Monday, January 1, 1934

  • Most CWA men worked today.
  • DERBY – A large water main bursts on Caroline Street. Water cascades down the hill into Main Street, leaving 2.5′ of sand in the cellar of Samuel Kussner’s store on 153 Main Street.
  • OXFORD – The interior of the Great Hill Church was badly vandalized sometime over the past week. Residents are outraged.
  • SHELTON – A bad fire breaks out in the landmark Edward Ross Hawley home on Huntington Street, near the Far Mill River bridge. Many family antiques destroyed, some of which were over 150 years old. The Huntington Fire Company’s antiquated fire apparatus failed to arrive. Eventually a fire engine from downtown Shelton saved the house from complete destruction.

January 2

  • The CWA payroll this week is $17,269.21 among the 4 communities.

January 3

  • SHELTON – The little portable schoolhouse on Long Hill Avenue is dangerous – 50 children now attend there. The boiler fell through the floor, making the school impossible to heat. Students have been sent home on occasion due to cold.

Thursday, January 4

  • SEYMOUR – An illegal liquor plant containing two stills is found in an old Seymour Ice Company icehouse on the Ansonia Road. Four Ansonia men are arrested. Many are surprised that such activity is continuing since Prohibition has ended and liquor is now legal.
  • SHELTON – Huntington – “The weather during the past week has been ideal for sleigh riding and both young and old in the locality have taken advantage of it”.

January 5

  • DERBY – William Parker Dexter, 81, dies at his Cottage Street home. Born in Vermont June 22, 1852, he came to Derby 1873, and was employed at Sterling Piano from that year, until the company went out of business in 1925. He was in charge of the finishing department for over 50 years. He continued to service the old local pianos up until the end of his life.

January 6

  • SHELTON – Rev. Frank S. Morehouse of the Church of the Good Shepherd marries local girl Alta Lyons. The newspaper calls it one of the largest attended marriages in Shelton history.

January 7

  • Rain and mild temperatures remove the last of the snow. 1.13″ falls.
  • SEYMOUR – A Derby Avenue man nearly drowns in Plush Mill Pond when he falls through the ice while taking a shortcut. He is rescued by neighbors on Second Street and the Citizens Engine Company which is nearby.

January 8

  • Today sees the largest payroll since the CWA began – $23,543 to 1,347 Valley workers in Ansonia, Derby, Seymour, and Shelton.

Thursday, January 11

  • SHELTON – Residents of the suburb of Epsom Downs, just north of Riverside Cemetery, are trying to get a footpath built between their neighborhood and Ferry School so their children do not have to walk along River Road.

January 14

  • ANSONIA – A regional conference for the advancement of Judaism is held at Jewish Community Center on Factory Street, sponsored by the Northeast Religious Union of American Hebrew Congregations.

January 15

  • This week’s CWA payroll for the Valley was $22,097 for 1359 workers. The workers broke down to 583 from Ansonia, 253 from Derby, 355 from Shelton, and 168 from Seymour.
  • DERBY – The police department’s DeSoto sedan turned in for a new Ford V-8 deluxe Tudor sedan.
  • SHELTON – Rev. Nathaniel Prindle, pastor of the Shelton First Baptist Church, dies at the age of 70 following an illness of 2 years. He came here in 1890, and was ordained in 1898 at the White Hills Baptist Church. He served in other churches before returning to Shelton in 1913.

January 17

  • ANSONIA – An arson fire destroys a Beaver Street barn., which contained furniture, school books, and tools.
  • DERBY – The First Congregational Church holds its 259th Annual Meeting.

Thursday, January 18

  • ANSONIA – State and local police raid a Canal Street address and arrest 13 on gambling charges.
  • SHELTON – Vital statistics for 1933 record 143 births, 91 marriages, and 185 deaths (80 of which were from Laurel Heights Tuberculosis Sanatorium). This compares to 1932 which saw 75 births, 136 marriages, and 87 deaths (49 of which were from Laurel Heights).

January 19

  • The CWA is reducing its workweek from 30 to 24 hours.

January 20

  • ANSONIA – An 8 year old boy and his 6 year old sister drown in the Ansonia Canal behind the copper mill on Main Street. The boy was trying to rescue his sister, who fell through the ice near the lower tail race. 300 witness the tragedy, and at least one additional rescuer, a high school student, fell through the ice but was saved. The fire department tried extending long ladders over the ice, but to no avail. 

January 22

  • OXFORD – The Oxford Garden Club is organized with 14 members in the home of Rev. Henry Douglas.

January 23

  • SEYMOUR – Word is received that the Bank Street covered bridge will be replaced by a concrete bridge by the State.

January 24

  • ANSONIA – Four clergymen assist the rector of Macedonia Baptist Church for the packed funeral of the two siblings who drowned on January 20. 
  • DERBY – The local Housatonic Council, Boy Scouts of America, continues to grow. 1933 ended with 27 troops composed of a total of 594 boys. This is up from the 21 troops and 431 boys at the end of 1932.

Thursday, January 25

  • ANSONIA – 34 stores begin a 3 day Red Tag Day sale.
  • OXFORD – The 1933 Grand List reveals there are 271 houses, 964 outbuildings, 17 stores and business places, 5 water powers and mills, 384 automobiles, 162 horses, and 1,343 cattle in town.

January 27

  • DERBY – The Derby Relief Fund begins 3rd Annual Fund Drive. In the past two months it has helped 1,835 people in 351 families. This month, the charity workers gave out 60 pairs of shoes this month, and outfitted 150 CWA workers from head to toe. The Fund also provides skim milk to 91 needy families on a daily basis.

January 28

  • ANSONIA – The Church of the Assumption is rededicated with impressive ceremonies.

January 30

  • The Valley CWA payroll is $17,405.30 for 1,361 men. The manpower breakdown is Ansonia 589, Derby 252, Shelton 354, and Seymour 166. The payroll is lower this week due to the decrease in working hours and cold weather.
  • ANSONIA – The 1933 Grand List reveals there are 2,447 houses, 1,391 outbuildings, 443 commercial buildings, 20 mills and factories, 2,552 automobiles, 28 horses, and 129 cattle in the city.
  • Today is President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s 52nd birthday. “Roosevelt Balls” are held across the country to mark the occasion.
  • ANSONIA – The Roosevelt Ball held at Ansonia Armory is largely attended and raised over $500 for the Warm Springs Foundation for Polio Sufferers. 
  • DERBY – Over 500 attend the Roosevelt Ball at St. Mary’s Hall.
  • OXFORD – About 100 attend the Roosevelt Ball at Grange Hall.
  • SEYMOUR – Over 300 attend the Roosevelt Ball at Concordia Hall.
  • SHELTON – Over 600 attend the Roosevelt ball at Shelton High School.
  • SHELTON – The 1933 Grand List reveals there are 1,709 houses, 1,097 outbuildings, 147 commercial buildings, factories and mills, 1761 automobiles, 189 horses, and 1,084 cattle in the city.

January 31

  • The destroyer USS Hull, named after Commodore Isaac Hull, is launched at the Brooklyn Navy Yard.


Thursday, February 1

  • SEYMOUR – The Seymour Ice Company starts harvesting 9″ thick ice in reservoir off 387 South Main Street.
  • SHELTON – Work begins demolishing the Far Mill River bridge on Huntington Street. A temporary bridge has been constructed.

February 2

  • 9″ of snow falls on this Groundhog Day. CWA men are put to work clearing snow.
  • OXFORD – “Main roads through town are well opened to traffic, the state highway department having a gang with snowplows working all night”.
  • SEYMOUR – The Town’s 1933 Grand List is about $181,000 less than 1932.

February 6

  • DERBY – Harry Comen of New Haven has now taken over the Old England Brewery on Derby Avenue, and plans an addition to the facility.

Friday, February 9

  • Temperatures drop to record lows of -20 to -24 in the early morning.
  • SHELTON – The Huntington Fire Company saves a house from burning down on Far Mill Street.

February 10

  • ANSONIA, DERBY, & SHELTON – The District Nurse Association made 11,631 visits to 2,538 cases in 1933. The Ansonia car traveled 8914 miles, while the Derby-Shelton car added 10.469 miles to its odometer.
  • SEYMOUR – The Town’s 1933 Grand List shows 1,253 houses, 1,192 automobiles, 84 horses, and 603 cattle.

February 12

  • ANSONIA – 69 year old Broad Street resident Neketa Sutkovoy, who made national news two years ago when he built own grave, sepulcher, and monument at Three Saints cemetery to keep busy after he lost his job to the Great Depression, dies at Griffin Hospital. He is buried within his creation two days later.

February 13

  • OXFORD – “With from 12 to 15 inches of ice on the ponds, those who depend on harvesting a season’s supply have had ample opportunity and most ice houses are well filled”.

February 14

  • ANSONIA – A fire breaks out in a large 1-story cement structure on 17 Beaver Street. The structure is occupied by the United Paper Company, Lolman Luria & Son metal waste firm, and the Valley Drug Co. The fire, which started in the paper company storeroom, causes $10,000 damage and draws a large crowd.

Friday, February 16

  • DERBY – It is confirmed that the High School will not field a baseball team this year.
  • SHELTON – About 100 CWA men are working on Lafayette Field. The football field will have a cinder track around it, and a baseball diamond will also be laid out. The fields will be surrounded by at least 1500′ of fencing.

February 17

  • ANSONIA – Oil seeping from factories into the Naugatuck River has formed a pool in the ice under the west side of the Maple Street Bridge. Some children managed to light the oil on fire today. It burned fiercely and caused much black smoke, but caused no damage.
  • SEYMOUR – The Seymour Ice Company finishes harvesting ice for the year. This is the first time since 1931 the icehouses are full.

February 19

  • The Valley CWA payroll is $19,950 this month. The workers, divided by town, were Ansonia 574, Derby 255, Seymour 163, and Shelton 352.
  • DERBY – Seven boys, ranging from 12 to 16, are arrested for stealing coal from cars on the railroad trestle. They said they had no coal to heat their homes.

February 20 

  • One of the worst blizzards to occur in this region in the twentieth century occurs today. The Evening Sentinel runs a reduced edition, with the banner headline reading “BLIZZARD BURIES THE WHOLE EAST, SHIPS WRECKED ON NEW ENG. COAST”. The storm began yesterday evening, and by midnight was a “howling blizzard”. The northbound train is stuck in snowdrifts between Derby and Ansonia for about 3 hours before it could be dug out. School is cancelled for the rest of the week; most are unable to make it to work. Automobiles are buried. There are no milk or mail deliveries. Snow is about 2’ on the level, with drifts from 5’ to 15’ deep, and the storm is considered the worst since 1888.
  • ANSONIA – Traffic is at a standstill until the first trolley plow made it up Main Street at noon, regular snowplows prove futile.
  • DERBY – Griffin Hospital personnel work round the clock during the blizzard, with a baby born there at the height of the storm. The operators at the local SNETtelephone exchange also work around the clock.
  • OXFORD – A state snowplow becomes snowbound.
  • SHELTON – The entire city is snowbound, with many automobiles abandoned. Echo Hose is now responding to emergencies in a horse-drawn sleigh. A baby is born on New Street right after midnight during the blizzard, assisted by a local doctor and a district nurse.

February 21

  • Trolley and bus service is still out to Bridgeport, New Haven, and Waterbury. Railroad passenger service is resumed this afternoon.
  • ANSONIA – 200 CWA workers are trying to shovel out the major streets. Many of the shovels came from local hardware stores after the City’s supply ran out. Mail is resumed today, but fresh milk is scarce. The trolley belt line was reopened this morning, and the Wakelee Avenue trolley line was reopened later in the afternoon.
  • DERBY – Hundreds are digging out. Osbornedale Farm is one of the few to make its milk deliveries, using 2 horses pulling a sleigh.
  • OXFORD – The town is completely snowed in and isolated. Even the State Road is impassible.
  • SEYMOUR – 185 men, including CWA workers, are trying to dig out the main roads. Many sleighs on the roads, horses are in demand even though they are scarce.
  • SHELTON – 358 CWA workers are clearing snow. A milk station has opened at the Charity Headquarters on Howe Avenue because no milk deliveries have been able to come through.

Thursday, February 22

  • In the wake of the Blizzard of 1934, the best way to get about today is with skis, snowshoes, or sleighs. Snow is being shoveled from the principal streets, mostly by hand, and dumped into the rivers. Horses are being enlisted to assist in the cleanup. Bread, coal, and oil stocks are starting to run low. Large sections of the Valley are still completely snowbound. Later in the day, rain falls, and channels have to be cut in the snowdrifts along the cleared streets to allow the rainwater out. The volunteer firemen stand down in most stations, after being on continuous duty for 72 hours.
  • ANSONIA – Mayor Hart asks residents to assist in clearing their own streets of snow, and for the Boy Scouts to assist them. 
  • DERBY – New Haven Avenue is still blocked to automobiles, but trolleys are getting through.
  • OXFORD – Quaker Farms residents get tired of waiting for the state plows, and open 3 miles of Route 67 on their own with oxen, horses, and shovels.
  • SEYMOUR – 185 CWA workers are clearing Main Street by hand, and they haven’t started clearing Bank Street and Broad Street yet. The trolley tracks and state highways are still closed.
  • SHELTON – 350 CWA men shoveling out, trying to reach Huntington. The fire department is using a sleigh borrowed from the Beard Farm on Long Hill.
  • SHELTON – Despite the bad weather, the Purple Heart Association has its first annual Washington Birthday Banquet at Legion Hall

February 23

  • Government officials are stunned when they get word that the CWA will not pay for snow removal. The CWA men are let go.
  • ANSONIA – With the loss of the CWA men, the number of men clearing snow has been reduced from 350 men to 35 street department men. 
  • DERBY – The trolleys are being enlisted to haul snow away. The road to New Haven is open to traffic on a limited basis.
  • SHELTON – The road to Huntington is finally cleared.

