Old St. Andrews



Humour in the "St. Andrews Standard"




Humour in the "Standard"

March 11, 1842
Too Good to Be Lost
Two gay companions driving towards the pretty little town of ------ on a fine morning a few days ago espied a well dressed female walking some little distance before them on the road. One of them, (who we shall call X) says to the other, “I know that person well, she is a d—d fine girl—I am very intimate with her.” “Who is she? who is she?” inquired his friend Y, just as they were about overtaking the lady in question; who, looking round at the moment, discovered an African countenance of the deepest hue! Y’s laugh was in no way measured—while X, exclaimed, “laugh d—n you laugh will you?” And many a good laugh has Y and his friend at X, and his intimacy with the lady of colour.


Sept 14/1843
Death of Extraordinary talking raven, 28 years old, owned by Mr. John Binge, of Grove Park. "could talk as plainly as any man, so far as his knowledge extended. In point of imitation he was inimitable, and could mimic anything he every heard. Like many others of his tribe, eh was often exceedingly mischievous, but generally amusing. But his masterpiece was the correct repetition of the Lord's Prayer, which for emphasis and distinct enunciation would have done no discredit to many a village schoolmaster."


July 2/1845
Horoscopes: Life fates for people born in a given month. Eg: June: The man born now will be of a small stature, passionately fond of women and children, but will not be loved in return. The lady will be a giddy person and fond of coffee; she will marry at the age of 21, and be a fool at 45.


July 21, 1852
We found the following jeu d’esprit in our “communication box.”
For the Standard
A Seasonable Rhyme for Children of larger growth.
The Market House Bell hath a tongue, and it speaketh to his Comrade the clock.


Dickory! Dickory! Dock!
A word with you friend Clock;
Tell me I pray, the time of day,
Dickory! Dickory! Dock!


Ding! Ding! Dong!
Don’t you hear my mellifluous gong?
Which ascends to the sky from my turret on high?
Ding! Ding! Dong!


Dickory! Dickory! Dock!
What! not answer me friend Clock?
As you asleep? Let’s have a peep,
Dickory! Dickory! Dock!


Ding! Ding! Dong
Ah! Now I see what’s wrong,
Oh! Shame on the Town, to let you run down
Ding! Ding! Dong.


Dickory! Dickory! Dock!
Where’s he who winds thee, Clock?
Three Pounds a year, is lost I fear!
Dickory! Dickory! Dock!


Ding! Ding! Dong.
I should not stand it long,
Petition the town to take you down
Ding! Ding! Dong.


A “still, small voice” from the clock replieth—
I have no time friend Bell to speak
With three just now, wait till next week.


July 8/1863
A Rich Joke.
A party of ladies and gentlemen from St. Andrews proceeded on a moonlight aquatic excursion lat week. The wind died away and the vessel became encalmed off Robbinston, at rather a late hour. the party proceeded on shore, and with fife and rum marched up the street, to the no small consternation of sundry inhabitants, who were awoke from their slumbers, under the impression, that a raid by the Confederates, had been made upon them, for the purpose of sacking and destroying the village. After some little time had elapsed, and no harm was done, the people returned to the slumbers,--to dream of Lecs, Jacksons, Ewells and Johnstons.


Sept 23/1863
A smart trick--a woman disguised as a colored person went into one of the stores in town a few evenings ago, and said a lady with whom she lived sent her for some crockery ware; the lad selected the ware and the woman took it away; after she had gone someone I the store remarked her arms were white. This awakened the suspicions of the land and he at once went to the house where the woman resides, and ascertained that he had been swindled, as she had not sent for the articles. As the person who committed the act is known, and will be compelled to return the articles, her name is withheld for the present.


Nov 11/1863
Look here. South Side, Market Square:--
I shave the old, the young, and the grey,
Their head or face for ready pay;
By morning sun, or evening light,
I'm always sure to do it right.
My razors are sharp, shears not bad,
All is ready to be had.
I wish to please you, one and all,
So come, my friends, please come and call.
--W. O. McMichael
[Mr. McMichael was black; see the recollections of “A Native Son,” Courier, March 30, 1933]


Aug 4, 1874
It is much to be deplored that there is a disposition to use, eye, and even to publish slang phrases, when plain and pure Saxon would not only be more euphonious but correct. It is nothing uncommon to hear such terms as he “runs” that shop, or hotel, or business. And “go for him” answers all sorts of purposes other than the true meaning. “Not much,’ “that’s so,” and “you’re whistling, etc.,” may be heard at any hour, and used by persons supposed to possess a fair education. The fact is, without being hypocritical, they should at once use a slang dictionary, instead of the good old fashioned Walker, Webster or Worcester, if they indulge in such expressions.


Sept 9/1874
During the past few weeks a number of shows and Entertainments were held here by Americans, and two thirds of them were as great humbugs as ever exhibited anywhere. Their flaming placards worded in the most bombastic style, attracted people to their exhibitions, who were disappointed and disgusted—particularly at the deception openly practiced by those who advertised “Gift Entertainments—no humbug—everyone received a gift”, according to the number of their ticket. In one instance a few paltry gifts were given away when numbers were called out which had not bee issued. In a hall that will not contain more than 300, the folly of calling no. 450, 520 or 630 is apparent, that people saw at once that the Yankee claptrap had deceived them. We hope they will profit by the lessons at the expense of 20 cents.