The combination electrical, wind, rain and hail storm which visited this section at about 6:15 last night, was undoubtedly one of the most severe storms of short duration, ever witnessed here. The streets were flooded and all forms of traffic suspended until the storm has passed. The street cars were stalled – the power having been shut off – automobiles were garaged; teams were stabled and pedestrians who were more than a few hundred feet from any refuge were soaked. Yes soaked, stoned (for there were hail stones and blown about like a wet rag).

50 Years Ago, 1955

Ten Lewiston playgrounds, including the City Park swimming pool, will open next Thursday for a 10-week schedule which will last until one week before schools open again in September, it was reported yesterday by Lewiston Recreation Director Nathaniel J. Crowley.

Portland – Heat that sent the mercury into the 90’s sent throngs of Maine residents and visitors to fresh water and ocean beaches today but produced no reports of serious highway accidents. Three to four hundred persons set up about 100 tents at Sebago State Park, Naples. Motor boats drummed along the waterways with a clear track in the absence of wind for sailcraft.

25 Years Ago, 1980

Forget about the credit crunch. About mortgage rates and prime rates and discount rates. There’s a much more serious problem: Inflation is biting down hard on that American institution called the penny gumball.

The Ford Gum and Machine Co. has been making the brightly colored gumballs for nearly half a century – since 1934 to be exact. On an average working day, the plant here turns out 4.95 tons or almost 10,000 pounds of gumballs. That’s about 2,227,000 balls a day.

Officials at Ford Gum are worried, however. Can they keep the price of a penny gumball at a penny? The problem is that the cost of refined sugar has more than doubled, rising to more than $40 per 100 pounds because of a drop in the world sugar crop.

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