February 24

  • A deep freeze has turned the slush from yesterday into ice, compounding the snow cleanup. The government restates its position, saying it will now pay CWA men for snow removal.
  • OXFORD – Mail service is resumed.
  • SHELTON – Frederick Meyer dies at age 85 at his Highland Avenue home. Born in 1849 in Germany, he came to Shelton 50 years ago. He worked at Derby’s Birmingham Iron Foundry for 15 years before he started the Meyer Iron Foundry on Howe Avenue in 1899. At the time of his death, the firm employed 25.

February 26

  • Another 6” of snow falls. The Federal Government extends the time they will pay for CWA men to help clear snow. Schools have been closed since the blizzard, and now it looks like they will remain closed until winter break, next week.

February 27

  • Coal dealers are frantically trying to keep up with orders. 

February 28

  • Temperatures are -15 at 6:30 AM. People are still being urged to keep their automobiles off the roads and use the trolleys to get around. CWA work suspends at 5 PM, when the federal mandate for snow removal runs out again. Many streets had to be shoveled out a second time.
  • The CWA has paid $219,967.63 to all Valley cities since November 26. The breakdown is Ansonia $90,531; Derby $42,039; Seymour $25,191; and Shelton $62,114.


Thursday, March 1 – The cleanup from the Blizzard of 1934 continues.

  • SEYMOUR – Great Hill – “For the first time in 32 years John Karanth was unable to deliver milk on the day after the big storm but spent it struggling through the drifts with men, shovels, and horses. On the following day he made his rounds with 4 horses, which attracted much attention. Otis Francis is cut off from the Ajello Brothers, who buy his milk, by the impassible road from the church to the four corners and for more than a week has been obligated to throw away large quantities of milk. The road from the church to Squantuck is still untouched. Reservoir employees are obligated to make their daily rounds on foot”.

March 2

  • A thaw causes snow to turn to slush, and revealing a layer of ice underneath, making traveling extremely hazardous. Light rain falls in the evening, flooding roads.
  • DERBY – 35 state highway men are shoveling out New Haven Avenue.
  • DERBY – The residence of Henry Spero, a well known Ansonia jeweler, at the corner of Fifth and Anson Streets is burglarized.

March 3

  • Because the CWA men put in 48 hours with the snow cleanup last week, there will be no work this week. Their normal workweek is 24 hours.

March 4

  • Rain and mild temperatures helps the snow cleanup. Many streets are now completely clear of snow. 

March 5

  • The temperatures rise to 62 degrees. The ice breaks up on the Naugatuck River.
  • ANSONIA – Despite the high water on the Naugatuck River, no damage is reported.
  • DERBY – The Naugatuck River is 6-7′ above the high water mark today. The Housatonic River is also rising, and residents are waiting to see what happens when the ice on Lake Zoar breaks up. Water over the Ousatonic Dam is 5’ deep, and rises to within 2’ of the bottom of the railroad trestle over the river. The road is washed out on Sentinel Hill.
  • OXFORD – “The light rains and fog of the last several days have brought about normal conditions on the main roads through town, but the side roads are still bad with ruts and ice”. Small streams are flooding.
  • SEYMOUR – After the ice is dynamited upriver in Naugatuck, it flows down the river and causes a jam below Seymour, resulting in a freshet. The High School is closed, and New Haven Copper Company closes when the nearby riverbank overflows. The water does not enter the mill, however.

March 6

  • A thunderstorm breaks out at midnight.
  • ANSONIA – A social worker gives a speech at the Jewish Community Center on Factory Street on “Nazi Terrorism”.
  • DERBY – Floodwaters have risen within a foot of Derby Avenue. Island Park is completely covered. Trees are being dragged away by floodwaters on the riverbanks. Cellars are flooded
  • OXFORD – Cottages are being flooded below Stevenson Dam. 
  • SEYMOUR – Floodwaters are receding and things are returning back to normal.
  • SHELTON – The ice on the Housatonic River, from below the Moulthrop place on River Road to the Stratford Bridge, has not broken up. This is creating an ice jam, as broken ice from upriver and the Naugatuck is piling up on the solid ice, threatening to create an ice jam that can lead to a flood. Attempts to break the ice with dynamite fail, and consideration is given to dropping a bomb upon it from an airplane. Several factory cellars are flooded along Canal Street.

March 7

  • Street departments are rushing to make repairs to storm-damaged streets and roads.
  • DERBY & SHELTON – The high water on the Housatonic River is slowly receding. The ice above the Ousatonic Dam still has not broken up. Island Park is still covered with water. The ground floors of the flooded cottages along Lake Housatonic are starting to come above water.

Saturday, March 9

  • The CWA is rapidly cutting back on its manpower, with 94 men from Ansonia alone. Unmarried men are being dropped first. The program will close expire on March 30.
  • SEYMOUR – Great Hill – “Weather conditions have seriously disturbed the routine of residents of this community. No mail reached the side roads for two weeks, except when brought by an obliging neighbor. After the winter recess the Great Hill School reopened on Friday but with 7 pupils in each room. The Seymour grange, the Great Hill Church and the Farm Bureau were all obliged to cancel meetings. Chicken barrels and oil cans have been dangerously low and more than one family is tired of beans. One farmer was unable to deliver his milk for ten days. But where the CWA and the town left off, Old Sol has continued on the job and the prospects are that the countryside will soon be back to normal”.

March 10

  • ANSONIA – The hole knocked out of the concrete from the south sidewalk of the Bridge Street Bridge after last month’s blizzard, will be covered with a metal plate. This is in case dump trucks need to dump snow into the river again.
  • OXFORD – “Nearly three weeks have elapsed since the big snowstorm of February 20, and now comes the surprising report that from Chestnut Tree Hill Road east to the Seymour line, a mile of improved town aid road is still impassible, not having been opened since the storm. This piece of road is a part of the connecting highway between two trunk lines, and is also part of a mail route. The question is pertinent as to whether the convenience of having this road is not sufficient to warrant the people of that immediate district to get busy”.

March 13

  • ANSONIA – A German refugee assails Adolph Hitler at a largely attended open meeting at the Jewish Community Center on Factory Street.

Friday, March 16

  • ANSONIA – A 58 year old Columbia Street CWA worker is overcome by sewer gas at a jobsite on State Street and Pleasant Street, knocking him unconscious. He is rescued and taken to Griffin Hospital.
  • SEYMOUR – Great Hill – “A large flock of robins was seen here on March 11 and occasional ones since that date, showing that Mr. Redbreast is following his schedule in spite of the weather”.
  • SHELTON – “For the first time since the February blizzard, the roads in Huntington are now all open and the school buses are able to cover the various routes. Some of the drivers have not been able to cover all of their routes but have been making 2 trips, one to each end of the route while the youngsters living in the middle were unable to get to school until Tuesday of this week”.

March 18

  • The long awaited breaking of the ice above the Stevenson and Ousatonic dams finally occurs. Hundreds watch the ice flow downriver but there is no damage. The river is now clear for navigation.

March 20

  • DERBY – Carl Dektor dies at his Minerva Street home. Born in Russia, he came to Derby as a young man. He established a shoe store in 1895 on lower Main Street, and later moved the business to his own building at 215 Main Street.
  • SEYMOUR – The Beecher Street Bridge is damaged when a heavy truck caused it to sag. It is now closed until it is repaired.

Thursday, March 22

  • ANSONIA – Captain Theodore M. Terry of the Eagle Hose H&L Co. No. 6 suffers frostbite on all 5 toes of his left foot at a minor chimney fire on Hunters Lane. He is under the care of a physician and expected to recover. Temperatures are in the 20s overnight.
  • OXFORD – “Spring was officially ushered in yesterday, but old man winter has not fully relinquished his grip. The snow has mostly disappeared, except in sheltered places, but deep frost is still maintaining its hold. But at least we have turned the corner, and just ahead are the springtime birds and flowers”.

March 23

  • DERBY – There is a movement to convert the Sterling Opera House for public performances.
  • OXFORD – “Workmen under the CWA program will resume work again this morning on the road project in Red Oak district. The men will get 3 days, or 24 hrs’ work, and this will probably be the last payroll under the CWA movement. Oxford, not being one of the preferred towns, it is understood, will not be eligible for aid under the revised program of the federal aid pact”.
  • SEYMOUR – Great Hill – “The dirt roads are undergoing the spring thaw and are very trying to those who must use them. The Rockhouse hill road from the Jensen place to the bridge is especially bad being described as a resident as the worst it has been in 46 years. (The Oxford school bus) was mired there twice this week. Between the church and the Karnath farm are almost impassible sections which have claimed other victims who managed to make their escape by means of planks, stones, and shovels…(one) can hardly help wondering why the CWA has not been used for some really valuable service along these lines”.
  • SHELTON – The Shelton Hosiery Mills has hired 25 more men and added a night shift due to a Federal order for 16,000 dozen socks for the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC)

March 24

  • DERBY – State Senator Henry M. Bradley Jr. confined to his New Haven Avenue home after the car which he was a passenger in hits a pole in New Britain, injuring him. 

March 25

  • ANSONIA – Early morning burglars steal a new Ford car, $85 worth of new tires, and a 1000 pound safe containing $100 in cash from the Community Motor Sales at 382 Main Street. The safe is found in the City dump at 8 AM blown open, still smoking, with its contents emptied out. The car is recovered around noon in Southbury. The burglars are still at large.

March 27

  • DERBY – State Senator Henry M. Bradley Jr. is elected president of Derby-Shelton Memorial Day Parade Association.

March 28

  • ANSONIA – Alton Farrel, a former State Senator and the Mayor of Ansonia in 1905 and 1906, dies at his home in New Haven. Born in Ansonia on August 22, 1879, he was the Secretary-Treasurer of Farrel-Birmingham Corporation since Farrel Foundry and Birmingham Iron Foundry merged in 1927. He lived for many years on State Street, though at the time of his death he lived in New Haven.
  • SEYMOUR – Nash’s Diner on Main Street across from the railroad depot, closes and files for bankruptcy. Open for 6 years, it was the most popular restaurant in town.

Thursday, March 29

  • ANSONIA – The 12th Annual Automobile Dealers’ Association of Ansonia, Derby, Shelton and Seymour Show opens at Ansonia Armory. The event lasts for three days, and features models from every dealer.

March 30

  • ANSONIA – Ansonia’s Federal Emergency Relief Commission (FERA) meets at City Hall to plan for the New Deal program which will soon roll all CWA men and projects into it.
  • DERBY & SHELTON – Today is Good Friday. An estimated 7,950 dozen hot cross buns are consumed in Shelton today, and 12,850 dozen are consumed in Derby. The conservative estimate is about 154,200 buns were consumed between the two cities.
  • SEYMOUR – A 6:30 AM collision head-on collision occurs between two large delivery trucks, near King’s Hill on the west side highway just above the Ansonia line. Both drivers are injured. One of the trucks was owned by the Frisbie Pie Company of Bridgeport, resulting in pies, cakes, and hot cross buns being scattered all over the road. 

March 31

  • 2.9″ of rain falls. Some washouts are reported on local roads. 
  • DERBY – City native Thomas McGarry, a Dery police officer since 1925, dies suddenly at his New Haven Avenue home of a heart attack at age 45.
  • SEYMOUR – The heavy rains result in a freshet, flooding some areas of town.
  • SHELTON – The replacing of the Far Mill River Bridge over Huntington Street, which started several weeks ago under CWA labor, will be completed by the FERA program. The new concrete bridge will replace a 38 year old iron bridge.


Easter Sunday, April 1

  • Churches packed on this Easter Sunday. The skies are cloudy until 10 AM, when the sun breaks through, making a beautiful spring day.

April 2

  • ANSONIA – The late Alton Farrel’s will is probated. He leaves $10,000 each to Griffin Hospital, the Julia Day Nursery School (Julia Day was his mother), and the Ansonia YMCA. He also leaves $5,000 to the Pine Grove Cemetery Association.

April 3

  • ANSONIA – The American Brass Company announces a 10% wage increase for all hourly and piece workers. The wages of an ordinary laborer goes from 40 to 44 cents an hour.
  • ANSONIA – 400 FERA workers begin work in the City.
  • SEYMOUR – The Town’s FERA offices in are in Center School.

April 4

  • DERBY – Mayor Riordan sets a 25mph speed limit within the City, and posts 10 new signs.

Thursday, April 5

  • OXFORD – “Farmers are preparing for their spring work. While the fields are still soft and wet, a few more days of sunshine will put them in shape to be worked and plowmen will be busy”.

April 6

  • DERBY – The Board of Aldermen is not enthusiastic about a proposal to establish an automobile junk yard at the old Sterling Piano Company property.
  • SEYMOUR – Great Hill – “The ice has at last disappeared from the Derby Reservoir and the song of the frog is nightly heard, all very cheering to the winter worn native”.

April 7

  • ANSONIA – There has not been a diphtheria case in the City in 6 years.
  • DERBY – Edward Manion, 27, of Mt. Pleasant Street is named to the police department, to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Thomas McGarry. He has been on the supernumerary force for 4 years. Officer Manion would later go on to become the Chief of Police.

