Saturday, November 17, 2007

Bethany Beach Water Department

Bethany Beach was found in 1901 as a Summer Camp Meeting spot for the Disciples of Christ. The Water Treatment Class, I am attending, had a field trip to the Bethany Beach Water Department today. Below are photos of their system.


Bethany Beach Water Department is located on the west side of Route 1 on Collins Street, it is surrounded by homes. The current facility was built in 1992. The engineers were Davis, Bowen and Friedel. Since it is Summer beach community the demand for water will go from 1.4 million gallons a day in the summer down to 100,000 gallons per day in the winter. A three man crew handles the water department including meter reading.

The tour was given by Ron Foreman, head of the Bethany Beach water Department. This is our group at one of the five wells that serve Bethany Beach. Ron Foreman is to the left and Anita Beckel, our instructor, is in the center. Bethany has an iron problem. their well puts out about 14 parts per million of iron.

The water will enter an aerator (the green box in the left corner). This will introduce air into the water and oxidize the iron. It will also help remove hydrogen sulfide(that rotten egg smell)and increase the pH of the water.

Chemicals are mixed with the water to help make the iron and other material clump up and the water sits in this clarifer until the material settles to the bottom.

Clarifier with Anita Beckel and Ron Foreman.

Watching the clear water roll over the weir.

The clumped up material from the clarifier is pumped to a Sludge pond.

The Chemical Shed, it holds the potassium permanganate and Polyaluminium chloride used to help remove the iron and precusors that form trihalomethane later when mixed with chlorine.

Bethany Beach uses Accu tab to disinfect the water. This is the Control Panel.

Ron Foreman said that because the water treatment plant was located in a developed area they did not want to use chlorine gas, due to the dangers of gas. The type of chlorine they use is produced by putting tablets in the Chlorinator and water is sprayed across the tablet and mixed with the water. This will disinfect the water. There is not a chlorine smell when you stand next to the unit.

As you can see the chlorinator also makes a great arm rest.

The tablets come in 55 pound Buckets. Ron Foreman said he has encounters problems with PPG Industries manufacturing standards for the tablets and this has caused problems.

The water is filtered thru Four Greensand Filters to remove iron etc.

Bethany Beach adds Sodium Fluoride to their water. The State requires municipalities to add fluoride to their water. It does not require private water systems to do so. Fluoride is supposedly good for children's teeth but as people become adults it does not have much of an effect. In fact in older people the fluoride will cause bones to become more brittle. Bethany Beach has no schools on it's systems, for the most part their population is older adults, those children that do come to Bethany are on vacation and are only there for a week or so, so why does Bethany need to have fluoride in their water?

This is Bethany Beach's One Million Gallon Standpipe

For an idea of Bethany Beach Water quality click on Water Quality Report

The State of Delaware put them on the State Drinking water alert For Trihalomethanes Trihalomethanes is a compound that forms when natural organic substances from decaying vegetation and soil reacts with chlorine. The potassium Permanganate fed into the system is suppose to act as an oxidant on the humic and fulvic acids from the decaying vegetation and soil and allow chlorine to be used later in the system.

An entertaining history of Bethany Beach

The Death of Riley W. Adkins in 1944


Riley W. Adkins, who ran a well known and successful general store in Delmar, died on November 15th, 1944. He had been in business in Delmar for 35 years. He was a member of Delmar Lodge No. 582 Loyal Order of the Moose and of Wicomico Tribe No. 13, Improved Order of Red Men. He was the son of John Adkins.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Wi-Middle Drama Club


I went to Wicomico Middle School tonight to watch a sanitized more politically correct version of Huck Finn, called "Huck Finn's High Tailin Adventures". Middle School Drama is always difficult what with the range of ages and the age of the students. I think Allison Pullen, Colin Dennis, Jamie Goslee, Blake Barrett Yein Ha, and Jenna Miles gave excellent performances for their age.

Hoffman-La Roche Announces Plant 1962

In 1962 the Agriculture Division of Hoffman-La Roche Inc of Nutley, N. J. announced it was leasing an 11,200 square foot concrete block warehouse in Delmar, Delaware to serve the boiler and East Coast livestock Industries. A 1,600 square foot two story wing will be added to the warehouse for a lunchroom, offices, weighting and labeling. The blended vitamins produced by the plant will be marketed under the Ray Ewing Company subsidiary of the Hoffman-La Roche Agricultural division.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Maryland School Armistice Day Program

From the November 15, 1938 edition of the Bi-State Weekly

ARMISTICE DAY PROGRAMS AT MD. SCHOOL

The Maryland High School enjoyed a program on the afternoon of November 11th, presented by the seniors. This program was dedicated to those who have given their efforts and even their lives for one of the greatest forces of democracy - Freedom of Speech. The program was presented in the form of a radio script and all the members of the class took part.

