Crime and punishment — old-school style — comes to light - Etcetera - 9/3/13


‘If he has a conscience he will suffer for his mistake. That will be punishment — as well as the prison.”

— Fyodor Dostoevsky, “Crime and Punishment,” Chapter 19.

Incarceration was never an option for misbehaving Walla Walla High School classmates. Interesting, though, are sentencing options meted out by the student-directed Judicial Board of Control that oversaw infractions in the early part of the last century.

Retired Whitman College librarian Joe Drazan came across a fascinating, original, handwritten ledger from Wa-Hi, circa 1918-1920, which lists rules students broke and ensuing reparations, as well as a Student Handbook for 1927.

“I quickly digitized the whole thing,” said Joe, who has documented countless newspaper photos, articles and advertisements compiled in DVD format and available at area libraries as a fundraiser.

“Many names you will recognize as somebody’s grandfather or other known figure in town,” he noted.

Perusing the information, Joe observed that students most often offended common sensibilities during weekly auditorium assemblies. “Talking, whispering, passing notes, climbing over the seats, carving in the seats. Study hall and hallways were monitored closely for the same plus for running and standing (loitering, I presume).”

“‘Puppy Love’ is an offense I have not figured out yet, but may be tantamount to today’s public displays of affection — PDAs — (if they even call them that anymore). Flirting is mentioned only once separately, so Puppy Love must be more serious and common.”

Another offense is lockstepping in the halls, and walking more than three abreast was considered a no-no. Boys and girls got in trouble for matching pennies, a serious violation.

Joe said punishments included seating in “criminal row” at assemblies, assignment to the “Pest room” (detention?), changing study halls (relocating), learning and reciting multiple lines of poetry and writing essays.

To see more of Joe’s work, go to

With interesting finds you’d like to share or to ask questions, email Joe at

Leslie and Russell Kroum were in the right place at the right time when they came upon an injured dog in desperate shape that strayed into their Hilltop Acres yard off Stateline Road.

The wee guy that Leslie says appears to be a purebred 5-year-old Lhasa apso “had really given up living when he finally let us catch him.”

He’d been spotted in the neighborhood for about three days when Leslie saw him walk out of their garage side-by-side with Mel, their female tortoiseshell cat.

“At one point he gave up running from us and we found him lying under a bush. We were able to pick him up. My (firefighter) husband helped assess his injuries and felt he was savable so I contacted a vet on call” said Leslie, a school counselor who commutes to Kennewick and is a dog trainer on the side.

The Kroums dubbed him Pirate, as one of his severely damaged eyes needed to be surgically extracted.

The canine also needed sedation and medication to remove maggots from his wounds and lab work to determine damage to any internal organs from being in the elements, she said.

“Our local shelter or community support is the only hope for this little fella. We just need to let the community know to help donate to our local organizations for situations such as this so our fur buddies can continue to be taken care of,” Leslie said.

Friends and acquaintances have already been contributing funds for Pirate’s care.

Russell took Pirate to the shelter after an overnight stay with the Kroums. At Animal Clinic East, Pirate’s eye was removed, his wounds cleansed, ears voided of cheatgrass and body hair totally shaved off because it was matted beyond redemption.

“His prognosis is great,” Leslie added. The Kroums are fostering him as he heals, helping keep watch on the drains in and around his injured eye area. “Everyone who handles him says he is a doll,” she said.

“The shelters have emergency funds for this sort of thing but you can see how one surgery can deplete that fund,” she added. To that end, Leslie posted the circumstances on Facebook at Leslie Stubbs Kroum and a local business owner sent out a challenge to match his $100 donation. A California business owner responded with a match. “I think there is both an awareness opportunity here and a civic opportunity,” Leslie said. Donations may be made to Blue Mountain Humane Society, 7 E. George St.

Leslie plans to do follow-up care and training, using the power of her dog pack to help him get comfortable with the loss of his eye. She will guide him with light leash pressure and release to encourage him to get familiar with walking on a lead, as he appeared skittish earlier. “He will be crate trained and obviously is good around cats,” she added. He will be adoptable as soon as he heals. Direct adoption inquiries to Michelle Miller at BMHS, 525-2452.

Etcetera appears in daily and Sunday editions. Annie Charnley Eveland can be reached at or afternoons at 526-8313.


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