April 10

  • ANSONIA – In the past week, FERA has paid 393 men $5,114.98 for 9,002.5 hours of work.
  • DERBY – The City’s FERA allotment has been cut by 20%.
  • SEYMOUR – The FERA program begins its second week, with 94 men working three days at a time. Single men have been eliminated from payroll. The town has been allotted $800 less per week than it received under the CWA.

April 11

  • 2.9″ of rain begins falling in the late evening, continuing to 8 AM the next morning and causing some washouts.
  • ANSONIA – The Pine High School woodworking department is building a new pulpit for St. Joseph’s Polish Roman Catholic Church.
  • ANSONIA – The Julius Wislocki store on 20 Maple Street is held up. $12 is stolen from cash register.
  • OXFORD – The Little River overflows its banks.
  • SEYMOUR – The third freshet of the season this year causes little damage.

Thursday, April 12

  • ANSONIA – Henry Kornblut’s department store reopens. His business has expanded to occupy a second store in his building on 316-318 Main Street, doubling the department store’s space.
  • SHELTON – Huntington – “The nervous ‘play dead’ opossums have suddenly taken to this locality for making their homes. During the past few weeks a number of these animals have been seen on the highway, caught, and taken home to become pets for children. It is very unusual to see them in this neighborhood and many are wondering if this is a sign of a very hot summer since these animals are from the south”.

April 14

  • ANSONIA – 50 FERA workers are dropped from the roles, as the program is being scaled back.  Many of the furloughed workers were single men without dependants, or married men who had family members who were working. Those remaining are only working two days this week.
  • ANSONIA – The Italian-American Abbruzzese Club, formerly at 523 Main Street, celebrates the opening of its new location on 1 Factory Street.

April 15

  • ANSONIA – About 3,000 attend the dedication of the Annie E. Larkin memorial at St. Mary’s Cemetery. The late educator taught in Ansonia half century, and was the principal of the Elm Street School.

April 16

  • ANSONIA – For the second year in a row, the Spadefoot Toads have returned to Hotchkiss Pond. Scientists are elated at the further opportunity to research the rare, elusive species. Residents surrounding the pond are upset, as they are incredibly noisy and interrupt their sleep. There are renewed calls for the pond to be drained. The preeminent scientist on the subject, Dr. Stanley Ball from New Haven’s Peabody Museum is on the scene at once. He says it is highly unusual for them to reappear two years in a row in such large numbers. More information from the Connecticut DEP website on this species can be found on the above link and here (press “cancel” when the print screen appears).

April 17

  • ANSONIA – Dr. Ball arranges for a large newsreel company to film the Spadefoot Toads at Hotchkiss Pond.
  • OXFORD – A house south of Oxford Center on the State Road (Route 67) is destroyed by fire tonight. A family that had been staying there moved out during the day.
  • OXFORD – “Very little spring work has been done as yet by local farmers. Due to the recent rains the fields are very soft and wet and will require several days of sunshine before they can be worked”.

April 18

  • ANSONIA – Hotchkiss Pond is quiet tonight, despite the large number of people who drove out to hear the Spadefoot Toads. Over 600 toads have been removed by Dr. Ball, to his private pond in East Haddam due to concerns the pond may be drained. Scientists from Columbia and Cornell are also studying the toads.
  • DERBY – Former Police Chief John Nolan dies at Griffin Hospital of pneumonia. Born in Derby in 1853, he was appointed to what was then the Birmingham Police Department’s Chief on June 2, 1885 and continued to serve when the Town and Borough were combined to form the City of Derby in 1894. He was replaced when Republicans came into power in Derby 1897, but was back following year when Democrats regained power. He was ousted a second and last time in 1900, again due to the Republicans coming into power. It was during his successor’s term that an ordinance was passed preventing the police chief from being replaced at the whim of the controlling political party in Derby. He served as a night guard at the Derby Gas & Electric’s plant in Shelton from 1900 until he retired in 1920.

Thursday, April 19

  • SHELTON – “With the approaching warm weather, much activity can be seen on and around the race track on the Huntington Speedway, Huntington. This is a good half mile track for racing cars. Plans are already being made to have the tracks ready for races by Sunday, April 29”.

April 20

  • ANSONIA & DERBY – Both cities’ police departments are scrambling after discovering part of a cache of $20,000 worth of  perfumes, cosmetics, toilet goods, and similar items in the city dumps on Island Park and off Division Street. This would be worth approximately $325,000 today. The items were traced to two trucks that were hijacked in East Lyme on April 4. The items were apparently dumped in those locations two days ago, after three members of the hijackers’ gang were arrested in New Haven. It appears that children and scavengers had made off with much of the contraband, and the police are trying to collect it as evidence.   

April 21

  • ANSONIA – The Ansonia High School Commercial Department wins 2 gold medals, 4 silver cups, and other awards at the Annual State Efficiency Contests in Bridgeport.
  • OXFORD – “A hard frost this morning with the thermometer registering below freezing, someone cools the ardor for too early planting”.

April 24

  • ANSONIA – A Capitol Theater janitor finds $191 (worth over $3000 today) while the sweeping ladies lounge. The woman who dropped the money is identified, the cash is returned, and the honest janitor receives a $15 (worth almost $250 today) reward.

April 25

  • ANSONIA & SEYMOUR – $5,000 more in stolen contraband from the East Lyme hijacking is discovered in a cellar on South Main Street, Seymour. The owner of the house is a janitor who works for a Main Street, Ansonia perfume dealer. The perfume dealer apparently asked the janitor to store some of the items in his cellar, and to dispose of the rest of them, without telling him it they were stolen goods. The perfume dealer is arrested, after he claims that he realized that the items he received were stolen because the brands that were hijacked were flagged. However, the perfume dealer apparently panicked, because he was afraid of “gang vengeance”, which led him to ask the janitor to store some of the contraband in his home and dispose of the rest in landfills. Police are trying to sort out the details.
  • DERBY – FERA projects are progressing in Derby, including the construction of a retaining wall along Griffin Hospital property on Seymour Avenue, and the grading of Grove Street, F Street, and Silver Hill.

Thursday, April 26

  • ANSONIA – An additional $500 worth of the merchandise from the East Lyme hijacking is found above a cut rate drug store at Main Street and Railroad Avenue. The proprietor is arrested.
  • ANSONIA – Former Mayor Michael Cook is named Ansonia’s new postmaster by President Franklin D. Roosevelt. He succeeds A. W. Jeynes, who was appointed by President Warren Harding and served three 4-year terms.

April 29

  • Short Line bus service is inaugurated with hourly service between Waterbury and Bridgeport, with stops on Wakelee Avenue in Ansonia, Elizabeth Street in Derby, and Kyle’s Corner in Shelton.
  • SEYMOUR – Former resident Leland Stowe has written a book called “Nazi Germany Means War”.

April 30

  • DERBY – The US Post Office states the Civil Service Commission will review the recent test for Derby Postmaster, with a view of possible correction and renaming.
  • OXFORD – “Many are commenting as to the few spring birds. Very noticeable is the absence of blue birds, one resident stating that usually three or four pairs have nested in bird houses around his grounds but this year not a pair has appeared”.


Tuesday, May 1

  • ANSONIA – $200 more in contraband from the East Lyme hijacking is recovered by State Police in a Division Street attic. The homeowner is arrested. He says it was dumped near Stevenson Dam by a Derby man, who removed it from a store in that City.
  • ANSONIA – The manager of the Boston Store reports the greatest spring sales volume ever for Frigidaires.
  • DERBY – The police department is measuring awnings this week to ensure that they are 7.5′ above the sidewalk, to conform with local laws after some complaints were received.

May 2

  • DERBY – A bench warrant issued for the proprietor of Derby News and Tobacco Store, who lives in Shelton, for possession of articles stolen from the East Lyme hijacking. 
  • OXFORD – “Another of our local farmers has fallen into line and adopted the implements of a machine age. Eugene Wyant is this year doing his heavy work with tractor power”.

Thursday, May 3

  • SEYMOUR – A 9-year old New York City boy falls 15′ into the Naugatuck River near Broad Street Park. He is rescued by 2 local men.

May 5

  • DERBY & SHELTON – Trolley service between Shelton’s South End and East Derby will be suspended in favor of busses, which will be on the same half hour schedule. South End residents are not happy, saying the buses can’t keep the schedule as reliably as the trolleys unless they are operating under the best weather conditions. The trolley company says the line is underused.

May 8

  • SHELTON – Boy Scout Troop 2, based at the Church of the Good Shepherd, is celebrating its 20th anniversary.

May 9

Thursday, May 10

  • DERBY – 27 stores take place in the annual Derby Day sales.

May 12

  • SEYMOUR – A serious head-on crash occurs on Derby Avenue. One of the drivers, from Derby, dies of his injuries the following day in Griffin Hospital. The other driver is arrested.

May 13

  • DERBY – Edwin Laborie, 64, dies while cutting grass at his home on 25 Homestead Avenue. Born in Huntington on January 13, 1870, he moved to his newly constructed home in 1925. He worked for the Connecticut Company for 35 years, and was one of the oldest and best-known of that company’s motormen on the belt line between Derby and Ansonia. 

May 16

  • ANSONIA – A raid on a North State Street tenement results in one arrest, with a 20 gallon still, liquor, and mash seized. This is the second liquor raid in the City this week.

Thursday, May 17

  • ANSONIA – A new FERA project starts today, involving 20 men to widening Division Street between Clifton Avenue and Mill Street, as well as laying a 250’ of an 18” cement pipe to serve as a storm water sewer in that location. Completed FERA projects include a storm water drain on lower Main Street from Beaver Brook to Chestnut Street and Factory Street. A storm water drain on Vose Street to Remer Street has also been completed. The Myrtle Street bridge over Beaver Brook has been widened, and a retaining wall has been constructed at Elm Street School.

May 18

  • ANSONIA – Former mayor Michael Cook assumes his new duties as Ansonia’s postmaster.
  • DERBY – The Princeton and Cornell rowing teams are staying at Hotel Clark for the upcoming Yale Regatta. Visiting crews somehow commandeer the microphone at the Commodore Hull Theater, and call out to passerby, who can hear them a block away.
  • SHELTON – Derby Gas & Electric Company will be redoing the entire street lighting system in Shelton. The old system included 41 arc lights and 127 incandescent (60 candlepower lamps), and it was often complained that the middles of streets were brightly illuminated while the street corners were dark. The new system will include seven 600 candlepower lamps, 35 400 candlepower lamps, 73 250 candlepower lamps, & 82 100 candlepower lamps for more uniform lighting. The six bridge lights, 2 traffic lights on Center Street, and one caution light at Bridgeport Avenue and Sullivan Street will remain unchanged.

May 19

  • DERBY – Many spectators arrive in the City early for the Yale Regatta. Some are charging as much as $2 for parking in their yards near the boathouse or rowing course. Others take special trolleys that go directly up Housatonic Avenue to the boathouse. Yale wins the varsity event, while Cornell wins the freshmen and junior varsity regattas. 30,000 spectators witness the races. Two Yale students try to swim across the river, one has to be pulled out of the river by a patrol boat after feigning exhaustion. There are major traffic jams after the races.
  • DERBY – The Blue Light Inn on Housatonic Avenue is broken into either late this evening or early tomorrow morning. After the burglars find no money, they destroy the interior.
  • SHELTON – The observation train, which runs along the railroad tracks parallel to the Yale Regatta course, has 20 cars this year. Popular radio personality Harvey Firestone is on board the train. Riverview Park is packed with spectators. Over 4,000 automobiles are parked from the Maples to Riverview Park and on the streets for Derby Day. The police direct traffic, and are credited for there not being a single accident despite the huge influx of vehicles, though two pocketbooks are stolen from parked cars.

May 20

  • DERBY – The house at 253 Elizabeth Street is hit by lightning, ripping an 8′ hole in its turret.
  • SHELTON – 4,000 attend the air circus and automobile races sponsored by the Sutter Post American Legion at the Huntington Speedway. Three race cars careen off the track, smashing through the inner rail into a mass of spectators. One racer & two spectators are injured, including one who has to be removed by ambulance. The air show includes air stunts and parachutes. 1,200 automobiles are counted in the parking lot.

May 21

  • DERBY – Three men hold up Connecticut Company office, striking the lone employee present in the back of his head with a rifle butt. They steal $76 in cash and over $1,000 in trolley tokens – including the trolley receipts from the Yale Regatta. The police catches up to the getaway car on Turkey Hill Road and chase it as far as Milford but the criminals manage to escape.

Thursday, May 24

  • ANSONIA – A tenement on North Main Street is raided by the police. A 10 gallon still is seized, along with moonshine, whisky, and mash. One man is arrested.
  • SHELTON – Federal agents raid a Howe Avenue address, arrest 2, and seize a 100 gallon still.

May 25

  • ANSONIA – The Swedish Methodist Church holds its annual meeting. Sunday services will now be completely in English, and the name of church will soon be changed.
  • OXFORD – “Farm work is well advanced, considering the season. Most farmers have finished planting their corn and potatoes, and fields of grain are coming nicely. With the plentiful supply of rain the prospects are for a large hay crop for the year”.
  • OXFORD – “The many summer homes about town are being opened for the season, with the prospect that more than ever will enjoy the benefits of a few weeks spent in the hills of Oxford. In the river section several new camps are in the process of construction”

May 26

  • ANSONIA – Miss Minnie Willis, who retired last June as the principal of Grove Street School after working for the school system for 51 years, 42 as a principal, is stricken while visiting the Ansonia Public Library with Holbrook Street School principal Miss Georgiana Peck. Miss Peck tried driving her to a nearby doctor, but the 71 year old woman was deceased upon arrival. Grove Street School was the largest in Ansonia at the time. Miss Willis and Miss Peck shared an apartment on Franklin Street, and ironically both later had their respective schools named after them.