The cast was as follows:
Announcer .......Norman Hancock
Socrates.........Lloyd McClaine
Savonarois.......Edward Culver
Moderator........Robert Lecates
Miles Standish...Clayton Cugler
Parson Brown.....Bobby Vincent
Sam Adams........Lloyd McCains
Gov. Hutchinson..William Ellis
Paul Revere......Lloyd McCains
Major Otis.......George Elliott
Garrison.........Edwin Kircher
Labor leader.....Norman Hancock

Other members of the cast supplied the voices of the crowd.

Many of the former graduates of the school, as well as many parents and patrons of the school enjoyed the program with the pupils of the High School.

Following the High School program the pupils of the seventh grade gave the following program with the elementary school and several parents as an audience:

Song: America; Bible reading; 122nd psalm followed by prayer, Adelia Waller recited "Armistice Day Vision".

A short play entitled "Mary Peace Club" was presented by the following cast;
Mary......Jean Hastings
Peggy.....Mary Ellen Hearn
Betty.....Betty Blades
Tom.......Russel Kerley
Ted.......Merrill Nichols
Bink......Alvin Culver

This play was about six friends who wanted to do something to help promote world peace.

The program was closed by singing "America, the Beautiful".

Delmar Planning and Zoning

The Delmar Planning and Zoning Meeting was held tonight, all members except Ed Ferro was present. Among the item discussed;

F P Barnard, John Middleton and Tracy Middleton of J & F Contractors presented plans for a two story home (24' by 28') they plan to build at 410 East State street. There was a house there before and it was torn down. After some discussion approval was given with contingent that they would provide a better plat, add an additional window, and a few other cosmetic changes.

Ralph Krum of RK Real estate representing Alex Navarro and Maria Arias, who have a house at 412 E. Walnut, requested a positive recommendation from Planning and Zoning for the Maryland Board of Zoning Appeals to have the addition on their house considered a rental property. At some point in the history of the property a mother-In_Law apartment was added to the existing house. The Navarro's want to make it a rental apartment. Planning and Zoning gave them a favorable recommendation.

Debbie Huddleston presented a draft of the Well Head Protection Ordinance. After much discussion it was agreed it needed a lot more work.

The December Planning and Zoning meeting date has been changed to December 11th. Two developers who hope to develop the land recently annexed in to town off of Stage Road on the Delaware side of town will be there to present plans for their developments.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

1984 Wicomico BOE votes to close Sharptown School

Today in 1984 the Wicomico County Board of Education approved the recommendation of Evelyn Holman to close the Sharptown Elementary School. Only William G. Duvall voted against this recommendation. The date of June 1986 was set for the closing date.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Top Hat Cafe Robber

In Today's Daily Times was an article about a robbery at the Top Hat Cafe. A masked man wielding a handgun demanded the purses of two people at the Top Hat cafe at 7 PM Wednesday night. He was wearing an orange mask, blue jacket, jeans and black shoes.

It is a dead give a way, the guy must have been local as he was dressed in Wildcat colors.

Upcoming Meetings

Tuesday, November 13th 6:30 PM Sussex County Council Meeting

Thursday November 15th, 7:00 PM Delmar Planning and Zoning

Saturday, November 17th, 10:00 AM Delmar Police Abandon Vehicle Auction changed from Oct 27th

Blog Reading Level

There is a Blog Reading Level website called the blog readability test . It determines what level of education is required to understand your blog. Just enter the URL of the blog you want to test. I won't say what level my blog came in at(somewhere between Redneck to Mensa).

Sunday, November 11, 2007

The Wasted Lives on Armistice Day

Today in 1918 at 11 AM an armistice went into effect to stop the fighting in World War I. The Armistice however had been signed at 5:10 AM that morning and in order to ensure the word reached everyone that the fighting should stop, a time of 11 AM (The eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month), was selected for a cease fire. Between 5:10 AM until 11 AM that morning close to eleven thousand troops would die or be wounded in battle knowing that if they could make it to 11 AM they would live. A Stupid, Stupid waste of lives, all because the allied generals (not the Germans this time) wanted to gain as much land as possible before the fighting stopped. They had an outlook of there is no glory in not fighting, only in fighting, of course they weren't the ones in the trenches or going "over the hill".

