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Look back: Auburn inmate leaves to fight in WWI
LOOK BACK

Look back: Auburn inmate leaves to fight in WWI

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Oct. 20, 1915

LEAVES PRISON TO BATTLE WITH THE ALLIES

George Gough is 26 and a Giant in Stature Who Says War Fever Has Strengthened His Desire to "Make Good."

Actuated by the love of adventure and the desire to make good and taking with him the physical strength of a young giant and the remembrance of a father who fought all through the Boer War, George Gough, 26 years of age, left Auburn Prison this morning to enlist in the army of Great Britain. He was the first man from Auburn Prison who has joined the colors of his native country across the water, it is believed.

"I'm now given a chance to follow the motto of the Mutual Welfare League," he told a Citizen reporter at the prison gate today, "and I want to make good. If I come out alive, I shall have done it, too. I've no experience at the war game, but I can go in and use my muscle and bone, and spirit and blood, if necessary."

Has Aliases, Too.

In war, young Gough will have a chance to wipe out some of the aliases under which he has been known. Besides his real name he has gone under the caption of George Grouch and Richard Copeland. The youth was received at the prison August 1, 1913, to serve a term of two years and 10 months for grand larceny. He was sentenced in the Court of General Sessions in New York by Judge Swan but owing to good behavior, had seven months and 10 days stricken from his full term. And during the last few months it has seemed that Gough has been almost frantically anxious to maintain perfect conduct, lest a slip at any time take from the time he might be free to fight for his country.

— Compiled by David Wilcox

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One warm summer’s day in 1974, when I was a college kid interning as a cub reporter at what was then known as the Auburn Citizen-Advertiser, I left the paper’s new building on Dill Street in downtown Auburn and walked three blocks to the City Hall on South Street to cover a meeting of the City Council — or, to be technically accurate, the Auburn Urban Renewal Agency, or AURA, which was an offshoot of the council.

  • Updated

One warm summer’s day in 1974, when I was a college kid interning as a cub reporter at what was then known as the Auburn Citizen-Advertiser, I left the paper’s new building on Dill Street in downtown Auburn and walked three blocks to the City Hall on South Street to cover a meeting of the City Council — or, to be technically accurate, the Auburn Urban Renewal Agency, or AURA, which was an offshoot of the council.

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