May 27

  • ANSONIA – The City’s Memorial Day services are held at Ansonia Congregational Church.
  • DERBY – The Annual Services for the Derby-Shelton Memorial Day Parade are held at Derby High School auditorium. Two surviving Civil War veterans, one from each city, attend.
  • DERBY – A rare outdoor mass is held at Mt. St. Peters cemetery before over 3,000 people. This is the first time such a mass was held here, and it also included memorial services.
  • SHELTON – The Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) and Sons of Union Veterans (SUV) decorate the Huntington cemeteries, and holds services at Huntington Congregational Church. Both of Derby and Shelton’s sole Civil War veterans are present. A small parade is held.

May 28

  • DERBY – A FERA project will soon begin, which will drain the marshes behind the Main Street trolley carbarns, and along the west side of Naugatuck River. Mosquitoes from these locations are a big problem on Seymour and Atwater Avenues.
  • SEYMOUR – The second story of the First National Building is razed.

 May 30 – Memorial Day

  • ANSONIA – Heavy rain shortens today’s parade, only running from Central Street to the Ansonia Armory, where program that would have been at Pine Grove Cemetery is held. This is the first time in 28 years rain forced a change in Memorial Day plans.
  • DERBY & SHELTON – The Derby-Shelton Memorial Day Parade goes on as planned despite the rain. Hundreds of cheering spectators line the streets, culminating in ceremonies on Derby Green. Hundreds of schoolchildren do not participate in the parade due to the weather, however.
  • SEYMOUR – The parade goes on as planned, with about 3,000 participating. This is the first year that there are no Civil War veterans to honor, as they have all passed. Outdoor exercises are moved into Concordia Hall due to the rain.

Thursday, May 31

  • DERBY – Charles Rotteck retires from the Derby Post Office. He worked there 40 years, 11 as a clerk and 28 as a letter carrier.


Saturday, June 2

  • ANSONIA – The “Turtle Pond”, west of Westfield Ave, is being drained by FERA workers to eliminate the mosquito nuisance.
  • SEYMOUR – Park Field, which is being enhanced by FERA, may be renamed Carlos French Memorial next fall.

June 3

  • ANSONIA – The Swedish Methodist Church changes its name to Trinity Methodist Episcopal Church.

June 6

  • ANSONIA – A well known attorney, former Corporate Counsel for the City of Shelton, is found dead in his Jackson Street home of gas poisoning. He was 34.

Friday, June 8

  • SHELTON – A fire destroys a large barn containing 2 automobiles, 3 wagons, and half a ton of hay on Old Coram Road. Despite the fact there are no hydrants, the fire is prevented from spreading to large a chicken coop.

June 9

  • ANSONIA – The big steam engine at which supplied power for breaking down and sheet rolls at the American Brass Company has been replaced by two electric motors. The engine was purchased in 1907, and put in service in 1908. It shattered on May 29, and was too badly damaged to fix, hampering ABC operations until the motors were put on line.

June 11

  • SHELTON – The Board of Aldermen passes a resolution authorizing $75,000 worth of Relief Bonds.

June 12

  • The day brings 1.51” of rain and thunderstorms.
  • Four trainloads worth of the Ringling Bros., Barnum & Bailey Circus pass through the Valley.
  • DERBY – The cashier at the Derby branch of the Connecticut Company who was allegedly held up and robbed of a large amount of tokens, as well as the trolley company’s receipts after Derby Day, breaks under questioning and admits the whole thing was a hoax. He is charged with embezzlement. The Derby native was employed by the trolley company for 25 years. Three years ago, he was seriously injured in a trolley accident, and for some time had been taking money from the company to cover his bills. The fake hold-up was done to cover the shortages that he had been carrying over in his accounts, and he did so by hitting his head against a pipe and throwing the stolen tokens into the river in bags for later retrieval, and hiding others in the trolley barn. His story started falling apart when 2 bags of tokens were accidentally found hidden in the trolley barn. 
  • SHELTON – The body of a 50 year old Maltby Street man is found in the Housatonic River.

June 13

  • ANSONIA – 217 Ansonia High School seniors graduate at the Capitol Theater as 1800 relatives and friends look on. Mary Pattinson is the valedictorian, and Helen Poniltis is the salutatorian.
  • SEYMOUR – A woman admits to causing the damage at Trinity Cemetery on May 21 with her car, resulting in damage to several monuments including William W. H. Wooster. The cemetery association reacted by closing the cemetery at dusk. She says her son was teaching her to drive in the cemetery when she stepped on gas instead of the brake. She is very upset about the whole incident, and will pay for the damage. The association will not press charges.

Thursday, June 14

  • SEYMOUR – Town Counsel Clifford J. Atwater dies of pneumonia at Griffin Hospital at age 75. He served as town prosecutor from 1925 to 1933, and was assistant prosecutor at the time of death. He also served as Tax Collector for 15 years, and represented Seymour on the General Assembly in 1899. He was Treasurer of Seymour Congregational Church at the time of his death.
  • SHELTON – A spectacular 2-alarm fire destroys the Hemming-Walsh Cutlery Manufacturing Company on Myrtle Street at Coram Avenue. The fire is fed by driving wind and exploding barrels of oil and shellac, and burning embers fall all over neighborhood. All 3 Derby fire companies assist Shelton. The machinery had been removed when the company went into receivership 4 months ago. The 100’x50’, 2-story frame brick building, built in 1917, was gutted 9 years before by another fire when it was owned by Holmes Manufacturing Company, which made munitions there.

June 16

  • ANSONIA – A High Street garage is destroyed by fire, along with the 1928 Packard inside it.

June 17

  • OXFORD – St. Peter’s Episcopal Church celebrates the 100th anniversary of the building of its church, along with its Old Home Day exercises. The event is well attended.

June 19

  • 3.61″ of rain falls today, mostly in the morning.  The total is nearly 7″ for June thus far. 
  • ANSONIA – The new storm water sewer worked well. In years past Main Street would be flooded by rainstorms such as this.
  • DERBY – 103 Derby High School seniors graduate at the Commodore Hull Theater. The Valedictorian is Ida Veronica Torbi, and the Salutatorian is Olga Madzik.
  • SHELTON – The largest load of lumber in years is received at the Shelton Docks on the 256’ long barge Dutton No. 2. The 150,000′ of lumber is earmarked for the Seymour Lumber Company, Housatonic Lumber Company, and Shelton Lumber Company. The fact that such a large lumber shipment has been received is being interpreted as a sign of possible economic recovery, as the construction market has been stagnant since the Great Depression began.

June 20

  • ANSONIA – A memorial marble tablet for late principal Annie Larkin is unveiled at ceremonies attended by hundreds at Elm Street School. It reads in part “Annie E. Larkin; 1894-1933; Erected by friends and former pupils in grateful remembrance of unselfish service and devotion”.
  • SEYMOUR – Seymour High School’s 47th commencement is held at Seymour Methodist Church. The class of 78 is the largest in the school’s history up to that time. Almost 700 attend, church overflowing. Grace Amico is the Valedictorian, and Stephen J. Plaskon is the Salutatorian.

Thursday, June 21

  • OXFORD – “Reports drifting in from several sources are that a nudist colony is being established in a certain isolated section of town. While the report is unverified as yet, it is believed there is foundation for same. Undoubtedly numerous hiking parties will be exploring the hills and woods ere long and they will not be Boy Scouts”.
  • SHELTON – Swimming facilities at Camp Irving will be “bigger and better” then ever. A “crib” is being constructed on waterfront 25′ wide, 50′ long, with a 4′ wide walk. There is a 25′ long pier. The Camp’s “navy” is composed of 6 rowboats, 3 canoes, and 1 whaleboat.

June 22

  • ANSONIA – Spadefoot toads appear once again at Hotchkiss Pond. The rare, loud, mysterious creatures were silent since early May, but emerged after Tuesday’s 4″ rainstorm. They were loud Wed & Thurs but quiet today.
  • OXFORD – “Haying is in full swing and farmers are reporting the best hay crop of several years. The wet cold spring has been favorable for the grass crop, pastures are in better than average condition, and now with warm weather following an abundance of rains, all growing crops are doing well”.
  • SHELTON – Shelton High School graduates 90 students in its auditorium. The Valedictorian is Edwin Lund of Wheeler Street. The Salutatorian is Richard William Treloar. The class is in the largest in the school’s history up to this time.

June 23

  • DERBY – President Franklin Delano Roosevelt passes through Derby, along New Haven Avenue, Main Street, and River Road, while traveling from New London toHyde Park via New Haven and Danbury. The President stops at the corner of Main Street and Elizabeth Street to receive a brief greeting from Mayor Riordan. The entire route is lined with spectators, and already there is talk of renaming River Road to Roosevelt Drive. Many of the populace seems to be genuinely affected by the President’s visit.
  • DERBY – The Bradley Florists announce that they will switch entirely to the wholesale florist industry. The firm is nearly 80 years old, is the oldest retail business in Derby, and is one of the oldest florists in the State.
  • OXFORD – “The cool waters of Swan’s Reservoir on Park Road is a favorite resort these hot days, men, women, and children in large numbers frequenting the place, many lingering until late evening. No, it is not a “nudist camp”, although the bathing suits are wonderful to behold”.
  • SEYMOUR – “A group of Squantuck residents, having been informed that President Roosevelt would pass that way at 11 o’clock Saturday collected in front of the home of  R.G. Preece and waited diligently until 12:30 where they were rewarded by a fleeting glimpse of the presidential party as it sped along on its way to Danbury and Hyde Park. In spite of the high speed maintained, the president was plainly recognized and was seen to smile and wave his hand. One is led to wonder whether this is the first president who has, while in office, traversed the beautiful valley of the Housatonic”.

June 24

  • ANSONIA – Immanuel Episcopal Church announces the diocese will loan it $5,000 to complete its church edifice. Ground for the church was originally broken on October 7, 1928.

June 26

  • OXFORD – “We have read with interest the suggestion that Derby might remember the passing of President Roosevelt through the town by renaming the River Road Roosevelt Drive. Long years ago Oxford had its Governor’s Hill road and it still is used by one of the highways of the town. Incidentally, it is said the governor thus remembered was also a Jeffersonian. Why not connect Roosevelt Drive with Governor’s Hill and call it Jefferson Boulevard?”

Thursday, June 28

  • ANSONIA – The Evening Sentinel supports the AME Zion church’s attempt to secure the old B’nai Israel synagogue on Colburn Street. AME Zion reportedly must vacate their present church building by July 2.

June 29

  • Today’s high is 106, with a low of 71.
  • ANSONIA – Two FERA projects are completed today. Benz Street has been widened and graded, and stone walls have built in places. Sixth Street has also been graded, with a new stone wall near the corner with Star Street. The FERA men will now be shifted to projects on Hill Street and the Fourth Street School.
  • DERBY – Two Minerva Street men, aged 46 and 40, are killed in after being struck by a car on Housatonic Avenue near the Yale Boathouse and the Blue Light Inn across the street from the boathouse. The car flees the scene. Acting on a tip, within two hours the police track the car to two Shelton men. They are arrested. The driver appears to have been intoxicated.
  • OXFORD – “Our city friends seeking quiet and beauty of the country will find such peace and beauty on some of the side roads in Oxford. Governors Hill Road, leading from Oxford Center to Quaker Farms, a distance of 2 miles, is well worth driving over. The road is in fair condition for auto travel, is arched for much of the way with trees, and as it winds its way over the hills and through the dells, it becomes to a nature lover a source of pure delight. Try it next Sunday”.
  • SEYMOUR – A man dies of heat prostration at 11:30 PM at his cousin’s home on Shelton Avenue.
  • SHELTON – Eastern Distilleries, Inc will move into the old Harris, Seybold, & Potter factory. It will employ 35-40 men.
  • SHELTON – “The George W. Scranton home on Coram Avenue, adjoining the Gardner property, one of the oldest residences in that section of the city has been demolished by the owner. Mrs. Flora H. Gardner, and the site is now being graded to beautify the place. Considerable other work is being done on the rear of the Gardner property on the Prospect Avenue side. Mr. Scranton is president of the Derby Gas and Electric Company”. 

June 30

  • Today’s high is 101, with a low of 71.
  • OXFORD – Camp Palmer, the Bridgeport Knights of Columbus Camp, opens for its 13th season along the Housatonic River. The enrollment for the first two weeks is 75, which is a record.
  • OXFORD – “Yesterday was a day of high temperature throughout this section, the highest being reported by Eugene Wyant of Woodside Avenue, who stated his thermometer at one time was 104 degrees in the shade”.


Sunday, July 1

  • Today’s high is 101, with a low of 71.
  • SHELTON – 5,000 people visit Indian Well State Park. A Maple Street girl rescues a drowning boy in the Housatonic River.
  • SHELTON – Camp Irving, the Housatonic Council’s Boy Scout Camp, opens for the season. A record 50 campers have signed up for the first week. Camp Irving was located where Housatonic Well Fields are today.

July 2

  • SEYMOUR – The Seymour Playground Association inaugurates the summer season with the opening of the pool at Legion Park. Over 500 swim the first day.

July 3

  • A shower dumps 0.35″ this evening, and may finally put an end to the heat wave and waters thirsty crops.
  • DERBY – FERA has approved painting two book rooms and the window casements at Derby Public Library this month.
  • OXFORD – Camp Pomperaug of the Bridgeport Scout Council opens today on Lake Zoar with 125 Boy Scouts.