Nine out of 16 American divisions allowed the scheduled attacks on Germany positions to proceed that day until 11 AM. Artillery batteries fired their cannons until 11 AM in order not to have left over unused artillery shells. General John Joseph “Black Jack” Pershing was the American General in charge of the American troops and he ordered the fighting to continue until 11 AM.

As Laurence Vance said in an article; If the fighting had stopped at 5:10 then there might be around today some descendants of George Price, the last Canadian killed in the war, G. E. Ellison, the last Briton killed in the war, Joseph Trebuchon, the last Frenchman killed in the war, and Henry Gunther, the last American killed in the war. Henry Gunther died one minute before the armistice took effect. A VFW post in Baltimore honors his memory.

A good book on this armistice day fiasco is "Eleventh Month, Eleventh Day, Eleventh Hour: Armistice Day, 1918 World War I and Its Violent Climax" by Joseph E. Persico.

A good PBS interview with him about the book and day is at interview with Joseph Persico

1983 Pennsylvania Ave Arrests

Excerpt from The Leader and State Register August 29, 1983

Ten persons were arrested on Pennsylvania Avenue in Delmar, Friday night as part of an ongoing effort to "clean up downtown."

Police Chief Hunter Nelms said an undercover police officer observing the area from a vantage point between 10 P. M. and midnight aided police in the arrests.

"No matter what it takes, we're going to make a concentrated effort to get downtown in shape," Nelms said. "Whether they're smoking a joint or littering, we are going to let them know they can't do it here."

Arrested and fined were Timothy Moore,23, of South Memorial Drive, Delmar, MD, drinking in public; Robert D. Parsons,24, 204 S. Maryland Ave, Delmar, MD, drinking in public;

Thomas A. Austin, 19, 100 E. Delaware Ave., Delmar, DE, disorderly conduct; Darrell G. Downes, 20, 8 Delaware Ave., Delmar, DE, disorderly conduct;

Daniel V. Graves, age unavailable, Northwood Drive, Salisbury, MD disorderly conduct; Wayne B. Jones, 19, 9 W. East St. Delmar, MD, littering,

Howard W. Hall, 56, RD 1, Salisbury, disorderly conduct; Terry D. Force, 21, 603 E. Pine St, Delmar, MD , disorderly conduct;

Richard B. Curtis, age unavailable, 205 N. Second St. Delmar, DE, possession of an alcoholic beverage by a minor and consumption of alcohol in a public place.

Charged and awaiting a court hearing is Steve Searcey, 18, 100 W. East st. Delmar, MD, littering and disorderly conduct.

Police said they will make additional arrests in conjunction with Friday night's stake out.

Mary Mallon



Mary Mallon was born on September 23, 1869 in Cookstown, Ireland, at the age of 15 she immigrated to America where she found employment as a domestic servant and cook. She changed jobs often, due to her temper and the general prejudice against single Irish woman working as domestics. A trail of sickness was following her from job to job however. From 1900 to 1907 she worked at 8 jobs and 27 people became ill and one died from typhoid fever. George Soper,an engineer with Typhoid fever experience, tracked a typhoid problem to Mary. He turned the case over to the New York Health Department. The health department determined Mary was a carrier of Typhoid even though she did not display symptoms of the disease. She was locked up in isolation for three years. The Health department released her in 1910 making her sign a document saying she would not work as a cook again. Though commonly known at the time that typhoid could be spread by water or food products, people who are infected by the typhoid bacillus could also pass the disease from their infected stool onto food via unwashed hands. For this reason, infected persons who were cooks (like Mary Mallon) or food handlers had the most likelihood of spreading the disease. No doubt part of the reason for those signs in the restrooms of restaurants that say Employees must wash their hands.

In 1915 Mary Mallon was found to be working as a cook again when 25 people became ill in Sloane Maternity Hospital in Manhattan. Mary was sent to North Brother Island, part of Riverside Hospital, where she would stay imprisoned for the next 23 years. She died on November 11, 1938 at the age of 69 from pneumonia. Her body was cremated. In her lifetime she caused 47 illnesses and 3 deaths.

During her lifetime and after her death she left many questions about the rights a state has to imprison someone without a trial nor breaking any laws. Today we are so accustom to imprisonment without trial we would not even raise an eyebrow. She was best known by the nickname the press gave her of Typhoid Mary.