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November 19, 2013

Step Back in Time: Nov. 19, 2013

(Continued)

 50 years ago

Nov. 19, 1963

Greeley Osterhout and Virgil Andrews are ages apart but they had one experience in common with dozens of other hunters Monday — they bagged their deer early on the first day of the season.

The woods of Otsego and Delaware counties were filled with hunters from far afield Monday as the two-week open season on male deer began.

“It was like the old Fourth of July celebrations,” one rural resident reported. “Beginning at 7 o’clock sharp it was ‘boom … boom …boom-boom-boom.’ If every shot got a deer, the woods would be cleared of game.”

One hopeful sign amid the shooting and slaying of game: no injuries were reported inflicted on hunters in the two counties.

Proudest hunter but most reticent probably was Mr. Osterhout of Portlandville. At age 91 the retired U&D and D&H railroader and longtime (until last year) fireman at the Oneonta Theater, was on the hill across Route 28 from his home at 7 a.m. when the season began. He had two slugs for his shotgun. He needed only one. A few minutes after his season began it ended as he downed a 140-pound buck.

Mr. Osterhout dragged the deer from the hill before neighbors helped him get it across the busy road and home where he lives upstairs in a home occupied by grandchildren, Mr. and Mrs. Walter B. Dart.

About the time Mr. Osterhout made his kill young Virgil Andrews, son of Mr. and Mrs. Stewart Andrews of the Otsdawa Road, was making good on his first try.

Virgil has hunted small game before but he was using his brother’s shotgun as he roamed a hill near his home Monday morning about 7:15. Then the 120-pound five-point buck came by — and down.

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