 July 4 – America’s 158th Independence Day

  • Temperatures are 92, but far less humid, dropping to 68 at night. The holiday was noisy, reminding many of how Independence Day was celebrated before the Great Depression struck.

Thursday, July 5

  • SHELTON – The Adams Manufacturing Company moves its New York City offices and stockrooms for the first time in 106 years, to the 15th floor of the Nelson Tower on 34th St & 7th Ave. Many Valley factories had New York City offices and showrooms.

July 6

  • ANSONIA – Charles E. Remer, Head Teller of the Ansonia National Bank, completes his 50th year of service today. He was hired in 1884 as a clerk, since that time has only been out 3 days for illness.
  • SHELTON – Metco Manufacturing of Brooklyn, NY, will lease 30,000 square feet in the former Bassett Metal Goods factory. It will manufacture silver hollowware including coffee, sugar, and creamer sets, water pitchers, cocktail shaker sets and novelties, both silver and chrome plated. They will employ about 100.

July 7

  • The heat wave is broken this evening with showers. The temperature was almost 100 in the afternoon. 

July 8

  • The humidity remains, but the temperatures are cooler. 
  • SHELTON – 1,800 pack the Huntington Speedway to watch 5 accident-free races, to raise money for the milk funds for the Kiwanis and Derby-Shelton Rotary. Many are disappointed when the parachute jumper fails to show.

July 9

  • The temperature is 78 at noon.
  • ANSONIA – The Colburn Street and Fourth Street pools open today for the season.
  • ANSONIA – 72 girls attend the opening day of Girl Scout Day Camp at the Girl Scout House on Union Street.
  • ANSONIA – 14 young men leave for CCC camp.
  • DERBY – 8 young men leave for CCC camp.
  • OXFORD – Camp Palmer has 120 boys enrolled. Camp Rippowam, the Stamford Council Scout Camp on Lake Zoar, opened last week with 60 campers.
  • SHELTON – Camp Irving has 60 campers. Camp Pershing, the Naugatuck Council Boy Scout Camp near Camp Irving, opens in two days. 
  • SHELTON – “Webb’s swimming pool is proving a very popular place during the hot weather, for both old and young, because it is easy to reach since one can drive right up to the pool, and there is a small bath house and a nice baseball ground near. Mr. Webb very generously throws open this nice recreation spot to the public”. The swimming hole was located off Nichols Avenue, near today’s Stone House Road.

July 10

  • DERBY – There is interest in donating the Downs property on Chatfield Street and Hawthorne Avenue as either a State Park or City Park. The property is composed of 70 acres of meadow and woodland, including all of Coon Hollow.
  • DERBY & SEYMOUR – Nearly all Democrats, and many Republicans, favor changing the name of River Road to Roosevelt Drive, to commemorate the President’s passing that way last month.
  • OXFORD – 72 new campers enter the Bridgeport Scout Council’s Camp Pomperaug on Lake Zoar.
  • OXFORD – “Traffic on the Oxford Road is not heavy as compared with some other highways, but some idea can be had of the travel when by actual count during one hour last Sunday afternoon 300 cars passed a given point counting north and southbound traffic”.
  • SHELTON – Camp Millcroft Girl Scout Day Camp opens for the season off Huntington Street.

July 11

  • The summertime population along Lake Housatonic and Lake Zoar is the highest that it has been in years. This includes those patronizing the Recreation Camp, summer camps, and cottages.

Thursday, July 12

  • ANSONIA – The vault at Ansonia Post Office has failed to open to its combination since Saturday. Permission is obtained from the United States Post Office in Washington DC to crack it. Because the steel doors were so strong, it was easier to break though an adjacent 1-foot thick concrete wall. Had the safe not been broken into, the City would have run out of stamps today.
  • ANSONIA – Jack Ready’s Grille formally opens at 7 Canal Street. The establishment adjoins the Capitol Theater Building.
  • DERBY – Jack Dempsey, former heavyweight champion, visits an Elizabeth Street restaurant for an hour while passing through the City with his friend “Jerry the Greek”. While there, he asks where “the island” is, explaining that someone once offered him $100,000 to fight Harry Wills. Before making his decision, he looked up Derby on a map and seeing it was inland town decided it was false. In reality, the location was probably O’Sullivan’s Island.
  • DERBY – Mayor Riordan has assigned the Board of Aldermen the task of renting or selling the Harris-Seybold-Potter plant on Housatonic Avenue as the next step of Derby’s industrial rehabilitation program.
  • DERBY – A suspicious fire breaks out in a house behind 142 Caroline Street, near Lombardi’s Garage, and is confined to a 3rd floor tenement.
  • SHELTON – Over 2,000 attend the first concert of the year at Riverview Park, given by the American Legion Band.

July 13

  • ANSONIA – AME Zion Church purchases the former B’nai Israel Synagogue on Colburn Street.
  • OXFORD – “The many people returning from the berry fields with full baskets and pails would indicate that the season for blueberries and bilberries is in full swing with an unusually large crop”.

July 16

  • ANSONIA – The State Supervisor of Secondary Education declares the conditions at Ansonia High School the worst in the state, with 1,100 attending a facility intended for 550. Unless improvements are made the school may fail to make the State’s approval list.
  • SHELTON – A car crashes into a telegraph pole on Shelton Avenue, dragging it 60′ before breaking through a wire fence. The car then goes another 100′ through a meadow, before crashing into the lower reservoir. The lone driver survives, charged with driving while intoxicated.

July 17

  • SHELTON – Huntington – “Considerable damage was done to the runways of an outside sawmill in Huntington on Tuesday afternoon, when a fire broke out among the sawdust. An alarm was sent in on the Huntington telephone system, by the operator, and both trucks were soon on the scene. The runways were of very dry wood which soon ignited and burned. The sawmill was formerly owned by the late Arthur Laborie and is situated on Lane Street”.

Thursday, July 19

  • SHELTON – The City’s new fire engine, a 1934 Aherns-Fox combination pumper, arrives by rail at the Derby freight station. It will be assigned to Echo Hose, Hook & Ladder Co. No. 1, but will respond to any major fire in the City.
  • SHELTON – The City’s experimental municipal green grocery for unemployed opens with large patronage. Food items can be purchased in exchange for labor, mostly at City farms.
  • SHELTON – The State begins condemnation procedures against the last two property owners who are holding out along the route of the proposed new Leavenworth Road.

July 20

  • Today is one of the worst days of summer so far, in terms of heat and humidity. The temperature falls to 72 overnight.
  • SHELTON – Trying to prevent the closing of a public boat landing adjoining Judge Leroy Moulthrop’s property off River Road, boat owners will now call the landing Wooster’s Cove, which is the oldest reference to the place found in Town records from 1821. The landing was most recently called Moulthrop’s Landing. This is part of a squabble involving Judge Moulthrop over who now owns the area encompassing the landing.

July 21

  • The temperature is 92 at noon, but less humid. Rain is desperately needed.
  • OXFORD – “Almost daily complaints are heard from people on lower Oxford Road of the several young men who are using the new cement road in that part of town as a race track, where each evening they speed back and forth on their motorcycles, endangering the life and limb of any other travelers on the road”.

July 22

  • ANSONIA – State Police arrest 23 at a cockfight off Prindle Avenue, and seize 63 birds.
  • SEYMOUR – A serious accident on Derby Avenue after the driver of a roadster claims he is blinded by headlights coming from another car. The car flips over 3 times, all 6 occupants are ejected. 3 are injured, 2 critically.

July 23

  • ANSONIA – Vandals damaged the Mead School pool over the weekend. It is closed today.
  • SEYMOUR – 17 young men have so far reported for CCC duty this summer. The Town’s total allotment is 20.

July 24

  • ANSONIA – The Lewis Bros. 3-ring circus and wild animal show arrives in 45 silver gray and red trucks, trailers, and house cars, and sets up off Division Street. A number of boys are disappointed as they cannot help set up the circus, as they have always done, due to National Recovery Administration code.
  • ANSONIA – Federal agents raid a Hodge Avenue address and seize a 250 gallon still and 7,000 gallons of mash. One man is arrested.
  • DERBY – An 8year old boy is struck and severely injured by a car on Housatonic Avenue, in the same spot where two men were killed last month, while walking home from the Recreation Camp with his friends. The driver is held for reckless driving.
  • OXFORD – “The long continued drought is seriously affecting many of the planted crops throughout the town. Pastures in most places are devoid of feed and one dairyman stated that he is feeding as much grain to his herd as he does in winter. Those fortunate to have a good water supply are keeping lawns and flowers in fair condition, but other lawns and gardens are about ruined for the year”.
  • SHELTON – Indian Well State Park had been very crowded during the heat wave.

July 25

  • A major thunderstorm dumps a large amount of rain just before midnight. 
  • ANSONIA – City sewers are unable to handle the rapid influx of water, and the streets flood. The water is inches deep on Main Street. 1.42” of rain falls.
  • ANSONIA – FERA men have lowered a culvert west of Westfield Avenue to drain a bog, and have also drained a bog at Jackson Street. They are trying to eliminate mosquito breeding grounds.
  • DERBY – Dirt washed on the tracks on Derby Avenue and near the Seymour border has to be removed before trolley service can resume. A total of 0.71″ of rain falls here.
  • DERBY – Replacing the Housatonic Avenue Bridge over the Derby Canal may be done by the State, thought this probably will not happen until the trolley line is abandoned. At this time, the trolley runs on the Housatonic Avenue line twice a day to take employees to and from the factories.
  • OXFORD – Several inches of rain falls.
  • SEYMOUR – Cars are stranded on flooded streets.

Thursday, July 26

  • ANSONIA – The popular Ready’s Diner on 55 Water Street is ruined by an early morning fire believed caused by defective wiring.
  • SHELTON – One of the most horrific events in Shelton’s history occurs about 3 PM today. After swimming with others at a popular swimming hole along the Housatonic River, north of Riverview Park, 8 children walk a short distance down the railroad tracks, just below a curve, and inexplicably sit down on the west side tracks and start playing with a deck of cards. A northbound freight train passed them on the east side tracks, blocking out any other noises, and obscuring the view around the curve. Then a southbound fast freight train on the west side tracks whipped around the bend at 40mph, and plowed into the children – in full view of other swimmers in the river and people on the north bluff of Riverview Park – before they had any time to react. None of the 8 children survived. Riverview Park is jammed with spectators and worried parents, and the anxiety is compounded when the Medical Examiner takes over an hour to arrive, delaying the positive identification of some of the bodies. The children, 7 boys and 1 girl, ranged from 8 to 16 years in age. Two pairs of them were siblings, and they all lived on the hill across Howe Avenue from Riverview Park, on Wheeler Street, George Street, West Street, and New Street. The story makes national headlines. Link to Valley Independent Sentinelarticle.

July 27

  • ANSONIA & DERBY – The cornerstone of the AME Zion Church, laid in 1888 on Derby Avenue is found. It will be placed in Church’s new building, the former B’Nai Israel Synagogue on Colburn Street, Ansonia.
  • SHELTON – Mayor Daniel Shelton orders all City flags at half mast in the wake of yesterday’s tragedy. The coroner rules the southbound engineer could not see children around the bend until it was far too late to stop. Riverview Park is still packed with curious onlookers. Donations are being sought and fundraisers held for the families, some of whom are unemployed due to the Great Depression.

July 28

  • SHELTON – Funerals for seven of the train disaster victims are held throughout the day, including a double funeral for two brothers at St. Joseph’s Church and a second double funeral for a brother and sister at Donovan & Sons Funeral Home on Oak Avenue. One of the funerals is on the victim’s 15th birthday. All are packed. The City is completely numbed by the calamity.

July 29

  • ANSONIA – The last funeral for a Shelton train disaster victim is held at Three Saints Church.

July 30

  • DERBY – A Cleveland man goes to a Derby Avenue home to ask a relative to help him reunite with his ex-wife, who is staying at Lake Zoar. It is later discovered a revolver is missing from the home, leading to fears he may commit suicide. A Derby police officer tracks the man down to a New Haven Avenue trolley. The officer overtakes the trolley, and tries to stop it by blocking it with his police car. The trolley smashes into the police car, the officer jumping out of it just in time. Jumping on the trolley, he sights the man slowly reaching for his pocket. Fearing he is reaching for the revolver, the officer overpowers the man, and arrests him. The man is distraught, saying he never intended to hurt anyone.
  • SHELTON – A truck carrying drug sundries is hijacked on River Road, just south of Moulthrop Gas Station late at night. The driver discovered bound and gagged in his empty truck in New York City the next morning.

July 31

  • SHELTON – The President of the New Haven Railroad writes a letter expressing his sincere sympathy for the victims and families of the train disaster. Mayor Daniel Shelton puts out a public appeal asking for help in raising funds for the bereaved families.


Wednesday, August 1

  • SEYMOUR – “The Great Hill School is being renovated and a new furnace installed”.
  • SEYMOUR – Tingue Textile mills is operating at 60% capacity, and has enough orders to keep 125 full-time employed at least until the end of the year.

Thursday, August 2

  • DERBY – A car with 3 men in it is sideswiped on River Road, just above the Recreation Camp, by a hit and run driver at 9:50 PM. The car goes over the embankment and falls 40′ before stopping on its side against tree, only 10′ from the Housatonic River. The driver is in serious condition at Griffin Hospital. 

August 3

  • DERBY – The Board of Aldermen unanimously vote to change name of River Road to Roosevelt Drive.
  • SHELTON – A benefit dance is held at Shelton High School auditorium for families of the July 26 train disaster victims. Over 500 attend, and $702.44 is raised.

