New Year’s Resolutions for 1907

“This is the day that many resolutions are made,” said the Lincoln Evening News on January 1, 1907, “and The News has gathered a few on the fly that may aid in strengthening the wavering backbone of many other citizens who would like to break away from habits that are embarrassing and detrimental to their material progress.”

Some Lincoln citizens interviewed by the News planned a change in clothing style. Frank Zehrung said, “I have decided to quit wearing red vests. I confess that I am fond of them, but some of my friends strenuously object and you may say that I have cut out this scarlet waistcoat.” Secretary Whitten promised to “swear off from wearing patent leathers. I have had a weakness for wearing patent leather shoes since my boyhood, but I have never been able to secure a pair that did not crack and here is where I quit.”

Still others decided to change personal habits. A. R. Talbott told the News, “One of the drawbacks to success in life is getting up late in the morning and I am it. Hereafter I shall rise one hour earlier. Think of the sunrises that I have missed by an inexcusable habit.” Judge W. H. England asked, “Do you think that I laugh too much? Well, I have come to the conclusion that I do and during this year you will find that I will not uncork my laugh quite as often as I have in the past.” W. C. Frampton planned to “cut out discussing political questions in chop houses. Several times I have become the storm center of a lot of fellows who hung around me and would not allow me to eat my dinner because I started something about politics.”

Hunting was mentioned by several men interviewed. Harry Harley said, “I have grown too fond of hunting and have made a strong resolution to do less trekking on the Lancaster county moors hereafter. You would be surprised if you knew how much money I spent in 1906 for cartridges.” Deputy County Clerk Doug Frye promised to stop spinning tall tales of his hunting prowess: “Nearly all of the tall hunting stories have been laid at my door. I admit that I have told a few, but I am not the only drop in the ink bottle. Hereafter . . . I shall tell no more hunting tales. If you hear a fellow saddle one on me call his bluff.”

Diet and exercise were also the subjects of New Year’s resolutions. Ralph Johnson “resolved to reduce my weight. You have, perhaps, noticed that I was rather stout. I shall take gymnasium work, and cut down my grocery and meat bill.” W. H. Dorgan said, “My friends have told me that I am growing rather stout and need to stretch my legs more. I have resolved to walk more in 1907, and give some other fellow a chance to hold down standing room in the street cars.” G. E. Hager “resolved to ride a bicycle exclusively in 1907,” but Colonel Bills preferred another form of transportation: “I have never been able to understand why Lincoln business and professional men do not take more horseback rides. As for me, I have sworn to ride more during 1907 than I have during any year of my life. Watch my smoke hereafter.”

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