All posts by Debbie Groom

In and Around Hannibal

Hannibal District No. 2 Stone Schoolhouse

District No. 2 was located just north of the Village of Hannibal. The original schoolhouse was a wooden structure which was constructed about 1820.

During its early history, children were not graded at this school and school terms were held only during the winter for a 12-week period. As was the custom those days, the teacher boarded among the parents of her pupils, stating one week at a time in each home.

In regard to that practice, there is an amusing story about Mary A. Dudley, a teacher in this district in those early days.

One of the parents with whom she was to board knew Mary was very fond of johnnycake.

So the woman decided she would serve plenty of the teacher’s favorite food during her stay in this household. Accordingly, johnnycake appeared on the table three time a day every day for a week.

When Miss Dudley went home for the weekend, her mother, thinking she would have something that her daughter liked, (you guessed it!) had a large johnnycake fresh out of the oven. However to her mother’s dismay, the young teacher had lost her enthusiasm for her favorite food.

At a school meeting held in the fall of 1850, it was decided to build a new school.  The old building was sold at auction for $9.64 to Grover Burt, grandfather of James B. Burt.*

Trustee J.D. Curtis worked with a building committee composed of Nelson Cole, Martin Wiltsie, James W. Burt, Samuel Stevenson+ and Orson Titus to develop plans and specifications for the new building.  The new school was to be constructed of stone at an estimated cost of $390 and located on the plank road to Oswego.

All the stone used in construction was taken from the site of the schoolhouse.

*James Burt owned a clothing and tailoring store in the village which remained in Burt hands for more that 75 years.

+Sam Stevenson, live stock dealer and  father-in-law to Ella Leonard Stevenson an advocate for the Women’s Suffrage Movement, a hard worker for prohibition and temperance in the Village and assistant organist at the Baptist Church.

In conjunction with the school, a stone toilet was erected at a cost of $26.96.  This was later torn down to make room for an addition to the school.

To keep the school repaired, an annual tax of $5 was levied on the school district. Also, a librarian whose duty was to account for all the books owned by the school district was appointed at each of the annual school meetings.

In 1884, new desks were installed in the schoolhouse.

Family names associated with District #2 included Curtis, Welling, Cummins, Fowler, Ecker, Campbell, Hill, Burt, Parker, Parsons, Kennedy, Gerring, Bishop and Correll.  Some of the later teachers in this district included 1920-21- Grace Upcraft, 1927-28- Frances Stock, 1928-29 -Franklin Barry, Lucy Welling, 1929-30 – Martha Shutts, 1931-32 – L. Mae Signor, 1932-33 Leah W. Owen, 1933-38 – Madeleine Adsitt, 1938-39 – Hazel French, 1939-41 – Minnie Perkins, 1941-43 – Bessie Cooper, 1943-46 – Lois Chaffee and 1946-49 Mildred Howell.*

*Franklin Barry went on to become Superintendent of Schools in Syracuse and I was lucky enough to have known five of the last six teachers.

After centralization, the Stone Schoolhouse was converted into an auto repair shop, once operated by Jeff Fowler. Rolling Thunder Auto and Cycle owned the structure when it was razed on Nov. 11, 1993, for a new garage.

If anyone has memories of the Stone Schoolhouse, send me an e-mail or give me a call.


Members of the Hannibal Senior Band will be collecting cans and bottles from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Oct. 26, at N&N Redemption Center to raise money for their upcoming band trip

The Hannibal Historical Society is hosting an Archives Day from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. today at the Hannibal Community Center on Oswego Street.  Town, Village and Historical Society Historian Lowell Newvine will show copies of newspaper clippings and photos dating from the mid 1800s.  Lowell will also be available to help with genealogy research.

The upstairs room will be open for those who wish to see artifacts owned by the society. Albums of photos taken by Virginia Davenport will be on display. There will be a sign-up sheet to order Pewter Christmas tree ornaments, depicting the newly-renovated and reopened Village Tavern.

The Hannibal Ecumenical Key Council Bake Sale will be from 9 a.m. to noon today (Saturday Oct. 26) at the Hannibal Village Market IGA.

The Ecumenical Key Council, is made up of members of the Churches of Hannibal. They meet the third Tuesday of the month at 2:30 p.m.  The money they make at their bake sales is split between the Hannibal Resource Center for their Thanksgiving Dinner Give Away and the Christmas Bureau at Hannibal Central School District.

