Time Capsule #3: The Goose Bone Weather Prophet

This week I pulled a copy of the Napanee Beaver from February 1901 out of our Time Capsule.

Napanee Beaver, 1901

The newspaper is huge (open it out and it’s 36 inches wide!), the print tiny and the articles, ads, notices crammed in.

I don’t understand how people could read it. I found it exhausting. And what about the typesetters? Imagine those thousands of teeny tiny blocks they had to put in place.

The Napanee Beaver

This week as I was searching for interesting tidbits to transcribe into this post, I realized how much I missed the creative zap from last year’s weekly Blurt-writing. Time for some creative fun! So this is a mash-up. I’ve spliced together words, phrases and sentences that come from different sections of the newspaper. A mix of Found Poetry and collage.

The delusion of what is called circumstantial
evidence whirled through the brilliantly
lighted ballroom.

Some practical advice from a business
expert idles at the door.

There is not a more dangerous class of disorders
than never having enough handkerchiefs.

There’s big economy
in buying undergarments now, little liver pills,
also seed oats and barley, milch cows, and
Handsome Furs.

The goose bone weather prophet, a comparatively
young man, is not by any means so homely as he
has been described.

Shrewd women know the recent snowstorm
has made the sleighing much better. It’s perfectly lovely.

If you have Lost – a purse, Found – a mink ruff, or had a narrow
escape from a serious runaway, split a toe
when chopping wood, intend erecting
a hotel, or sport a horseless carriage which is drawn
by a team of mules, there will be no admission fee.

The oldest picture book in our possession is the midnight sky.
Worth knowing.

Napanee Beaver 1901


The Daily Post Discover Challenge: Transcript

Would you like to know how to predict the weather using a goose wishbone? I’d never heard of it before reading this issue of Napanee Beaver.

 Napanee is in Ontario, west of Kingston.


4 thoughts on “Time Capsule #3: The Goose Bone Weather Prophet

  1. This is more like it! Loved the poem. I guess when there no tv or other media, you get it all in the newspaper. I can remember riding the commuter trains in London and how one had to be e pert at folding the Times. Then we all went with the Evening Standard as it was smaller and much easier to fold. Balance Beaver sounds in a class of its own for size! Love J

    Sent from my iPad


    • The Beaver is even larger than the Times used to be. I wondered whether people put their own news in or whether there was someone who went around finding out who visited whom, who’d been ill or been to the dentist…! I’m feeling a bit daunted by how much is in this Time Capsule! Yes – I had fun with playing with the texts!


What do you think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s