As it appeared in the Fifty Years Ago column in the November 1967 editions of the Rome Tribune-Herald
The three mysterious trunk-loads of whiskey confiscated here by Policeman Joe Johnson and sheriff’s officers at the Southern depot are still at the county jail. The manner in which the trunks were shipped to Rome has been discovered by the officers. They were stopped here by wire from the shipper at Jacksonville, Fla., to be reshipped to Atlanta where it is thought by the officers the whiskey was to be haven been supplied to “bootleggers.”
This method of shipment has been “worked” several times here, according to the officers who made the investigation. The owner or his agent, who is said to have been here when the liquor arrived, was heard to say that he intended holding the Southern railway responsible for the trunks. The value of the 380 quarts, at “bootleg” prices, is about $1,800.
For obvious reasons, the war department has asked that Christmas fireworks throughout the country be omitted this year.
In accordance with this request, city and county authorities everywhere in the United States are seconding the action of the federal authorities.
First Commissioner Simmons issued the following request and notice:
“To the Merchants of Rome,
A letter from the war department requests that all fireworks and the discharging of all explosives of every kind be ‘cut out’ during the Christmas holidays. I hope our merchants, therefore, will not lay in a supply of these goods. We have an ordinance prohibiting the use of fireworks in the city, which will be strictly enforced.
I hope that every good citizen, not only in the city but in the county, will cooperate with the officials of our government to prevent the waste of any material that will aid in any way in sending a bullet to look for a German or will give an unscrupulous wretch and opportunity to apply the torch. – D.W. Simmons, First Commissioner”
Chemistry, horticulture, medical science and kindred topics were all discussed before Judge Moses Wright in an attempt to find the answer to the question, “When is an orange ripe?”
The judge, in the case of the state commissioner of agriculture vs. O.L. Stamps & Company, ruled that the Rome commission house might proceed with the sale of a carload of oranges recently shipped from Florida.
The sale had been stopped by action of agents of the state, who alleged that their marketing was a violation of the pure food law. The state contended that the oranges had been picked when immature, had been ripened in the box instead of on the trees and as a result were too acidic to form a healthful food. Experts claimed that this method of ripening oranges made the acid content out of proportion to the sugar and quoted analyses to prove it.
The defendant contended that the oranges were O.K. and introduced a number of courthouse officials who had eaten them, said they tasted good and were without ill effects. The defense further contended that no artificial means of ripening had been employed, such as “sweating” or heat and that therefore the fruit did not come within the law against “adulterating” or employing “artificial processes.”
The operation of all railway lines east of Chicago as one centralized system was decided on today by the Railway War Board, to obtain the maximum efficiency in traffic movement. Cars and trackage facilities will be pooled regardless of ownership or the railroad’s individual interest.
This almost revolutionary move was announced tonight after an all-day conference between members of the War Board and government officials at which many remedies were offered for the freight congestion which has paralyzed railroad transportation in the East. The roads will be operated by a committee of vice presidents of the lines under the general direction of the War Board, itself comprising five of the country’s railway heads.