Step Back in Time features news items from The Daily Star 25 and 50 years ago.
50 years ago
Aug. 7, 1963
Alderman Francis Feeney feels that American flags should be displayed prominently on Main Street on holidays.
So does Clifford Harrer, president of the Oneonta Chamber of Commerce.
So do many people.
The flags have been noticeably absent in front of many business places during past holidays.
Mr. Feeney talked the matter over with Mr. Harrer, who has been active in American Legion affairs.
Last night, the second ward alderman suggested that the city employees put out the flags for downtown businessmen.
“On holidays most of the merchants forget to come down to put up the flags … many merchants themselves take off on holidays,” Mr. Feeney said.
He then suggested that the flags be kept at City Hall and when the holiday arrives city employees display them along the Main Street.
Mr. Feeney contends that there are “city employees on duty anyway … they can put them up.”
City Attorney Anthony DeAngelo, who says he likes to see the flags displayed as much or more than most than the next man, asked “who is going to pay.”
Mr. Feeney reminded the attorney that city employees were on duty and since he suggested the Safety Board study his recommendation, he intimated that police or firemen could set up the flags.
Mr. DeAngelo’s reasoning went this way: even though there are city men on duty, they would have to neglect their official duties to raise the flags, so in essence, the city would be paying for the project.
Mr. Feeney winced.
Then Mr. DeAngelo took a deep breath and pointed out that it would be dangerous for firemen to institute such a program and when needed in an emergency, they may be setting up flags.
Mr. Feeney was quiet.
Then Health Commissioner Edward Griffen declared in a louder voice, “If the merchants want the flags out they can come down and do it themselves. It’s not right for policemen or firemen to do it.
Then Mr. Feeney took his “flag recommendation” and retreated quietly to a conversation concerning a bad sidewalk.