Step Back in Time features news items from The Daily Star 25 and 50 years ago.
25 years ago
Oct. 24, 1988
A record snowfall in the region Saturday caused numerous car accidents and over 300 residents to go without electricity in Otsego County and surrounding areas.
The storm started with rain Friday, continued with a mixture of rain and snow into Saturday and by the afternoon turned into wet, heavy snow, said area weather observers. The nearly four-inch snowfall broke a 99-year-old record for the date.
A low pressure system from the Ohio Valley scooted across the western Catskills region, pulling moisture from the east coast and dumping nearly four inches of snow at Goodyear Lake, said David K. Mattice, National Weather Service observer for Oneonta.
Eight crews from New York State Electric and Gas worked from late Saturday afternoon to about 4 a.m. Sunday restoring electricity to customers in Oneonta, Cooperstown, Sidney Center, Gilbertsville and Franklin, said Ronald Brazier, general line foreman.
Saturday’s snowfall was the second-highest amount recorded for any one day during October. The record was set Oct. 7, 1873 with four inches of snow, said Mattice.
He said a report from the Sherburne-Earlville area recorded eight to nine inches of snow. But abut 60 miles south in the village of Walton barely an inch had fallen.
50 years ago
Oct. 24, 1963
COOPERSTOWN — Almost 19 years of devoted service by Emil “Pat” Hurtubise, as line foreman for the Otsego Electric Cooperative, Wednesday evening were lauded at a surprise reception in honor of Mr. Hurtubise at the Homestead Restaurant in Colliers.
Mr. Hurtubise is retiring as of the end of October.
He came to Hartwick as a line superintendent in October of 1945, on the recommendation of REA officials, when the cooperative had just been formed to serve at first the growing needs of the farming community.
Mr. Hurtubise became “a one-man department” and his duties included line construction, regulation, substation work and maintenance (he built the Richfield Springs substation), also meter reading, collections and other related duties.
“He brought his years of experience to the job, has been extremely loyal and will be long remembered by a great many members more than any other employee of the organization,” stated Arthur Jamieson, the cooperative’s manager.
A native of Minnesota, Mr. Hurtubise was educated in Ontario, Canada, coming to the United States as a 16-year-old boy with his parents, who settled in Richford, Vermont.
He went into the Armed Forces in 1942, during World War II, and came to Hartwick in 1945, where he purchased a farm on Route 205, presently operated by his son, John.
He is married to the former Miss Ella Airth of Ontario, Canada. They have three sons, Captain William Hurtubise, now serving with the Armed Forces at Puisan, Korea; John on the farm, and James a contractor.
Mr. Hurtubise said he will miss the telephone ringing at all times during nights of storms or snow, when he kept a light burning, always ready to go out on the road to restore service to the patrons.