Looking back 100 Decembers in LaGrange

Memoried Glances Julia Dyar

December 29, 2013

(This fifth weekend in December gives us the opportunity to have a round-up column of items we had to omit before because of space limitations.)

From LaGrange Daily News, 50 years ago

December, 1963

An Editorial

Material Expression Helps Keep Christ in Christmas — A lot of people at this time every year express their concern that Christ is being taken out of Christmas.

The Yuletide, a deeply spiritual observance, is over-commercialized, they believe. These people rightfully direct attention to the religious significance surrounding the birth of Christ. Almost everyone agrees with this emphasis.

The business and shopping activity which attend this season, far from being a detraction, in truth increases our spiritual observance. At the heart of the business tempo is the spirit of giving, of sharing life’s blessing with others.

Is there any more joyful trip one can make than when he is choosing gifts to make other people happy? And isn’t this completely in accord with the religious teachings of the Holy Birth?

Yes, there is profit-making at Christmas. But by and large it is wholesale profit-making. A healthy market-place is the backbone of strength for the American way of life. The work of God is furthered, and glorified, through the success of businessmen and the people who work for them.

The inspiring message of Christmas and all that it means in the religious sense rings forth from virtually every place of business and from almost every public square. Churches and other benevolent agencies benefit from the spirit of sharing and compassion for mankind which are at their highest during the Yuletide.

How much of this feeling for the poor, the weak, the hungry, transcends the season itself and continues through the year? A great deal of it does. The spiritual meaning of Christmas can never be too much emphasized … but let us not undervalue the material expression of this meaning.

For it helps to keep Christ in Christmas.

Front Page News

Assassination, Integration Art Top Stories — The assassination of President Jack Kennedy – one of the top stories of the century – completely dominated a news year that ranked highest in drama and import of any year since World War II.

That was the consensus of editors who selected the biggest new stories of 1963 for United Press International.

The integration story in the United States was the overwhelming choice for second place on the list.

The Pope John XXIII – Pope Paul IV story and the Gordon Cooper space flight contested closely for third place. The papal death and succession took third, Cooper fourth.

From LaGrange Daily News, 75 years ago

December, 1938

An editorial

Get Down to Fundamentals — The average American is highly wary of communism, fascism or other foreign “isms” which he believes may slip through our borders surreptitiously and destroy freedom and democracy as he knows it. Yet it is highly probable, as Dr. Nicholas Murray Butler has pointed out, that the great threat to American Democracy lies within our own borders. Abuse of taxing power, gradual centralization of government, and a growing bureaucracy are a few of the evils that are insidiously undermining Democracy from within, observes Dr. Butler.

Political demagogues have taught millions of persons to believe that they way to better things lies in the destruction of wealth, or, if you will, “redistribution of wealth,” which is another way of putting it. The taxing power of government is being used to to do the job. The people are allowing public money to be used to destroy taxpaying enterprises and private jobs under the delusion that they are thereby establishing social justice, social security or some Utopian condition that appeals to mass sentiment.

What is the ultimate solution to this problem? There is only one solution – public education! Just as the three R’s, readin’, ‘ritin’ and ‘rithmetic, are taught to every child, so must the simple fundamentals of economics – the bread and butter side of life, the obligation to produce, the obligation to save – be taught to every individual, child and adult alike. Only in this way can Democracy ultimately survive.

From LaGrange Daily News, 25 years ago

December, 1988

Front Page News

17 Debutantes to Make a Bow at Gala Ball Dec. 27 — The 1988 debutantes chosen by the LaGrange Cotillion Club will make their bows to society on Dec. 27, at the Highland Country Club. Following their presentation will be a gala ball, a highlight of the holiday season.

Debutantes are: Crista Michelle Bailey, Susan Nicole Ball, Leslie Kirsten Bushar, Ellen Callaway Cleaveland, Leslie Carole Dansby, Anne Hayes Drinkard, Helga Nikki Durand, Emily Ruth Duttera, Kristin Elizabeth Faress, Jennifer Wynn Holliday, Whitney McCrary Kirk, Sarah Duncan Lawrence, Mary Christine Morgan, Karen Lyn Scarborough, Lori Michelle Stephens, Stephanie Corinne Welch and Kathryn Marie Wildes.

From The LaGrange Reporter, 100 years ago

December, 1913

An Editorial

Women in Congress — The late James Freeman Clarke, answering a man who feared that if women had the ballot, they would get to Congress, said, “Perhaps so, but not until we want them. And when we want them we shall no longer be shocked at their taking such positions.”