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Mark Simonson

April 19, 2014

Signs of springtime in Oneonta arrived in April 1889


“Mrs. D.F. Wilber was costumed in black silk en train and Mrs. C.J. Morehouse in black lace, and surrounded by their beautiful assistants, presented a picture of exquisite loveliness not often seen in our village. Then the delightful tone of the occasion, with the elegant surroundings and exquisite music of the Metropolitan Orchestra lent an additional charm, entrancing to the guest. As the callers were presented by the lady attendants to the ladies who received, an interchange of pleasant conversation and the compliments of the season were indulged in.

“They were then escorted to the refreshment parlors where tea and chocolate were served, with other dainties and rare exotics, while the profound light stole through the mists of glittering lamps and every air was heavy with the sighs of choicest flowers, and music from sweet lutes that gushed forth in the midst of roses, an inspiration of pleasure and delight absorbed the guests, and with exclamations of admiration they made their adieus to their hospitable and royal lady entertainers.”

Many a springtime story in 1889 told of construction going on in Oneonta’s East End, as was seen in the Daily News of April 11.

“There are so few changes on lower deck that one would not suppose it belonged to and is a part of Oneonta, while the East End is booming, with life and activity. In passing in the street cars from one end of the line to the other, this change is quite apparent.”

Style was making it clear that spring was here.

“As the sun removes the snow and ice from the face of Dame Nature, many a young blood takes his place on the street corner and exhibits the latest fad in spring suits and allows the wind to whip his ample pant legs around his emaciated shanks. Truly, the robins are harbingers of spring, but the new spring suit is more to be depended on as an unfailing proof of its arrival.”

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Mark Simonson

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