Shopping Sets Record Shopping was heavy, with a new record volume of Christmas trade STORES OPEN Bluffton retail stores will be open this Wednesday and Thurs day night. Stores will dose Fri day at 6 p. m. reported by local merchants. Christ mas mail swamped Bluffton postal employes from the midpart of last week until this Wednesday, but every effort was made to deliver letters and packages promptly, despite the To cope with the heavy volume of Christmas mail, windows at the post office were open Saturday afternoon instead of closing at the usual 1 p. in. deadline. Late-arrival Christ mas parcels and perishable packages will be delivered on the morning of Christmas Day. Musical presentations in keeping with the season were given by grade school, high school and college groups during the last week, high lighted by a brilliantly presented grade school Christmas operetta, .ast Friday night in the high school gymnasium. Church Observances Church observances of Christmas were featured in the customary children’s programs, most of which were presented last Sunday night. A few programs reserved for Christmas eve will be given this Friday night. Bluffton business establishments and industries will suspend opera tions next Saturday in observance of Christmas Day, with usual activities being resumed next Monday morn ing. Peak of the Christmas shopping season was reached here last Satur day when the downtown district was thronged with shoppers throughout the day. Christmas holiday recess for Bluff ton grade and high school students will begin at noon this Thursday, and continue until Monday morning, Jan. 3. Bluffton college closed for the Yuletide vacation last Friday. Lions Will Sponsor March Of Dimes Here Bluffton Lions club again will sponsor the January March of Dimes campaign to raise funds for the war on infantile paralysis, it was announced at a dinner meeting of the organization Tuesday night in the Walnut Grill. Proceeds from the March of Dimes campaign are used locally to help defray the cost of treatment of those suffering from polio. A total of $575 was raised here last year. Arrangements for the campaign will be directed by the club’s health and welfare committee, of which Dr. B. W. Travis is chairman. At Tuesday’s meeting, Dr. Gordon Bixel, local optometrist, speaking on "How To See,” declared that hu mans must learn to see in the same fashion that they learn other skills. Describing work with retarded school children, he pointed to reme dial action in the form of glasses and treatment which result in im proved scholastic standing. Real Estate Deal Ray Epley of Arlington has pur chased the Cleon Henry farm of 91 acres northwest of Bluffton, former ly the Joe Gromann farm, occupied by Paul Amstutz. Epley expects to move on the place in the spring. The deal was handled by Mrs. H. W. Althaus. I__________ --------------------_---------------------------------------------------------------- y (Lo ■, Two From Here Bag Buck Deer One of this fall’s best records in deer hunting expeditions by Bluffton area residents was that of Lawrence Hosafros and Don Cuppies, who bag ged a pair of bucks on their trip to Michigan. Hosafros got an eight-point buck at 150 yards in his first 45 min utes of hunting, and Cuppies killed a spikehorn buck, horns under six inches. Both deer weighed about 150 pounds. The two local men were at the Will Harkness lodge near Macmillan, Michigan. CHRISTMAS MAIL MONDAY SETS ALL TIME HIGH MARK Total of 16,351 Letter Cancella tions is* Record at Office Here Fewer Parcels in Holiday Mail High Living Cost May be Cause Bluffton’s heaviest rush of mail in history swamped the post office Monday, when there were 16,351 let ter mail stamp cancellations, a new record 97 sacks of outgoing mail, and 88 sacks of incoming mail. Normal Monday morning mail rarely reaches half the volume handled during the day, post office attaches reported. A record volume of Christmas greeting cards and first-class mail is being handled by the Bluffton post office this year, although parcel post packages have dropped off sharply from the wartime peak, Postmaster Ed R. Reichenbach an ndunced this week. Fewer Parcels Fewer packages this year and last may be attributed to the higher cost of living cutting into family budgets, aggravated by the high cost of merchandise. Another factor in the slump of parcel post mailing is at tributed to the fact that only a few men are in military and naval serv ice, as compared with the wartime peak of parcel post mailing at the Yuletide. Following Monday’s flood of in coming mail, the volume dropped off Tuesday and Wednesday, with a noticeable decline on the latter day. Extra men have been