Minor items: 1905-1989

Back in the heyday of print newspapers, editors sometimes collected a number of short news items together and titled the assemblage with a headline suitable only for the 1st item. Presumably, this was done so as to not waste space (ink and paper) with multiple headlines.

I have found information about California condors buried in these “piles” of news. While that condor news is itself useful, I also value the historical context for the condor news that is provided by the other items in the set.

For this post, I provide 5 such examples of “minor items” bundled together into a single article. The examples come from 3 newspapers and span nearly a century.

For each example below, I give the article details and 2 quotations. The 1st quotation concerns the news responsible for the article’s title and the 2nd quotation concerns the news of the California condor. (If you want to know about the other minor items in each set, make use of the citation details provided.)

“New Butter Law”
Sausalito News
20 May 1905

This act requires the marking of packages of butter containing less than six pounds and more than one half pound so as to advise the purchaser or other as to the weight of the packages.

The California condor, all the eagles, sea birds, turkey buzzards or vultures are now protected. Permission to take the eggs of these birds will not be granted even to students, as the State Board of Fish Commissioners realize the urgent necessity of extreme measures to prevent these species from becoming extinct.

“Rocket Camera to Take Hurricane Photograph”
Washington Post
24 June 1956

Camera-carrying rockets are now under tests by Navy scientists to get a sky-eye view of cloud formations during hurricanes. The idea is to get a camera in the right spot, about 100 miles above the hurricane’s eye, to take an overall view of the entire hurricane cloud system.

Cornell ornithologists have succeeded in recording the sounds of two very rare birds, the whooping crane and the trumpeter swan. The crane is North America’s second rarest bird, and the trumpeter swan ranks fourth… Number three on the rarity list is the California condor, which is believed to be the silent type.

“Van Deerlin Files Suit Charging Libel”
Los Angeles Times
27 May 1983

Former U.S. Rep. Lionel Van Deerlin filed a $2.25-million libel suit … against Washington columnist Jack Anderson. Van Deerlin … contends that Anderson knowingly, maliciously and falsely implied Van Deerlin was a customer of a Capitol Hill “drug ring” …

The third California hatched in captivity was reported by San Diego Zoo officials to be “alert and strong with a hearty appetite.” The day-old chick gained five grams in the first 24 hours after hatching – the largest first-day weight gain of the three rare birds hatched this year.

“Compton Teachers Call Another Strike”
Los Angeles Times
13 January 1987

For the seventh time in two months, Compton teachers went out on strike in protest of stalled contract negotiations, union officials said. Wiley Jones, executive director of the Compton Education Assn., the teacher’s union, said about 90% of the district’s 1,400 teachers stayed away from class.

The federal Fish and Wildlife Service said it has completed the $3.9-million purchase of 11,360 acres … to form the Bitter Creek National Wildlife Refuge and re-establish the endangered California condor in the wild…. The plan is to capture the only two condors still free, add them to the 25 birds in a breeding program … and to begin releasing condors in the refuge after 1990.

“Priest Notes Easter with Empty Basket as Hostage Tribute”
Washington Post
27 March 1989

Americans celebrated Easter under mostly sunny skies with prayers, egg hunts and parades, but also with somber reminders such as an empty basket symbolizing the plight of the U.S. hostages [in Lebanon].

A California condor laid a giant Easter egg, to the delight of officials at the Los Angeles zoo. The blue egg, five inches long, three inches in [diameter] and weighing about 10 ounces, was spotted shortly after sunrise.

Today, it’s hard to imagine a time when food packages didn’t state the weight of the contents or satellites didn’t provide video of hurricanes from hundreds of miles above the Earth. Sometimes it’s also helpful to recall that conflict and tragedy are not just something we live with today. But amidst it all, there was interesting and even positive news about the California condor.

For much more about the California condor from newspapers, click on the NEWSPAPER button under POST TOPICS (located somewhere on this page – it depends on your device).