Would This Be Allowed Today?
by Charles F. Sullivan
Fifty years ago, every vehicle used in this city was moved by man or horse power, while now there is seldom a horse seen in the center of the city, now it is all gasoline or electrical driven.
It was a common sight to see from 25 to 50 cattle driven loose up west Second street with about two men following to see that they went where wanted, and to keep them going along.
The stock yards were located upon the Pennsylvania railroad on Mound street, and as there were many slaughter houses in all parts of the city, the owners would go to the stock yards and buy what he wanted and hire some men to drive them to his place of business.
It was up to the driver to choose his route and he usually got off of Third as quickly as possible, and so when across the Third street bridge they would come north to Second and then east on it. All property had a front fence and usually side fences, so all the cattle man had to do was to keep them going and turn them when necessary. The same was true of hogs but the drivers of them took it slowly and had a horse and wagon following and if one became exhausted, he would be promptly loaded into the wagon and ride the balance of the way.
One day, my brother and I were coming home and after crossing Third street on Charter, there was a large hog running loose belonging to a man doing business upon Third street and my brother gave him a whack with a stick and he made a terrible squeal, and his owner came out.
What he called us, would not sound good but we had important business at home, and were followed by a volley of stones he threw at us.
We owned a cow and kept it in the stable in the rear of 435 W. Second and in the morning after she would be milked, she would be turned out in the alley, to find her eats and drinks for the day, coming back in the evening in time to milk her. Usually she would go to the river where there was plenty of water to drink and in summer would stand in the stream up to her knees to keep the flies away.
Lots of garbage would be thrown into the alley and as she went along she would eat what suited her and leave the rest for the trash men to gather and haul away.
Occasionally she did not get home in time and then it was the duty of us all to go out and hunt and bring her home. Suppose someone would do that now, what would happen?
When I was about half grown, that was all changed and as we had a small lot just west of the levee on First street, three cornered in shape, I built a fence around two sides, the levee furnishing the third side and drove a well there, and then it was my duty to take her there every morning and bring her back at night.
About 1885, we sold the lot to Prof. Roberts who was to fill the ground and so that lot is now about ten feet under the surface of Robert’s boulevard just north of First.
We sold milk to several of the neighbors and seldom did we have more than enough left, for our own use. When we sold the lot we had to sell the cow, and that was the end of live stock in that part of town.
The stock yards were moved from Mound street to Springfield street opposite Woodley road and the cattle are hauled to and from there either by rail or truck, which is much more humane and easier done and the animals in better condition to be slaughtered than when driven until they were exhausted. Also nearly all the slaughter houses have been discontinued and I think there are only three in this city.
Much of the meat used here is shipped here from Chicago, Piqua, Troy or other cities. A youngster of this day, hardly knows what a cow, hog or sheep, looks like, and a load of bulk hay is never seen upon the streets here, yet fifty years ago it was a very common sight.
At this time, all deliveries of any thing is made by auto except a couple of bakeries who still continue with horses, for short deliveries yet using trucks for distance work.
Just after the fair last fall, I saw a late model coupe with a trailer attached, carrying two horses, and going to a greater speed than it would be possible for the horses to go by their own power. Does this not look as though we had gotten away from the horse and buggy days?