employed at the local post office to speed the handling of holiday mail, and Post master Reichenbach announced Tues day night that Christmas will be made brighter by delivering gift par cels received here on the morning of Christmas Day. Bluffton College Students Married Wedding of two Bluffton college students, Rev. Marion Hanover and Miss Margaret Irene Walton of Syc amore took place Sunday at the Williams Center Evangelical United Brethren church where the bride groom is pastor. Rev. C. E. Chivington of Criders ville, brother in law of the bride groom officiated in the double ring ceremony and ushers were Rev. Dale Shanley of Olive Branch and Rev. Jos. Graham of Blue Lick E. U. B. churches. The bride, given in marriage by her father Paul Walton, wore a floor length white satin gown with silk illusion veil. She was attended by Imageyne Brown of Bluffton col lege and Stanley Walton also of Bluffton college and brother of the bride was best man. Preceding the ceremony was a half-hour musical program by Mild red Rosenberger, organist and Mary Gallagher, vocalist, college friends of the bride. Following the ceremony a reception was held at the church. The couple will reside in the par sonage at Williams Center and con tinue their studies at the college here. Couple Weds At Emanuel’s Church Wedding of Vernon Steinmann of Mt. Cory and Miss Treva Everett, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Ev erett of near Bluffton took place at Emanuel’s Reformed church, Sunday afternoon at 1:30 o’clock. Rev. V. C. Oppermann officiated in a double ring ceremony and the couple were attended by Mr. and Mrs. Lyle Everett, brother and sis ter of the couple. The newly married couple will re side in Findlay where Mr. Steinman is employed as a salesman. The world-famonus editorial by Francis P. Church, long a news paper classic, which first appeared in the New York Sun fifty-one years “Dear Editor—I am 8 years old. “Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus. “Papa says ‘If you see it in The Sun it’s so.’ “Please tell me the truth, is there a Santa Claus? “Virginia O’Hanlon, 115 West Ninety-fifth street.” Virginia, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the skepticism of a skep tical age. They do not believe except they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men's or children's, are little. In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect an ant, in his intellect, as com pared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasp ing the whole truth and knowledge. Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus! It would be as dreary as if there were no Virginias. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which childhood Beautiful Spring— Or Was It Winter That Came Tuesday TI7INTER arrived Tuesday at 5:34 .m. that’s what the calendar said, but a lot of Bluff ton people stared at the calendar and said “nuts.” It wrfs a spring day if ever there was one temperatures went to a high of 48 degrees in the afternoon under the rays of a warm sun which vanished last Sunday’s three inch snowfall and to further confound the calendar the first installment of spring seed catalogs arrived at the postoffice. Many Returning For Christmas Holidays Many Bluffton young people are expected home for the Christmas weekend and most of them remain ing for the holidays. Among these are: Jean Ann Steinman, Baldwin Wal lace college, Berea. Mr. and Mrs. James Basinger, Neil Schmidt, Purdue university, Lafayette, Indiana. James Howe, Northwestern uni versity, Evanston, Illinois. David Stearns, Heidelberg college, Tiffin. Beverly Biery, Western Reserve university, Cleveland. James Fett, School of Mortuary Science, Pittsburgh. Nelson Hauenstein, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Dale Good, Indiana university, Bloomington, Indiana. Mr. and Mrs. Carlton Wilson and daughter and Miss Sarah Amstutz, Miami university, Oxford. Wade Mumma, Parke, Davis & Co., Detroit. Roberta Biery, Northfield School for Girls, East Northfield, Mass. Joanne Buhler, Bethel college, North Newton, Kansas. Eleanor Linden, Malcolm Basing er, Wooster college, Wooster. Marceille Steiner, Mrs. Hugh Hilty, Bliss Business college, Co lumbus. Elmer Stonehill, Bowling Green State university. Jean Ann Burcky, Helen Burk holder, John Althaus, Charles Trip lehorn, Hugh Hilty, Robert Burk holder, Virgil Basinger, Nelson Hiest and, Ohio State university, Colum bus. Bluffton Players On Findlay Cage Team Findlay Pat’s Barber Shop basket half team, sponsored by Ray Patter son, former Bluffton resident, will play Gilboa in Bluffton this Wed nesday night. On the Findlay team are a num ber of Bluffton