August 4

  • DERBY – The increasing number of serious accidents on River Road leads many to call for more State and local police patrols.
  • OXFORD – William Gabler, 64, proprietor of Oxford Hotel since 1902, dies. He was also the President of Seymour Sand & Gravel Company.
  • SEYMOUR – The Town is appealing to the Traffic Section of the State Motor Vehicle Department to correct the parking situation on Main Street, between DeForest Street and Bank Street, which leads to frequent traffic jams.
  • SEYMOUR – The new Ritz Tavern opens on 47 Bank Street.

August 5

  1. ANSONIA – A car loses control, and knocks over an empty police booth on Main Street, near the Methodist Church and Maple Street, about 10′. The driver is charged.

August 7

  • DERBY – The Police announce they are cracking down on people who play their radios too loud.
  • SHELTON – The coroner rules that the 8 children’s’ deaths from the July 26 train disaster are accidental. Mayor Shelton urges children to swim at Derby’s Recreation Camp, and said there is a supervised playground at Riverview Park that provides transportation there. None of the victims were registered at the playground.

August 8

  • DERBY – The City has twice the death rate from Tuberculosis in proportion to the State average.
  • SHELTON – Many attend a carnival at Pine Rock Park, sponsored by Echo Hose, Hook & Ladder Co. No. 1 and the newly-formed Pine Rock Park Fire Company.

Thursday, August 9

  • SHELTON – Many are complaining that residents are playing their radios too loud on Liberty Street, Union Street, and Oak Avenue.

August 10

  • ANSONIA – The big Quillinan Reservoir ice house on Beaver Street is being torn down by the Southern New England Ice Company, which succeeded Ansonia-Derby Ice Company. The ice company now has a plant which can make 100 tons of ice a day. Though there are still a few that prefer “natural” ice over “manufactured” ice, there is no longer a need for a 10,000 ton capacity ice house.
  • DERBY – The last of the Harris-Seybold-Potter machinery is taken out of its old Housatonic Avenue plant. The factory is for sale.

August 11

  • ANSONIA – About 40,000 spectators view a huge parade held for the 49th Convention of the Connecticut Fifers and Drummers Association. The Capitol Theater’s float is most impressive; promoting the movie playing there called Here Comes the Navy. The float featured a very realistic replica of the battleship USS Arizona, which is featured in the move. The last time this convention was held here was in 1891. Many pass out during the parade due to the extreme heat. After the convention, convention members and visitors partied at City firehouses and fraternal clubs into the night, holding impromptu parades all over the City.
  • DERBY – The newly renamed Roosevelt Drive runs from Cedric Avenue to the Seymour Town Line. The name change is gaining more acceptance from the residents.
  • SEYMOUR – A Memorial Service is held for the late German President Paul von Hindenburg at Immanuel Lutheran Church.

August 12

  • ANSONIA – Fire destroys a garage and 2 automobiles on Columbia Street, and a third auto is damaged. The fire is accidentally set youths, and when they are discovered one has 2nd degree burns on his hands. They are arrested for trespassing.
  • DERBY – Capt. Ira Benham Smith dies in Milford. It is said he lived in Derby at the start of the Civil War, and was first man to enlist here.

August 13

  • SEYMOUR – About 350 attend a highly-charged Town Meeting. The citizens finally agree to petition the State for two 5’ wide sidewalks on each side of the new Bank Street Bridge, and one sidewalk for the Little River Bridge.
  • SHELTON – In the wake of the recent railroad disaster, the Shelton Police and New Haven Railroad police are cooperating to stop trespassing on the railroad tracks. Over 20 have been arrested so far, mostly juveniles. Chief Donovan issues a warning that people caught bathing in the Housatonic adjacent to the tracks will also be subject to arrest. The Board of Aldermen asks the New Haven Railroad to install a wire fence from Brooks Street to The Maples, as well as bell signals at the crossings at Indian Well State Park and Birchbank.

August 15

  • ANSONIA – An informal conference held among Ansonia, Derby, Shelton, and Seymour officials at City Hall, to discuss FERA and relief issues.
  • DERBY – The State Supreme Court upholds a decision to award $6,752 to Mary Stier, widow of Supernumerary Police Officer William Stier. Officer Stier’s regular job was with the Derby Gas & Electric Company, and he died after responding with DG&E’s inhalator to a drowning on Lake Zoar on June 14, 1931. The Court rules that his death was caused by stress he received from the inhalator call, and DG&E is liable to pay the compensation.

Thursday, August 16

  • The Connecticut Company is urging motorists not to pick up hitch hikers ,as it is costing them trolley fares. Hitchhiking has been a growing trend in the last few years.
  • ANSONIA – Mrs. Alton Farrel extends her offer to use the Farrel and Brooker properties on North State Street to build a new Ansonia High School until July 1, 1935. 
  • OXFORD – “Several complaints have been registered against those who persist in nude bathing in Little River near Woodside dairy farm. No one objects to the using of the old swimming pool if the bathers deport themselves in a decent and proper manner, but rowdyism and vulgarity such as has been in evidence the last few days must cease or action will be taken on complaints made”.

August 17

  • SHELTON – The closing program is held at Girl Scout Camp Millcroft off Huntington Street.

August 18

  • ANSONIA – The FERA project on Hill Street is almost done.

August 20

  • ANSONIA – The entire Board of Education, as well as the Ansonia High School principal and superintendent of schools, will work together to lobby for a new Ansonia High School building.

August 21

  • ANSONIA – A vacant house is badly damaged by a fire believed started by boys on Root Avenue.
  • ANSONIA – A Broad Street man dies of injuries sustained on June 10 when he dove from a canoe into shallow water near Indian Well State Park.
  • SEYMOUR – The Seymour Rotary wants to build a fountain with an electric pump at the park. The rotary will not solicit, and will instead leave a donation jar at the Seymour Trust Company.

Friday, August 24

  • OXFORD – The final campfire of the season is held at the Bridgeport Knights of Columbus Camp Palmer. The boys leave the following day.

August 25

  • SEYMOUR – The Ritz Tavern has its formal opening on Bank Street, although it has been informally open for 2 weeks.

August 26

  • SHELTON – A large crowd attends the races at the Huntington Speedway off Mohegan Road. Three drivers are injured in crashes, including one who flips his car several times, and another who crashes into a tree.

August 28

  • ANSONIA – An attempt is made to torch the Alex Klimaszawaki tavern on 10 Colburn Street, by dousing rags with gasoline, then igniting them in a beer cellar. The subsequent fire melts the lead pipes on the beer barrels stored there, causing the beer to shoot out, extinguishing the fire.

August 29

  • SEYMOUR – A large, used Parkway diner being towed from Waterbury to New Rochelle, NY, gets stuck on Main Street. Traffic is suspended while it slowly winds through. Some joke that Seymour almost got a new diner today.

Friday, August 31

  • Temperatures drop to 40 this morning.


Sunday, September 2

  • SHELTON – Over 5,000 attend the first outboard races on Lake Housatonic, sponsored by the Birchbank Protective and Improvement Association. The start and finish line are at Camp Irving. The riverbanks on both sides are packed for 2 miles. There are a total of 11 races, involving about 25 boats.

September 3 – Labor Day

  • ANSONIA – Eagle Hose, H&L Co. No. 6 attends the National Firemen’s Association convention in Alexandria, VA. The company wins a host of awards, including Second Best Appearing Fire Company in Line overall and First in the same category for towns under 10,000. They also win an award for being the company traveling the longest distance by rail. During the grand parade, the section of grandstand that Captain Theodore M. Terry and 3 others are sitting on collapses, causing minor injuries to 2 in the party, as well as a number of others.
  • DERBY – The Recreation Camp closes for the season. Over 1,000 registered this year, with normal daily attendance over 400 and approaching 800 on hot days.

September 4

  • ANSONIA – The Public Schools open today, under sullen skies and a light drizzle. The preliminary enrollment figure is 2,414 grammar school, 220 at Pine High School, and 1,015 at Ansonia High School. There are 133 less grammar school children then last year, and 37 more high school students.
  • ANSONIA – The Board of Health votes to tear down the bath houses at the Mead School swimming pool, because they are seldom used and in disrepair.

September 5

  • ANSONIA – The Hevesy Bowling Alleys on Main Street have reopened for the season.
  • DERBY – The Public Schools open today. The preliminary breakdown is: Irving School – 527, Hawthorne School – 55, Franklin School – 330, Lincoln School – 290, and Derby High School – 597, for a total of 1779. This is the lowest number since 1928, down 38 from last year.
  • SHELTON – The Public Schools open today.

Thursday, September 6

  • DERBY – Lt. Anthony Urbano, the oldest member of the Police Department, petitions the Board of Aldermen for a retirement pension. Appointed in 1906, he was promoted to lieutenant in 1914. He was the only Italian-speaking police officer in the Valley for many years, and was often asked to translate in neighboring police departments as well. 
  • SEYMOUR – “Visitors to Great Hill should avoid for the present, the road from Hollywood Inn past the Ansonia Reservoir, as it is being extensively improved and will soon be completed. The steep old road will be hardly recognized with its improved grades, greater width, and smoother surface. This community becomes more and more accessible as time goes on”.  The Hollywood Inn is today’s John J. Sullivan’s. The road being described is today’s Great Hill Road, or Route 334. The Ansonia Reservoir is today’s Fountain Lake.

September 7

  • ANSONIA, DERBY, & SHELTON – Rural Rehabilitation Survey workers are interviewing people not on relief who wish to participate in a sustenance homestead program, where they would have about 10 acres to keep livestock, and grow food and fuel.
  • SEYMOUR – One of the worst accidents in Seymour’s history occurs when 6 young people are killed when a car collides nearly head on with a southbound trolley on South Main Street at 12:05 AM. The victims were all between 17 and 23 years old, and all but one were from Ansonia. 3 of the victims lived on 30 Powe Street. The remaining victim, who also was the only one to make it to Griffin Hospital before he expired, was from Seymour. The trolley was hit so hard it derails, and the motorman is injured by flying glass. The trolley passengers are shook up, but not injured. The car apparently sideswiped a car further down the road, then took off with the other car in pursuit. It is a gristly, disturbing scene.

September 8

  • 5.28” of rain falls today. It is considered the worst rainstorm in terms of accumulation since 1923.
  • ANSONIA – Broad Street is flooded.
  • DERBY – Lower Main Street is flooded. Crops are damaged.
  • OXFORD – Much corn is downed. The Little River is the highest it has been in the past year.
  • SEYMOUR – Trees are down, roads and cellars are flooded. The Derby Neck Road bridge is washed out. The Housatonic River enters the basement of Actors’ Colony Inn. 
  • SHELTON – Trees are down, gravel roads are washed out.

September 11

  • ANSONIA – Assumption School has 624 students, while St. Joseph’s School has 220, for a total of 854. Both student populations are down from last year.

September 12

  • DERBY – The proprietor of the United Cigar Store on Elizabeth Street loses his appeal and goes to jail for 1 year for receiving and concealing stolen goods connected to the recent East Lyme hijacking.
  • SHELTON – The Wire Novelty Company will move into a section of the Bassett Metal Goods factory on Bridge Street. They are expected to employ about 90. This building is today’s Birmingham.

Thursday, September 13

  • OXFORD – “Another 2½ miles of road in Red Oak district is practically completed. The work was made possible with funds from state appropriation for town aid roads. The completion of this section is most gratifying as it improves one of the worst roads of the town. It is expected that work will start immediately in Bower Hill section where approximately the same mileage and same type of road will be constructed”.
  • SEYMOUR – The Dutch Door Inn, formerly the Seymour House, on 7 Broad Street, has its grand reopening after being entirely renovated. Over 100 prominent Valley residents attend. The historic building was built in 1822, and was a stagecoach stop. It was later destroyed in the August 1955 Flood.

September 15

  • DERBY & SHELTON – With rising land values, Derby is evolving into a residential and mercantile center. The City has 51 manufacturers, and of those only a few are large ones, compared to 104 manufacturers in Shelton. By contrast, Derby has 268 businesses as opposed to 118 in Shelton. What is most telling, however, is the land value in Derby averages $1,744 as opposed to $555 in Shelton.

September 16

  • DERBY – George Scranton, who started as a clerk at the Derby Gas & Electric Company and rose to become its president, dies in Canada at age 73.

September 17

  • The Naugatuck River rises swiftly, due to heavy rains upstate.
  • ANSONIA – The high water causes no serious damage, but cellars along Main Street are flooded. Fortunately, merchants are used to these occurrences, and moved their stock out of harms way before the water came. Division Street is closed due to flooding. 
  • DERBY – Derby Meadows are inundated with water. Debris float down the river but cause little damage. The water levels on the Housatonic are normal, thought it is being monitored.
  • DERBY – Mayor Riordan announces he will not run for reelection. Within days, two former mayors, George Sullivan and Frank Conway, announce they will seek the Democratic nomination in Mayor Riordan’s place.
  • SEYMOUR – North Main Street at Rimmon Pond is flooded. The water on the Naugatuck River rose to within a few feet of the Broad Street Bridge.
  • SEYMOUR – The New Haven County coroner rules that the late 23 year old driver was to blame for the car vs. trolley accident that killed 6 on September 6.

September 18

  • ANSONIA – School registration is: Elm Street 292 students; Mead 261; Lincoln 462; Fourth Street 413; Grove Street 553; Holbrook Street 316; Westfield Avenue 146; Ansonia High School 1009; and Pine High School 220.

September 19

Friday, September 21

  • SHELTON – Huntington – “The Dutch Elm disease has invaded Fairfield County. Pessimists say that the elm will follow the American chestnut into oblivion. Experts say ‘tree sanitation’ will save them. We hope so”.