The Ecumenical Key Council also hosts the Baccalaureate, and Thanksgiving services for the community.   New people are always welcome.

Hannibal Fire Co. Auxiliary Breakfast Buffet will be from 8 to 11 a.m. Sunday Oct. 27 at the Firehouse on Oswego Street, Hannibal.  Menu includes pancakes, French toast, scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, home fries, sausage gravy, biscuits, and beverages.

Don’t forget to come in costume and come let the breakfast crew cook breakfast for you.

Hannibal Senior Dining Center meets at noon for dinner at the Senior Center (Library Building) on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Come early for coffee and news or to work on a jigsaw puzzle or  play games or just some idle chit-chat!  Give Rosemary a call and make your reservation.  This week’s menu is:

Monday — Baked chicken, garlic red potatoes, vegetable blend, juice, jello

Wednesday — Roast pork with gravy, sweet potatoes, Brussel sprouts and carrots, ice cream

Friday — Pasta with meat sauce, Italian blend vegetables, tossed salad, pears

Activities: Monday — Wii bowling;    Wednesday — Halloween party; wear your costume!  Friday — games

The Jammers will be celebrating Halloween with a covered dish dinner at 6 at the American Legion.  You are asked to bring a generous dish to pass – ham and scalloped potatoes and table service provided.  The Jam will begin at 7. You are encouraged to wear a costume.

Music BOOsters (the BOO is in honor of Halloween) will be meeting at 7:30 p.m.  Thursday, Oct. 31.

Sports Boosters will meet at 6:30 p.m. Monday, Nov. 4, in the high school libary.

The Hannibal Methodist Church will host its annual Election Day Luncheon from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the church.  Takeouts will be available and delivery in the village can be done. Call 564-5346.

The church is handicap accessible and is 1 block west of the village on Church Street. The luncheon will include your choice of New England clam chowder and vegetable beef soup and a choice of sandwiches and pie for dessert.

Home and School will be meeting at 6:30 p.m. Election Day, Nov. 5 in Room 30 (Pre-K wing) at Fairley School.

The Senior Band Concert will be at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 6 in Lockwood Auditorium in the High School.

Remember this column is about and for the people of Hannibal and the surrounding area.  If you have an event that you would like the public to know about, send me an e-mail or give me a quick call.




Fairley Elementary students travel to Sterling Nature Center

Second-graders at Fairley Elementary School ventured into Cayuga County on Oct. 17 to visit the Sterling Nature Center.

The nature center has more than 10 miles of hiking trails and two miles of lake shore.

Stephanie Griffin’s second-grade class started their day with a teacher-lead lakeside trail walk. Along the walk, students were asked to look and listen to nature sounds, and pick up three leaves to use later in a leaf rubbing session.

The second-graders kept a safe distance as Lake Ontario’s rolling waves crashed into the rock shoreline. Students learned that rocks near the water’s edge are smooth and flat, the perfect shape for skipping.

Other rocks found near the Great Lake contained fossils. Students were fascinated by two trees on the shore that had been overturned, roots exposed.

Before breaking for an outdoor bagged lunch under the pavilion, students toured the visitor’s center. Inside, they saw preserved animals, animals that they could find in their own backyards. Griffin’s students were particularly interested in the coyote and flying squirrel on display.

Second-graders also went on a nature walk with guide Jim D’Angelo. Students in Lisa Bailey’s class trekked down to the rookery, where the herons nest. Ducks, a beaver dam and a bald eagle were all spotted on the trail.

During the second session, Bailey had her class do leaf rubbings and habitat relay races. Each student picked a plastic animal toy, and had to categorize the animal into its natural habitat, either water, forest or field.

The leaf rubbings were done with crayons at the picnic tables. Students placed a leaf on the table, covered it with a sheet of paper, and used the side of a crayon to shade the leaves veins. They were then asked to write a sentence about its texture, or what tree the leaf came from.

Transportation for the field trip was paid for through a grant from Novelis. The Home and School Association also provided a portion of the cost.

New superintendent chosen in Oswego school district

Benjamin Halsey has been named the new Superintendent of Schools for the Oswego City School District.

Halsey, a distinguished leader with more than 20 years of experience in education, will be appointed at the special meeting at 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 29.

