100 Years Ago: 1923

Mrs. Elsie Anthoine and Mrs. A. L. Campbell will be the hostesses at the meeting Monday afternoon of the Murray Club which will take place at the home of Mrs. Anthoine on Sabatis street. The speaker will be Rev. Will A. Kelley, on “The Philosophy of American Home Life.”

50 Years Ago: 1973

House colleagues of Vice President-designate Gerald R. Ford gave him a standing ovation today, foreshadowing easy confirmation of his nomination. Republicans and Democrats stood and applauded for a minute after a clerk read President Nixon’s brief message nominating the Michigan Republican under the terms of the 25th Amendment the first time it had been used.

The House remained in session only eight minutes long enough to receive the message and to hear Rep. Henry Gonzalez, D-Tex., urge the House Judiciary Committee, which will consider the nomination, to study the possibility of revising the amendment to eliminate what Gonzalez said was the possibility of abuse.

25 Years Ago: 1998


Family, friends and neighbors of 15-year-old Melissa Samson of Hartford are hoping they can help her hitch a ride to Japan on a Halloween witch’s broomstick. A crew of 15-20 volunteers will put on a fundraising spook walk Oct. 20-31 at the Samsons’ Ricker Hill Road property about three miles from Buckfield. It will benefit Melisa’s participation in a seven-week Maine Youth Exchange Program trip next summer to the Japanese home of Takako Mori, the 15-year-old student who spent several weeks with the Samson family this past summer. “They have been corresponding by mail and they can’t wait to get together again,” said Melissa’s mother, Julie Samson. “There’s only 10 days’ difference between their birthdays.”

Jean Samson, Melissa’s father, said his family and a group of neighbors have put on Halloween spook walks for the fun of it for seven or eight years, but not on the scale of this one. He said the trail will cover nearly a quarter of a mile, beginning with scenes along a field and wooded area. then through a garage and house, and back to the fields. The walks are scheduled between 6 and 9pm each day.

“We will have 12 to 14 scenes along the way.” Samson said “Some of them will be skits. We’re building a Witches’ Hut complete with a thatched roof, and there will be two or three characters there to greet the visitors. We will  also have a gypsy fortune teller with a crystal ball at the garage, and there will be other entertaining stops along the way.”

Samson said he has seen some extremely graphic and noisy spook walks, but this one is geared to all ages from about eight and up. “This one isn’t one isn’t the “in-your-face” kind. We don’t want to give people nightmares,” he said. “It’s a little more subtle with plenty of spooky sounds and music. Lanterns and flashlights will light the way,” he said, and he’s counting on a bright moon on the nights leading up to Halloween on Saturday, Oct 31.

The complete spook walk will take close to half an hour, Samson said. Neighbors also will be making cookies and cupcakes for sale at the event.

The material used in Looking Back is produced exactly  as it originally appeared although misspellings and errors may be corrected.

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