players, who will be seen in action in the tilt. Included on the squad are Duane and Wayne Amstutz, LaVerne Augsburger, Wel don Deppler, Fred Herrmann, Casey Jones, Bob King, Don Welty and Gene Patterson. Christmas Music At Ebenezer Mennonite The Ebenezer Mixed choir will present a program of Christmas music Sunday morning at 10:30 o’clock directed by Mrs. Milo Lora. Mrs. Vinton Bucher is organist and Mrs. Wm. Althaus pianist. THE BLUFFTON NEWS z/ 4 A NEWSPAPER DEVOTED TO THE INTERESTS OF BLUFFTON AND VICINITY BLUFFTON, OHIO, THURSDAY, DEC. 23, 1918 “IS THERE A SANTA CLAUS?” ago—in 1897—was written in reply to a letter from a perplexed little girl. The little girl is now Mrs. Edward Douglas, 59-year-old widow New York, N. Y. Sept. 21, 1897 ture supernal beaut all real? All, Virgi is nothing else real No Santa Claus! "It Is More Blessed To Give Bluffton Students Marry At Pandora Wedding of two Bluffton college students, Miss Helen Bohn, daugh ter of Rev. and Mrs. Ernest Bohn of Pandora and Otto Klassen, son of Prof, and Mrs. J. P. Klassen, took place in the Grace Mennonite church, Pandora, Saturday after noon at 3 o’clock. Rev. Bohn, father of the bride, officiated at the nuptial ceremony assisted by Rev. J. N. Smucker of Bluffton. Musical numbers were by Miss Evelyn Hartzler, Goshen, Ind. Miss Mary Ann Smucker, Bluffton, and Miss Janice Welty, Pandora. The bride was attended by her sister, Miss Catherine Bohn and Paul Klassen, broRier of the bride groom was best Ushers were Stanley and Alden-,^^i, Herbert Klassen and Leonard Smucker. Both bride and bridegroom are seniors in Bluffton college and will reside in Beaverburg. Youth For Christ Rally On Tuesday A group from Elkhart, Indiana, will be in charge of the program for the monthly Youth for Christ rally at the Ebenezer Mennonite church next Tuesday night at 7:30 o’clock. Principal speaker will be Director Johnnie Hope who attended the Youth for Christ world congress in Beatenberg, Switzerland, last sum mer. Assisting will be the Elkhart County Youth for Christ team. Charles Boehr will lead the sing spiration and Dwight Probst the pre-rally prayer meeting at 7:10. Bluffton Takes Easy Game From Pandora Bluffton high basketeers encoun tered little difficulty in defeating Pandora high school by a 65 to 29 score on the gymnasium here Tues day night. It was Bluffton’s second victory of the season. Ray Lee Wilch and John Bauman led in scoring for Bluffton with 29 and 12 tallies respectively, while Bob Gerdeman and D. Basinger scored eight and seven points each for the visitors. Bluffton reserves won the opener 37 to 16. Births The following births at Bluffton hospital: Mr. and Mrs. Wm. Neff, Bluffton, a boy, Robert Gregg, Thursday. Mr. and Mrs. Don El sea, Rawson, a girl, Marcia Elaine, Thursday. Mr. and Mrs. Marion Bishop, Ar lington, a girl, Vickie Lee, Friday. Mr. and Mrs. Donald Mathews, Bluffton, a boy, Allen Ray, Friday. Mr. and Mrs. Marion Sampson, Arlington, a boy, James Russell, Friday. Mr. and Mrs. Robert Salsbury, Arlington, a girl, Sandra Lee, Sun day. LIBRARY CLOSED Public library at the high school will be closed December 24 to 29 inclusive, also on New Year’s day. and principal of a public school in New York City’s lower east side. Her letter and the editor’s 1'eply follow: fills the world would be extinguished. Not believe in Santa Claus! you might as well not believe in fairies! v You might get your papa to hire men to watch all the chimneys on Christ mas eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if they did not see Santa Claus coming down what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the World are those that neither children or men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not but that's no proof that they are not there. No body can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world. You tear apart the baby's rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strong est man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived, could tear apart. Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and pic y and glory beyond. Is it nia, in all this world there and abiding. Thank God! he lives, and he lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood. TIECAUSE a Bluffton woman in the spirit of Christmas shared her widow's pension with another less fortunate, the holi days will be brighter for an in mate of the Allen county old peoples’ home. It all happened in the post office lobby the other day just after the monthly pension checks arrived. From a worn purse she took a dollar bill and carefully tucked it in the folds of a greeting card and sealed the envelope. She’s not much of* a writer and addressing the letter proved quite a task, but there was an unmistakable air of satisfaction that comes with a good deed well done as she dropped the missive in the slot for outgoing mail to the county home at Lima. It was just one of those little gleams of Christmas spirit vir tually unnoticed amid the holi day rush—no more important in the sum total of things than the traditional widow’s mite—noth ing in the way of organized charity or scientific relief—but nevertheless demonstrating anew to a skeptical world that Good Samaritans still travel the Jericho road. Train Hits Auto At Grade Crossing Edgar Root and Forrest Mumma, employees at the municipal electric light and waterworks plant escaped uninjured when the automobile in which they were riding was struck at the Cherry street crossing by a fast northbound Nickel Plate mani fest freight. The accident occurred last Thurs day afternoon shortly after 5 o’clock as the two men were driving east on Cherry street. Locomotive of the freight struck the rear of the car tearing off the bumper and tail light, together with other damage to fenders and trunk. The car was almost clear of the crossing at the time and was struck only a glancing blow by the locomo tive. The freight was stopped here for twenty minutes following the crash as the train crew checked on details of the accident. Announce New Year’s Eve Midnight Show “Rose of Washington Square” topflight musical film production will be presented at the Carma theatre at a New Year’s eve midnight show ing it is announced by Geo. Car mack, proprietor. Advance ticket sale will open the first of next week. BLUFFTON MARKETS Wednesday Morning Grain (bushel prices) Wheat $2.20 corn $1.25 oats 78c soys $2.39. Poultry—Heavy hens 35c leghorn hens 29c heavy springers 40c. Eggs—Large white 49c large brown 46c medium white 42c medium brown 41c pullet 39c. Butterfat—63c. XMAS CAROLING F. H. A. girls of the high school will go caroling this Wednesday night. Anyone wishing them to stop and sing is asked to hang a light of some kind in the window. Organize Evangelistic Campaign On Sunday Details of the coming Tri-county Evangelistic campaign next month will be outlined at a prayer service to be held at the Pandora Methodist church, Sunday afternoon at 2:30 o’clock, it is announced by the pastor Rev. Elmer C. Thorpe. Members of the executive committee in charge also will be introduced at this time. The campaign will cover a three weeks’ period, Jan. 9 to 30, the first half of which will consist of meetings in the St. John Mennonite church and the last half in the Bluffton high school auditorium. COUNCIL REJECTS RAILROAD'S PLAN TO CLOSE STREET Nickel Plate Submits Proposal for College Avenue Grade Crossing Council Disagrees with Conten tion that Crossing is Un necessary Bluffton municipal councilmen Monday night rejected a Nickel Plate railroad proposal that College avenue be closed at Railroad street, to eliminate the crossing over their tracks which has been the basis of a controversy for more than a dec ade with respect to the erection of warning lights. Division officers of the railroad, in a check of traffic over the cross ing last week, said they believed there was so little vehicular and pedestrian traffic that closing of the street was the logical answer to the situation. As an alternative proposal, they again referred to a proposition made to the town last year, suggesting that the village and the railroad split on a 50-50 basis the cost of erecting crossing flasher lights, esti mated at more than $4,000. At that time, council turned down the pro posal because of a lack of municipal funds to cooperate. In refusing to consider closing of College avenue to eliminate the (crossing, councilmen pointed to heavy traffic to points in the immediate vicinity of the roalroad, as well as tuse of the crossing by residents who live in the southeast part of town. Two industrial operations adja cent to the roalroad are those of the Bluffton Cement Block Co. and the Bluffton stockyards. In addition, the Allen County Farm Bureau oper ates a bulk station just beyond the tracks. The railroad’s proposals of last week followed a conference with road officials in which the village admin istration disclosed that imposing of speed limit on trains is being con sidered because of widespread dis satisfaction of citizens with regard to the crossing hazard. Town officials said this week that a conference with railroad officials is being scheduled for early Janu ary, to attempt to reach a solution to the crossing problem. Seven Are Hurt In Two Area Accidents Seven Bluffton area residents were injured last Wednesday in two auto mobile crashes