Jan. 31, 1907 (Thursday)
NEW YORK LEGISLATURE FACES A PILEUP OF AUTOMOBILE BILLS: Automobiles are beginning to attract the attention of lawmakers around the country. (That's a look at Peachtree Street in Atlanta in 1907.) Lots of legislators in Albany, N.Y., for example, have submitted bills to help control -- or make money from -- automobiles and their owners. Bills before the legislators call for:
Automobile owners to carry insurance;
Owners to pay $3 to register each auto and each chauffeur;
Speed limits to be set at 20 mph for public roads;
A tax of about $2.60 for EACH SEAT of an automobile to raise money for road maintenance;
The suspension of a chauffeur's license for two years following a conviction of causing the death or injury of somebody;
Chauffeurs to pass an examination that includes speaking, writing and reading English.
That last one, according to one news article, "would prove an embarrassment to many foreign drivers."
TAFT IS COY IN HIS REQUEST FOR PROTECTION FOR PEARL HARBOR: Some in Congress are certain that they see a war cloud in the Far East. That's why many support Secy. Howard Taft's request to beef up the fortifications in Hawaii and Pearl Harbor. However, on Tuesday, a Senate committee approved only $100,000 for the work. Taft wants another $250,000 at least. To really protect Pearl Harbor, he thinks more than $3 million needs to be spent eventually. The Washington Post notes something strange about the request from Taft: "The Secretary refrains from stating in his letter any reason why he deems it necessary to immediately fortify the Hawaiian Islands." The unspoken reason: Japan.
DON'T READ THIS IF YOU ARE ABOUT TO EAT ICE CREAM: There's a bit of a dispute in Washington about the AMOUNT OF GERMS in the hokey pokey ice cream being sold in the streets of the nation's capital -- often from carts (as shown at right, in England). A Dr. G.W. Stiles, bacteriologist of the Agricultural Department, says he bought two cakes of hokey pokey ice cream from a Greek vendor in front of the Agricultural Department and promptly tested the food. He found between 12 million and 13 million GERMS PER CUBIC CENTIMETER in the ice cream. He says, "It is no wonder that typhoid fever is on the increase." Health Officer Woodward, however, counters the claim. He says the numbers are not remarkable, especially because of the small sample size. He says the germ content of London ice cream has been found to range from 500,000 to 14 million per cc, a "large number" of which were COLON BACILLI. So, what's the big deal?