March 23, 1921: Evolution 'awfully hard' on a man's figure
March 24, 2012 — 5:14pm
A “Detroit scientist” shared his bizarre theories on the front page of the Minneapolis Tribune:
First 24 Million Years Going to Be Awfully Hard on Man’s Figure
After That He’ll Be 132 Inches Tall, Have Legs Like Pipe Stems, Says Scientist.
Universal News Service
Detroit, March 22. – Man is growing so big that in time he will have to get off the earth.
He will be in the same class with the dinosaurs and the mammoth white elephant and other prehistoric elephants.
So maintains Levi S. Gardner, Detroit scientist, inventor of the ball-bearing typewriter, the electric gun and student of evolution.
“Men will be 132 inches tall in 24,000,000 years and in a few more million he’ll be too large to live on the earth; there won’t be enough food to sustain him,” Gardner said today.
He says future man will have a spine resembling a circus pole in length.
“The automobile is lengthening men’s spines,” Gardner stated, “and it is shortening his legs. If people ride around in autos for a few million years their legs will be about the size of pipe-stems and won’t be strong enough to support the rest of the body, which will grow larger as the legs grow shorter. Men of the future will have broader shoulders and bigger heads.”
Gardner maintains that it is the jouncing of the automobile which so affects the spine. Auto manufacturers here threaten to sue him for libeling the auto industry.
Prohibition and other efforts to take temptation away from the people, if persisted in, means that the race will be eliminated before its time, according to Gardner.
Paul C. Buetow, the proud owner of a new Ford, seemed happy enough in this 1921 photo. If only he knew what a few years behind the wheel would do to his great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-grandchildren. (Photo courtesy mnhs.org)
Sample Minnesota newspaper articles, photos and ads dating back more than 140 years. Fresh items are posted weekly. Go here for tips on how to track down old newspaper articles on your own. Follow the blog on Twitter. Or check out "Minnesota Mysteries," a new book based on the blog.
Email your questions or suggestions to Ben Welter.
Daniel Hoyt telephoned City Clerk Knott yesterday that he had shot a coyote "at 30 rods" from his house, 395 Twenty-third avenue southeast, and that he would appear soon at the city hall to claim a bounty of $7.50.
Before Fixit, there was Mr. Fixit, a quirky amalgam of Dear Abby, Google and T.D. Mischke. He deftly answered questions about food stains, home repair and city ordinances. But he also offered advice to the lovelorn and offbeat philosophical musings. And if you had a question of an extremely personal nature, he'd send you a response by mail, provided you sent him a stamped, self-addressed envelope. An interactive feature of the first order!
Thanks to Prohibition, criminal gangs plagued the Twin Cities in the 1920s and '30s. A corrupt St. Paul Police Department provided safe haven to gangsters and crooks of the era, as long as they agreed to stay out of trouble while in the city. The task of keeping the bad boys in line fell to "Dapper Dan" Hogan, a speakeasy owner and underworld leader. On December 4, 1928, Hogan, "whose word was known to be law among many criminals," was killed by a car bomb in the garage behind his St. Paul home. Rival gangsters were the likely culprits, but his murder was never officially solved.
"Women of the flats stood guard over their thresholds while police attempted to eject them for failure to pay rent on the grounds on which the dwellings stand. A near-riot was halted when a second court order was served on police, ordering a stay of the ejections."
"The designs this year," said a dealer in speaking of the trade, "are if anything, prettier than ever; everything runs to flowers, the old style of paper lace with bleeding hearts and dagger accompaniments have almost gone out of date. Some of the more elaborate like this one (holding up a magnificent design of plush) come us high as $20, but a girl has got to be pretty solid to receive as costly a token as this."