Each week Albany Herald researcher Mary Braswell looks for interesting events, places and people from the past. You can contact her at (229) 888-9371 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Before there were blogs, squawks, e-mails, text messages, article comments and social networking sites, people relied heavily on The Albany Herald's People's Forum to share their views. Here is a look back at excerpts from a few of the letters submitted to the editor during the month of October over the years.
* It is of great importance for us to remember that the present administration has conducted the city's affairs with a dignity of which we may be proud and in a manner worthy of respect. These men, Mr. McAfee, Mr. Wakeford, Chief Lee and the commissioners, were awake to the fact that certain bad elements had gained a foothold in Albany in the past and were quick to take action against the unwholesome conditions. (1957)
* The Zionist movement is leading us to the brink of a third world war in the Middle East. Unless we are very careful, we will be led into a war that will destroy this present evil world. (1957)
* I am in sympathy with the family whose pet Pekingese was killed by stray dogs. I know exactly what she means about the dog-catchers coming but yet not getting any dogs.
It all goes back to what I have been saying , that we are very badly in need of a humane society. I hope that some influential person will get this organization started. Then we won't have to worry about stray animals and I think there will be a whole lot less poisoning cases. (1960)
* When is it going to be possible for the people of America to be able to walk the streets without the fear of being mugged, robbed, pelted with stones and cola bottles?
This is what happened to a friend of mine and myself here on our own streets of Albany. We were walking home from the ballgame between Monroe High and Tift County when a gang of hoodlums, or whatever you want to call them, came up behind us ...
Incidentally, in November I'm voting for George Wallace. (1968)
* Now is the time for all truth-seeking, God-fearing, home-loving Americans to band together and elect George Wallace for our next president. At the Democratic Convention, Humphrey and his followers said they didn't need the support of voters from the South. This is a direct insult to all below the Mason-Dixon Line. (1968)
* I am one of those many millions in this country and elsewhere who just love to watch "Laugh-In" on Monday nights. But, WALB TV's sound is nearly unintelligible exactly during the time when Rowan and Martin awarded Mrs. Martha Mitchell with the famous "Fateful Fickle Finger Award." Is it possible that someone at Channel 10 is censoring the audio on national programs? Note: the actual name of the award was "Flying Fickle Finger of Fate Award." (1970)
* My son dislocated his shoulder playing football. We have no insurance and the bills were: $10 for the doctor, $5 for the emergency room fee, $10 for the X-ray, $8 to read the X-ray, and $25 for the brace for a total of $53 (that actually totals $58). If we're lucky, with five kids, nothing else happens. Why isn't there some place you can go for free? There isn't anywhere. (1970)
* There is a very good area being used publicly for mini-bikes, motorcycles, dunebuggies, etc. and it is very popular. I hardly ever pass the sand dunes without seeing someone out there having a grand and glorious time. (1972)
* Several years ago it was predicted in the People's Forum that the Dougherty County School System would go to h***. My friend, it is there, thanks to the superintendent and his bunch. Watching them operate is a trip. Democracy and human decency take a leave of absence every time they open their mouths. (1980)
* What has happened to the Civic Center? I am so disappointed that we have not been having any decent concerts. It has been approximately one year since I have been to a concert. Why can't we get good entertainment here? There is a lot of people that feel the same way. Somebody do something -- please! (1987)
* The proposal to convert the New Albany Hotel into a jail is a particularly bad one since it is the hope of everyone to some day have an attractive and revitalized downtown.
Putting a depressing jail anywhere on or near the new Central Square project is a bad idea but to put it directly across from the of our finest cultural facilities would ruin everything.
Dougherty County is bigger than it looks on the map. Surely we are not so destitute of ideas and space that we must resort to putting a jail directly in the front of our chief jewel -- the newly-restored Albany Municipal Auditorium of which we a re so proud. (1990)
* With the unwillingness of Congress to act for so many years on a solid federal budget and now bordering on no budget at all, the problem and solution are becoming more apparent. Blaming the other political party is the goal so that when re-election time comes, their jobs will be more secure. What is best for the country has been taken out of the picture and totally replaced by re-election concerns. (1990)
* A tragedy happened that is far worse than the murders of Nicole Simpson and Ronald Goldman. O.J. Simpson was found not guilty. The few who happen to think justice was done, really aren't concerned about justice. They are really concerned about the image of O.J. Simpson and not the facts. (1995)
* When I heard the verdict, I rejoiced and shouted the name -- not O.J. the other one, Jesus. But such joy fleets. I sat stunned for several hours, watching analysts and self-appointed judges lament the verdict. Why is the decision of a predominately African American jury condemned, standing on nullified ground? If a predominately white jury had said the same, we'd probably hear this: "The jury lived closest to the case, and they have spoken." I'll keep listening. (1995)