Century-old Ti — Winning at Whist

Maury Thompson
2 min readMar 19, 2021

This is the latest in a series of posts about news reported a century ago in the Ticonderoga Sentinel.

On his 88th birthday on Feb. 28, 1921, Mr. Donahue had perfect hearing, good eyesight and good card playing skills, assuming the game was not rigged in his honor.

Donahue won the men’s prize in the whist game at his birthday party.

Mrs. Chester Lamberton won the women’s prize.

Between 30 and 40 people attended, and a daughter-in-law in Buffalo sent two dozen roses.

“The table was perfectly decorated with flowers and ferns,” the Ticonderoga Sentinel reported on March3, 1921.

“He also received about 60 birthday cards, and it was pleasing to note he could read them without the aide of glasses. He is surely a remarkable man for one of his advanced years. His mind is keen, his hearing is perfect, and, aside from being lame, is physically in good condition.”

It wasn’t the only card game in town.

On Feb. 25, office workers of the International Paper Co. mill gathered for an evening of playing whist to bolster their spirits while the mill was shut down.

Marguerite Hanratta won the prize — a cut glass vase.

“If the occasion lacked pleasure, it was not discernable.”

All of the paper mills in Ticonderoga had now closed temporarily because of poor market conditions.

“With the shutting down of the Lower and Chemical mills Monday, paper making in this village came to a complete standstill. Extensive repair work, however, is going on in all of the mills and this gives work to a considerable body of men.”

In other March 3, 1921 Ticonderoga Sentinel news:

The Playhouse was scheduled on March 9 to show the “official’ round-by-round motion picture of the Jack Dempsey vs Bill Brennan boxing match.

“The most sensational heavyweight contest the world has ever known. The knockout shown in detail by three different cameras.”

Tickets, depending on seat location, were 25 cents, 35 cents or 50 cents — the equivalent of $3.59, $5.03 or $7.19 in 2021 dollars.

The White Church correspondent reported: “Alonzo Petty and Scott Davis do not report their usual good luck on their fishing trip of last Monday.”

The Fort Frederick Club raised $139 — the equivalent of $1,997 in 2021 dollars — at a benefit social at Factoryville Hall.

The Ticonderoga High School basket ball team led Shoreham 4–3 at the half, and in “the rudest kind” of turn around , lost the game 17–4.

“They went into a slump in the second period and were unable to score even one point.”

Click here to read the most recent previous post in the series.



Maury Thompson

Freelance history writer and documentary film producer from Ticonderoga, NY