Sunday, December 21, 2008

Henry Pratt's Memories XXVI

Continuing from the 1986 Record article:
Henry talked about Leon Case. "You know, he was the editor of the Watervliet Record from 1912-1930. Case was also elected to the state Senate--I believe for four years. he was a Democrat and it's pretty hard for a Democrat to get elected in a Republican County. He ran for office when we had a three way race with Taft, Teddy Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson, and I guess he got swept in on the Democratic mood of the country. In 1932 Leon Case was elected again and given credit for making the 12-foot road a state highway. In 1935 the road was built and named M-140." (Leon was elected Secretary of State in 1936).
Henry knew Leon Case well. "Papers were partisan in those days . Benton Harbor had one Republican and one Democratic paper. Coloma and Hartford each had their own papers. Leon published a nonpartisan paper--but, because he was a Democrat, he was lambasted. He was fair and honest. He presented local and state news only as it affected Watervliet. He was a very likeable chap--I'm glad I knew him."
My note: My grandfather Albert N. Woodruff (always known as A.N. Woodruff or Hon. A.N.  Woodruff) was the Editor and owner of the Watervliet Record for a short while in the 1890's. Here is information from Karl Bayer, publisher of the Tri-City Record:
In March 1890 .J.T.Johnson sold his interest in the Watervliet Record to Albert Newton Woodruff and Leroy Johnson (his son) sold his interest to Alonzo Hulson. Within a few months Hulson gave up his interest in the newspaper to Woodruff, leaving him as the sole owner.
According to local historian Bill Beverly jr., the Watervliet Record office was then located across from the present day Harding's at 416 N. Main St.
Woodruff sold the newspaer to Eugene F. Case of Wisconsin (Leon's father?) in 1891. Case published the Record in Woodruff's building until relocating to its present site in 1896.
(emailed July 30)

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