September 22

  • There has not been a single diphtheria case in the Valley in over a year.
  • ANSONIA – There is a proposal to build a new Ansonia High School for junior and seniors only, with lower grades attending the existing building.
  • HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL – Ansonia beats Lewis High of Southington 33-0 at Athletic Field.

September 23

  • SHELTON – The track record at the Huntington Speedway broken twice today. It is first broken by a car that made the ½ mile loop in 30.5 seconds. Not long after, another car did it 0.10 seconds faster. The track conditions are considered near perfect today.

September 25

  • SHELTON – Over 250 people attend the organizational meeting of the Shelton Civic Association at American Legion Hall. It is intended as a watchdog group to monitor the distribution of taxation.

Thursday, September 27

  • DERBY & SHELTON – The Derby Steel Products Corp has consolidated with the Wire Novelty Manufacturing Company of West Haven. Both will move into the Bassett Metal Goods factory on Bridge Street in Shelton. Derby Steel will abandon its Housatonic Avenue plant.

September 28

  • SEYMOUR – Great Hill – “The new improved road extending from the Malinauskas Farm to the Ansonia line above Hollywood Inn is now completed and visitors to Great Hill will be delighted at the changes effected. The road is wider, smoother, and less steep while the very sharp corner at the upper end is greatly modified. Present indications are that the next road project will be on the highway leading to Squantuck”. The road described is Great Hill Road, or Route 334. The Hollywood Inn is today’s John J. Sullivan’s.
  • SEYMOUR – Fritz Stephanofsky, 69, of Franklin Street, dies at Griffin Hospital. He came to Seymour from Germany in October 1891, and prior to that was a member of the Kaiser‘s Guard.
  • SEYMOUR – The Seymour Alumni Athletic Club is now using a new practice football field called “Berkeley Square”, which is formed by Spruce, Meadow, and Roberts Streets and Garden Street Extension.

September 29

  • Heavy rain today.
  • HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL – Ansonia does not play this week. Derby loses its opener in White Plains 39-0 in the rain, half of the game is played in a heavy downpour.
  • SHELTON – A 16 year old Grove Street girl is severely burned after a kitchen lamp which she was pouring kerosene into explodes this evening. She dies at Griffin Hospital the following day.

September 30

  • DERBY – The Christian Endeavour Society decorates 87 graves at ceremonies at Colonial (Uptown) Cemetery.
  • SHELTON – The Shelton Baptist Church dedicates its new organ. A large crowd comes for its first recital.


Monday, October 1

  • 12.87″ of rain fell in Derby and surrounding areas in September, the most in a single month since July 1897 when 19.49″ fell.
  • OXFORD – Republican Wiliam Curtiss defeats First Selectman Charles Pope, a Democrat, by 14 votes in the Town elections.
  • SHELTON – Republican Mayor Daniel Shelton reveals he will not seek reelection.

October 2

  • ANSONIA – Over 300 Christ Church parishioners attend a welcome reception for new pastor Rev. Arnold A. Fenton.

October 3

  • ANSONIA, DERBY, & SHELTON – X-rays of 1,500 children from Ansonia, Derby, and Shelton does not reveal a single case of Tuberculosis.
  • SEYMOUR – A 38 year old South Main Street woman is killed when she is hit by a car driven by a Waterbury man on her street this evening.

October 4

  • DERBY – Acting on a petition by the Derby Business Men’s Association, he Board of Apportionment & Taxation votes to restore funding to relight the White Way – consisting of 7 streetlights on Main Street and Elizabeth Street. The funding was cut earlier this year as an economy measure.
  • DERBY – The Commodore Hull Theater is dropping their matinee price from 25 cents to 15 cents, and evening show from 35 cents to 25 cents.

October 5

  • HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL – Stratford defeats Shelton 18-0 in an away game

October 6

  • DERBY – The Ousatonic Water Company has offered to sell Buddies Field to the City for $10,000, payable over 15 years, interest free.
  • HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL – The Ansonia-Torrington game is postponed due to rain. Milford defeats Derby 7-0 in the rain at Island Park.
  • SEYMOUR – After 7 recent traffic related deaths on South Main Street, many are complaining of the litany of unsafe conditions there.

October 7

  • ANSONIA – The New Clinton AME Zion Church on Colburn Street is dedicated by Bishop Walls of the New England Conference in impressive ceremonies attended by about 800 people. This is now Bishop Williams Court.

October 8

  • ANSONIA – An attempt to drain Hotchkiss Pond will start today, by a FERA mosquito extermination crew. This is over the objections of scientists who want to study the rare spadefoot toads there. Most of the neighbors, however, hail the pending removal of the toads, which can be extremely loud at night.
  • HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL – Ansonia defeats Torrington 47-0 in a make-up game before a sparse crowd at Athletic Field.

October 10

  • DERBY – Frank Gates has donated the flags for the George Washington Chapter #1, Purple Heart Association’s color guard.
  • SEYMOUR – Great Hill – “The apple season has opened at the Hale Orchards with a small crop of Baldwins and a fair amount of Delicious and Ben Davis. Cider apples are scarce and high making sweet cider a more expensive drink then usual”.

Thursday, October 11

  • DERBY – A tire blows on a car on New Haven Avenue, causing the driver to lose control The car ends up on the railroad tracks, near the Armour building, where the remaining 3 tires blow as well. Fortunately, an oncoming freight train sees the problem and applies its emergency brakes, stopping a few yards short of the car.

October 12

  • HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL – Derby ties Lyman Hall 7-7 in Wallingford.

October 13

  • ANSONIA, DERBY & SHELTON – A Griffin Hospital Benefit Week parade is held, starting at Riverview Park in Shelton, moving into Derby on Main and Streets and Seymour and Atwater Avenues. The parade then crosses into Ansonia, proceeding down Clifton Avenue to Bridge and Main Streets, ending at the Ansonia Armory. Thousands attend despite the low temperature and high winds.
  • HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL – Ansonia and Shelton battle to a scoreless tie at Athletic Field.

October 15

  • DERBY – Democrats nominate the City’s Fire Chief, James Minch, for Mayor. Meanwhile, former Mayor George P. Sullivan is nominated for the position by the Republicans.

October 17

  • SEYMOUR – The Town holds its own Griffin Hospital Benefit Week parade.

Thursday, October 18

  • ANSONIA – Work is progressing on the FERA project to drain Hotchkiss Pond. Two pits have been dug on the bottom of the pond, piercing the clay and reaching a layer of gravel. It is hoped that the water will seep away. This pond is well known for the rare species of Spadefoot toads residing there, and these elusive creatures were discovered as deep as 7’ underground.
  • DERBY – It has been proposed that the City acquire 70 acres in Coon Hollow, and use FERA workers to convert it into a park and athletic fields.

October 19

  • ANSONIA – Griffin Hospital Benefit Week closes with a ball at the Ansonia Armory. Nearly 150 couples attend.
  • HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL – Ansonia loses at West Haven 12-7.

October 20

  • HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL – Derby ties Branford 0-0 at Island Park.

October 21

  • ANSONIA – A large congregation witnesses the laying of the cornerstone at the new AME Zion Church.

Thursday, October 25

  • HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL – Shelton loses at Milford 12-6.

October 26

  1. SHELTON – A new branch of the Boston Store opens in the Pinney block on the corner of Howe Avenue and Bridge Street. Four days later, the Boston Store located in Ansonia sues, winning a temporary injunction baring the Shelton store from using either that name, or New Boston Store. 

October 27

  • ANSONIA – FERA has completed the grading of Ells Street.
  • HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL – Ansonia defeats Wilby High of Waterbury 12-0 at Athletic Field. Derby loses to Weaver High of Hartford 6-0 at Island Park.
  • SHELTON – The manager of the Derby gas station at Third and Elizabeth Streets is held up in the hallway of his Perry Avenue apartment building by 3 young men. They flee after he calls for help, they run away, and Derby police apprehend them shortly after.

October 31 – Halloween, spelled “Hallowe’en” in those days.

  • ANSONIA – Hallowe’en – Seven false alarms are pulled, some fences are damaged.
  • DERBY – Hallowe’en – Many are out trick or treating, dressed as “jailbirds, caballeros, Mae Wests, tramps, or clowns” popular. An abandoned tool shed is burned down on Island Park before a large crowd of teenagers. Since the building was useless and the fire attracted many who would otherwise be prowling the streets, the police do not intervene. In addition a leaf pile is set on fire and a false alarm is pulled.
  • SEYMOUR – Hallowe’en –  Hundreds of children are out, but the only serious incident involved 6 streetlights broken on Day Street. 
  • SHELTON – The Street Commissioner announces in the past year the City has received $167,178.39 from direct relief grants, as well as FERA and CWA allotments.


Thursday, November 1

  • SHELTON – The name for the new Shelton-Monroe highway is being discussed. Some want to name it “Clark Boulevard”, after David N. Clark, the president of the Derby and Shelton Board of Trade, who secured funding from the Federal Government for the project. Others prefer naming it “Thompson Highway”, after Col. Harold Thompson, president of the White Hills Community Club, who strove to get the highway built since 1924. The name of the highway, Route 110, ended up Leavenworth Road.

November 2

  • DERBY – The 70 acres of Coon Hollow is available for sale from the John I. Downes estate to Derby for $5,000. A plan is being floated to convert it into recreational and sport fields using FERA labor. Possible names are Downes Memorial Park, or Howe Memorial Park. Coon Hollow Park remained the name, except for the football complex which is named Leo F. Ryan Field.
  • HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL – Stratford beats Derby 30-6. Lyman Hall beats Shelton 19-0 in Wallingford.

November 3

  • HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL – Ansonia defeats Central High School of Bridgeport 13-6 at Athletic Field.
  • SEYMOUR – A survey of the past 4 years of Seymour High School graduates shows that 45% are working, while 58% of those who did not graduate are also working. 235 young people participated in the survey.

November 5

  • DERBY – Derby Coal and Charcoal Company moves from Minerva Street to 9 Elizabeth Street.

November 6 – State and municipal on this rainy Election Day. Democrat Wilbur Cross is reelected Governor.

  • ANSONIA – Republican Mayor Peter Hart is reelected over Democrat D. Minch 3884-3290. Ansonia voters select Alcorn over Cross 3555-3382. Republicans also win 9 of 15 Board of Aldermen seats.
  • DERBY – Former Mayor Democrat George P. Sullivan defeats Republican Archibald Duffield 1971-1694 for Mayor. Governor Wilbur Cross is reelected over Alcorn 2037-1524. Republican State Senator Henry M. Bradley is reelected by 864 votes
  • OXFORD – Oxford voters chose Alcorn over Cross 264-109. 80% turn out. 
  • SEYMOUR – Seymour voters chose Alcorn over Cross 1152-827. Despite this, the votes for Cross represent the largest Seymour Democratic vote in modern history up to that time.
  • SHELTON – Former Democratic Mayor Frank V. Crofut defeats incumbent Republican Mayor Daniel Shelton 1824-1701. Shelton voters select Cross over Alocrn 1669-1626.

Saturday, November 9

  • ANSONIA – Lawrence Froeliger, of 6 Lester Street, dies in a Boston hospital after suffering a spinal injury six day ago playing football for Arnold College of New Haven against Northeastern University at Boston. He graduated from Pine High School in 1932, where he played baseball. A well known athlete in the City, he discovered his talent for football while in college.
  • HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL – Shelton defeats Branford in a surprise win there, 13-7. This is the first win this year for Shelton.

November 10

  • HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL – Derby is defeated by Danbury 19-0 in an away game. This is Derby’s worst losing streak since Coach Leo Ryan took over in 1925.
  • SHELTON – Gov. Wilbur Cross attends the dedication of Lafayette Field, redeveloped by FERA for $70,000 in Federal aid.

 November 11 – Armistice Day

  • Many mark the holiday by attending patriotic church services.
  • ANSONIA – The Gordon Post, American Legion, parades and holds services on the Post Office esplanade.
  • SHELTON – 600 World War I vets from throughout the Valley attend commemorative service sponsored by the Sutter Post, American Legion, at Shelton Congregational Church.
  • SHELTON – An 18 year old White Hills Road man is killed, and his 19 year old Howe Avenue Extension man is severely injured, when they are struck by a car while waslking along Howe Avenue south of Peterson’s Garage. The car was driven by a 28 year old local man.

November 12

  • DERBY – An Electors’ Meeting held at Sterling Opera House is attended by 300 citizens, mostly men. All but 3 vote for the City to purchase of Coon Hollow for $5,000 and convert it into recreational facility.
  • DERBY – Rabbi Solomon Sigel, of Congregation Sons of Israel on Anson Street, accepts an invitation to join a Springfield synagogue. He is the first and only rabbi thus far in this Congregation’s history, coming when it was organized 17 years before.

November 13

  • ANSONIA – A 25’ section of retaining wall built last winter by CWA and FERA workers collapses on the south side of Hill Street, collapses. FERA is now repairing it.

November 14

  • DERBY – Through funds supplied by the FERA Educational Division, a free nighttime gym course will be given at Derby High School. About 70 pupils have signed up already.
  • SHELTON – The Bassett Metal Goods Building is being picketed by 3 members of the Needle Trades union, over the pending move of the Claire Knitting Company there. One sign says ‘keep sweat shops out of Shelton’. Claire is reportedly moving over labor troubles in New York.

Thursday, November 15

  • OXFORD – Temperatures are down to 19 this morning.

