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Pages of History: Prohibition and politics in Del Norte

From the pages of the Crescent City American, May 1931.

Abatement notices were placed Tuesday on the building on Front Street that is occupied by the High Lead Pool Hall and Tom’s Place, by agents from the United States District Court at Eureka. The orders dated April 17, 1931, charge that intoxicating liquors had been dispensed from the premises. 

The two buildings are owned by J.J. and N.F. McNamara, and the High Lead Pool Hall was operated by Frank Curtis and Tom’s Place was operated by Tom Thompson.

It is rumored that politics is playing its part in the abatement proceedings in these two cases, as it is said that local political enemies of J.J. McNamara are attempting to even up old scores they allege to have existed.

Mr. McNamara was chairman of the Rolph-for-Governor Committee in Del Norte County, and since the governor’s election Mr. McNamara has been in charge of affairs pertaining to the governor’s office in this county.

The federal prohibition agents have been working Crescent City pretty thoroughly for the past two months, and have a made a number of arrests.

Washing windows 

Two of our leading citizens have ventured out on a new endeavor and on Tuesday morning sallied forth on what seems will develop into quite a livelihood. 

Fred J. Kasbohm, Crescent City’s leading jeweler, and Joe Miller, Crescent City’s leading exclusive dealer in ladies’ footwear, are the two who have taken up the new endeavor.

Mr. Kasbohm was dressed in a natty blue serge suit with brown hat and a swaggerish tie, while Mr. Miller was dressed in a summery gray suit with a gray felt hat to match and natty tie that is the envy of all the Beau Brummels of the town, and down the street they went with their white porcelain bucket, one with a window brush and the other with a squeegee.

First they washed the windows at the Smoke Shop and were paid with two Mission oranges; Jack Duffy offered a shave for the washing of his windows and J.L. Musick then gave each a can of tomatoes. 

Other places up and down the street are offering all the way from 20-cent tickets to the theater to free tickets to the Pee Wee golf course. It seems that these men will develop into real businessmen if they continue in this adventure, unless they are taken up by the city marshal for not having first secured a license to wash windows in the city.

The boys should be encouraged in their work as it is the duty of a good citizen to help all adventurous young men in a pursuit so daring and lucrative as the one these have chosen. 

Warrant for ‘mining expert’ 

A warrant has been issued for the arrest of Jack Ebern, erstwhile mining expert who has been here for the past few weeks. Ebern is charged with forging the name of John Matthews, of Big Flat, to a check which was cashed by A.T. Manuel in payment for a battery Ebern purchased.

Ebern, it is said, had local people believing he was a mining man of some consequence and was on a deal to sell several large chrome deposits of this section to General Motors. He is gone now and the sheriff is looking for him. 

Reach Nita Phillips at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it


Del Norte Triplicate:

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