blamed on foggy weather and wet streets. A heavy fog was responsible for injuries to six persons in a headon collision four miles west of Raw son on County Road 51, at l:3Qa. m. Injured occupants of the two ve hicles, taken to Bluffton Commun ity hospital by Merritt Green, for treatment included: Robert Cherry, 21, Pandora, one of the drivers, lip and face lacera tions Herman Hilty, 21, Pandora, head and chest injuries Earl Mont gomery, 26, Findlay, the other driv er. bruises and abrasions Ralph Waltz, 28, Mt. Cory, broken arm and face injuries Richard Shoe maker, 23, and Donald Welty, 23, both of Pandora, bruises and abra sions. Cherry was driving north and Montgomery was southbound, accord ing to the report of Deputy Sheriff Glenn Moffitt. Both cars were con siderably damaged. In the other crash, Richard Ar nold, 26, of Beaverdam, suffered a s’ight concussion and lacerations of the scalp and right knee at 8 a. m. when his small farm truck skidded on the wet pavement in North Find lay and snapped off a utility pole. He -was taken to the Findlay hos pital. Merry Christmas NUMBER 36 WHITE CHRISTMAS IN PROSPECT AS COLD CONTINUES Twenty-Two White and Fifteen Green Yuletides Here In Past 37-Year Span Heavy Snowfall on Sunday Pro vides Pre-Christmas Set ting Here Bluffton’s prospects for a white Christmas—perennial hope of the holiday season—materially were brightened by colder weather and snowfall over the last weekend, finally bringing an end to unseasonal springlike temperatures which have prevailed here since early fall. Altho Sunday night’s three-inch snowfall hsid disappeared with a warm spell or Tuesdav, a continu ance of cold W€•ather and foi'ecasts of additional a w indicated that an appropriate Ciristmfs set Ling can be expected th is weekend. For the last four preceding years, the Bluffton area has enjoyed a white setting for its festive Christ mas scene, although a two-inch snow fall last year did not arrive until late morning. Trend Reversed Having snow for Christmas during the last four years, however, appar ently has reversed a trend establish ed beginning in 1936 when there was no snowfall on the Yuletide for six consecutive years. On the basis of weather conditions during the last 37 years, the odds favor a white Yuletide. Over the span of nearly four decades there have been 22 Christmas days with snow and 15 green. Heaviest snowfall of the 37-year period was in 1916 when a roaring blizzard brought a 12-inch blanket of snow. In 1935 Bluffton had eight inches, the heaviest snow in recent years altho there were seven inches in 1944. Warmest In 1932 The all-time warm weather record for Christmas here was in 1932 when the thermometer recorded a mark of 61 degrees shortly before noon. Bluffton’s 37-year record of Christ mas weather is as follows: 1911, no snow 1912, no snow 1913, trace of snow 1914, seven inches 1915, three inches 1916, 12 inches 1917, seven inches 1918, trace of snow 1919, one inch 1920, no snow 1921, no snow 1922, trace of snow 1923, no snow 1924, five inches 1925, one inch 1926, three inches 1927, no snow. 1928, one inch 1929, five inches 1930, no snow 1931, no snow 1932, no snow 1933, no snow 1934, three inches 1935, eight inches 1936, no snow 1937, no snow 1938, no snow 1939, trace of snow 1940, no snow 1941, no snow 1942, two inches 1943, no snow 1944, seven inches 1945, two inches 1946, two inches 1947, two inches. Bluffton Juniors Win Three At Ada Bluffton junior high basketball teams made a clean sweep of three games at Ada, Saturday morning. The Seventh graders led off with a 34 to 11 victory over Ada Seventh grade team. Burkholder and Camp bell were high with 8 tallies each, followed by Ramseyer with 7, Shu maker, Mathewson, Beach, Moser and Kaufman 2 and Molder 1. The Eighth grade took an excit ing overtime battle 28 to 26, after Bluffton had been trailing in the last five seconds, when Tommy Buch er landed a long range shot to tie the score as time ran out. In the overtime, Bluffton got a quick basket and successfully froze the ball the rest of the time. Ger ber led with 11 points followed by Molder with 7, Tom Bucher 5, Rich Bucher 4 and Montgomery 1. The freshmen jumped into a com manding lead of 13 to 1 at the quarter and coasted the remainder of the way to win 28 to 11. Weng er was high with 12 points followed by Patterson with 8 and Bracy and Smucker with 4 each. St. John’s Church Christmas Program “Going Home For Christmas,” a dramatic Christmas Worship Service which attempts to interpret the Christmas Story in the light of everyday experiences will be pre sented by the Sunday School of St. John’s Evangelica 1 and Reformed church Friday evening at 7:30 o’clock.