November 17

  • The New Haven County Farm Bureau is urging all rural residents, particularly those who live along rivers, to set food laced with the same kind of poison out for rats on the evening before Thanksgiving, in a coordinated attempt to eliminate the pests.
  • HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL – Commercial High School of New Haven defeats Ansonia 6-0 at Athletic Field. Derby defeats undefeated Norwalk 24-6 at Island Park. Shelton defeats Wilby High in Waterbury 7-6.

November 18

  • SEYMOUR – Immanuel Lutheran Church celebrates its 40th anniversary, and says goodbye to its pastor of 11 years, Rev. Herman Stippich, who will return to pastorate in Hamburg, Germany.
  • SEYMOUR – A 64-year old George Street man is killed when he struck by a motorcycle owned by a 22-year old Oxford man, at Bank Street and Martha Street. The motorcyclist is in fair condition at Griffin Hospital.
  • SHELTON – A 21-year old Danbury racecar driver is killed at the Huntington Speedway when his car leaves the track. The car overturns several times, throwing him from the car onto a rock pile 50’ from the track. He was in the lead at the time of the accident, and over 1,000 spectators witness it.

November 19

  • ANSONIA – The City’s School Superintendent files his annual report. He states that Ansonia High School’s enrollment is up 80% since 1928, and a new high school is “absolutely obligatory”. The number of elementary school children is down 117 this year.
  • DERBY – David Schpero’s Jewelry Store on 23 Elizabeth Street has its glass broken in the early morning hours. Jewels, watches, and rings worth about $300 is stolen. It is believed the thieves are the same ones who broke into Quadretti’s Jewelry Store in Shelton four nights earlier.
  • DERBY – FERA will drain the quarry at Grove Street near E Street, to eliminate a mosquito breeding ground. This quarry, which furnished the stone for the original Ousatonic Dam, has not been worked for several years.
  • SEYMOUR – The Seymour Trust Company has installed a tear gas system to protect the bank from holdups.

November 20

  • OXFORD – “Several local residents attended the auto races in Huntington last Sunday. Many others remained at home and saw plenty of racing on the new cement road”.

Thursday, November 22

  • DERBY – The Derby Relief Fund holds it’s Annual Meeting. The organization began the year with $1,012.32, and this year’s contributions added $1,899.35 to that. Receipts totaled $2,480.72, leaving a balance of $431.45 balance. The organization is estimated to have helped about 500 families this year, and was the lead agency for distributing federal food in the City. Osbornedale Farm donated 1480 gallons milk, and the Fund gave 300 pairs of shoes to needy persons.

November 23

  • ANSONIA – The City’s elm trees are in “poor condition” due to Dutch Elm Disease.
  • ANSONIA – 2 Franklin Street youths, aged 19 and 20, are arrested for 3 holdups in Ansonia and a garage break in Derby.

November 26

  • ANSONIA – The Board of Apportionment & Taxation votes to ask salaried Board of Education employees to give back 6% of their salary to the City due to its financial condition.

November 28

  • OXFORD – “For a long time the more observant have seen the need of some regulation measures for traffic control on the main highway through town. Since the new cement road has been completed, speeding has been more in evidence and the several minor accidents within a short time emphasizes the fact that something must be done to further safeguard the traveling problem”.

 Thursday, November 29 – THANKSGIVING

  • HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL – Ansonia defeats Naugatuck in an away game 25-0. Derby and Shelton tie at Lafayette Field. Ticket sales to the later game totaled 4,630.
  • SHELTON – “Some mischief makers from this city (Derby) traveled to Shelton in the wee hours of Thursday morning and painted one of the goal posts with red paint, striping it in true Derby High colors. Had Derby High made the extra point good to win 14-13, that pair of goalposts would probably have made a trip across the bridge”.

November 30

  • At this time, there are 26 students from Ansonia, 9 from Derby, 5 from Shelton, and 2 from Seymour, attending Yale University. 
  • ANSONIA – Horace Fosdick, Sr .dies at his Central Street home at the age of 76. Born in Massachusetts in 1859, he founded a confectionary on 64 Main Street in Ansonia on March 1, 1880. 18 months later he sold out, and entered the bakery business on Wakelee Avenue. He later relocated to lower Main Street. He built a bakery and residence on Central Street in 1888. In 1915 he entered the automobile business, founding the Fosdick Motor Company on the site of his former bakery. He was the only president of the motor company up to the time of his death. It is noteworthy that he was the only Republican to represent the Third Ward from Ansonia’s founding in 1889 until the time of his death.
  • SEYMOUR – A house is gutted by fire on 32 New Street. The female owner and a male boarder are in serious condition at Griffin Hospital with burns. The man was rescued by the fire department while dangling from a 2nd story ledge. The fire was started by an oil burning range.


Saturday, December 1

  • DERBY – The Board of Aldermen appropriates $5,000 to purchase Coon Hollow.
  • SHELTON – In the wake of the November 18 fatal accident, the Fairfield County Coroner suggests banning racing at the Huntington Speedway until the track is made safe. At same time, he says no one is to blame for recent fatality.

December 3

  • DERBY – “Hoodlums again caused annoyance and damage during the past few nights. The same band, which has been running wild for weeks, is believed to have broken no less than 14 pickets on the new fence, which the city built some time ago, along the Shelton property. Another section of the fence near Greystone also suffered damage at the hands of these miscreants. Friday night, during a dance a the Children of the American Revolution at Library Hall, these same hoodlums are believed to be the ones who let the air out of tires on several automobiles”.
  • SHELTON – The Huntington Speedway will be closed for the season.

Thursday, December 6

  • ANSONIA – The Charity Department cost $69,240 in the year ending November 30. This is a drop of $94,929.30. The net cost in 1933 was $164,070.30. The reason for this dramatic drop is Federal Assistance through the New Deal Programs.

December 7

  • ANSONIA – The first railcar-load of Christmas trees arrives at the freight yard.
  • SHELTON – Huntington – “William Nemetz Jr. has completed building a hall on the corner of Huntington Street and Ripton Road, will open it to the public tomorrow”.

December 8

  • ANSONIA – Mayor Hart turns on the colored Christmas lights for the first time in downtown Ansonia.
  • DERBY – A New York City promoter is offering Derby $150 a month to rent the Sterling Opera House. Mayor Riordan announces two days later the City will accept the offer.
  • HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL – Ansonia defeats Derby 12-0 at Island Park, in zero degree weather and a cold wind. 4,000 brave the cold to watch, with hot coffee being a popular drink. The ice in the water buckets freeze before the game is over. Last week, Ansonia youths painted goal post lavender (Ansonia’s football team was named the Lavender back then), so Derby responds a couple days by painting their own goal post bright red. Both of these goal posts are carried to Ansonia by their victorious fans after the game.

December 10

  • ANSONIA – “Many Christmas shoppers appeared on the street, Saturday night, and merchants in general reported a good trade. The lights along the upper section of Main Street were turned on for the first time and the hundreds of incandescent lamps together with the brilliantly illuminated store windows with their Christmas stocks and decorations, gave the street a holiday appearance. Less than two weeks remain until Christmas and until then Ansonia mercantile establishments expect to do a good business”.
  • ANSONIA – The Board of Aldermen vote to hold a public hearing to explore the City possibly acquiring the Holbrook property in Silver Hill for development byFERA into a park and recreation center. The 30 acres includes Bog Pond.
  • SEYMOUR – Great Hill – “A week ago wee were telling in these columns of the various flowers which were in bloom in our gardens, this morning the thermometer only 8 above 0 and the ground had frozen, most ponds about here covered with ice and Hoadley’s Pond, for the first time this year, safe for skating which was enjoyed by many yesterday afternoon”.
  • SHELTON – The City spent $88,527.80 on relief received from federal grants and bonds this past year. Food accounted for $59,200.30.
  • SHELTON – In making up the grand list for 1935, the assessors have found that the three oldest automobiles listed in the properties are two Fords, one from 1914 and the other from 1916, and a 1914 Pierce-Arrow truck.

December 11

  • ANSONIA – Many go to the Ansonia Garage on 60 Central Street for their first look at 1935 Studebaker.

December 12

  • ANSONIA – The Ansonia Water Company will distribute pine boughs for Christmas decorations again this year.

Thursday, December 13

  • DERBY – The improvements on Great Hill Road are completed today. The 20 FERA men employed there will be shifted to turning Coon Hollow into a park.

December 14

  • DERBY – The plans for renting Sterling Opera House to a New York promoter have fallen through. There is now talk of making it a FERA project.
  • SHELTON – The wading pool at Riverview Park, built by the Shelton Kiwanis Club about 5 years ago, is being dismantled and will be filled in. It was very popular when it was first built, but has been rarely used for the last 2 years.

December 15

  • DERBY – Police Officer Pasquale Mizil is hit by a car on Main Street and Caroline Street. Officer Mizil stepped into the street with a flashlight, to warn another car to turn on its headlights, when he was struck from behind by another car. He taken to Griffin Hospital with a broken leg. The driver is found to be intoxicated.

December 16

  • ANSONIA – The new First Methodist Church parish house, an addition the Main Street church, is dedicated.

December 17

  • ANSONIA – A 2-alarm fire breaks out at an abandoned 3-story tenement on Powe Street. It is the third fire there this month.

December 18

  • ANSONIA – The first formal presentation of flags to a World War I veterans organization in the Lower Naugatuck Valley occurs when Frank Gates donates the flags to the Purple Heart Association in a ceremony at the Ansonia Armory.
  • DERBY – FERA men are removing 59 dead apple trees the Gilbert Orchard on the Lombardi farm in the Maple Shade area, because they are infected with apple maggots.

December 19

  • ANSONIA – New AC-current lights are turned on in the City for the first time. These replace the old carbon-arc lights on main streets and 60 watt incandescent lights on side streets. The area with the new lights includes Main Street, all the way down to Colburn Street, and the side streets off it. The candlepower of the new lights varies according to the situation, and includes reflectors to spread the illumination. The 60-watt side street bulbs are being replaced by 100 watt bulbs. Residents are encouraged view the new lights north of Colburn Street and the old ones south of that to compare the difference.

Thursday, December 20

  • DERBY – The Derby Relief Fund will distribute over 300 Christmas baskets over the holiday. Their fundraising slogan is “Will you help?” The American Legion and District Nurses’ Association will be assisting.
  • DERBY – The Sam Schwartz store on Main and Caroline Streets is held up by 4 men with guns at 9:45 PM. Ordering everyone in the store but the cashier to the back of the building, they steal nearly $600 in cash before taking off in a car toward New Haven.

December 21

  • ANSONIA – The Salvation Army will be handing out gift baskets this Christmas.

December 23

  • DERBY – A window is smashed at the Derby Fur and Dress Shop on Elizabeth Street. A ladies’ raccoon coat valued at $175 and two fur muffs valued at $5 each are stolen.
  • SHELTON – An early morning fire in the rear of Saul Steinman’s store on the second floor on Howe Avenue and Center Street is quickly contained by firemen, though some stock is damaged.

December 24

  • ANSONIA – 1,800 children attend the annual Ansonia Rotary Club Christmas Party at the Capitol Theater, where they watch the John Wayne movie ‘Ride him Cowboy’ and the Our Gang comedy ‘Wild Poses’. After the movies the curtain goes up to reveal large Christmas tree and Santa Claus, who gives each child a candy cane.
  • ANSONIA – At the annual Ansonia Manufacturing Company’s Christmas Party, the owner gives each employee a bonus of 2% of his year’s earnings. This was a complete surprise to the firm’s 150 employees.

 December 25 Christmas

  • A late morning snowstorm keeps many indoors on Christmas. The accumulation is light accumulations, but conditions are slippery. 
  • ANSONIA – “The brightly illuminated trees which appeared in almost every house on some streets, gave the city a more realistic yuletide appearance. Nearly every residence had some reminder of Christmas showing in windows or on doors and porches and there were any number of wreaths and other decorations, most of the illuminated by electric lights”.
  • DERBY – The Ansonia Methodist Episcopal Church choir sings carols for patients at Griffin Hospital. One Christmas baby is born to a Derby Aveune, Seymour couple.
  • DERBY – The Postmaster reports the largest volume of business this season since 1929.

Thursday, December 27

  • SEYMOUR – A 45 year old Scotland Street, Ansonia father of 7 is hit by a car on lower Derby Avenue, dragged 65’ and killed The car drives away, and is chased by another that was following behind, but it gets away.
  • SHELTON – A 45 year old Myrtle Street man is found dead of accidental gas poisoning in his kitchen, from a leak in gas range.
  • SHELTON – The trolley company announces the resumption of the South End – East Derby trolley service, effective through the winter.

December 29

  • ANSONIA – David Ross Bowen, vice president of Farrel-Birmingham, dies at his Clover Street home.

December 30

  • ANSONIA – The Christian Science Society holds its first service in their new church at the corner of South Cliff Street and New Street. The Society’s first service was held in 1913 on New Street. After that they started meeting regularly at the YMCA in 1921, and moving to the Colburn Block on Main Street the following year. The Society formally organized 1924, and started meeting the Ansonia Water Company building the following year. They purchased the Moore property on South Cliff Street in August of this year, and converted it into a church.
  • DERBY – The Sons of Italy vote to purchase the Ennis property, at the corner of West Fourth Street and Anson Street. The large frame dwelling there will be renovated into a clubhouse.

December 31

  • OXFORD – “The last day of the year was marked by the lowest temperature of the season, registering 4 above 0. Yesterday was a banner day for those enjoying ice skating. Hoadley’s Pond attracted many throughout the day especially late afternoon when the many gliding about the pond provided a winter scene enjoyed by many autoists, who in parked cars watched the happy merry making skaters”.
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