Tuesday, April 06, 2004

If you didn't read about the history of Laurel in The Billings Gazette's Explore Laurel section on Sunday, you should dig up a copy (I couldn't find it on the web). The article, ostensibly provided by the Laurel Chamber of Commerce, makes many amazing claims, among them:
-- The Laurel area originally was occupied by the Nanticoke Indians.
-- The area was claimed by both Maryland and Pennsylvania's Penn family until 1775.
-- Laurel was once home to the world's largest manufacturer of baskets.
-- Old Christ Church, built in 1771-1772 (before Lewis and Clark!), stands one mile east of Laurel.
-- A nearby cable ferry was once a station along the Underground Railroad and the center of operations for a hated slave trader.
This is little-known information that you wouldn't even find in the Montana News Association. But as a lengthy correction in today's issue notes, the Gazette won't stand behind this story, and it apologizes for any "confusion" it may have caused. The Chamber of Commerce apparently was in Laurel, Delaware, and the editor in charge, if any, not only didn't edit the story but never even glanced at it.
Guess I'll be changing my summer vacation plans to the East Coast.

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