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Exploring History Through a 1919 Newspaper: The Evening Star

February 22nd, 1919
Join us as we explore history through a 1919 newspaper - The Evening Star. We look at stories such as the origin of "Keeping Up With the Joneses" and Dry Detective Slain in Rosslyn. Plus, income exceptions for 1918 babies, driver right-of-way and McLean farm for sale.
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Let’s try something new.

We browsed the papers from Saturday February 22nd, 1919 to come up with some fun and interesting things to share with you. This is what we came across in The Evening Star on that date.

Origin of Keeping Up With the Joneses

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Payne was active in the temperance movement his entire life and was a member of the Anti-Saloon League.

Keeping Up With the Joneses was a gag comic strip which ran from 1913 to 1938. Many people have since forgotten the comic, but the phrase remains as I’m sure you’re all aware.

Rock Creek Church Houses

This lovely advertisement shows homes for sale on Rock Creek Church Road at Shepherd St. NW

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Here’s what the same homes look like today on Google Street View.

Dry Detective Slain in Rosslyn

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This isn’t a good headline to come across in the paper. The ugly side of Prohibition was the resulting spike in crime. Here’s an excerpt from the article.

William K. Payne, one of the Chief Assistants of Rev. J Peters, prohibition commissioner of Virginia and said to have been the most active prohibition detective in the state, was shot in the head last night at Rosslyn, and so seriously wounded that he died at Georgetown University Hospital a little later. The murder was committed in rear of the building of the Arlington Trust Company.

IT was reported that a Washington colored man named Wesley Johnson might be able to throw light on the case. Johnson, who learned his name had been connected with the affair, went to Rosslyn and made it clear that he was in no way involved in the murder.

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Income Exceptions for 1918 Babies

Who doesn’t like a tax deduction? The 16th Amendment in 1913 established the right of the Federal Government to levy a tax on its citizens. With said right came the ability to grand exceptions and deductions.

Below is an article outlining the policies around child exemptions.

Driver Right-of-Way

These were the early days for automobiles on the streets of DC and police were pushing enforcement of right-of-way for vehicles heading north or south.

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Major Raymond W. Pullman was the superintendent from 1915 to 1920 and oversaw the creation of both the Traffic Division and the Women’s Bureau.

Sadly, he contracted pneumonia after a trip to New York City and died in February of 1920.

McLean Farm for Sale

How about 10 acres of land and a farm for sale in McLean? Back then you could have purchased it for a cool $4,500. That’s about $65,000 in today’s money according to this inflation calculator. Not too shabby.

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If you’d like to read the whole paper, head over the Chronicling America by the Library of Congress and check it out for yourself.

Today's Recommendation

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