Halsey brings to the Oswego City School District nine years of experience as the Superintendent of the North Collins Central School District. Prior to his role of superintendent at North Collins, Halsey’s tenure in education includes experience as a building principal, assistant principal, athletic director and teacher.

The Oswego City School District Board of Education, on behalf of the community in which they serve, selected Halsey based on his demonstrated firsthand knowledge of the day to day operations of every department in a school district, including but not limited to finance, curriculum, and school law.

The board stated in his role as superintendent at North Collins, Halsey demonstrated the ability to make difficult decisions and stood for his convictions. He also demonstrated tremendous visionary skills and possesses the skills necessary to carry those out, bringing others alongside.

Additionally, he has some unique out of the box practices that the Oswego City School District Board of Education felt would bring the district and the community together through positive change.

Coupled with Halsey’s professional experience and demonstrated leadership abilities are resounding character virtues of integrity and humility. The virtues were echoed by Halsey’s professional references as well as from unsolicited sources and are qualities that the Board of Education believes the district will benefit greatly from.

The Board of Education said in a joint statement about the decision to appointment Halsey, “We look forward to his leadership, vision, and working with him for our community.”

Halsey will assume the duties of the superintendent for the Oswego City School District Dec. 2.

Gary Mix is the current Interim Superintendent of School, assuming the responsibilities following the retirement of William Crist in June 2013.

Hooper favors Mahaney

I moved to Fulton two years ago after 40 years in Hannibal (with a five-year absence.)

But Hannibal will always be home to me and my family. It was a privilege to be able to serve the people of Hannibal as a member of the Town Board.

I wish I were there to vote for Dan Mahaney for Highway Superintendent. Dan is an honorable man who has worked hard to bring a level of professionalism to the highway department.

He has sought and received grants that have enabled us to do more with less Hannibal taxpayer money. He has developed relationships with town residents, vendors and neighboring highway departments that have benefited Hannibal.

He has overseen the maintenance of abandoned cemeteries. He has attended schools and training as required (suggested) by the state.

He is up in the middle of the night, checking roads and conferring with the school superintendent regarding school closing. (I know because I’m one of those night owls that have seen the truck go by when I lived in town!)

I urge the voters of Hannibal to vote for Dan Mahaney — a person who makes Hannibal a priority, a person who has kept our roads safe for our children and ourselves, a person I’m proud to call friend.

Rita Hooper


Candidate asks for support in election

For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Joe Susino and I have been proud to call Oswego home my entire life.

Service to my community has been a cornerstone of my life, and I am running for Legislator in order to continue that service.

From my time working for the Town of Oswego, to my 13 years as a volunteer firefighter with the Town of Oswego, along with my current work as an EMT with Menter Ambulance, I have always been giving back to and serving our community.

I have used the phrase “Ready to Serve” to describe my candidacy, because that is truly who I am. From day one as your Legislator, I will be ready to go, and ready to listen to you in order to provide thorough and personal constituent service.

Of the 25 county legislators, my opponent is certainly one of the loudest on the Legislature; but I don’t believe that yelling is the way to get things done. As your Legislator, I will offer a different style, by listening more than I speak, representing my community, and offering solutions to our county’s complex problems.

I’m humbly asking for your vote for Legislator on Nov. 5. I encourage you to reach out with any questions and concerns at 575-0840.


Joe Susino


Pringle supports Granby trio

I am writing this in support of the three most important people in the town of Granby.

I grew up in Granby and have since moved out of Granby because of the taxes. If Ed Williamson was Town Supervisor back then, we probably would still live in   Granby.

Ed has done a great job for the people and should keep doing a great job.

Now for two candidates that are running for Granby Town Council. I hope you will all give them your support. They are  Brenda Frazier-Hartle and Eric Clothier.

Brenda is a hard worker and she will look out for the people. Eric Clothier will also look out for the people he also is a good worker. Brenda and Eric are both energetic and you need new blood.

So when you go to vote don’t forget these three people.

I know Ed has been there and you need to keep him in, he has done a lot for the Town Of Granby and Ed will fight for you and so will Brenda and Eric.

Don’t forget to get out and vote Nov. 5.

Thank you for your support,

Sue Pringle 


Light in the Darkness — Judas Iscariot

“Then Judas Iscariot, one of the Twelve, went to the chief priests to betray Jesus to them. 

They were delighted to hear this and promised to give him money. So he watched for an opportunity to hand him over.”

