True stories of old Houston and Houstonians: historical and personal sketches / by S. O. Young. Page: 149
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HOUSTON AND HOUSTONIANS 149
went through the whole run without any of the other conductors
knowing he was there. He went to the division superintendent's
office, made his report and turned over about $600 in cash.
Now, according to the rules adopted by the regular conductors,
the railroad should have received only about $150 for that run.
The superintendent asked many questions and when he found
that there had been no convention, picnic or anything of that
kind and that it was just an ordinary run, he reported the matter
to the president of the road by wire, and within an hour
or two every conductor on that division was out of a job.
Of course, the street car drivers had no picnic like the big.
conductors did, but they managed to hold up their end of the
line pretty well. In place of nickels, the street car companies
issued tickets, and these passed everywhere just as actual
nickels or five-cent pieces would do. Once I was on the old
fair grounds car when several railroad men were in the cai
One of them, a long-legged fellow they called Judge, went forward
and was soon busily engaged in a conversation with the driver.
One of the others said: "I'll bet Judge is telling that fellow to
rob that box." We slipped up closer where we could hear the
conversation and sure enough he was. Here was what he was
saying: "Catch a young grasshopper and tie a thread round his
wings, leaving the legs free. Then lower him carefully into the
box. The minute he touches bottom he will grab onto everything
in his reach and you can't shake him loose. Then all you got
to do is to haul him out, clean his feet and drop him back again.
You can empty that box of every ticket in it in a few minutes."
I never had a chance to find out if the driver followed his
advice or not, but I suspecthe did, for I noticed he kept a good
lookout on each side of his track after that, evidently fearing
that some fool grasshopper might come out of the grass and
attempt to cross the track.
Now when I began to write this I intended to point out that
in the "good old times," it took as long to go from Preston
Avenue to the fair grounds and return, on the old mule car,
as it takes to go from here to Galveston on the Interurban.
There were several other points I wanted to make, all going to
show what humbugs the "good old times" are, but I got switched
off on the north end conductors and the Judge's grasshopper anq
have used up all my space talking about them, so I will have to
postpone my comparisons until some other time.
YELLOW FEVER EPIDEMIC.
HE present agitation over meningitis reminds me of
some of the really.exciting times they used to have in
Houston when that great enemy, yellow fever, made an
invasion. For the first few days pandemonium broke loose, and
then people settled down and waited, in grim desperation, for
Here’s what’s next.
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Young, Samuel Oliver. True stories of old Houston and Houstonians: historical and personal sketches / by S. O. Young., book, 1913; Galveston, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth24646/m1/149/: accessed January 18, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .