June 7, 1888
Having heard of the marvelous construction of the well at Salem, and knowing the many good qualities of the good citizens of that famous old town, ye editor spent last Thursday there. To write a historical sketch of Salem and do justice to the subject would require page after page, and as our remarks are of a cursory nature, we leave that pleasant task for a future day, and remark with a pencil that
GEN. J. M. RONEY
has just completed a large, handsome brick hotel, which rises upon the ashes of the old hotel. The new one has been christened the "Ragon House," and it is well built, conveniently arranged and furnished in good style and taste. From the dining room, (where we spent a large percent of time) to the parlor, everything is neat, clean and inviting, and "mine host" and his wife make the guests at home.
J. A. FARRIS
whose loss was great by fire, has rebuilt a large brick store house, and has it full of new dry goods, notions, and so forth, and the cleanliness of his stock is refreshing. He is doing a good business and deserves to do so.
J. D. FARRIS
is the principal groceryman, and he carries a large and well selected stock of those goods and has a good trade. Besides his large stock, his fine face and portly form helps him to draw trade. The drug firm of
J. V. HAYDEN & CO.
is composed of Drs. J. V. Hayden and J. D. Threlkeld, who have a large practice, which means that they are popular physicians. They carry a good stock of drugs, and the general appearance of their surroundings shows that they are doing a good business.
has a large stock of general merchandise, and Miss Nettie, the manager, shows a tact and taste in arranging and displaying the goods that is excelled by no one. Those who think a woman can't attend to business, would have their doubts quickly dispelled by calling at Miss Nettie's counter or counting room.
MISS LIZZIE GRASSHAM
has a handsome, well selected, stylish stock of millinery goods, and has spent time in qualifying herself for this business, nor did she spend it to no advantage. She has a fashionable constituency, and never fails to please a customer.
DR. R. SHELBY
has a stock of groceries and drugs, and is not without a good trade. He is a fine physician and surgeon, and will some day be among the best physicians.
"Tom and Jim," have a larger blacksmith and repairing shop than can be found in any three surrounding counties; they are fine mechanics. They handle farm machinery of all kinds, and with the fine agricultural district surrounding Salem, it is a 'matter of course' they do a good business. By industry, combined with brain and muscle, they have succeeded, and are of that class of young men who always make life a success.
the "Village Blacksmith," plys his trade, not "under the spreading chestnut tree," but in his commodious shop, where he has built up a reputation for good work. He has a genial face and a sparkling eye, full of good humor and not wanting determination.
the postmaster, the man who looks for mail for the Joneses, Smithses, 'We-uns,' and our neighbors, and receives the customary abuse when he says, "Nothing," is doing a nice little business in selling and making saddlery, harness, etc. He is a pleasant man, and as popular as any P. M. can be, unless it is one who can furnish mail to every one on every occasion.
Salem has a large flouring mill, now owned by Mitchell & Co. It is doing a fair business and is of great advantage to the town and surrounding country.
There is no myth about the famous well. It is 200 feet deep and has 160 feet of water. At the top you find good limestone water; sink the bucket halfway to the bottom and you draw up pretty fair sulphur water; not as strong as the Crittenden sulphur water, but good; sink the bucket to the bottom and you draw up water unfit to drink, on account of its oily flavor, and after it "sets" a few seconds, little particles of oil gather on the top.
Source: Crittenden Press. (Marion, Ky.) 1879-1907, June 7, 1888, Image 3 - Chronicling America - The Library of Congress.
[My comments are in brackets.]