Mark 14:10-11

Judas Iscariot is a prime example of a man who followed Jesus but never surrendered completely surrendered his life to Him. He serves as a warning to us that to follow Jesus means to accept not only the God Man but his will and agenda for our lives as well.

Judas was appointed by Jesus to be an Apostle, and as such traveled with Jesus and the other eleven chosen men for three years. He was both a witness to the teaching and miracles of Jesus … and, in a way not easily understood … a participant in the power of the Holy Spirit ministering to others.

He was there at the wedding feast in Cana when Jesus turned water into wine. He was present with Jesus outside the tomb of Lazarus and witnessed his rising from the dead when Jesus called, “Lazarus, come out!”

Judas himself would have cast out demons, seen the sick healed when he laid hands on them, and helped to feed 5,000 with one little boys lunch.

We sometimes have a picture of Judas sitting in a black cloak deep in the background, somehow separated from the other Apostles, but this is not the image scripture paints. He was trusted by the other disciples. As their treasurer he was entrusted with their money bag.

But Judas had his own agenda. Judas, his name appears eight times in scripture as “Ish-Kerioth”.

Iscariot is not his last name. “Ish-Kerioth” labels him as a man from Kerioth, a small town in Judea known for its insurgency. It was a hot bed for Zealots, who would resort to any means in their attempt to rid Israel of the hated Romans.

Historians are in agreement that Judas was a Zealot. Furthermore, based upon some other words used in scripture to describe Judas, it is probable that hewas a member of the Sicarri, an elite group of assassins who carried out the darkest ops of the Zealots.

They believed that any means were justified if the end was desirable. And the ‘desirable’ end the Zealots sought was the expulsion of Rome from Israel.

This goes far in explaining Judas’ betrayal of Jesus. He never left his own goals or agenda for Christ’s but sought to use means of his own choosing in an attempt to force the issue, to bring about the conclusion he and his compatriots longed for.

The Rev. David Grey

Mt. Pleasant United Methodist Church

Barclay discusses state referenda to be voted on Nov. 5

When voters go to the polls Nov. 5, they will be asked whether to support a number of amendments to the State Constitution.

Recently, I talked about the casino referendum and the implications its passage will have on New York.

This week, I want to let readers know about five other referendums that will appear on the ballot.

All of these passed the State Legislature in order to be put in front of the public for a vote. Some matters I supported in the Legislature, while others I did not.

Civil Service Credits for Disabled Veterans

Our State Constitution allows veterans to receive additional credits on a civil service exam.

This is a one-time credit, according to our constitution. This amendment would enable veterans to receive additional credits if they become disabled.

For example, if a veteran was employed as a police officer, decided to return to military service in Afghanistan, and became disabled as a result of his or her service, the employee would be eligible to receive an additional credit as a disabled vet. I supported this in the Legislature and plan to do so at the polls.

Land Exchanges

Title disputes have a chance to be put to rest if the public supports the amendment to resolve claims between the state and private parties that own land in Hamilton County.

This constitutional amendment would allow the Legislature to settle 100-year-old disputes between the state and private parties over land in a state forest reserve. Owners of land in the Forest Preserve would receive clear title to the lands where they live and pay property taxes if this passes. I supported this in the Legislature as well.

Another land exchange amendment would enable NYCO Minerals, Inc., a private company, to continue its mining operations in Essex County. The company currently mines wollastonite, a rare white mineral used in ceramics, paints, plastics and other building products.

The Lewis Mine, which NYCO Minerals, Inc. uses, produces 60,000 tons of wollastoniate annually — 8 percent of the annual worldwide production.

The mine is approaching the end of its life cycle and its closure would mean the loss of nearly 100 full-time workers as well as tax revenue for the local economy.

Debt Limit Exclusion/Sewage Facilities

This amendment would enable municipalities to extend their debt limit for sewage treatment and related facilities until Jan. 1, 2024. I supported this in the Legislature.

Increasing Age Judges Can Serve

Currently, state Supreme Court judges must retire at 76. This amendment would increase the mandatory retirement age to 80. It would also increase the retirement age for judges of the Court of Appeals from 70 to 80. Also, it would prohibit the appointment of any person over the age of 70 to the Court of Appeals. I voted against this bill in the Legislature and plan to do so at the polls.

If you have any questions or comments on this or any other state issue, contact my office by mail at 200 N. Second St., Fulton, New York, by e-mail at or by calling 598-5185.