Here they are, back by popular demand, the highlights and the lowlights in the routine calls to Saranac Lake's finest as recorded in the police blotters a mere 75 years ago.
8-3-36 - 11:30 p.m. received a call that the people at 302 Broadway were making a lot of noise. Investigated by Brown & Garwood, found the door to the bar room of Bert Hickocks' place open and people at the bar were singing and raising hell, told him to shut the door and stop making so much noise. - Garwood & Brown (I wish the cops would have described the raising hell part)
8-6-36 - 8:30 p.m. State Troopers called, stating that a suit case full of women's clothing had been lost, same fell off a Plymouth car. If anyone is seen trying to sell the above suit case, notify troopers. - Brown
8-16-36 - 10:30 p.m. Complaint from J. A. Latour, 185 Broadway that there were some fellows bumming rides, yelling and making a lot of noise. Investigated by Brown and Duprey, told them to go up past the tracks. - Ryan
8-23 - 6:30 p.m. Joe Sarant, the tailor, 10 Bloomingdale avenue reports that sometime today between 11:45 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. someone stole a pair of grey suit pants. He believes that old man Smith or a fellow by the name of Jake who lives at 51 Bloomingdale avenue might have them. These two men were doing some work for him today in the shop at 10 Bloomingdale Ave., where goods were stolen. See stolen property book. - Brown
(I imagine the police assigned their best investigator to this case - be on the lookout for man in ill-fitting gray pants)
Saranac Lake, August 1944
8-4-44 - 2:50 a.m. Call from 63 River Street People swimming at the beach. Noisy. Found two couples from the Hotel Saranac in swimming. Sent them away with a warning to not come again in the night. - Ryan and Jones
8-5-44 - 3:45 a.m. Call from operator. Said that someone was complaining about noise at Swenson's "down back of Bloomingdale Avenue". Found John Swenson, his wife and mother-in-law had just come home and were laughing and talking. All sober. Windows and doors all open. Warned them to not laugh so loud. - Jones
(Another stern reprimand from the police)
8-13-44 - 7:15 a.m. Gave accommodations in lockup to Troopers Mansion and Hornby who had in custody one John Doe charged with vagrancy. - Jones
The above man escaped from Dannemora Prison 8-7-44. Returned to Dannemora by Mansion and Hornby. - Wallace
8-22-44 - 8:30 p.m. Call from Mrs. Benham, Pine Street complaining about 2 men back of her house drinking, had been there since 6 o'clock. Investigated by Duprey and Higgins - saw 2 men starting to run thru the woods - took after them and after a short chase captured John Doe who put up some resistance after getting him under control noticed a cut on his head. Patched him up and locked him up. The other fellow got away. [How cool is that language "some resistance", "under control", it had to be a Pete Higgins entry]. - Higgins and Duprey
8-27-44 - 3:30 p.m. Complaint from Tom Hennessy, 28 River Street that a dog owned by Wentworth next door had bit and scratched his son's head. Investigated found the same to be true talked to the owner of dog and she said the dog was on a chain and the kids come and play with the dog. Told Hennessy to see the Judge.- Duprey
Another call about the Wentworth dog from Dr. Wardner - said he had just treated the kid's head and there were 2 teeth marks there. Saw Mrs. LeMieux (Wentworth's daughter) owner of the dog and told her to be at the police station at 10 o'clock a.m. as Hennessy will he here to make a complaint against her. - Higgins and Duprey
8-29-44 - 5-15 a.m. Report from Fred L. Perry of 14 McCarthy St., Faust, that sometime between 8 p.m. yesterday and 5 a.m. today his car was stolen from Dorsey Street while he was sleeping in Phil Adler's Hotel. 1934 black Chevrolet 2-door coach value $100.00. He is a cook at Sunmount. If found call the kitchen. The car has a cracked windshield on the passenger side. - Jones
Now here is the Inseide Dope for my friend and colleague, Bob Seidenstein, who fills this space every Friday.
Bob had heard rumors that this was a house of ill repute, right here, smack-dab in downtown beautiful River City. We probably had all heard that rumor back then. Traveling down Dorsey Street, it was located on the right side of the street on the spot just as the bridge crosses to the municipal parking lot.
I remember the place well, as I delivered the Enterprise in that area in 1944. Never was it called a hotel, to my knowledge; there was a run-down sign designating it as a bar, but it was merely a two-story house with a sloping porch and not in very good condition. So maybe the rumors were correct because it did not appear as a place where one could rent a room, to say nothing about even looking remotely like a hotel.
(Editor's note: The first sentence of this column has been corrected to read "75 years ago" instead of 65.)